European ARC Announcements

European ARC Announcements are provided by ESO and the European ALMA Nodes that together make up the European ALMA Regional Centre Network.

ALMA Band 2 Contracts Signed

Published: 15 May 2020

The contract has been signed for the production of the final set of receivers to be installed on the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA). Of the originally foreseen ten receiver bands, eight have already been installed, and the ninth, Band 1, is currently in production in East-Asia. Now, contracts have been signed to start the production of the final band in the original ALMA definition —  Band 2, led by ESO. Exceeding the originally defined frequency range for this Band (67-90 GHz), the proposed receiver will operate at the full 67-116 GHz frequency window. The hugely successful Band 3 receiver has already opened up the 84-116 GHz frequency range years ago, but the new Band 2 will allow for observations across the entire 67-116 GHz atmospheric window using a single receiver. The project will involve multiple international partners as detailed below.

ALMA and La Silla Paranal Data Jointly Accessible from the ESO Archive Science Portal

Published: 10 May 2020

ALMA data products have been integrated into the ESO Archive Science Portal along with data products from the La Silla Paranal Observatory (including APEX). Millions of datasets can be browsed jointly through a uniform set of query items, providing a unique integrated panchromatic view of the southern hemisphere extending from the near-ultraviolet to millimetre wavelengths. Queries can be carried out interactively through a web application which presents the results on the celestial sphere and provides aggregate and detailed individual information, or via direct database and Virtual Observatory access for programmatic, recurring and/or massive queries. The selected data can then be downloaded from the respective portals for ALMA and ESO. In this initial phase content from the ALMA Archive Interface is synchronised every two weeks, with the cadence progressively increasing with time.

Update on the Status of ALMA Cycles 7 and 8

Published: 24 Apr 2020

On behalf of the ALMA Director, with support from all Executives, the recent decisions taken regarding the status of Cycle 7 and Cycle 8 are as follows:

  • The start of ALMA Cycle 8 has been postponed until 2021 October. It is anticipated that the Cycle 8 Call for Proposals will open again in 2021 March.
  • ALMA Cycle 7 will continue through 2021 September, with currently non-completed projects ranked A, B and C remaining in the observing queue.

ALMA Cycle 8 Call for Proposals Suspended due to COVID-19

Published: 17 Apr 2020

The COVID-19 crisis has continued to affect the global community, including ALMA users and staff. ALMA operations remain suspended, as announced on March 20. Under these difficult and unprecedented circumstances, the ALMA Director, with support from all Executives, has decided to suspend the submission of Cycle 8 proposals until further notice. The Cycle 8 proposal submission server will be closed as of 15:00UT on Friday, 17 April, 2020.

Job Advertisement at ESO: Software Engineer for the ALMA Science Archive

Published: 15 Apr 2020

ESO is looking for a software engineer to join the Data Flow Infrastructure (DFI) group in the Science Operations Software (SCS) department of the Directorate of Engineering. The DFI group is responsible for the development and maintenance of software tools which are critical for the end-to-end operations of the ESO observatories.

The deadline for applications is the 17th of May. More information and instructions on how to apply are provided on the recruitment portal.

Delivery of calibrated datasets upon request

Published: 09 Apr 2020

The EU ARC has implemented a service which permits ALMA users to request the calibrated data for a given dataset (Member Obs Unit Set, MOUS) to be made available for download. The service is open both for ALMA PIs or Delegees with proprietary ALMA data and for archival users wanting to use datasets for which the proprietary time has expired.

Release of Band-to-Band High-Frequency Long-Baseline ALMA Test Data

Published: 08 Apr 2020

ALMA is releasing data acquired as part of the Extension and Optimisation of Capabilities effort (EOC). These data were taken as part of the High-Frequency Long-Baseline Campaign (HF-LBC-2017) during Cycle 5, which was organised to test the calibration and imaging capability of ALMA at high-frequencies (>284GHz, Band 7) and using long baselines (>8.5km).

Extension of Proprietary Times

Published: 01 Apr 2020

Due to the COVID-19 crisis and its impact on the global astronomical community, the ALMA Director has made the following decision regarding proprietary times of ALMA data sets.

The proprietary period of all MOUSs that have been delivered to principle investigators (PIs), but have not become public on 19 March 2020, will be extended by three months. This implies that the proprietary period of all these ALMA data will effectively be set to 15 months, or nine months for DDT projects. 19 March was the last day that ALMA was observing before Cycle 7 observations were suspended.

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