Astronomers from the universities of Hertfordshire and Kent have received a grant which will allow them to map large areas of the sky 1000 times faster than with current technology.
The universities, in conjunction with the University of British Columbia and the Joint Astronomy Centre, have been awarded 1,500 hours of observation and survey time on the James Clerk Maxwell Telescope (JCMT) at the Mauna Kea Observatories in Hawaii. The award, which is part of the JCMT Major Legacy Surveys, has been valued by the Particle Physics and Astronomy Research Council (PPARC) at £2.1 million.
The study, which will begin in 2006 and end in 2011 and is known as SASSy (SCUBA-2 All-Sky Survey), intends to search a large fraction of the sky for unknown and invisible star-forming clouds and galaxies. A new £12 million SCUBA-2 camera within the telescope will allow the academics to access the cold hidden universe of distant dusty star-forming galaxies and nearby cold star-forming clouds.
Helene Murphy | alfa
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