|One of the ATCA science drivers, identified by the user
community, is the study of "Galaxy Formation and Evolution" in strong partnership
with the Australian SKA Pathfinder (ASKAP). Three key areas are:
The very short baselines between antennas, achieved by locating the 22-m dishes of the
Australia Telescope Compact Array (ATCA) very close to each other, allow the mapping of
very low-surface brightness atomic and molecular hydrogen via the HI and CO spectral
lines. Longer baselines filter out the diffuse emission and often provide an incomplete
picture. The HI 21-cm line is used to map gas in relatively nearby galaxies while
red-shifted CO lines can be used to map the gas in much more distant galaxies. Four of the
six ATCA dishes are shown in the photo above. - For more information see the ATCA Future
Science Plan on the ATUC pages.
- high-resolution mapping of the gas and dark matter in galaxies
- characterising black holes, quasars and radio galaxies
- low-surface brightness HI and CO mapping of nearby and distant galaxies, respectively.