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20th of September 2021
The VAST Pilot Survey
by Murphy et al.
The ASKAP Variables and Slow Transients Survey (VAST) is designed to detect highly variable and transient radio sources on timescales from 5 seconds to ∼5 years. Murphy et al. have recently presented the survey description, observation strategy and initial results from the VAST Phase I Pilot Survey. This pilot survey consists of ∼162 hours of observations conducted at a central frequency of 888 MHz between 2019 August and 2020 August, with a typical rms sensitivity of 0.24 mJy/beam and angular resolution of 12 − 20 arcseconds. A total of 113 fields were observed for a 12 minutes integration time, with between 5 and 13 repeats, and cadences between 1 day and 8 months. The total area of the pilot survey footprint is 5131 square degrees, covering six distinct regions of the sky, as shown in the figure above. An initial search of two of these regions, totalling 1646 square degrees, revealed 28 highly variable and/or transient sources, selection of which will be covered in ADAPs this week.

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