ASKAP Survey Science Announcement


Since 2008, an open and international process to determine the major Survey Science Projects to be conducted by the Australian SKA Pathfinder (ASKAP) telescope has been proceeding.

CSIRO ATNF can now announce the successful science projects that have been invited to proceed to the Design Studies stage.

This follows recommendations provided by the ASKAP Survey Science Project Assignment Committee, a committee made up of a broad range of international experts. Projects that were successful were chosen according to their scientific merit and operational feasibility.

Ten teams have been successful with each of the successful proposals prioritised into one of three categories. A breakdown of the 10 projects illustrates the international interest in the ASKAP program. The projects represent 363 unique authors from 131 institutions. The breakdown of unique authors by region was 33 per cent Australia and New Zealand, 30 per cent North America, Europe 28 per cent, 9 per cent rest of world.

Principal Investigators of the successful teams will be invited to work with CSIRO through the Design Studies phase. The Principal Investigators and ASKAP Project Scientists will form the ASKAP Survey Working Group which will meet on a regular basis to ensure close collaboration between CSIRO ATNF and the Survey Science Projects.

Two of the top ten proposals invited forward are EMU (an Evolutionary Map of the Universe) led by Prof Ray Norris (CSIRO ATNF) and WALLABY (the Widefield ASKAP L-Band Legacy All-Sky Blind Survey) led by Dr Baerbel Koribalski (CSIRO ATNF) and Prof Lister Staverley-Smith (UWA).

EMU is a deep survey for star-forming galaxies and active galactic nuclei, designed to trace the evolution of star-forming galaxies and massive black holes through the history of the Universe. WALLABY is a survey for galaxies containing neutral hydrogen gas over 75% of the entire sky, and is aimed at improving our understanding of galaxy formation.

Other Science Survey Projects will study variable and transient radio sources, the interstellar medium of our own Galaxy, magnetic fields in space, and pulsars.

During the telescope’s first five years at least 75% of its time will be used for large Survey Science Projects, each needing more than 1500 hours to complete and designed to take advantage of ASKAP’s unique capabilities including huge survey speed and very wide field of view.

A complete list of the projects can be found here.