Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Astronomers Tune In To 'Radio Universe'

Date:
September 12, 2008
Source:
University of Kent
Summary:
An innovative project aims to address many key issues in astrophysics: What is the universe made of and how does it evolve? Are we alone in the universe? How do galaxies, stars and planets form and evolve? What are the laws of physics in extreme conditions? And how does the Sun affect the Earth?

Astronomers at the School of Physical Sciences, University of Kent, have joined an innovative project that aims to address many of the key issues in astrophysics.

Related Articles


These include: what is the universe made of and how does it evolve? Are we alone in the universe? How do galaxies, stars and planets form and evolve? What are the laws of physics in extreme conditions? And how does the Sun affect the Earth? The University’s main role will be to search for signals which accompany the birth of stars.

Such an undertaking will require the completion of arrays of antennas to detect radio waves at metre-long wavelengths. The low frequencies of these waves gives rise to the telescope by the name of LOFAR – the LOw Frequency ARray. The arrays will be spread across the Netherlands, Germany, France and Great Britain.

The processing of the data will be done by a supercomputer situated at the University of Groningen and further radio telescopes may be constructed at sites in Poland, Sweden, Ireland and Ukraine.

Michael Smith, Professor of Astrophysics at the University of Kent, said: "The LOFAR project has been launched to advance upon instrumentation based on the old 1960s technologies of radio telescopes that used large mechanical dishes to collect signals which were then detected by a receiver for analysis.

"Even if scientists continued to use the old technologies, the instruments for this project would need to be one hundred times larger than existing ones, which is cost prohibitive as a high proportion of the outlay on these telescopes is the steel and moving structure. Therefore, new technology was required to make the next step in sensitivity necessary to unravel the secrets of the early universe, the physical processes in the centres of galaxies, and the formation of quasars, stars and planets."

LOFAR is the first telescope of this new sort, using an array of simple omni-directional antennas instead of mechanical signal processing with a dish. The electronic signals from the antennas are digitised, transported to a central digital processor, and combined in software to emulate a conventional antenna.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Kent. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Kent. "Astronomers Tune In To 'Radio Universe'." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 September 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080909095106.htm>.
University of Kent. (2008, September 12). Astronomers Tune In To 'Radio Universe'. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 2, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080909095106.htm
University of Kent. "Astronomers Tune In To 'Radio Universe'." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080909095106.htm (accessed March 2, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Space & Time News

Monday, March 2, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: SpaceX Launches Rocket, Satellites on Board

Raw: SpaceX Launches Rocket, Satellites on Board

AP (Mar. 2, 2015) SpaceX launched it&apos;s 16th Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral, Florida on Sunday night. The rocket was carrying two commercial communications satellites. (March 2) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Astronauts Leave Space Station for Third Spacewalk

Astronauts Leave Space Station for Third Spacewalk

Reuters - News Video Online (Mar. 1, 2015) NASA Commander Barry Wilmore and Flight Engineer Terry Virts perform their third spacewalk in eight days outside the International Space Station. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Spacesuit Water Leaks Not An Issue On Latest ISS Walk

Spacesuit Water Leaks Not An Issue On Latest ISS Walk

Newsy (Mar. 1, 2015) Astronauts are ahead of schedule with hardware upgrades to the International Space Station, despite last week&apos;s spacesuit water leak scare. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Black Hole 12 Billion Times the Size of Sun Discovered at Dawn of Universe

Black Hole 12 Billion Times the Size of Sun Discovered at Dawn of Universe

Buzz60 (Feb. 26, 2015) Scientists are saying they&apos;ve spotted a black hole 12 billion time bigger than the sun. Patrick Jones (@Patrick_E_Jones) has the details. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins