AAS 206th Meeting, 29 May - 2 June 2005
Session 15 Astronomical Instruments
Poster, Monday, 9:20am-6:30pm, Tuesday, 10:00am-7:00pm, May 30, 2005, Ballroom A

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[15.02] The Long Wavelength Array

N. E. Kassim, E. Polisensky, T. J. W. Lazio, K. Weiler, P. Crane, P. Ray, K. Stewart, B. Hicks, A. Cohen, W. Peters, M. Nord (NRL), W. C. Erickson (U. of Tasmania)

Sub-arcminute resolution and sub-Jy sensitivity below 100 MHz is now being obtained on a routine basis using self-calibration or field-based calibration techniques with the 74 MHz system on the NRAO Very Large Array (VLA). The VLA 74 MHz breakthrough has inspired an emerging suite of new low frequency instruments, including the Long Wavelength Array (LWA), an electronic array planned to operate in the 20--80 MHz frequency range. It will have a collecting area approaching one square kilometer at its lowest operating frequencies, and provide milliJansky sensitivity and a few arcseconds resolution across its observing band. The LWA will surpass, by 2--3 orders of magnitude, the power of previous interferometers in its frequency range, and thus open a window on one of the most poorly explored regions of the electromagnetic spectrum. The LWA's scientific objectives include (1) Planetary and solar radio emission; (2) The three-dimensional distribution of Galactic cosmic rays and Galactic supernova remnants and pulsars; and (3) The extragalactic universe, including high-redshift radio galaxies and galaxy clusters. Because the LWA will explore such a poorly investigated region of the spectrum, the potential for new discoveries, including new classes of sources or physical phenomena is high. We will also present results from the design-and-development phase of the LWA, including a description of ongoing prototyping activities, initial configuration/station studies, and our plans for a staged evolution of the LWA in the southwest US. Basic research in radio astronomy at the Naval Research Laboratory is supported by the Office of Naval Research.

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 37 #2
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