The UK ARC Node hosted its first virtual ALMA workshop for new postgraduate students during a series of half-days from the 9th to the 13th of November 2020. This workshop covered the same topics that are featured in typical introductory ALMA workshops, including introductions to ALMA and interferometry, hands-on work with the Observing Tool and the ALMA Science Archive, and calibration and imaging in CASA. The difference was that this workshop was conducted entirely virtually, which presented some new challenges in terms of interactions with the participants, particularly in terms of troubleshooting problems. However, by the end, the participants succeeded in making their own ALMA images.
Summary of ALMA 2020 UK Virtual Workshop
One of the advantages of holding a virtual workshop like this is that people can join regardless of their locations. Participants came from across the UK as well as from several other countries (even though the workshop was aimed at UK students). Demand for the workshop was very high, but for practical reasons, registration was capped at 24 people.
A few people who could not join the November workshop expressed an interest in a potential workshop in the future, and the UK ARC Node is currently gauging interest in another workshop in February or March 2021. Any people who would participate in another workshop are invited to fill in this poll.