European ARC Newsletter
29 Jul 2019
Fauna at ALMA: Credit - ALMA Observatory

Welcome to the European ALMA Regional Centre Newsletter!  

This Newsletter is a compilation of recent European ALMA Regional Centre Announcement items. Follow the links or visit the European ARC Announcements to read more. In addition to these Announcements the Newsletter informs you about various developments in the ALMA Programme, as well as about ALMA or ALMA-related meetings.

Up-to-date information about weather, configuration and scheduling can be found on the ALMA Status page.

European ARC Announcements

The new ALMA interface query tool

29 Jul 2019:

Welcome, the new as-fast-as-you-type query interface for the ALMA. This amazing new ALMA query interface features the classical result table, in addition to an expanded view of the observations on-the-sky through AladinLite, as well as a totally new viewer to visualize the spectral coverage of the observations - all in one easy to use package.

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Phase II submission is now open

26 Jul 2019:

The Phase II submission period is now open for all PIs to submit the science goals of their accepted Cycle 7 projects. The Observing tool has also been updated with the Phase II version. Your project may also be required to pass a technical feasibility assessment as part of the Phase II process in order to be added to the observing queue. Further information on the Phase 2 process, including how you can delegate the Phase II preparation to one of your colleagues, is available in the Phase II Quickstart Guide at

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ALMA Cycle 7 PI survey

26 Jul 2019:

Subsequent to the ALMA Cycle 7 proposal result outcomes, ALMA kindly requests the participation of all PIs to submit feedback on the consensus reports received informing them of their ALMA Cycle 7 results. One survey should be completed per proposal submitted.

The surveys are strictly confidential and anonymous, but provide the means to gauge and improve the reviewing process. The deadline for completing the survey is 5 September 2019. To complete your survey please follow the link here.

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Cycle 7 Proposal results

25 Jul 2019:

The ALMA Cycle 7 results were announced on July 23, 2019, with almost 400 high-priotiry proposals assigned for the upcoming observations. Cycle 7 observations will begin on Octorber, 1, 2019 and have a total of 4300 hours allocated to the 12 metre main array. The newly accepted A and B ranked proposals will have 4033 hours dedicated time while the remainig 267 hours is allotted for the carried-over Cycle-6 A rated projects. For more details on the execution time distribution by region and sciecne catagory visit the ALMA Observatory.

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Job Advertisement: ALMA Scientific Researcher position at PACE

22 Jul 2019:

Since May 2014, the Institute for Astrophysics and Space Science (Lisbon node, IA) is officially part of the European Atacama Large Millimetre Array (ALMA) support structure as a Centre of Expertise (CoE). This status was granted by ESO after the recognition of IA team’s capability to support the community with the use of ALMA, in addition to the already existent EU ALMA Regional Centre (ARC) nodes.

PACE advertise a 2-year ALMA related post-doc position

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Report on Cycle 7 Proposal Submission

30 May 2019:

The deadline for proposal submission for Cycle 7 was 19 April 2018. 1785 proposals were submitted, including 14 Large Programmes. This is a slight decrease from Cycle 6, although the number of hours requested on the main array is 4.5 more than offered. The oversubscription rate remains high (~6 on the 12-metre array for the European applicants). Detailed proposal submission statistics are available in a dedicated report. The report provides a summary of items such as the number of submitted proposals and time requested, subscription rates, and comparisons with the number of hours requested in previous Cycles.

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ALMA Programme News

The all new ALMA query interface tool

Contribution: Felix Stoehr - ALMA Archive  

We would like to present, and welcome you to the new as-fast-as-you-type query interface for the ALMA
Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA). This amazing new ALMA query interface features the classical result table that is fully searchable and really updates as-you-type in realtime, providing instant access to over 34000 observations. At startup the entire holdings of ALMA's database are visible and accessible using unlimited virtual vertical scrolling or searching.

There is also a fully expandable view of the observations on-the-sky through AladinLite. This provides full zoom scaling from the footprint of the observations and coverage, expanadable out to the entire Galaxy. An embedded slider bar can be utilised to change the background image to any desired in the electromagnetic range, from gamma-rays, through to the optical and IR, right out to the sub-millimtre and radio bands.   


An entirely new and arguably one of the best features is the spectral coverage visulization panel. Following the trend, the spectra tool is also fully scalable and provides practailly limitless zooming. But, additionally, molecular lines can be overplotted on the spectral range of interest. These start with the most common molecular transitions, but when zooming the list is refined in realtime. A sliderbar can also be used to set the range of interest while the spectral plot itself is directly scrollable. Optionally, sub-samples of molecular species can be selected and custom redshifts can be input.


Report of the ALMA Development Workshop (3-5 June 2019) at ESO

Contribution: Carlos de Breuck, ESO Development Team

In order to keep ALMA at the forefront of technology, all ALMA partners have a continuous development programme. To coordinate these efforts, especially in the list of the new priorities outlined in the ALMA development roadmap, ESO hosted a joint development workshop in Garching, just after the release of our 3 yearly call for ESO development studies.

The meeting covered the full scope of the development studies and projects ranging from receiver and backend development, digitizer, correlator and signal transport to observing modes, software and archive development. The synergies with other observatories such as IRAM, SKA, Nobeyama, and APEX were also highlighted in the programme. All talks are available from Zenodo and linked from the conference programme. A common theme was the coordination between the front-end, digitization, band-end and correlator to achieve an increase of the IF bandwidth by more than a factor of two. Most importantly, a clear willingness between the ALMA partners to join forces to achieve the ambitious development goals emanated from this workshop.


ALMA2019: Science Results and Cross-Facility Synergies

Cagliari, October 14-18, 2019

The program is now finalised for the ALMA 2019 science results and cross-facility synergies meeting to be held in Cagliari. The topics will be varied throughout the week to provided a range of mixed and changing sessions. A social trip will also be planned for Wednesday afternoon.

The list of confirmed invited speakers includes:

  • Yuri Aikawa (University of Tokyo, Japan)
  • Sean Andrews (Center for Astrophysics, Harvard, USA)
  • Caitlin Casey (University of Texas, USA) 
  • Ilse Cleeves (University of Virginia, USA)
  • Roberto Decarli (Osservatorio di Astrofisica e Scienza dello Spazio di Bologna, Italy)
  • Miroslava Dessauges-Zavadsky (Observatoire de Genève)
  • Shep S. Doeleman (Harvard CfA, USA; EHT)
  • Sean Dougherty (ALMA, Chile)
  • Nanase Harada (ASIAA, Taiwan)
  • Chat Hull (NOAJ/ALMA, Chile)
  • Jeong-Eun Lee  (Kyung Hee University,  South Korea)
  • Tomasz Kaminski (Harvard CfA, USA)
  • Olivier Le Fèvre (Laboratoire d'Astrophysique de Marseille, France)
  • Fabien Louvet (Universidad de Chile, Chile)
  • Sergio Martin (Joint ALMA Office, Chile)
  • Anna Miotello (ESO Garching, Germany)
  • Thushara Pillai (Max-Planck-Institute for Radio Astronomy, Germany & Boston University, USA)
  • Nami Sakai (RIKEN, Japan)
  • Eva Schinnerer (Max-Planck-Institute for Astronomy, Germany)
  • Sven Wedemeyer (University of Oslo, Norway)
For more information please visit the conference webpage directly:

Upcoming ALMA or ALMA-related Meetings

  • Improving Image Fidelity on Astronomical Data: Radio Interferometry and Single-Dish Data Combination
    12-16 August, 2019, Lorentz Center, Leiden, The Netherlands

    Many areas in astronomy require the combination of millimetre/radio interferometric and single-dish observations to recover scientific physical information over a large range of spatial scales. However, the combination process poses a number of severe technical challenges. In this workshop, we aim to understand, compare, and test the various methods of data combination. We will convene the leading experts in interferometry and single-dish combination techniques across the world, with participants with a wide range in experience with interferometry and single-dish data, and data combination. In addition to scientific talks, the workshop also includes technical talks covering the various techniques and a number of hands-on sessions to test and work on the different combination methods.
  • The physics and chemisty of the ISM
    2-6 September, 2019, Palais des Papes-Avignon, France

    CELEBRATING THE FIRST 40 YEARS OF ALEXANDER TIELENS' CONTRIBUTION TO SCIENCE: Xander Tielens has been driving research in the fields of interstellar physics and chemistry and the cosmic cycle of matter with outstanding contributions for 40 years. With this meeting, we wish to celebrate his scientific achievements and discuss future research directions opened up by his contributions. The meeting will focus on the fields strongly influenced by Xander involving the physical and chemical processes that control the interstellar medium and its life cycle. The meeting will consist of invited reviews, invited and contributed talks, and posters. We will especially emphasize future opportunities offered by the powerful telescopes at our disposal such as, for example, ALMA, SOFIA, and JWST.  
  • Views on the Interstellar Medium in galaxies in the ALMA era
    2-6 September, 2019, Bologna, Italy

    The advent of the power of the Atacama Large Millimeter Array and the upgraded capabilities of other sub-mm/mm facilities are now opening a complete new window of the baryon cycle. On one hand, local galaxies are exploited as 'laboratories' where the interstellar medium is studied down to molecular cloud scales and the physical processes can be investigated in detail. On the other hand, thanks to the unprecedented sensitivities of the new facilities, systematic surveys of the gaseous content in high redshift galaxies are starting to characterize the gas cycle throughout cosmic time. Dedicated observations have revealed gas in the most distant galaxies, all the way to the reionization epoch, and have started to dissect the interplay between luminous active galactic nuclei and their host galaxy. These new observational constraints are guiding the next generation of galaxy evolution models.
  • ESA/ESO SCIOPS 2019 - Working together in Support of Science
    19-22 September, 2019, ESAC, Madrid, Spain

    The upcoming ESA/ESO SCIOPS 2019 Workshop will take place at ESAC and will address the following areas: Collaboration between large scientific teams in the multi-messenger era; how space- and ground-based observatories communicate their transient and observational capabilities, and can prepare and adapt them to provide scientists with access to time and data for multi-messenger programmes; cultural and policy changes needed to enable multi-facility time allocation, prioritisation of observations, publication of information on upcoming observations and data sharing; tools, services and standards to support coordination between facilities for the selection and publication of targets by survey facilities, coordination and publication of follow-up observations among observatories, as well as for publishing, searching, analysing and visualising data; and tools and services to support collaboration between teams.
  • ERIS 2019: European Radio Interferometry School
    7-11 October, 2019, Gothenburg, Sweden

    This school is the eighth of a series of summer schools supported by RadioNet. ERIS will provide a week of lectures and tutorials on how to achieve scientific results from radio interferometry. The topics covered by the lectures/tutorials will include: (1) Calibration and imaging of continuum, spectral line, and polarization data; (2) Observing techniques for low frequencies (e.g. LOFAR), intermediate frequencies (e.g. VLA and e-MERLIN), high frequencies (e.g. ALMA and NOEMA), and VLBI (e.g. EVN); (3) Extracting the information from astronomical data and interpreting the results; (4) Choosing the most suitable array and observing plan for your project.​