First e-EVN image using 512 Mbps data rate

DWINGELOO, The Netherlands (15 February 2007) - On 2 February 2007, the European VLBI Network (EVN) carried out the first successful five European station e-VLBI (electronic very long baseline interferometry) run at 512 Mbps data rate, using Cambridge, Jodrell Bank (MkII), Medicina, Onsala, and Westerbork (single dish) telescopes. The observation ran for about one hour without notable problems. Torun was also part of the array, but its data rate was limited to about 480 Mbps.

 

3C454.3, a strong fringe-finder source, was observed. In spite of the poor UV-coverage, it was possible to reconstruct the basic source structure at a dynamic range of about 400:1 and produce the first 512 Mbps map. This result shows that sensitive e-VLBI experiments will be possible in the near future when more telescopes join the array in 2007.

About the European VLBI Network (EVN)
The European VLBI Network (EVN, www.evlbi.org) is an interferometric array of radio telescopes spread throughout Europe and beyond, which conducts unique, high resolution, radio astronomical observations of cosmic radio sources. It is the most sensitive VLBI array in the world, thanks to the collection of extremely large telescopes that contribute to the network.

 

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About EXPReS
Express Production Real-time e-VLBI Service (EXPReS, www.expres-eu.org) is a three-year project funded by the European Commission with the objective of creating a distributed, large-scale astronomical instrument of continental and intercontinental dimensions. This electronic Very Long Baseline Interferometer (e-VLBI) is achieved using high-speed communication networks operating in real-time and connecting together some of the largest and most sensitive radio telescopes on the planet. EXPReS is coordinated by JIVE, the Joint Institute for VLBI in Europe (www.jive.nl), which is hosted by ASTRON, the Netherlands Foundation for Research in Astronomy (www.astron.nl), in Dwingeloo.

 

About JIVE
The Joint Institute for VLBI in Europe (JIVE, www.jive.nl) was established as a scientific foundation in December 1993. JIVE's mandate is to support the operations of the European VLBI Network (EVN) in the widest sense. The major activity has been the development, construction and successful operation of the EVN Data Processor, a powerful supercomputer that combines the signals from radio telescopes located across the planet, creating one huge telescope of intercontinental dimensions. Using this technique of Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI), astronomers can make detailed images of cosmic radio sources, providing astronomers with the clearest, highest resolution view of some of the most distant and energetic objects in the Universe.

 

Contact:
Arpad Szomoru, Head of Data Processor Research and Development
Express Production Real-time e-VLBI Service (EXPReS)
Joint Institute for VLBI in Europe
+31 521 596 500
szomoru [at] jive [dot] nl
www.expres-eu.org

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