Submillimetre-Wavelength Telescopes

  • Jacob W. M. Baars
  • Hans J. Kärcher
Part of the Astrophysics and Space Science Library book series (ASSL, volume 447)


Once the first larger mm telescopes had demonstrated the importance of the very high frequencies for astrophysical research, efforts were undertaken to open up the submillimetre-wavelength regime, i.e. frequencies from 300 GHz to 1 GHz or higher. From the best sites on earth, observations are possible up to about 1 GHz in the windows between the absorption lines of tropospheric water vapour (Fig. 6.1). Several institutes realised dedicated submm telescopes between 1987 and 1995, the three most significant being the JCMT and the CSO on Hawaii and the SMT/HHT on Mt. Graham in Arizona. An array of eight 6-m antennas, the Submillimeter Array (SMA) on Hawaii came into operation in 2004 (Ho et al. 2004). The definitive instrument is ALMA (Atacama Large Millimeter/submm Array), consisting of more than 60 antennas located at 5000 m altitude in northern Chile and covering the entire frequency range from 30 to 950 GHz. It began operation with a partial array in 2008 and construction was completed in 2014.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jacob W. M. Baars
    • 1
  • Hans J. Kärcher
    • 2
  1. 1.Max-Planck-Institut für RadioastronomieBonnGermany
  2. 2.MT Mechatronics - consultantKarbenGermany

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