e-MERLIN/VLBI National Facility
CALL FOR e-MERLIN PROPOSALS - Cycle-2
e-MERLIN requests proposals from the international astronomical community for observations to be made during Cycle-2. Proposals are competitively peer-reviewed under standard STFC rules by the PATT e-MERLIN Time Allocation Committee. Allocation will be made on the basis of scientific merit and technical feasibility alone. During the first 5 semesters of e-MERLIN operations ~50% of observing time has been allocated to 12 large legacy projects and most of the remaining time will be allocated via PATT to standard proposals solicited prior to each observing semester.
e-MERLIN provides high resolution (40-150mas) and high sensitivity (~7-14 μJy in Cycle-2) imaging at cm wavelengths as well as polarimetry, spectroscopy and astrometry. Cycle-2 observations will commence in September 2014, with some limitations in observing capabilities.
Developments:Throughout Cycle-0 extensive commissioning activity was undertaken,
whilst during Cycle-1, a limited amount of continued commissioning and further e-MERLIN
development work has been on-going. Following final testing and commissioning, the
introduction of the full 2 GHz bandwidth at C-Band is scheduled for delivery in Q4 2014/Q1 2015.
PATT observations made after this development may benefit from this extra bandwidth once it
becomes available, however, this will be offered initially on a shared-risk basis. All proposals should
be justified assuming the current available bandwidth of 512MHz.
Deadline for Receipt of Proposals - 23:59:59 UT on 15th April 2014
L-Band: 1.23GHz to 1.74GHz
C-Band: 4.5GHz to 7.5GHz
- The Lovell Telescope will be available for up to 15 days at L-Band and C-Band for during Cycle-2 at the discretion of the University of Manchester. Proposers must make a detailed case for the inclusion of the Lovell telescope in their proposed observations.
- During Cycle 2, e-MERLIN operations will be on a best-efforts basis and no programmes are guaranteed to be observed.
- Please note that K-Band observations and rapid frequency flexibility between L- and C-Band will not be available during Cycle-2.
- Proposers should consult the allocated e-MERLIN legacy programme to avoid conflicts (see notes below). In cases where PATT proposals directly replicate portions of allocated legacy projects, legacy projects will normally be given priority.
- During Cycle-2 there is one VLBI session. Simultaneous joint VLBI+e-MERLIN observations cannot be guaranteed although every effort will be made to provide simultaneous or contemporanious matching e-MERLIN observations for joint programmes. EVN proposals should be submitted to the EVN Programme Committee - details for proposing for EVN time can be found via the EVN web pages.
The system parameters for observation of a continuum source in optimum conditions are:-
|Maximum angular resolution||~150||~40||(milliarcsec)|
|RMS level for 12 hr on source||~14/7**||~13/7**||(uJy/bm)|
More extensive technical details are available at e-MERLIN cycle-2 capabilities.
Proposals should be submitted via the e-MERLIN Web-based Northstar Proposal
Tool. The proposal tool will be open for proposal submissions from 20th March 2014.
See notes below:
- The sensitivities quoted are under ideal conditions and assume no contribution from confusion or dynamic range limitations. So far, from observations of 12-24 hrs duration have reached sensitivities within few percent of these nominal values at L-band, with and without the Lovell Telescope in optiml observing conditions.
- ** The use of the Lovell telescope at L-Band, and at C-Band with the new receiver systems, reduces the 12 hr rms noise level in the central part of the field of view by ~50% compared with the array not including the Lovell Telescope.
- Frequency switching: Due to commissioning commitments in cycle-1, rapid cycling between L- and C-Band will not be permitted. Within C-Band, frequency changes on time-scales of >2 hour will be possible. However, proposers should note that such programmes (e.g. cycling between observing bands 4.5-5.0GHz and 6.5-7.0GHz within a single observing run) will result in significant additional calibration overheads. Proposals with frequency changes faster than once every 2hrs will not be permitted.
- Details of available spectral line configurations are available at http://www.e-merlin.ac.uk/observe/cycle2.html.
- Proposers should take careful note of the observations allocated to the e-MERLIN legacy groups (see http://www.e-merlin.ac.uk/legacy/). The e-MERLIN Legacy programmes will run concurrently with PATT observations from cycle-1 for up to 5 semesters. In cases where PATT proposals directly replicate portions of allocated legacy projects, legacy projects will normally be given priority. All e-MERLIN legacy proposal are available at http://www.e-merlin.ac.uk/legacy/. Proposers requiring further information should contact firstname.lastname@example.org for clarification well in advance of proposal submission.
- Access to e-MERLIN for Scientists from EU Countries: e-MERLIN is one of the participating institutes in the RadioNet project from which transnational access (TNA) within the EU to existing observing facilities is financially supported. TNA support envisaged for the RadioNet3 provision from January 1st 2012 includes travel reimbursement for data reduction visits to the e-MERLIN support facility in JBCA Manchester for TNA-enabled programmes.
Jodrell Bank Observatory,
Cheshire SK11 9DL,
Telephone: +44 (0)1477 571321,
Facsimile: +44 (0)1477 571618,