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ALMA Development Studies History

by Carolyn Hunsinger last modified Nov 09, 2016

ALMA Development Studies History


Cycle 1

The first call for ALMA Development Studies (Cycle 1) was reported in eNews

77 investigators associated with 26 institutions responded to the Call with a total of 21 Study Proposals, of which the following 8 were funded.

Cycle 1 Study Title

(hover for linked reports)

Second Generation Receiver for ALMA Band 6 (Study continues into Cycle 2) Anthony R. Kerr (NRAO)
Ultra-wideband quantum limited amplifiers for receiver frontends D. Woody (Caltech)
Design Study for Production of the Band 2 Cartridges Eric Bryerton (NRAO) Study has become a Cycle 2 ALMA Development Project: Design and Testing of a Prototype Band-2 Cartridge (PI: K. S. Saini)
A Visualization Portal for ALMA Data E. Rosolowski (UBC-Okanagan) Study has become a Cycle 2 ALMA Development Project: The Next Generation ALMA Viewer (PI: E, Rosolowsky)
Millimeter/Submillimeter VLBI with ALMA Jeff Kern (NRAO) Study was associated with an ALMA Development Project now reaching realization: The ALMA Phasing Project (PI: S. Doeleman, MIT)
Unleashing Large Dataset Science Lee Mundy (Univ. Maryland) Study has become a Cycle 2 Development Project: ALMA Data Mining Toolkit: ADMIT (PI: Lee Mundy)
Increasing the ALMA Data Rate B. Glendenning (NRAO) NOTE: Study proposal was withdrawn
ALMA Band 1 Receiver Development Study P.T.P. Ho (ASIAA) Study has become an ALMA Development Project led by East Asia, in collaboration with North America and Universidad de Chile

Cycle 2

The second call for ALMA Development Studies (Cycle 2) was reported in eNews Feb 2014:
9 submissions were received from 8 PIs with teams totaling 41 investigators from 17 institutions; 6 were funded.

Cycle 2 Study Title



Advanced Solar Observing

T. Bastian, NRAO

Study has resulted in ALMA offering solar observations in Cycle 4 Observations

2nd Generation Band 10 Receiver

A. Kerr, NRAO

Community Science Tool Development

A. Leroy, NRAO

2nd Generation Band 6 Receiver

A. Kerr, NRAO

Millimeter Camera

S. Claude, NRC-Herzberg

Calibration Refinements for ALMA Imaging

T. Wilson, NRL

Cycle 3

Results from the third call for ALMA Development Studies (Cycle 3) were reported in eNews Dec 2015:
15 submissions were received from 15 PIs with teams totaling 53 investigators from 19 institutions; 7 were funded.

Note: the due date for Reports for Cycle 3 Studies has not yet occurred.

Cycle 3 Study TitlePINotes
Extensions & Enhancements to the ALMA Phasing System L. Matthews, MIT
Spectral Resolution and Bandwidth Upgrade of the ALMA Correlator R. Lacasse, NRAO
Improving the Calibration of Atmospheric Spectral Features T. Hunter, NRAO
Pulsars, Magnetars, and Transients with Phased ALMA J. Cordes, Cornell
Feature Extraction and Data Cube Visualization through Topology P. Rosen, U of Utah
Advanced Materials and On-wafer Chip Evaluation: 2nd Generation A. Lichtenberger, UVA
Digital Correlation and Phased Array Architectures J. Weintroub, SAO

Cycle 4

Cycle 4 Call for North America ALMA Development Studies Results

North America issued a Call for Proposals for ALMA Development Studies on 1 March 2016, with proposals due 2 May 2016.

A panel of highly qualified members of the astronomical community reviewed the study proposals. To avoid conflict of interest, none of the review panel members are affiliated with NRAO. Panels submitted anonymous grades and rankings. The panel discussed the results in a telecon and arrived at a consensus ranking. A recommendation for the Cycle 4 Development Studies program was drafted, approved by the North America ALMA Office and NRAO, and consented by the National Science Foundation (NSF).

Six Studies from 32 proposers representing ten institutions were proposed for North American funding with the consent of NSF (see Table 1). These six studies were judged to have substantial potential for science impact while fitting within the Fiscal Year (FY) 2017 funding envelope of the ALMA Development Program and the broad outlines set by ALMA 2030. The proposed slate of Studies strives to aid the community in achieving its scientific objectives in the coming decade and address the following key ALMA development objectives:

  • improve sensitivity and spectral grasp via improvements to the workhorse ALMA Band 6 receivers and substantial improvements to the ALMA Band 10 receivers;
  • upgrade ALMA Band 3 receivers by lowering system noise and broadening the bandwidth of the critical 3mm band;
  • a study on backend pathways for providing increased bandwidth;
  • enhance functionality, including spectral line capability, for phased ALMA;
  • provide a new viewer in the Common Astronomy Software Applications (CASA) package, with interactive selection of regions of interest and interoperability with CASA cleaning operations; and
  • improve software that optimizes use of the combined ALMA 12m, compact, and total power arrays.
Development of 2nd Generation SIS Receivers for ALMA Kerr, Mangum, Lichtenberger, Effland, Dindo, Srikanth NRAO, UVA
Prototype of a Complete Dual-Linear 2SB Block and a Single-Polarization Balanced 2SB Block Henke, Niranjanan, Knee NRC-HIA
 Digital Back End Antenna Article Ford, Ashton, Gerrard, Langley, Revnell, Luce, Erickson, Lacasse, Saez, Carilli, Ricci NRAO, JAO, CfA
Diversifying the Scientific Applications of the ALMA Phasing System Matthews, Crew, Fish, Hecht, Doeleman


Cleaning Up Interactive Cleaning Rosolowsky, Kern

U. Alberta, NRAO

Total Power Map to Visibilities Koda, Teuben, Sawada, Plunkett, Brogan Stony Brook, UMD, JAO, ESO, NRAO