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The Science Case for PILOT I: Summary and Overview

Lawrence, J. S. and Ashley, M. C. B. and Bailey, J. and Barrado y Navascués, D. and Bedding, T. R. and Bland-Hawthorn, J. and Bond, I. and Boulanger, F. and Bouwens, R. and Bruntt, H. and Bunker, A. and Burgarella, D. and Burton, M. G. and Busso, M. and Coward, D. and Cioni, M.-R. and Durand, G. and Eiroa, C. and Epchtein, N. and Gehrels, N. and Gillingham, P. and Glazebrook, K. and Haynes, R. and Kiss, L. and Lagage, P. O. and Le Bertre, T. and Mackay, C. and Maillard, J. P. and McGrath, A. and Minier, V. and Mora, A. and Olsen, K. and Persi, P. and Pimbblet, K. and Quimby, R. and Saunders, W. and Schmidt, B. and Stello, D. and Storey, J and Tinney, C. and Tremblin, P. and Wheeler, J. C. and Yock, P. (2009) The Science Case for PILOT I: Summary and Overview. Publications of the Astronomical Society of Australia, 26 (4). pp. 379-396. ISSN 1323-3580.

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PILOT (the Pathfinder for an International Large Optical Telescope) is a proposed 2.5-m optical/infrared telescope to be located at Dome C on the Antarctic plateau. Conditions at Dome C are known to be exceptional for astronomy. The seeing (above ∼30 m height), coherence time, and isoplanatic angle are all twice as good as at typical mid-latitude sites, while the water-vapour column, and the atmosphere and telescope thermal emission are all an order of magnitude better. These conditions enable a unique scientific capability for PILOT, which is addressed in this series of papers. The current paper presents an overview of the optical and instrumentation suite for PILOT and its expected performance, a summary of the key science goals and observational approach for the facility, a discussion of the synergies between the science goals for PILOT and other telescopes, and a discussion of the future of Antarctic astronomy. Paper II and Paper III present details of the science projects divided, respectively, between the distant Universe (i.e. studies of first light, and the assembly and evolution of structure) and the nearby Universe (i.e. studies of Local Group galaxies, the Milky Way, and the Solar System).

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Bedding, T. R.0000-0001-5222-4661
Bouwens, R.0000-0002-4989-2471
Olsen, K.0000-0002-7134-8296
Quimby, R.0000-0001-9171-5236
Tinney, C.0000-0002-7595-0970
Tremblin, P.0000-0001-6172-3403
Additional Information:© 2009 CSIRO. Submitted: 21 November 2008; accepted: 13 May 2009; published: 4 November 2009. The PILOT Science Case, presented here, was produced as part of the PILOT conceptual design study, funded through the Australian Department of Education, Science, and Training through the National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy (NCRIS) scheme, and the University of New South Wales through the UNSW PILOT Science Office. The European contribution has been supported by the ARENA network of the European Commission FP6 under contract RICA26150. We thank Eric Fossat and Giles Durand for providing us with data prior to publication.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Department of Education, Science, and Training (Australia)UNSPECIFIED
University of New South WalesUNSPECIFIED
ARENA Network of the European Commission FP6RICA26150
Subject Keywords:cosmology: observations; early universe; instrumentation: high angular resolution; site testing;stars: formation
Issue or Number:4
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20091130-143310121
Persistent URL:
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:16840
Deposited By: Jason Perez
Deposited On:23 Dec 2009 03:17
Last Modified:04 Nov 2019 01:04

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