The Submillimeter Array SMA News
The Submillimeter Array (SMA) is an 8-element radio interferometer located atop Maunakea in Hawaii. Operating at frequencies from 180 GHz to 418 GHz, the 6m dishes may be arranged into configurations with baselines as long as 509m, producing a synthesized beam of sub-arcsecond width. Each element can observe with two receivers simultaneously, with up to 8 GHz bandwidth each per sideband. The digital correlator backend provides a uniform resolution as high as 140 kHz.

SMA Site Hawaii
The Submillimeter Array is a joint project between the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory and the Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics and is funded by the Smithsonian Institution and the Academia Sinica.
SMA Director: Dr. Ray Blundell

SMA Newsletter January 2018

February 28, 2018 High Pressure Star Formation in the Galactic Center
Some galaxies in the universe are as much as a thousand times more luminous than our Milky Way galaxy, with most of their light being emitted in the infrared. Astronomers attribute that ultra-intense luminosity to warm dust heated by massive bursts of star formation that are often concentrated in the galaxy's center, near the supermassive black hole. The Milky Way also has a supermassive black hole, and its inner region (called the Central Molecular Zone, CMZ) has plenty of the gas needed to form new stars. But the star formation rate there is not only not intense, it is less than average given the amount of mass present. There are several notable exceptions, like the dramatic Arches Cluster, but these serve to highlight the strange inactivity everywhere else.
SAO Science Update and
article courtesy of PHYS.ORG
December 8, 2017 Dusty protoplanetary disks
"Planetary systems form out of disks of gas and dust around young stars. How the formation proceeds, however, is complex and poorly understood. Many physical processes are involved including accretion onto the star, photoevaporation of material of the disk, interactions of the disk with planetary embryos, growth of the dust grains, settling of the dust to the midplane of the disk, and more. To unravel these various factors, observations of protoplanetary disks at multiple wavelengths are used; the submillimeter wavelength range in particular offers a way to peer through most of the disk to estimate dust masses directly."
Article courtesy of PHYS.ORG

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