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ACAMAR 5: Australia-China Workshop on Astrophysics – Program


Tue, 2 Apr | Wed, 3 Apr | Thu, 4 Apr

Tue, 2 Apr

9:10–10:00 a.m. | 10:30a.m.–12:40 p.m. | 1:30–2:30 p.m. | 2:30–3:00 p.m. | 3:30–5:10 p.m. | 5:10–6:00 p.m.

Tue, 2 Apr, 9:10 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. Day ↑ | Top ↑

Session 1: Country Updates

RACV Healesville Country Club — Chair: Professor Elaine SADLER, CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science

9:10 –9:35 a.m. — Australia
Professor Rachel WEBSTER, University of Melbourne/AAL

Prof. Webster will give an overview of Australian astronomy

9:35 –10:00 a.m. — China
Professor Ji YANG, Purple Mountain Observatory, CAS

Prof. Xue will give an overview of Chinese astronomy

Tue, 2 Apr, 10:30 a.m. to 12:40 p.m. Day ↑ | Top ↑

Session 2: Radio Astronomy

RACV Healesville Country Club — Chair: Professor Elaine SADLER, CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science

10:30 –10:50 a.m. — SKA in China
Professor Bo QIN, NAOC


10:50 –11:05 a.m. — Radio Astronomy Technologies at CSIRO

CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science (CASS) runs a strong Technologies Program engaged in developing new systems for radio astronomy utilising the latest technological advances. In particular, CASS has developed new Phased Array Feed (PAF) systems already in commissioning for ASKAP and is developing a new cryoPAF system for Parkes with unparalleled sensitivity, using the new "rocket" PAF feeds. The other major advance is in Ultra Wide Band (UWB) systems covering a 6:1 frequency range and achieving a constant beam over all frequencies using novel techniques. The first of these systems has been recently commissioned at Parkes. For both the PAF and UWB systems CASS has also developed "state-of-the-art" FPGA-based digital systems to process the large amounts of data generated. The next generation of digital signal processing systems is also under development using the revolutionary RF-System-on-a-Chip (RFSoC) recently released by Xilinx. An overview of these developments and the latest advances will be presented.

11:05 –11:20 a.m. — Future Prospects for Joint Australia-China Cooperation in the Context of the Murchison Widefield Array
Professor Melanie JOHNSTON-HOLLITT, Curtin University

I will present an overview of the activities associated with the Murchison Widefield Array (MWA) with a particular focus on the upgraded instrument, future plans, and joint Australian-Chinese research efforts.

11:20 –11:40 a.m. — FAST Science update/Review of FAST HI Survey Plan
Dr Ming ZHU, National Astronomical Observatory of China

Large scale HI survey is one of the major science drive for the Five Hundred meter Aperture Spherical radio Telescope (FAST). Here we review the FAST extra-galactic HI survey plan based on the preliminary results of test observations during FAST commissioning period. The under-planning FAST survey will focus on observations deeper than that of ALFALFA survey in order to answer important questions on galaxy formation and evolution. We also propose to make deep mapping of the diffuse HI gas around nearby galaxies and study the integrated HI emission on group and cluster scales. Synergies between the FAST HI survey and other ongoing HI surveys using the SKA pathfinder instruments will also be discussed .

11:40 –11:55 a.m. — Updated results from the Parkes/FAST collaboration
Dr Andrew David CAMERON, Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (Astronomy and Space Science)

Since its first light in 2016, the Five-hundred-metre Aperture Spherical Telescope (FAST) in southern China has already been producing a steady stream of new astronomical discoveries particular with regard to radio pulsars. Over 60 new pulsars have already been identified through early observations, and the imminent Commensal Radio Astronomy FAST Survey (CRAFTS) promises to produce orders of magnitudes more. The Parkes/FAST collaboration is an ongoing scientific partnership between the CSIRO and NAOC, intended to support FAST during this early science work. Over the past 1.5 years, the Parkes radio telescope has observed, confirmed and studied many of these new pulsar discoveries, and has also supported a number of additional science projects led by Chinese PIs. Here we will present some of the most exciting and recent results from this work, as well as a look to the future of this productive collaboration.

11:55 a.m. –12:10 p.m. — Early Science results from the Parkes ultra-wide bandwidth receiver

An ultra-wide bandwidth receiver system (UWL) has recently been installed on the Parkes 64m-diameter radio telescope. I will describe the properties of this receiver system, show example scientific results (relating to high time resolution and high frequency resolution observations), describe our future plans for the system and discuss the role of wide-band receivers on single dish telescopes in Australia and China (including both FAST and QTT).

12:10 –12:25 p.m. — How to detect ultra-high-energy cosmic rays with FAST
Dr Clancy William JAMES, ICRAR/Curtin

The Five hundred meter Aperture Spherical Telescope, FAST, offers the first opportunity to detect ultra-high-energy cosmic rays impacting the Moon. When these rare particles interact, they produce a burst of radio waves lasting a few nanoseconds. Pointing a radio telescope at the Moon, and searching for ultra-short pulses, allows the 20 million km2 visible lunar surface to be turned into a giant cosmic ray detector. The ultimate goal is to detect enough of these particles to uncover their origin. Until now however, no experiment has had the sensitivity to detect the signature of a single particle from over a light-second's distance. This talk describes how to use FAST to search for ultra-high-energy cosmic rays. The necessary experimental steps are laid out, which have been developed by the LUNASKA project on the Parkes radio telescope. Current theoretical uncertainties due to lunar surface effects are also described, as is a method to resolve these. Finally, event rate estimates with both current and future FAST receives are given, which points the way to an experiment to resolve the origin of the highest energy particles in nature.

12:25 –12:40 p.m. — FAST-MWA Synergies in Pulsar and Fast Radio Burst Science
Dr Ramesh BHAT, ICRAR, Curtin University

The geographic locations, operating frequencies and contemporaneous sky visibility bring exciting scientific synergies between the Murchison Widefield Array (MWA) and the Five-hundred metre Aperture Spherical Telescope (FAST) in the areas of pulsars and fast radio bursts (FRBs). While the unprecedented collecting area of FAST makes it a superbly sensitive instrument to search for pulsars, the MWA’s prodigious field of view makes it a powerful survey instrument at low radio frequencies. The MWA pulsar team is building high time resolution digital archives of the entire southern sky by leveraging the MWA’s voltage capture functionality and the newly commenced all-sky pulsar survey (SMART), the data from which can be readily mined for low-frequency detections of new pulsars, and follow-up studies of promising candidates, that will emerge from the Commensal Radio Astronomy FAST Survey (CRAFTS). The low frequencies and electronic steering capabilities also make the MWA a powerful instrument for rapid follow-ups of FRBs that will be detected by the CRAFTS project.

Tue, 2 Apr, 1:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. Day ↑ | Top ↑

Session 3: Student Talks

RACV Healesville Country Club — Chair: Professor Bo QIN, NAOC

1:30 –1:40 p.m. — Gas Temperature Demography in the Magellanic Clouds

A galaxy's star formation rate is partially determined by how quickly gas converts from di!use atomic (HI) state to molecular (H2). This HI-H2 conversion is a!ected by the amount of metal in the gas and the strength of interstellar radiation fields. We have conducted an Australia Telescope Compact Array (ATCA) observation project that uses HI absorption to probe the HI-H2 conversion within disparate environments in two local laboratories: the nearby Large and Small Magellanic Clouds. This project will complement the ASKAP survey, GASKAP and help us understand the gas processes that lead to star formation and how these impact galaxy evolution throughout the Universe. Our project observed 48 sightlines in LMC and 31 in SMC with 6km configuration of ATCA telescope, which doubled the total number of sampling. We will present the results for the temperature distribution of atomic gas in the Magellanic Clouds and its implications for our knowledge of ISM evolution and galaxy formation.

1:40 –1:50 p.m. — Southern Pulsar Census and Polarimetric Studies with the MWA
Ms. Mengyao XUE, ICRAR-Curtin

The Murchison Widefield Array (MWA) provides an excellent opportunity to extend the frequency range of pulsar observations in the Southern Hemisphere. In 2017 we carried out an initial census of a large sample of known (i.e., catalogued) pulsars at 185 MHz using the MWA Voltage Capture System (VCS), which records raw (unprocessed) data from a maximum of 128 MWA tiles at high-time and high-frequency resolutions (100 us, 10 KHz). This led to the successful detection of 65 pulsars (including six millisecond pulsars and two in binary system), but using only ~10% of the full-array sensitivity, as the detected powers from the tiles were incoherently summed. We are currently reprocessing these data using the new tied-array (i.e. phased array) beam-former pipeline for high-time resolution, full-polarimetric studies of a large sample of pulsars. The analysis is currently underway and also necessitated a detailed characterisation of the polarimetric performance of the MWA in tied-array mode, using two bright southern pulsars, PSR J0742-2822 (moderately polarised) and PSR J1752-2806 (highly polarised). Our analysis suggests that reliable pulsar polarimetry can be realised at frequencies < 270 MHz at zenith angles < 45 degrees. Our analysis also led to first low-frequency polarimetric studies of these two pulsars, high-precision determinations of their Faraday rotation measurements, and an intriguing result, where the degree of linear polarisation of one of the pulsars showing a steady (and rapid) decline at the low frequencies of the MWA. I will present these developments, our initial interpretation and current efforts toward further detailed follow-ups using the low-frequency capabilities of the MWA and other facilities.

1:50 –2:00 p.m. — HI intensity mapping with Parkes telescope
Mr. Lincheng LI, National Astronomical Observatories,Chinese Academy of Sciences

to be submitted later...

2:00 –2:10 p.m. — The HI mass function in Arecibo Ultra-Deep Survey
Mr Hongwei XI, National Astronomical Observatories, Chinese Academy of Sciences

Arecibo Ultra Deep Survey (AUDS) is a blind HI survey targeting galaxies beyond local universe using the 21 cm emission line. The Arecibo $L$-band Feed Array is employed, which gives a upper limit of redshift 0.16. The survey covers two regions located in opposite directions, minimising cosmic variance and ensuring that all observations were able to be performed at night when RFI is weakest. The total area covered was about 1.35 deg$^2$, and total on-source integration time is over 700 hours. The long integration time and small observation area makes it the most sensitive HI survey yet undertaken, with the rms reaching as low as 60 $\mu$Jy per velocity channel. We have so far detected around 250 galaxies. The mass range is log($M_{HI}$/$M_\odot$)-2log$h$ = 5.85-10.29. The furthest galaxy is located at 560 Mpc. Both 1/V$_{max}$ and 2DSWML methods are used to derive the HI mass function (HIMF). The former method results in a faint-end slope $\alpha = -1.36\pm 0.07$, characteristic mass $\log(M_* h^2/M_\odot) = 9.62\pm 0.10$, and density $\Phi_* = (5.18\pm 1.44)\times 10^{-3} h^3$ Mpc$^{-3}$ dex$^{-1}$, while the latter gives $\alpha = -1.17\pm 0.10$, $\log(M_* h^2/M_\odot) = 9.43\pm 0.10$, and $\Phi_* = (7.04\pm 2.14)\times 10^{-3} h^3$ Mpc$^{-3}$ dex$^{-1}$. The sample is divided into high- and low-redshift subsamples to investigate the evolution of HIMF. A slight evolution of the HIMF is present in both methods with $\alpha$ decreasing and $M_*$ increasing with redshift. Similar observations will be possible with FAST, but with much greater sensitivity, larger field of view, better RFI environment, and a higher redshift limit of 0.35, twice as high as available with ALFA.

2:10 –2:20 p.m. — Early Results with FAST Relating to Pulsars
Ms Lei ZHANG, National Astronomical Observatories of China

PSR J1926−0652, a pulsar recently discovered by the Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical radio Telescope (FAST). Using sensitive single-pulse detections from FAST and long-term timing observations from the Parkes 64-m radio telescope, we probe phenomena on both long and short time scales. The pulsar exhibits multiple profile components, short-term nulling and subpulse drifting and intermittency on scales of tens of minutes. There is currently no single physical model that can explain all of these phenomena. We therefore proposed a simultaneous observation with China (FAST) and Australia telescopes (Parkes and ATCA) to obtain a deeper understanding of this unusual pulsar and drifting and nulling in general.

2:20 –2:30 p.m. — Single pulse search with Parkes data archive
Mr Songbo ZHANG, Purple Mountain Observatory, Chinese Academy of Science

We will report the discovery of a new fast radio burst (FRB), FRB 010312, in archival data on Data Access Portal (DAP). This burst is one of the broadest found to date, the second earliest FRB known, and the ninth FRB discovered with a dispersion measure larger than 1000 cm^{-3} pc. As this is only the start of our search, we will also introduce our further search of the whole DAP which contains more than 30 years archival data of Parkes telescope and the idea of a big single pulses database.

Tue, 2 Apr, 2:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Day ↑ | Top ↑

Session 4: Radio Astronomy (Cont)

RACV Healesville Country Club — Chair: Professor Bo QIN, NAOC

2:30 –2:45 p.m. — HI Observations of Planck Catalogue of Galactic Cold Clumps (PGCC) with FAST
Dr Ningyu TANG, National Astronomical Observatories, Chinese Academy of Science

The Planck Catalogue of Galactic Cold Clumps (PGCC) are believed to be in the early phases of star formation. To investigate the transition from atomic to molecular gas in these clumps, HI observations toward PGCC sources were taken with the Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical radio Telescope (FAST). HI Narrow Self-Absorption (HINSA), which associates with cold HI gas in molecular cloud is introduced. We present primary results here.

2:45 –3:00 p.m. — A novel geometric wavelet based radio dynamic range imaging method
Associate Professor HAO SHAN, Xinjiang Astronomical Observatory

The future SKA has a series of characteristics, such as large field of view, high dynamic, multi-beam, broadband, high frequency and high time resolution, etc. In our research, we also find that radio images has complex characteristics, which can be represented in multi-scales and multi-directions. In this paper, we try to realize a geometric wavelet based dynamic range imaging while retaining important visual information, such as the multi-scale and multi-direction features.Multi-scale image processing techniques have been used in the filed of high dynamic imaging, however they will cause halo artifacts when used for range compression. In these methods, wavelet based mehtods, especially the symmetrical analysis-synthesis filter bank aided by a local gain control of the subbands can work when properly implemented. It can also adapted for the related problem of “companding”, in which an HDR image is converted to an LDR image, and later expanded back to high dynamic range. However,as is known to all, the tensor product based wavelet has disadvantages in represented point sources, but a fatal flaw in representing the curve-like or extended sources, which can be summed up as the second-order continuously differentiable sigularities. The needle-shaped elements can realize a perfect representations for extended sources. In recent research, we use the already published EVLA images, and we find that geometric wavelet, such as curvelets and shearlets in the dynamic range imaging can avoid halo artifacts while retaining important visual information. The experimental results prove that this curvelet-based high dynamic iamging method has competitive results and wide application prospects. The future work will include the compressed sensing based innovations.

Tue, 2 Apr, 3:30 p.m. to 5:10 p.m. Day ↑ | Top ↑

Session 5: Data and Centres

RACV Healesville Country Club — Chair: Professor Lister STAVELEY-SMITH, University of Western Australia

3:30 –3:50 p.m. — Chinese SKA regional centre progress and early science prepartion
Dr Quan GUO, Shanghai Astronomical Observatory

In this talk, we will introduce the progress of developing Chinese SKA regional center prototype and the preparation of SKA early science on behalf of SKA team in Shanghai Astronomical Observatory

3:50 –4:05 p.m. — SKA Regional Centres - status and developments
Professor Peter QUINN, ICRAR

I will review the status and current development of SKA Regional Centres. The work going on in Australia via the AusSRC Project, the joint efforts of Australia and China through the ERIDANUS project and the collective work of internatonal SRC projects will be discussed. The aim of the SRC efforts is to produce a global network of data and processing centres that are well matched to national needs and the needs of the SKA for the creation of advanced data products by KSP teams and the operation of the SKA Science Archive. Australia and China are well placed to lead major SRC developments in the coming 5-10 years based on the experience with SKA pathfinders and precursors (ASKAP, MWA and FAST) and the ERIDANUS effort.

4:05 –4:20 p.m. — IVOA and China-VO
Dr Chenzhou CUI, NAOC

The International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA) was formed in June 2002 with a mission to facilitate the international coordination and collaboration necessary for the development and deployment of the tools, systems and organizational structures necessary to enable the international utilization of astronomical archives as an integrated and interoperating virtual observatory. Chinese Virtual Observatory (China-VO) is the national VO project in China initiated in 2002 by Chinese astronomical community leading by National Astronomical Observatories, CAS. China-VO became a member of the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA) in 2002. As the deputy chair of IVOA and PI of the China-VO, in my talk I will give an overview and current status of the organization, and latest progresses from the China-VO.

4:20 –4:35 p.m. — Five Years of China-Chile Cooperation in Astronomy
Professor Zhong WANG, Chinese Academy of Sciences South America Center for Astronomy

Since late 2013 China has established an outpost for cooperations in astronomy in Chile, known as CASSACA (Chinese Academy of Sciences South America Center for Astronomy). Over the past five years, it has served the interest of astronomy communities of both countries, and is a focusing point for Chinese scientists who wish to have more access to the Southern Sky. I will give an overview of the work accomplished by CASSACA and discuss the outlook for this Center in the next few years.

4:35 –4:50 p.m. — A China - Australia Joint Research Centre in radio astronomy and the Square Kilometre Array
Professor Steven TINGAY, ICRAR - Curtin University

will describe a Joint Research Centre in radio astronomy and the Square Kilometre Array, led by Curtin University and the Shanghai Astronomical Observatory. The exact content of the abstract and talk depends (not completely) on the outcome of multi-million dollar proposals currently in the final stages of review under the Australia-China Science and Research Fund (ACSRF), in both China and Australia. The proposal outcomes will be known before ACAMAR5, but not before the abstract submission deadline

4:50 –5:10 p.m. — Pulsar activities at NTSC's 40-m radio telescope
Dr Jintao LUO, National Time Service Center, CAS

NTSC(National Time Service Center, CAS, China) is running a 40-m radio telescope, which is located in a mountain area that provides good radio environment. Pulsar activities, including instrumentation developments and researches on pulsar time scale, will be told as the main part of the talk. VLBI activities and technical details of the telescope will be introduced with a few slides, as well.

Tue, 2 Apr, 5:10 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. Day ↑ | Top ↑


RACV Healesville Country Club


RACV Healesville Country Club


RACV Healesville Country Club

Wed, 3 Apr

9:00–10:20 a.m. | 10:50a.m.–12:30 p.m. | 1:30–2:35 p.m. | 2:35–2:55 p.m. | 3:25–4:55 p.m. | 6:30–9:00 p.m.

Wed, 3 Apr, 9:00 a.m. to 10:20 a.m. Day ↑ | Top ↑

Session 6: Gravitation Waves and Transients

RACV Healesville Country Club — Chair: Professor Lifan WANG, Purple Mountain Observatory, Chinese Academy of Sciences

9:00 –9:20 a.m. — A matter machine - the science case for a high-frequency gravitational-wave observatory
Dr Paul LASKY, Monash University

On the 17th of August 2017, gravitational waves from the inspiral of two neutron stars were first observed. Subsequent electromagnetic observations across the spectrum meant that this was arguably the most observed transient event in the history of astronomy. But gravitational waves were not detected from either the merger or post-merger phases of the collision, which occur at gravitational-wave frequencies above many hundreds of Hertz, where the LIGO and Virgo detectors begin losing sensitivity. I will discuss the science case for building a dedicated, high-frequency gravitational-wave observatory. Among other things, such an observatory could detect the merger and post-merger phases of a binary neutron star collision, allowing us to probe exotic nuclear physics in the cores of neutron stars in a regime not accessible with terrestrial experiments.

9:20 –9:35 a.m. — NAOC's SiTian all-sky monitoring network: a new vision of the transient optical sky
Professor Roberto SORIA, University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences

High-cadence, deep all-sky optical monitoring is the new frontier of optical astronomy for the next decade. The goal is to discover the optical counterparts of several types of high energy, relativistic transients (such as gravitational wave mergers, fast radio bursts, tidal disruption events). Prompt optical monitoring of the transient events will pinpoint their location with arcsec accuracy, and constrain the physical origin of the electromagnetic emission. NAOC is planning to set up a world-wide network (known as SiTian) of 72 robotic one-metre telescopes, each with a field of view of 5 deg x 5 deg. Each telescope will scan a different field every 60 s. The goal is to scan the whole night sky every 30 min, simultaneously in 3 optical bands, down to a limiting magnitude of 21.5 mag per scan (an unprecedented combination of speed and depth). The most interesting transients will be followed up spectroscopically with three newly built, dedicated 4-m telescopes. Sitian will be complementary to LSST, covering an unexplored region of the parameter space (timescales from 30 min to several hours). It will be a $500 million multi-national project; we aim to develop and implement it between 2022 and 2027, with telescopes installed in China, Europe, US, Chile, South Africa and Australia. In particular, Australian participation to SiTian will be crucial for at least three reasons: a) technical experience of optical/IR all-sky monitoring (eg, SkyMapper, DREAMS); b) experience of real-time automated processing and managing of huge data streams (similar challenges faced by the SKA and its Pathfinders); c) location, location, location (required to achieve continuous monitoring of the southern sky).

9:35 –9:50 a.m. — Pulsars and gravitational waves
Dr Xingjiang ZHU, Monash University

Pulsars are unique cosmic laboratories with a range of astrophysical applications. Observations of binary pulsar systems provided the first indirect evidence for the existence of gravitational waves. The exceptional rotational stability of millisecond pulsars can be exploited to construct a pulsar timing array, which is essentially a Galactic-scale detector for nanohertz gravitational waves. In this talk, I will first describe new progress in modeling the mass distribution of Galact double neutron stars. I will then present a novel framework that allows population properties of double neutron stars to be inferred from radio and gravitational-wave observations. In particular, I will show that it will soon become possible to probe neutron star equation of state and magnetic field evolution with Advanced LIGO and radio telescopes like FAST and SKA. Lastly, I will provide updates on the international pulsar timing array efforts and highlight some new limits on the expected signal amplitude of the gravitational wave background formed by supermassive binary black holes.

9:50 –10:05 a.m. — The astrophysical science case for a decihertz gravitational-wave detector
Professor Ilya MANDEL, Monash

I discuss the astrophysical science case for a decihertz gravitational-wave mission. I focus on unique opportunities for scientific discovery in this frequency range, including probes of type IA supernova progenitors, mergers in the presence of third bodies, intermediate mass black holes, seeds of massive black holes, improved sky localization, and tracking the population of merging compact binaries.

10:05 –10:20 a.m. — Binary Black Hole Population Properties: the Second Observing Run and Beyond
Professor Eric THRANE, Monash University

Following LIGO and Virgo's second observing run, there are now 10 confirmed gravitational-wave detections of binary black holes. The detections mark a transition from the initial discovery of gravitational waves to the compilation of gravitational-wave catalogs. With the first catalog of gravitational-wave transients, we use the mass, spin, and distance of merging binaries--encoded in gravitational waveforms--to probe binary formation, the fate of massive stars, and cosmology. In this talk, I review some of the population inferences from LIGO/Virgo's first catalog and discuss some of the science possible with future observing runs.

Wed, 3 Apr, 10:50 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Day ↑ | Top ↑

Session 7: Transients, Antarctic, High Energy and Space Science

RACV Healesville Country Club — Chair: Professor Ji YANG, Purple Mountain Observatory, CAS

10:50 –11:10 a.m. — GHz to THz Radio and Tera-eV gamma-ray astronmy: Their intimate connection
A/Professor Gavin ROWELL, University of Adelaide

The interstellar medium (ISM) is a crucial element in understanding the production of gamma-ray emission. For example relativistic cosmic-ray nuclei accelerated in extreme environments (e.g. supernova remnants) can interact with the surronding ISM, producing co-located GeV to TeV gamma-ray emission. While much of the ISM is traced in the HI 21cm and CO spectral lines, the THz radio spectral lines tracing atomic carbon are critical in understanding the missing or 'dark' components of the ISM. In this talk I will highlight the role that such THz observations can play in shedding light on this issue, and how they will influence our understanding of the gamma-ray sky. I will also outline the importance of the new high resolution HI, OH and CO surveys in the context of high energy astrophysics.

11:10 –11:30 a.m. — X-ray Binaries
A/Professor Duncan GALLOWAY, Monash University

X-ray binaries consist of neutron stars or black holes accreting from a stellar companion. Depending upon the nature of the compact object and the evolutionary status of the mass donor, these objects can exhibit a wide range of phenomena, including acceleration of jets, persistent or intermittent pulsations, and thermonuclear (X-ray) bursts. X-ray binaries emit over a wide range of wavelengths, from radio through to gamma-ray, and exhibit variability on timescales of ms to decades. I will briefly describe the properties of different classes, recent exciting results, and current prospects for observations.

11:30 –11:50 a.m. — Kunlun Dark Universe Survey Telescope

Kunlun Dark Universe Survey Telescope, one of two major facility of Chinese Antarctic Observatory, is a 2.5-meter optic/infrared telescope and will be built at the Chinese Antarctic Kunlun Station. After several year design and operation of AST3 at Dome A, NIAOT team have accumulated rich experience to develop KDUST under such extreme environment. This talk will give the latest progress of project proposal and key technology pre-research.

11:50 a.m. –12:10 p.m. — The Deeper, Wider, Faster program: the ongoing novel, real-time, multi-wavelength fast transient program
A/Professor Jeff COOKE, Swinburne University of Technology

The Deeper, Wider, Faster (DWF) program coordinates over 50 multi-wavelength telescopes worldwide and in space with particle and gravitational wave detectors to detect and follow up the fastest transients (milliseconds-to-hours duration) in real-time. Coordinated facilities include Parkes, ASKAP, VLA, MeerKAT, Molonglo, MWA, South Pole Telescope, GROND, REM, CTIO DECam, Subaru HSC, SkyMapper, CNEOST, LCOGT, Zadko, Antarctic AST3-2, Keck, SALT, VLT, Gemini, Palomar, AAT, Lijiang, Xinglong, ANU 2.3m, Zadko, HAWC, Pierre Auger Observatory, and the Swift and HXMT space observatories. DWF coordinates deep, wide-field radio through gamma-ray facilities to observe the same field at the same time with a fast cadence for real-time fast transient detection and identification. The deep, wide-field, fast-cadenced optical data (DECam or Subaru HSC) is processed and analysed in real-time (continuous 20s exposures) on the Swinburne supercomputer and the candidates are assessed and identified within minutes of outburst using our sophisticated data visualisation technology in our mission control room. Rapid-response (minutes later) deep spectroscopy and imaging is triggered on high-priority events, along with conventional (hours/day later) ToOs for longer duration events. Finally, long-term monitoring of the fields is performed globally, as some fast transients are associated with slower evolving events. DWF was initially conceived to search for counterparts to fast radio bursts and gravitational wave events, but searches for all events in this relatively unexplored fast time domain. It is the only program that is designed to be on field before, during, and after transient detection and capable of uncovering the nature of fast radio bursts, as well as their host galaxies. With its observing strategy and developed techniques in real-time data processing, analysis and visualisation, DWF has been a strong trailblazer for LSST and all future deep, wide-field transient surveys.

12:10 –12:30 p.m. — Astronomy with space telescopes in the next decade: From flagship missions to CubeSats
A/Professor Michele TRENTI, University of Melbourne


Wed, 3 Apr, 1:30 p.m. to 2:35 p.m. Day ↑ | Top ↑

Session 7: Transients, Antarctic, High Energy and Space Science (Cont)

RACV Healesville Country Club — Chair: Professor Ji YANG, Purple Mountain Observatory, CAS

1:30 –1:50 p.m. — Fast radio bursts from primordial black hole binaries coalescence
Professor Xuefeng WU, Purple Mountain Observatory, Chinese Academy of Sciences

We propose a model in which the coalescence of primordial black hole (PBHs) binaries with equal mass M ˜10^{28} g can emit luminous gigahertz (GHz) radio transient, which may be candidate sources for the observed fast radio bursts (FRBs), if at least one black hole holds an appropriate amount of net electric charge Q . Using a dimensionless quantity for the charge q =Q /√{G }M , our analyses infer that q ˜O (10^{-4.5}) can explain the FRBs with released energy of order O (10^{40}) ergs . With the current sample of FRBs and assuming a distribution of charge ϕ (q ) for all PBHs, we can deduce that its form is proportional to q^{-3.0 ±0.1} for q ≥7.2 ×10^{-5} if PBHs are sources of the observed FRBs. Furthermore, with the proposed hypothetical scenario and by estimating the local event rate of FRBs ˜2.6 ×10^{3} Gpc^{-3} yr^{-1}, one derives a lower bound for the fraction of PBHs (at the mass of 10^{28} g ) against that of matter, f_{PBH}(10^{28} g )≳10^{-5}, needed to explain the rate. With this inspiring estimate, we expect that future observations of FRBs can help us to falsify their physical origins from the PBH binaries coalescences.

1:50 –2:05 p.m. — Simulating observations from a lunar-orbiting interferometer
Dr Benjamin MCKINLEY, Curtin University

Following the recent success of the Chang’e-4 Lunar mission, China is planning a new mission to do ground-breaking science at very-low radio frequencies from lunar orbit. The Ultra-Long-Wavelength Astronomical Observation Array aims to make the first detailed images of the sky between 1-30 MHz and to measure the global signal from neutral hydrogen between 30-100 MHz. A new collaboration has been established between researchers at the National Astronomical Observatories, Chinese Academy of Sciences, in Beijing and Curtin University in Perth, to simulate the outputs of the proposed satellite constellation and develop new methods for calibration and imaging. This talk will outline our recent progress and plans for the future, which will include the development and testing of innovative strategies for calibration and imaging that can overcome the unique challenges faced by an interferometer in lunar orbit.

2:05 –2:20 p.m. — Preliminary results of atmospheric seeing at Dome A, Antarctica
Mr. Bin MA, National Astronomical Observatories, Chinese Academy of Sciences

Dome A, Antarctica, the location of Chinese Kunlun station, is a promising astronomical site, because the atmospheric seeing is expect to be as good as Dome C ( about 0.3”) or even better. Yet there is no direct measurement of night seeing. To solve this, we have developed the KunLun Differential Image Motion Monitor (KL-DIMM), which is designed to be operated automatically under the harsh environment at Dome A. In cold test down to – 70 degree, the KL-DIMM functioned correctly and was able to cold reboot. In Jan 2019 two KL-DIMMs were successfully installed on an 8-m tower Dome A by the 35th Chinese Antarctic Expedition team, and they have been monitoring the daytime seeing since then. In this talk I will present the preliminary results from KL-DIMMs, which are expected to acquire the free atmosphere seeing, as well as the night seeing, for the first time at Dome A.

2:20 –2:35 p.m. — FRBs: physical models and cosmological applications
Dr Fayin WANG, Nanjing University

In this talk, I will present the physical models and cosmological applications of fast radio bursts.

Wed, 3 Apr, 2:35 p.m. to 2:55 p.m. Day ↑ | Top ↑

Session 8: Galaxies and Optical Instrumentation

RACV Healesville Country Club — Chair: A/Professor Emma RYAN-WEBER, Swinburne University

2:35 –2:55 p.m. — HOGS in Space: The Habitat of Galaxies Surveys
Dr Michelle CLUVER, Swinburne University of Technology

Our view of the radio universe is about to change forever. Not just because of the unexpected discoveries that invariably accompany new and more sensitive telescopes and instrumentation, but also thanks to the wealth of data that will soon start to flood the archives. As deep and large galaxy surveys start to become the norm, ancillary multiwavelength information becomes vital to addressing the breadth of science questions that mega-datasets facilitate. As an example, I will discuss how HI data, ancillary spectroscopy, photometry, SEDs and photometric redshifts can be leveraged to explore the influence of environment on galaxy evolution in the local (z<0.1) universe.

Wed, 3 Apr, 3:25 p.m. to 4:55 p.m. Day ↑ | Top ↑

Session 8: Galaxies and Optical Instrumentation (Cont)

RACV Healesville Country Club — Chair: A/Professor Emma RYAN-WEBER, Swinburne University

3:25 –3:45 p.m. — Clumpy, Turbulent Galaxies in the Local Universe
Dr Deanne FISHER, Swinburne

Over 2/3 of all star formation in the Universe occurs in gas-rich, super-high pressure clumpy galaxies in the epoch of redshift z~1-3. However, because these galaxies are so distant we are limited in the information available to study the properties of star formation and gas in these systems. I will present results using a sample of extremely rare, nearby galaxies (called DYNAMO) that are very well matched in gas fraction (fgas~20-80%), kinematics (rotating disks with velocity dispersions ranging 20-100 km/s), structure (exponential disks) and morphology (clumpy star formation) to high-z main-sequence galaxies. We therefore use DYNAMO galaxies as laboratories to study the processes inside galaxies in the dominate mode of star formation in the Universe. In this talk I will report on results from our programs with HST, ALMA, Keck, and NOEMA for DYNAMO galaxies that are aimed at testing models of star formation. We have discovered of an inverse relationship between gas velocity dispersion and molecular gas depletion time. This correlation is directly predicted by theories of feedback-regulated star formation; conversely, predictions of models in which turbulence is driven by gravity only are not consistent with our data. I will also present results from a recently acquired map of CO(2-1) in a clumpy galaxy with resolution less than 200 pc. With maps such as these we can begin to study these super giant star forming clumps at scales that are more comparable to local surveys of GMCs. I will show results for the star formation efficiency of clumps, the boundedness of clumps of molecular gas, and discuss links between star formation efficiency and formation of clumps of stellar mass. The details of clumpy systems are a direct constraint of the results of simulations, especially on the nature of feedback in the high density environments of star formation that dominate the early Universe.

3:45 –4:05 p.m. — Identifying Outlier Galaxies Using Multi-Wavelength Databases
Dr Chao-Wei TSAI, National Astronomical Observatories, Chinese Academy of Sciences

Extragalactic sources with properties different from the normal populations often mark important phases of galaxy evolution. For example, the recently discovered extremely luminous infrared galaxies (ELIRGs) selected by their unusual red colors in mid-infrared from the WISE sky survey revealed a rapid massive growth episode of supermassive black holes shrouded by the heavy dust cocoon. Other systems such as starburst dwarf galaxies also show unique characteristics in their photometry. In this talk, I will describe my experience in identifying these outliers from the large databases, and in carrying out follow-up studies to investigate these strange populations. I will also discuss an effort of constructing a tool that can use to conduct a more systematic search for these outliers from multi-wavelength databases. This tool can be also useful for statistical studies for the large observation programs such as the FAST sky survey.

4:05 –4:25 p.m. — Introduction on Chinese 12-m optical/infrared telescope
Professor Xiangyan YUAN, Nanjing Institute of Astronomical optics & Technology

The 12m optical/infrared telescope (LOT) is urgently needed in China for a wide range of scientific research and has been selected by Chinese government for the Thirteen-five-years plan in 2016. The concept design introduced here has been approved by Chinese astronomical community and CAS in Dec. 2017. For quite a long time, China will very likely have only one 10m class telescope, therefore LOT should be a general-purpose telescope including multi-foci. The four-mirror Nasmyth system, optimized according to the GLAO requirements, has a f-ratio about 14 and field of view 14 arecmin with excellent image quality. Some off-axis four-mirror Nasmyth optical systems are also presented. The primary focus system has a f-ratio 2 and 1.5degree field of view with 80% light energy encircled in 0.5 arecsec. A double–layer Nasmyth platforms are proposed to accommodate more instruments, such as the wide field imaging spectrograph, high resolution spectrograph and multi-object fiber spectrographs and so on. Not all optical systems will be constructed in the same time, which will be in stages depending on the science and funding situation.

4:25 –4:40 p.m. — New TEC CCD cameras of LAMOST
Dr Lei JIA, National Astronomical Observatories, Chinese Academy of Sciences

This paper introduces the high performance TEC cooled CCD cameras of LAMOST telescope.LAMOST totally has 32 CCD cameras and CCDs were cooled with LN in the original design. In order to achieve higher temperature control accuracy and simplify routine maintenance,the TEC cooling method has gradually replace the LN system since 2016. The TEC cooling structure is described in detail. Fifty percent of the LAMOST CCD cameras are TEC cooled mode so far,and the update is still in progress. A set of remote control and monitoring software was also developed and completed.Providing a 10 degree heat dissipation temperature for the TEC hot side,a 4k by 4k CCD can be cooled to -95 degree. The accuracy of CCD temperature is about ±0.1 degree, and the dark current is less than 2 electrons during 1800s exposure time. Key words: LAMOST,CCD,LN,TEC,dark current

4:40 –4:55 p.m. — CCD Camera and operational software for CSTAR2
Dr. Jian WANG, Univ. of Sci. and Tech. of China

CSTAR (Chinese Small Telescope Array) is a telescope array which consists of four telescopes with 145mm apertures. The telescopes point at the zenith of the geographic Antarctica, with a view field of 20 square degrees. The telescopes was installed in 2009, CSTAR2 is a new telescope array which consists of two telescopes with 145 aperture and an equatorial mount, which will installed at Dome A in 2019. We developed CCD cameras with 1K*1K pixels for CSTAR since the previous camera has been out of products. Furthermore, the CSTAR2 has an equatorial mount, which make the telescope pointing to any sky area and more flexible and powerful. We also develop an operational software for the whole telescope to make observation much easier.

Wed, 3 Apr, 6:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Day ↑ | Top ↑

Conference Dinner

Registration required

6:30 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.

Conference dinner will be provided on 3 April free of charge for participants.

More info →

Thu, 4 Apr

9:00–10:30 a.m. | 10:30–11:00 a.m. | 11:00a.m.–12:00 p.m. | 12:00–12:15 p.m. | 12:15–1:30 p.m.

Thu, 4 Apr, 9:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Day ↑ | Top ↑

Session 9: Stellar and Planetary Science

RACV Healesville Country Club — Chair: Professor Di LI, NAOC

9:00 –9:20 a.m. — Galactic Calibration of the Tip of the Red Giant Branch
Professor Jeremy MOULD, Swinburne University

Indications from Gaia data release 2 (DR2) are that the tip of the red giant branch (TRGB, a population II standard candle related to the helium flash in low mass stars) is close to -4 in absolute I magnitude in the Cousins photometric system. Our sample is high latitude stars from the thick disk and inner halo, and our result is consistent with longstanding findings from globular clusters, whose distances were calibrated with RR Lyrae stars. As the Gaia mission proceeds, there is every reason to think an accurate Galactic geometric calibration of TRGB will be a significant outcome.

9:20 –9:40 a.m. — Exoplanet Searching With AST3 and Beyond
Professor Ji-Lin ZHOU, Nanjing University

Here I report the progress of transiting exoplanet survey uses AST3 in the year of 2016, which we discovered 116 exoplanet candidates (Zhang et al. accepted by ApJS). Also we report the constrction of time domain observaroty (TIDO) in Ali, Tibet. Collaborations to form a international global net are welcome.

9:40 –10:00 a.m. — Veloce and Exoplanetary Science in the post-TESS era
Professor Chris TINNEY, University of New South Wales

NASA’s TESS mission is set to follow in the Kepler mission’s footsteps, by once more revolutionising our understanding of extrasolar planets. Kepler has told us that small planets are common, and that the distinct populations of planets include gas-giants (i.e. roughly Saturn-Jupiter size), Neptunes and sub-Neptunes (~4 times the size of the Earth) and smaller planets of 1-2 times the size of the Earth. But what we really want to know are the DENSITIES of those planet populations. That means measuring masses, and almost all Kepler planets are inaccessible to mass measurement. Measuring masses requires the ability to do Doppler follow-up and that requires brighter stars. TESS will deliver those stars and Australia’s Veloce instrument is one of the few facilities in the south for doing those observations. I’ll report on Veloce’s capabilities, and its potential to engage with Antractic telescopes in doing exoplanetary science in the TESS, and post-RESS era.

10:15 –10:30 a.m. — Women in astronomy
Dr RENU SHARMA, International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research

Astronomy is a champion of getting young minds, regardless of gender, interested in science. However, about 20% of positions in astronomy are held by women astronomers and this percentage gets further reduced as the seniority levels increase. There are efforts to address this anomaly in Australia and to support gender balance through Astronomical Society of Australia’s Pleiades Scheme, through the Science in Australia Gender Equity pilot and family friendly policies of individual organisations. While the current Zeitgeist calls for more women in the workforce but the progress is very slow as shown by the World Economic Forum 2017 Global Gender Gap Report. The report states, “A key avenue for further progress is the closing of occupational gender gaps. These gaps often reflect a myriad set of factors that require adjustments within the education sector, within companies and by policymakers..... and that the world as a whole could increase global GDP by US$5.3 trillion by 2025 by closing the gender gap in economic participation by 25% over the same period.”

Thu, 4 Apr, 10:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. Day ↑ | Top ↑

Reports from formal and informal Break-out sessions

RACV Healesville Country Club — Chair: Professor Michael ASHLEY, University of New South Wales

Thu, 4 Apr, 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Day ↑ | Top ↑

Panel Discussion

RACV Healesville Country Club

Thu, 4 Apr, 12:00 p.m. to 12:15 p.m. Day ↑ | Top ↑


RACV Healesville Country Club — Chair: Professor Lifan WANG, Purple Mountain Observatory, Chinese Academy of Sciences

Thu, 4 Apr, 12:15 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. Day ↑ | Top ↑


RACV Healesville Country Club