ALMA Regional Centres


The Joint ALMA Observatory (JAO) with its headquarters in Chile consists of three ALMA Regional Centres (ARCs), which are hosted by ESO (Europe), NRAO (North America) and NAOJ (East Asia).


ESO ARC nodes

The European ALMA Regional Centre (EU ARC) provides the interface between the ALMA project and the European science community. It supports its users mainly in the areas of proposal preparation, observation preparation, data reduction, and data analysis.

Unlike its partner ARCs in North America and Japan, the European ARC is organized as a coordinated network of scientific support nodes distributed across Europe. The central node is located at ESO Headquarters in Garching bei M√ľnchen and carries the responsibility for all the core ARC activities as well as the coordination of the additional science support provided by the¬†regional nodes.

Here is a list of all nodes and their respective fields of specialisation:

  • German (Bonn-Cologne): Infrastructure for advanced data analysis and modeling (incl. Cologne Database for Molecular Spectroscopy), Polarimetry, Astrometry, Pipeline heuristics, Automatic data calibration
  • Italian (Bologna): Data handling/GRID-technology, Mosaicing, Coordinating surveys/key-projects, Polarimetry
  • Nordic (Onsala): Multi-Frequency Synthesis, Phase modeling, Self-calibration, Astrometry, Deconvolution, GRID computing, Astrochemical modelling and radiation transfer
  • IRAM (Grenoble): Calibration, Phase correction, Polarimetry, Imaging simulator, Schools
  • Allegro (Leiden): High-frequency, Wide field imaging, Data analysis tools
  • UK (Manchester): Data analysis, Archive, Data reduction heuristics, Proposal preparation, Multi-Frequency-Synthesis and Wide-field & high-dynamic range imaging
  • Czech (Ondrejov): Solar and (extra)galactic astrophysics, Laboratory measurements of molecular spectral lines, Observation planning, Data quality check, Data storage and processing, Data reduction using CASA

North America

The North American ALMA Regional Center (NA ARC) is a subset of the North American ALMA Science Center, concentrating on the internationally agreed ALMA core functions. The ALMA international partners in East Asia and Europe support similar ALMA Regional Centers. In North America, the ARC is a partnership between NRAO , the National Research Council of Canada (NRC), supported by the Millimeter Astronomy Group at the Herzberg Institute of Astrophysics, and the National Science Council of Taiwan (NSC).

(from the NA ARC Website)

East Asia

The East Asian ALMA Regional Center (EA ARC) is based at the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ) founded by the National Institutes of Natural Sciences (NINS) of Japan in cooperation with the Academia Sinica (AS) in Taiwan. EA ARC provides the primary gateway to ALMA for East Asian user community. The ARC are staffed by scientists with expertise in radio astronomy and interferometry, and their purpose is to work with the community of astronomers to maximize the scientific productivity of the telescope. The EA ARC Headquarters is located at NAOJ in Mitaka. The key user service of the EA ARC at the Headquarters includes the complete trajectory from proposal preparation and observational preparation to the delivery of the calibrated science products to the users. In addition to the user services, the EA ARC provides a number of functional duties directed toward ALMA operations, commissioning, development, and outreach.

The Taiwan has an ARC station, and it is located at the Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics in Academia Sinica (ASIAA) in Taipei. In collaboration with EA ARC and NA ARC, it serves all the ALMA user community in Taiwan, and offers supports for the ALMA proposal and observational preparation, data reduction and data analysis. As for user support, there is also coordination with the University Consortium of ALMA-Taiwan (UCAT). The information for the Taiwanese ARC is available from here.

(from the EA ARC Website)