National Astronomical Observatory of Japan

Japanese Receivers for ALMA Obtained the First Spectrum

| Science


Two different types of the receivers Japan developed for ALMA (Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array) successfully obtained the first spectrum from the universe. These Japanese receivers, which are designed for the frequency bands Band 4 and Band 8, marked this milestone on June 22 and 30, 2010, respectively. The receivers will undergo detailed performance tests as part of the evaluation process.

There are ten frequency categories of the millimeter/submillimeter wavelengths (30 to 950 GHz) — Band 1 through Band 10 — at which ALMA observes celestial objects to ravel the mysteries of the universe. Receivers for each band are developed and fabricated by partner countries of the ALMA Project, and Japan is in charge of the receivers for three bands: Band 4 (125 to 163 GHz), Band 8 (385 to 500 GHz), and Band 10 (787 to 950 GHz).