Submillimeter Astrophysics and Technology
  Thursday June 13 2024 10:51 PST      

TGP Conference 2009
122 Participants
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Sponsored by
Caltech Submillimeter Group
Jet Propulsion Laboratory


With ALMA well into its construction phase, Herschel soon to be launched, and powerful new technologies, instruments, and projects on the horizon, astrophysics at submillimeter wavelengths is finally emerging from its early pioneering phase and is rapidly advancing toward the scientific forefront with an ever-accelerating stream of major new results. This is the legacy of Tom Phillips, who for nearly four decades has been at the center of the most important developments in this field.

Starting in the early 1970's, Tom pioneered submillimeter spectroscopy using his InSb hot-electron bolometer receiver, and detected numerous new species in the interstellar medium, including the surprisingly abundant neutral carbon atom. In 1979, Tom co-invented the superconducting SIS mixer, which completely revolutionized the field and is the fundamental enabling technology for both ALMA and the HIFI instrument for Herschel. As OVRO director in the early 1980's, Tom completed the construction of the three-element millimeter-wave interferometer that is now part of CARMA, and then moved on to the construction of the Caltech Submillimeter Observatory on Mauna Kea, completed in 1987. In addition to their seminal scientific contributions, both CSO and OVRO served as important platforms for the practical demonstration and refinement of SIS technology, an essential step toward ALMA. Since the mid-1980's, Tom has also been the central organizer of the U.S. effort to develop a submillimeter space mission. By the late 1990's, Tom's tireless efforts led to NASA's participation in the Herschel Space Observatory, for which Tom serves as the U.S. Principal Investigator.

Please join us for this two-day symposium in which we will discuss the latest advances in submillimeter astrophysics and technology, as we celebrate and honor Tom Phillips and his remarkable achievements and contributions.