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Today's Colloquium: MeerKAT and radio transients: the ThunderKAT Large Survey Project

Submitter: Patrick Woudt
Description: MeerKAT is South Africa's SKA precursor telescope. It will consist of 64 13.5-m offset Gregorian radio dishes, and will form part of the SKA Phase 1 mid-frequency array.

MeerKAT is currently under construction and is expected to start full scientific operations in 2016. Ten large survey projects (LSP) have been defined on MeerKAT, collectively taking up 70% of the available time during the first five years of scientific operation.

One of the MeerKAT LSPs, ThunderKAT, is focussed on the study of radio transients and relates to understanding accretion processes and accretion-related outflow in compact binaries (accreting black holes, neutron stars and white dwarfs), supernovae and gamma-ray bursts.

I will present details of the ThunderKAT project, with a particular emphasis on the commensal nature of the search for transients and its associated comprehensive multi-wavelength programme. I will show preliminary results of KAT-7 observations of radio transients obtained during the science commissioning phase of KAT-7.
Copyright: MeerKAT
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