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MSSS-HBA is nearing completion!

Submitter: George Heald
Description: As you can see from the official status page, the observational part of the MSSS-HBA survey (120-160 MHz) is now almost complete. Because we are utilizing a fast and reliable pipeline for post-processing, the hardworking MSSS Team have consistently kept up with the observing schedule during 2013. This means that we can already take a sneak peek at the LOFAR sky as seen by MSSS at around 150 MHz!

The image shown today was generated with the Aladin Sky Atlas. Using Aladin's new "HEALPix All-sky Builder" utility, it was a simple matter of providing the program with a directory full of FITS files (approximately 3000 of them!), each containing a single MSSS-HBA image created using LOFAR's awimager. For the experts, the images were not beam-corrected, and represent the median over all 8 HBA bands in the survey.

This MSSS-HBA all-sky image is presented on a zenith projection, with a Galactic coordinate grid. The Galactic equator is the horizontal line cutting through the circle marked "Cas A" (that and the other similar grey circles mask areas surrounding the brightest sources on the sky, where the image quality is not as high as everywhere else). Along the Galactic equator several supernova remnants are visible. There are still a few blank areas where images were not yet available, but actually many of those areas have since been filled in! The HBA survey is expected to be complete by the end of 2013.

If you haven't clicked to view the image at full resolution, you really should - the relatively small preview might hide some of the details. Even then, it should be noted that the full-resolution image shown here is still strongly undersampled. To view the whole image at its true full pixel resolution, you probably would need a screen that is approximately 50 times larger -- in both width and height!
Copyright: MSSS / ASTRON
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