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Paper: The Square Kilometer Array: Key Science and Technology Development
Volume: 345, From Clark Lake to the Long Wavelength Array: Bill Erickson's Radio Science
Page: 461
Authors: Cordes, J.M.
Abstract: This paper summarizes the science goals for the Square Kilometer Array and its possible implementation. The SKA is the next generation radio telescope that will revolutionize our knowledge of the universe. The SKA will enable massive surveys of many kinds at meter and centimeter wavelengths. It is being designed to probe fundamental questions in physics, such as the nature of dark energy and dark matter and the properties of gravity in the strong-field limit. The SKA will also lead to a better understanding of complexity in the universe, viz. the origins of magnetic fields, galaxies, stars, planets and life. Currently the purpose and specifications of the SKA are defined in terms of five key science areas, which are summarized here, along with the enormous discovery space that will be opened up by the SKA. The key “axes of discovery” for the SKA include a huge boost in sensitivity combined with high angular resolution and wide field of view (FoV). These innovations, combined with those developed in radio astronomy contexts over the last few decades, will open new windows to the universe. It will also provide numerous synergistic studies with telescopes that span the electromagnetic spectrum as well as with non-electromagnetic telescopes, especially gravitational wave detectors.
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