University of Waterloo
200 University Avenue West
Waterloo, Ontario, Canada N2L 3G1
Phone: (519) 888-4567 ext 32215
Fax: (519) 746-8115
JPL Chief Technologist and Merle Kingsley Professor of Physics
It is a remarkable but not widely appreciated fact that the universe is as bright at submillimeter wavelengths as it is in the traditional optical/near-infrared bands. The submillimeter band remains underutilized for astronomy mainly due to logistical and technological difficulties, but this is changing rapidly. For example, the CCAT project aims to construct a 25m diameter submillimeter-wave telescope at 5600m altitude on Cerro Chajnantor in Chile. With its large collecting area, excellent site, and wide field of view, CCAT will perform deep, large-area surveys of the high-redshift universe. In order to fully exploit CCAT, cameras and imaging spectrometers with millions of detectors will ultimately be needed, an increase of several orders of magnitude compared to the largest submillimeter instruments at present. I will discuss some of the science opportunities enabled by such megapixel-scale instruments as well as recent developments in superconducting detector technologies that could make these instruments practical and affordable.