From ALMA: “ALMA Selects New Director”

ESO/NRAO/NAOJ ALMA Array in Chile in the Atacama at Chajnantor plateau, at 5,000 metres

07 July 2017

Nicolás Lira T.
Press Coordinator
Joint ALMA Observatory
Santiago, Chile
Tel: +56 2 24 67 65 19
Cell: +56 9 94 45 77 26

Dr. Sean Dougherty. Credit: Catherine Vlahakis

After a competitive selection process that began in January 2017, the international governing board of the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) has selected Dr. Sean Dougherty as the new ALMA Director for a 5-year term beginning in April 2018.

Dougherty is currently the director of the Dominion Radio Astrophysical Observatory, Canada’s national radio astronomy facility, run by NRC Herzberg Astronomy and Astrophysics.

The Dominion Radio Astrophysical Observatory is a research facility founded in 1960 and located south-west of Okanagan Falls, British Columbia, Canada. The site houses three instruments – an interferometric radio telescope, a 26-m single-dish antenna, and a solar flux monitor – and support engineering laboratories. The DRAO is operated by the Herzberg Institute of Astrophysics of the National Research Council of the Canadian government.

He has served as a member of the ALMA Board representing North America for four years and was the chair of the ALMA Budget Committee for the last two years.

Dougherty received his bachelor’s degree in mathematics and physics from the University of Nottingham, England, in 1983 and his Ph.D. in astrophysics from the University of Calgary, Canada, in 1993.

Dougherty has more than 20 years of science and engineering management experience in radio astrophysics. This includes Canada’s contributions to international radio astronomy facilities and R&D projects as well as leadership of major science and engineering activities at the Dominion Radio Astrophysical Observatory. He also led the design and construction of the WIDAR correlator for the Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array and is currently leading the international consortium designing the correlator and beamformer for the Square Kilometer Array.

WIDAR correlator at VLA

NRAO/Karl V Jansky VLA, on the Plains of San Agustin fifty miles west of Socorro, NM, USA

SKA Square Kilometer Array

See the full article here .

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The Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), an international astronomy facility, is a partnership of Europe, North America and East Asia in cooperation with the Republic of Chile. ALMA is funded in Europe by the European Organization for Astronomical Research in the Southern Hemisphere (ESO), in North America by the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) in cooperation with the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) and the National Science Council of Taiwan (NSC) and in East Asia by the National Institutes of Natural Sciences (NINS) of Japan in cooperation with the Academia Sinica (AS) in Taiwan.

ALMA construction and operations are led on behalf of Europe by ESO, on behalf of North America by the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO), which is managed by Associated Universities, Inc. (AUI) and on behalf of East Asia by the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ). The Joint ALMA Observatory (JAO) provides the unified leadership and management of the construction, commissioning and operation of ALMA.

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