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Gould Belt Survey

The Gould Belt Legacy Survey GBS used two JCMT survey instruments (SCUBA-2 and HARP to survey nearby star-forming regions (D < 500 pc). The survey includes the best known Gould’s Belt clouds – Orion, Taurus, Perseus, Serpens and Ophiuchus – as well as less well-studied local star-forming regions, and complements similar Gould Belt surveys with the Spitzer and Herschel space telescopes. The SCUBA-2 targets are half-degree regions preselected on Herschel 500 micron emission to provide a deep, uniform 850 micron survey at 14” FWHM resolution. Data at 450 microns at 9” FWHM resolution were also acquired in locations of high surface density of protostellar objects. The HARP observations focus on subregions of the same clouds in 12CO(3-2), 13CO(3-2) and C18O(3-2). The science goals of the GBS are:

  • Protostellar lifetimes and accretion rates;
  • Origin of the IMF and brown dwarfs;
  • Structure of cores to clouds;
  • Evolutionary Classification
  • Mass ejection and accretion rates;
  • Core kinematics;
  • Clouds and filaments;
  • Tests of the standard model of star formation;
  • Large scale turbulence.

CANFAR current activities

JCMT Gould Belt Survey

  • Archives data at the Canadian Astronomy Data Centre and on CANFAR
  • Uses Interactive and Batch Processing systems on the CANFAR cloud
  • Publishes datasets using the CANFAR Digital Object Identifier (Datacite) system

Data & software needs and future plans

  • Improvements in the capabilities and scale of the CANFAR processing and storage systems.


  • Project web page: http://www.eaobservatory.org/jcmt/science/legacy-survey/gbs/
  • Node lead and contact: James Di Francesco
  • People:
    • James Di Francesco, survey co-ordinator (Canada)
    • Jennifer Hatchell, survey co-ordinator (UK)
    • Michiel Hogerheijde, survey co-ordinator (Netherlands)
    • Derek Ward-Thompson, survey co-ordinator (UK)
    • Helen Kirk, data reduction and management
    • plus ~45 other survey members across the three partner countries