Advanced Research Computing


SKA Science working and focus groups

SKA1 Scientific Use Cases

These use cases highlight some of the scientific objectives that could be enabled by phase 1 of the SKA (SKA1). The science use cases presented here are by no means meant to identify specific surveys or projects that are guaranteed to be carried out with SKA1, nor are they intended to highlight the highest priority science cases. They should be used as a reference for science and engineering staff involved in the design, construction and operations activities.

SKA Science Working Groups (SWGs) and Focus Groups (FGs)

These groups have developed and evolved to provide a conduit for interaction with the astronomical community. They are now intended to cover all science areas that will be addressed with the SKA. All SWGs are open to new self-nominations from prospective members who satisfy the criterion of being accredited researchers in a relevant field of astrophysics and we actively encourage new membership. 


The Cosmology Working Group addresses the history of our universe at redshifts of ~0.5 to ~6. See SKA website for associate members.

Ian HarrisonU. of ManchesterUKcore
Matt JarvisOxford Univ.UKcore
David BaconUniv. PortsmouthUKcore
Richard BattyeUniversity of ManchesterUKcore
Michael BrownU. ManchesterUKcore
Phil BullQueen Mary Univerity of LondonUKcore
Alkistis PourtsidouQueen Mary Iniversity of LondonUKcore
Laura WolzJBCAUKcore

Cradle Of Life

This working group addresses the ‘Cradle of life’ comprising topics such as the formation of planets in disk systems around young stars, SETI, exoplanets and complex molecules. For other topics related to science within the Milky Way, please visit the science working group ‘Our Galaxy’.  See SKA website for associate members.

Melvin HoareUniversity of LeedsUKCore
John IleeUniversity of LeedsUKCore
Subu MohantyImperialUKCore

 Epoch Of Reionization

The first of the working groups addressing the history of our universe, looking at the furthest cosmological distances, redshift range ~6 to ~25.  See SKA website for associate members.

Jonathan PritchardImperial CollegeUKcore

Extragalactic Continuum (Galaxies/AGN, Galaxy Clusters)

This working group is focused on the study of continuum emission from galaxies, AGN and galaxy clusters over Cosmic time, including the evolution of the cosmic star-formation rate out to the epoch of reionization.  See SKA website for associate members.

Rob BeswickU. of ManchesterUKcore
Ian HeywoodUniversity of Oxford / Rhodes UniversityUKcore

Extragalactic Spectral Line

This is the listing of the (non-HI) extragalactic spectral line science working group, addressing spectral line work not covered by the HI Science Working Group or the Our Galaxy Science Working Group

Megan ArgoUniversity of Central LancashireUK
George BendoUniversity of ManchesterUK 
Rob BeswickUniversity of ManchesterUK 
Daniel EspadaSKAOUK
Gary FullerUniversity of ManchesterUK 
Luke HindsonHertfordshireUK 
Melvin HoareUniversity of LeedsUK 
Gareth JonesCambridgeUK 
Jacco van LoonU. of KeeleUK 
Roberto MaiolinoKavli Institute for Cosmology, CambridgeUK 
Anita RichardsUniversity of ManchesterUK 
Mark ThompsonUniversity of HertfordshireUK 
Serena VitiUCLUK

Gravitational Waves

This working group has a particular focus on Gravitational Wave Science enabled by stand-alone SKA surveys (for example of galaxy clusters) or working in conjunction with GW interferometers in both a direct cross-correlation and a more synergistic mode.

David BaconUniversity of PortsmouthUK 
Matteo FasielloICG Portsmouth/td>UK 
Rob FenderOxford/td>UK 
Ian HarrisonUniversity of ManchesterUK 
Alex JenkinsKing’s College LondonUK 
Katarina MartinovicKing’s College LondonUK 
Kaustubh RajwadeUniversity of ManchesterUK 
Kaustubh RajwadeUniversity of ManchesterUK 
Mairi SakellariadouKing’s College LondonUK 
Gianmassimo TasinatoSwansea UniversityUk 
Zvonimir VlahUniv. CambridgeUK 

HI Galaxy Science

This working group is focused on the history of gas in our universe through the study of atomic HI line emission and absorption, mainly at redshifts from ~0 to ~1.5.  See SKA website for associate members.

Matt BothwellCambridge University UKmember
Tim DavisUniversity of CardiffU.K.member
Steve EalesCardiff UniversityUKmember
Daniel EspadaSKAO UKmember
Yin-Zhe MaUniversity of ManchesterUKmember
Roberto MaiolinoKavli Institute for Cosmology, CambridgeUKmember
Kyle OmanDurham UniversityUKmember
Anastasia PonomarevaOxfordUKmember
Sambit RoychowdhuryU. ManchesterUKmember
Amelie SaintongeUCLUKmember


This working group addresses the fundamental physics of cosmic magnetism.  See SKA website for associate members.

Anna ScaifeUniv. SouthamptonUnited Kingdomcore

Our Galaxy

This is the listing of the Galactic (note the capital ‘G’) science working group, addressing science within the Milky Way.

Jan ForbrichUniversity of HertfordshireUKCO-CHAIR (j.forbrich AT herts.ac.uk)
Adam AvisonUniversity of ManchesterUK 
Shari BreenSKA ObservatoryUK 
David EdenArmagh ObservatoryUK 
Danielle FenechUCLUK 
Gary FullerUniversity of ManchesterUK 
John IleeUniv. of LeedsUK 
Theo KhouriChalmers UniversityUK 
Pamela KlaassenUK Astronomy Technology CentreUK 
Steve LongmoreLiverpool John Moores UniversityUK 
Anna McLeodDurham Univ.UK 
Nicolas PerettoCardiff UniversiyUK 
Ian StevensUniversity of BirminghamUK 
Mark ThompsonUniversity of LeedsUK 
James UrquhartUniversity of KentUK 
Jaime Vargas-GonzalezUniversity of HertfordshireUK 
Farrah ZainolUniversity of BirminghamUK 


This working group addresses fundamental physics through the study of pulsars and gravitational waves.  See SKA website for associate members.

Aris KarastergiouOxford UniversityUnited KingdomCo-chair aris.karastergiou AT physics.ox.ac.uk
Ben StappersUniv. ManchesterUnited Kingdomcore

Solar, Heliospheric & Ionospheric Physics

A Science Working Group dedicated to Solar, Heliospheric & Ionospheric (SHI) physics.

Eduard KontarGlasgow UniversityUKCO-CHAIR (eduard AT astro.gla.ac.uk)
Deb BakerUCLUK 
Istvan BallaiUniversity of SheffieldUK 
Mario BisiSTFCUK 
Gert BothaNorthumbria UniversityUK 
Philippa BrowningUniversity of ManchesterUK 
Gerry DoyleArmagh ObservatoryUK 
Jonathan EastwoodImperial College LondonUK 
Lyndsay FletcherGlasgow UniversityUK 
Mykola GordovskyyUniversity of ManchesterUK 
Iain HannahUniversity of GlasgowUK 
Mike HapgoodSTFCUK 
Caitríona JackmanUniversity of SouthamptonUK 
Petra KohutovaUniversity of WarwickUK 
Alec MacKinnonGlasgow UniversityUK 
Sophie MurrayMET OfficeUK 
Valery NakariakovUniversity of WarwickUK 
Hamish ReidGlasgow UniversityUK 
James TappinSTFCUK 
David TsiklauriQueen Mary University of LondonUK 
Sergei ZharkovHull UniversityUK


This working group addresses transient phenomena and the time variable unknown.  See SKA website for associate members.

Rob FenderUniv. OxfordUKCore
Aris KarastergiouOxford Univ. UKCore
Ben StappersUniv. Manchester UKCore

High Energy Cosmic Particles (Focus Group)

The High Energy Cosmic Particles (HECP) Focus group is dedicated to the detection of high-energy particles, primarily cosmic rays, interacting in the moon or in the atmosphere above the SKA telescopes.

Justin BrayUniversity of ManchesterUK 
Ken GayleyUniversity of IowaUSA 
Keith GraingeUniversity of ManchesterUK 
Rebecca McFaddenOxford UniversityUK 
Ralph SpencerUniversity of ManchesterUK


This is the listing of the Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI) science working group. VLBI will be performed using SKA1-LOW and SKA1-MID.  See SKA website for associate members.

Robert BeswickUniv. ManchesterUKcore
Jack RadcliffeUniversity of ManchesterUKcore