Astronomy in the Time Domain

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Science  11 Feb 2011:
Vol. 331, Issue 6018, pp. 686-687
DOI: 10.1126/science.1201365

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To catch the most extreme and unusual phenomena in the universe, many instruments are becoming increasingly coordinated, complementing each other across the energy spectrum from radio emission up to gamma-rays. As reported in this issue, the coordinated efforts of teams from the AGILE (Astro rivelatore Gamma a Immagini Leggero) (1) and the Fermi gamma-ray space telescopes (2) provide an example of the very successful multiwavelength campaign that was triggered on the spot. Within a month observers around the world responded with 16 follow-up reports. Astronomy now stands at the edge of a new frontier, enabled by modern information technology and by political and technical synergies across institutional boundaries.