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Data Analysis of and Results from Observations of the Cosmic Microwave Background with the Cosmic Background Imager


Sievers, Jonathan LeRoy (2004) Data Analysis of and Results from Observations of the Cosmic Microwave Background with the Cosmic Background Imager. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/8706-VY52.


We present results from observations of the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) with the Cosmic Background Imager (CBI), a sensitive 13-element interferometer located high in the Chilean Andes. We also discuss methods of analyzing the data from the CBI, including an improved way of measuring the true power spectrum using maximum likelihood estimation. This improved method leads to a saving of a factor of two in memory usage, and an increase in speed of order the number of points in the spectrum. The initial results are discussed, in which the fall-off in power at ell > 1000 (the "damping tail") was first observed. We also present the results from the first year of observations with the CBI, and discuss cosmological intepretations both alone and in concert with the results from other experiments. These provide tight constraints on cosmological parameters, including a Hubble constant of 69 +/- 4 km/s/Mpc, an age of the universe of 13.7 +/- 0.2 billion years, and a denisty of dark energy of 0.70 +/- 0.05 of the critical density of the universe. Finally, we discuss an alternate method of data compression, with great flexibility in what information is kept, while being computationally tractable. We then apply this method to the CBI data to constrain the potential emission from foreground contaminants contributing to the observed CMB radiation. We find that the data is consistent with zero foreground, with a maximum allowed foreground contribution between about 8% and 12% of the total signal (at an ell of 600 and frequency of 30 GHz), depending on the spectral index of foreground emission.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:cmbr; cosmology; early universe; radio astronomy
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Physics, Mathematics and Astronomy
Major Option:Astronomy
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Readhead, Anthony C. S.
Group:Owens Valley Radio Observatory (OVRO), Astronomy Department
Thesis Committee:
  • Steidel, Charles C. (chair)
  • Readhead, Anthony C. S.
  • Kamionkowski, Marc P.
  • Pearson, Timothy J.
Defense Date:30 September 2003
Non-Caltech Author Email:sieversj (AT)
Record Number:CaltechETD:etd-05282004-140350
Persistent URL:
Sievers, Jonathan LeRoy0000-0001-6903-5074
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:2191
Deposited By: Imported from ETD-db
Deposited On:28 May 2004
Last Modified:05 Nov 2021 22:38

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