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Observational and Theoretical Advances in Cosmological Foreground Emission


Stevenson, Matthew Alan (2014) Observational and Theoretical Advances in Cosmological Foreground Emission. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology.


Observational and theoretical work towards the separation of foreground emission from the cosmic microwave background is described. The bulk of this work is in the design, construction, and commissioning of the C-Band All-Sky Survey (C-BASS), an experiment to produce a template of the Milky Way Galaxy's polarized synchrotron emission. Theoretical work is the derivation of an analytical approximation to the emission spectrum of spinning dust grains.

The performance of the C-BASS experiment is demonstrated through a preliminary, deep survey of the North Celestial Pole region. A comparison to multiwavelength data is performed, and the thermal and systematic noise properties of the experiment are explored. The systematic noise has been minimized through careful data processing algorithms, implemented both in the experiment's Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) based digital backend and in the data analysis pipeline. Detailed descriptions of these algorithms are presented.

The analytical function of spinning dust emission is derived through the application of careful approximations, with each step tested against numerical calculations. This work is intended for use in the parameterized separation of cosmological foreground components and as a framework for interpreting and comparing the variety of anomalous microwave emission observations.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:Cosmology; Cosmological foreground emission; Interstellar dust; Interstellar medium; Wide-area astronomy survey; Radio astronomy instrumentation
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Physics, Mathematics and Astronomy
Major Option:Astrophysics
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Readhead, Anthony C. S.
Group:Owens Valley Radio Observatory (OVRO), Astronomy Department
Thesis Committee:
  • Hirata, Christopher M. (chair)
  • Golwala, Sunil
  • Hillenbrand, Lynne A.
  • Pearson, Timothy J.
  • Readhead, Anthony C. S.
  • Scoville, Nicholas Zabriskie
Defense Date:12 June 2013
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:09292013-182521898
Persistent URL:
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription ItemJournal Article
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:7966
Deposited By: Matthew Stevenson
Deposited On:20 Nov 2013 17:47
Last Modified:30 May 2023 22:27

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