CaltechAUTHORS
  A Caltech Library Service

Characterization of the BICEP Telescope for High-precision Cosmic Microwave Background Polarimetry

Takahashi, Y. D. and Ade, P. A. R. and Barkats, D. and Battle, J. O. and Bierman, E. M. and Bock, J. J. and Chiang, H. C. and Dowell, C. D. and Duband, L. and Hivon, E. F. and Holzapfel, W. L. and Hristov, V. V. and Jones, W. C. and Keating, B. G. and Kovac, J. M. and Kuo, C. L. and Lange, A. E. and Leitch, E. M. and Mason, P. V. and Matsumura, T. and Nguyen, H. T. and Ponthieu, N. and Pryke, C. and Richter, S. and Rocha, G. and Yoon, K. W. (2010) Characterization of the BICEP Telescope for High-precision Cosmic Microwave Background Polarimetry. Astrophysical Journal, 711 (2). pp. 1141-1156. ISSN 0004-637X. http://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20100316-103422736

[img]
Preview
PDF - Published Version
See Usage Policy.

2581Kb

Use this Persistent URL to link to this item: http://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20100316-103422736

Abstract

The Background Imaging of Cosmic Extragalactic Polarization (BICEP) experiment was designed specifically to search for the signature of inflationary gravitational waves in the polarization of the cosmic microwave background (CMB). Using a novel small-aperture refractor and 49 pairs of polarization-sensitive bolometers, BICEP has completed three years of successful observations at the South Pole beginning in 2006 February. To constrain the amplitude of the inflationary B-mode polarization, which is expected to be at least 7 orders of magnitude fainter than the 3 K CMB intensity, precise control of systematic effects is essential. This paper describes the characterization of potential systematic errors for the BICEP experiment, supplementing a companion paper on the initial cosmological results. Using the analysis pipelines for the experiment, we have simulated the impact of systematic errors on the B-mode polarization measurement. Guided by these simulations, we have established benchmarks for the characterization of critical instrumental properties including bolometer relative gains, beam mismatch, polarization orientation, telescope pointing, sidelobes, thermal stability, and timestream noise model. A comparison of the benchmarks with the measured values shows that we have characterized the instrument adequately to ensure that systematic errors do not limit BICEP's two-year results, and identifies which future refinements are likely necessary to probe inflationary B-mode polarization down to levels below a tensor-to-scalar ratio r = 0.1.


Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
http://dx.doi.org/10.1088/0004-637X/711/2/1141DOIArticle
http://iopscience.iop.org/0004-637X/711/2/1141/PublisherArticle
ORCID:
AuthorORCID
Ade, P. A. R.0000-0002-5127-0401
Bock, J. J.0000-0002-5710-5212
Additional Information:© 2010 American Astronomical Society. Issue 2 (2010 March 10). Received 2009 June 26; accepted for publication 2010 January 29; published 2010 February 22. Bicep is supported by NSF Grant OPP-0230438, Caltech Discovery Fund, Caltech President’s Fund PF-471, JPL Research and Technology Fund, and the late J. Robinson. We thank our colleagues in Acbar, Boomerang, QUaD, Bolocam, and SPT for advice and helpful discussions, Kathy Deniston for logistical and administrative support, and the South Pole Station staff for their support. We acknowledge support by the NASA Graduate Fellowship program (H.C.C., E.M.B.), the John B. and Nelly Kilroy Foundation (J.M.K.), and NSF PECASE Award AST- 0548262 (B.G.K.).
Funders:
Funding AgencyGrant Number
NSFOPP-0230438
Caltech Discovery FundUNSPECIFIED
Caltech's President's FundPF-471
JPL Research and Technology FundUNSPECIFIED
NASA Graduate FellowshipUNSPECIFIED
John B. and Nelly Kilroy FoundationUNSPECIFIED
NSFAST-0548262
Subject Keywords:cosmic background radiation; cosmology: observations; gravitational waves; inflation; instrumentation: polarimeters; telescopes
Issue or Number:2
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20100316-103422736
Persistent URL:http://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20100316-103422736
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:17751
Collection:CaltechAUTHORS
Deposited By: Jason Perez
Deposited On:17 Mar 2010 21:39
Last Modified:08 Jul 2019 20:59

Repository Staff Only: item control page