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Simulations of Global 21-cm Signal Observations with MIST to Study the Early Universe

Presentation #525.02 in the session “Large Scale Structure and Cosmic Surveys”.

Published onJan 11, 2021
Simulations of Global 21-cm Signal Observations with MIST to Study the Early Universe

I will present work in progress on simulating radio observations with the Mapper of the IGM Spin Temperature (MIST) experiment using the Niagara Canadian supercomputer. MIST is an experiment that will measure the sky radio spectrum below 200 MHz to try to detect the 21-cm line of neutral hydrogen to study the early universe (z>6). The 21-cm signal is emitted or absorbed during the hyperfine spin-flip transition of neutral hydrogen atoms. Studying the globally averaged 21-cm signal from high redshifts can provide insights on the first compact objects during the Cosmic Dawn and the Epoch of Reionization. In our work, we simulate the global 21-cm signal and the radio foregrounds, and convolve them with beam pattern models from different antenna designs being considered for MIST. From these simulated observations we then attempt to retrieve the input 21-cm signals and their associated astrophysical parameters. Comparing the results for different antenna designs will inform our choice of antenna design for MIST. In this presentation I will discuss how the global signal and the foregrounds are simulated. I will then present the antenna designs studied and compare their performance when trying to extract the 21-cm signal. After summarizing our findings I will outline the next steps for this project, which include investigating (1) a wider range of antenna designs and (2) the effects of antenna location on the Earth as well as its orientation relative to the sky.

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