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Proceedings Paper

HIRAX: a probe of dark energy and radio transients
Author(s): L. B. Newburgh; K. Bandura; M. A. Bucher; T.-C. Chang; H. C. Chiang; J.F. Cliche; R. Davé; M. Dobbs; C. Clarkson; K. M. Ganga; T. Gogo; A. Gumba; N. Gupta; M. Hilton; B. Johnstone; A. Karastergiou; M. Kunz; D. Lokhorst; R. Maartens; S. Macpherson; M. Mdlalose; K. Moodley; L. Ngwenya; J. M. Parra; J. Peterson; O. Recnik; B. Saliwanchik; M. G. Santos; J. L. Sievers; O. Smirnov; P. Stronkhorst; R. Taylor; K. Vanderlinde; G. Van Vuuren; A. Weltman; A. Witzemann
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Paper Abstract

The Hydrogen Intensity and Real-time Analysis eXperiment (HIRAX) is a new 400{800MHz radio interferometer under development for deployment in South Africa. HIRAX will comprise 1024 six meter parabolic dishes on a compact grid and will map most of the southern sky over the course of four years. HIRAX has two primary science goals: to constrain Dark Energy and measure structure at high redshift, and to study radio transients and pulsars. HIRAX will observe unresolved sources of neutral hydrogen via their redshifted 21-cm emission line (`hydrogen intensity mapping'). The resulting maps of large-scale structure at redshifts 0.8{2.5 will be used to measure Baryon Acoustic Oscillations (BAO). BAO are a preferential length scale in the matter distribution that can be used to characterize the expansion history of the Universe and thus understand the properties of Dark Energy. HIRAX will improve upon current BAO measurements from galaxy surveys by observing a larger cosmological volume (larger in both survey area and redshift range) and by measuring BAO at higher redshift when the expansion of the universe transitioned to Dark Energy domination. HIRAX will complement CHIME, a hydrogen intensity mapping experiment in the Northern Hemisphere, by completing the sky coverage in the same redshift range. HIRAX's location in the Southern Hemisphere also allows a variety of cross-correlation measurements with large-scale structure surveys at many wavelengths. Daily maps of a few thousand square degrees of the Southern Hemisphere, encompassing much of the Milky Way galaxy, will also open new opportunities for discovering and monitoring radio transients. The HIRAX correlator will have the ability to rapidly and efficiently detect transient events. This new data will shed light on the poorly understood nature of fast radio bursts (FRBs), enable pulsar monitoring to enhance long-wavelength gravitational wave searches, and provide a rich data set for new radio transient phenomena searches. This paper discusses the HIRAX instrument, science goals, and current status.

Paper Details

Date Published: 8 August 2016
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 9906, Ground-based and Airborne Telescopes VI, 99065X (8 August 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2234286
Show Author Affiliations
L. B. Newburgh, Univ. of Toronto (Canada)
K. Bandura, West Virginia Univ. (United States)
M. A. Bucher, APC, Univ. Paris Diderot, CNRS (France)
Univ. of KwaZulu-Natal (South Africa)
T.-C. Chang, Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics (Taiwan)
H. C. Chiang, National Institute for Theoretical Physics (South Africa)
Univ. of KwaZulu-Natal (South Africa)
J.F. Cliche, McGill Univ. (Canada)
R. Davé, Univ. of the Western Cape (South Africa)
South African Astronomical Observatories (South Africa)
African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (South Africa)
M. Dobbs, McGill Univ. (Canada)
C. Clarkson, Univ. of Cape Town (South Africa)
Queen Mary Univ. of London (United Kingdom)
K. M. Ganga, APC, Univ. Paris Diderot, CNRS (France)
T. Gogo, Univ. of KwaZulu-Natal (South Africa)
A. Gumba, Durban Univ. of Technology (South Africa)
N. Gupta, IUCAA (India)
M. Hilton, Univ. of KwaZulu-Natal (South Africa)
B. Johnstone, West Virginia Univ. (United States)
A. Karastergiou, Univ. of the Western Cape (South Africa)
Univ. of Oxford (United Kingdom)
Rhodes Univ. (South Africa)
M. Kunz, Univ. de Genève (Switzerland)
D. Lokhorst, Dunlap Institute, Univ. of Toronto (Canada)
R. Maartens, Univ. of the Western Cape (South Africa)
S. Macpherson, Durban Univ. of Technology (South Africa)
M. Mdlalose, Univ. of KwaZulu-Natal (South Africa)
K. Moodley, Univ. of KwaZulu-Natal (South Africa)
L. Ngwenya, Univ. of KwaZulu-Natal (South Africa)
J. M. Parra, McGill Univ. (Canada)
J. Peterson, Carnegie Mellon Univ. (United States)
O. Recnik, Dunlap Institute, Univ. of Toronto (Canada)
B. Saliwanchik, Univ. of KwaZulu-Natal (South Africa)
M. G. Santos, Univ. of Western Cape (South Africa)
J. L. Sievers, Univ. of KwaZulu-Natal (South Africa)
National Institute for Theoretical Physics (South Africa)
O. Smirnov, Rhodes Univ. (South Africa)
P. Stronkhorst, HartRAO (South Africa)
R. Taylor, Univ. of Cape Town (South Africa)
K. Vanderlinde, Dunlap Institute, Univ. of Toronto (Canada)
G. Van Vuuren, Durban Univ. of Technology (South Africa)
A. Weltman, Univ. of Cape Town (South Africa)
Princeton Univ. (United States)
School of Natural Sciences (United States)
A. Witzemann, Univ. of the Western Cape (South Africa)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9906:
Ground-based and Airborne Telescopes VI
Helen J. Hall; Roberto Gilmozzi; Heather K. Marshall, Editor(s)

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