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Proceedings Paper

Optical performance of the BICEP2 Telescope at the South Pole
Author(s): Randol W. Aikin; P. A. Ade; S. Benton; J. J. Bock; J. A. Bonetti; J. A. Brevik; C. D. Dowell; L. Duband; J. P. Filippini; S. R. Golwala; M. Halpern; V. V. Hristov; K. Irwin; J. P. Kaufman; B. G. Keating; J. M. Kovac; C. L. Kuo; A. E. Lange; C. B. Netterfield; H. T. Nguyen; R. W. Ogburn; A. Orlando; C. Pryke; S. Richter; J. E. Ruhl; M. C. Runyan; C. Sheehy; S. A. Stokes; R. Sudiwala; G. P. Teply; J. E. Tolan; A. D. Turner; P. Wilson; C. L. Wong
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Paper Abstract

Bicep2 deployed to the South Pole during the 2009-2010 austral summer, and is now mapping the polarization of the cosmic microwave background (CMB), searching for evidence of inflationary cosmology. Bicep2 belongs to a new class of telescopes including Keck (ground-based) and Spider (balloon-borne) that follow on Bicep's strategy of employing small, cold, on-axis refracting optics. This common design provides key advantages ideal for targeting the polarization signature from inflation, including: (i) A large field of view, allowing substantial light collecting power despite the small aperture, while still resolving the degree-scale polarization of the CMB; (ii) liquid helium-cooled optics and cold stop, allowing for low, stable instrument loading; (iii) the ability to rotate the entire telescope about the boresight; (iv) a baffled primary aperture, reducing sidelobe pickup; and (v) the ability to characterize the far field optical performance of the telescope using ground-based sources. We describe the last of these advantages in detail, including our efforts to measure the main beam shape, beammatch between orthogonally-polarized pairs, polarization efficiency and response angle, sidelobe pickup, and ghost imaging. We do so with ground-based polarized microwave sources mounted in the far field as well as with astronomical calibrators. Ultimately, Bicep2's sensitivity to CMB polarization from inflation will rely on precise calibration of these beam features.

Paper Details

Date Published: 15 July 2010
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 7741, Millimeter, Submillimeter, and Far-Infrared Detectors and Instrumentation for Astronomy V, 77410V (15 July 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.857868
Show Author Affiliations
Randol W. Aikin, California Institute of Technology (United States)
P. A. Ade, Cardiff Univ. (United Kingdom)
S. Benton, Univ. of Toronto (Canada)
J. J. Bock, California Institute of Technology (United States)
Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
J. A. Bonetti, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
J. A. Brevik, California Institute of Technology (United States)
C. D. Dowell, California Institute of Technology (United States)
Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
L. Duband, Commissariat à l'Énergie Atomique (France)
J. P. Filippini, California Institute of Technology (United States)
S. R. Golwala, California Institute of Technology (United States)
M. Halpern, The Univ. of British Columbia (Canada)
V. V. Hristov, California Institute of Technology (United States)
K. Irwin, National Institute of Standards and Technology (United States)
J. P. Kaufman, Univ. of California, San Diego (United States)
B. G. Keating, Univ. of California, San Diego (United States)
J. M. Kovac, Harvard Univ. (United States)
C. L. Kuo, Stanford Univ. (United States)
Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology (United States)
A. E. Lange, California Institute of Technology (United States)
C. B. Netterfield, Univ. of Toronto (Canada)
H. T. Nguyen, California Institute of Technology (United States)
R. W. Ogburn, Stanford Univ. (United States)
Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology (United States)
A. Orlando, California Institute of Technology (United States)
C. Pryke, The Univ. of Chicago (United States)
Univ. of Minnesota (United States)
S. Richter, California Institute of Technology (United States)
J. E. Ruhl, Case Western Reserve Univ. (United States)
M. C. Runyan, California Institute of Technology (United States)
C. Sheehy, The Univ. of Chicago (United States)
Univ. of Minnesota (United States)
S. A. Stokes, Stanford Univ. (United States)
R. Sudiwala, Cardiff Univ. (United Kingdom)
G. P. Teply, California Institute of Technology (United States)
J. E. Tolan, Stanford Univ. (United States)
A. D. Turner, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
P. Wilson, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
C. L. Wong, Harvard Univ. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7741:
Millimeter, Submillimeter, and Far-Infrared Detectors and Instrumentation for Astronomy V
Wayne S. Holland; Jonas Zmuidzinas, Editor(s)

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