NPA Zoom Seminar, Ruby Byrne, University of Washington, “Measuring the Epoch of Reionization: Progress, Challenges, and Next Steps for High Redshift 21 cm Cosmology”

Event time: 
Thursday, November 19, 2020 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm
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Event description: 

The 21 cm emission line from neutral hydrogen represents a promising observational probe of cosmological evolution. In particular, measuring the highly redshifted 21 cm emission from the Epoch of Reionization (EoR) will illuminate a crucial and currently poorly understood period in cosmological history. The EoR denotes the period when radiation from early galaxies and black holes ionized the intergalactic medium. A direct measurement of the EoR will illuminate the astrophysics behind the formation of the first stars and galaxies, will test models of dark matter and dark energy, and could reveal exotic new physics. However, the signal is extremely faint and is overwhelmed by the bright intervening foreground emission. Recent advances in analysis techniques attempt to overcome these challenges and achieve a detection of the EoR. In this presentation, I discuss my current work with the Murchison Widefield Array (MWA) and the Hydrogen EoR Array (HERA) and the path towards successful 21 cm cosmology.
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