Group Meeting – forum for an official research presentation; one speaker per slot, with students preparing and presenting a 20-25 minute talk on their research. Postdocs and staff may opt to give a blackboard talk.
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Group Meeting Speaker: Kabelo Kesebonye
Title: HIRAX commissioning and instrument characterization
Abstract: An exciting frontier of radio astronomy is using the redshifted 21-cm emission of neutral hydrogen to reconstruct a three-dimensional map of large-scale structure in the universe. These maps encode a faint imprint, known as baryon acoustic oscillations (BAOs), that correspond to remnant ripples left behind by sound waves echoing through the plasma of the early universe. Hydrogen Intensity and Real-time Analysis eXperiment (HIRAX) is a new experiment which will constrain BAOs, open new views into structure formation and the universe’s expansion history, and shedding light on the mystery of dark energy. HIRAX will map the southern sky over a frequency range of 400-800 MHz, located in the Karoo, Nothern Cape. HIRAX will be complementing Canadian Hydrogen Intensity Mapping Experiment (CHIME), which is surveying the northern sky at the same frequency range. My project focuses on the assembly and characterization of the 8-element prototype array sited at HartRAO, which is a critical milestone along the path to constructing the full array which will consist of 1024 elements.
Journal Club – discussion around recent arXiv or any interesting/relevant papers; the purpose is to keep up to date on research elsewhere and to scientifically critique the articles.