Flux Calibration of CHIME/FRB Intensity Data

By: Bridget C. Andersen, Chitrang Patel, Charanjot Brar, P. J. Boyle, Emmanuel Fonseca, Victoria M. Kaspi, Kiyoshi W. Masui, Juan Mena-Parra, Marcus Merryfield, Bradley W. Meyers, Ketan R. Sand, Paul Scholz, Seth R. Siegel, Saurabh Singh

Fast radio bursts (FRBs) are bright radio transients of micro-to-millisecond duration and unknown extragalactic origin. Central to the mystery of FRBs are their extremely high characteristic energies, which surpass the typical energies of other radio transients of similar duration, like Galactic pulsar and magnetar bursts, by orders of magnitude. Calibration of FRB-detecting telescopes for burst flux and fluence determination is crucial for... more
Fast radio bursts (FRBs) are bright radio transients of micro-to-millisecond duration and unknown extragalactic origin. Central to the mystery of FRBs are their extremely high characteristic energies, which surpass the typical energies of other radio transients of similar duration, like Galactic pulsar and magnetar bursts, by orders of magnitude. Calibration of FRB-detecting telescopes for burst flux and fluence determination is crucial for FRB science, as these measurements enable studies of the FRB energy and brightness distribution in comparison to progenitor theories. The Canadian Hydrogen Intensity Mapping Experiment (CHIME) is a radio interferometer of cylindrical design. This design leads to a high FRB detection rate but also leads to challenges for CHIME/FRB flux calibration. This paper presents a comprehensive review of these challenges, as well as the automated flux calibration software pipeline that was developed to calibrate bursts detected in the first CHIME/FRB catalog, consisting of 536 events detected between July 25th, 2018 and July 1st, 2019. We emphasize that, due to limitations in the localization of CHIME/FRB bursts, flux and fluence measurements produced by this pipeline are best interpreted as lower limits, with uncertainties on the limiting value. less
SPOKES: an End-to-End Simulation Facility for Spectroscopic Cosmological
  Surveys

By: B. Nord, A. Amara, A. Refregier, La. Gamper, Lu. Gamper, B. Hambrecht, C. Chang, J. E. Forero-Romero, S. Serrano, C. Cunha, O. Coles, A. Nicola, M. Busha, A. Bauer, W. Saunders, S. Jouvel, D. Kirk, R. Wechsler

The nature of dark matter, dark energy and large-scale gravity pose some of the most pressing questions in cosmology today. These fundamental questions require highly precise measurements, and a number of wide-field spectroscopic survey instruments are being designed to meet this requirement. A key component in these experiments is the development of a simulation tool to forecast science performance, define requirement flow-downs, optimize ... more
The nature of dark matter, dark energy and large-scale gravity pose some of the most pressing questions in cosmology today. These fundamental questions require highly precise measurements, and a number of wide-field spectroscopic survey instruments are being designed to meet this requirement. A key component in these experiments is the development of a simulation tool to forecast science performance, define requirement flow-downs, optimize implementation, demonstrate feasibility, and prepare for exploitation. We present SPOKES (SPectrOscopic KEn Simulation), an end-to-end simulation facility for spectroscopic cosmological surveys designed to address this challenge. SPOKES is based on an integrated infrastructure, modular function organization, coherent data handling and fast data access. These key features allow reproducibility of pipeline runs, enable ease of use and provide flexibility to update functions within the pipeline. The cyclic nature of the pipeline offers the possibility to make the science output an efficient measure for design optimization and feasibility testing. We present the architecture, first science, and computational performance results of the simulation pipeline. The framework is general, but for the benchmark tests, we use the Dark Energy Spectrometer (DESpec), one of the early concepts for the upcoming project, the Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument (DESI). We discuss how the SPOKES framework enables a rigorous process to optimize and exploit spectroscopic survey experiments in order to derive high-precision cosmological measurements optimally. less