NPA Seminar: Johanna Nagy, University of Toronto, “Probing Inflation with SPIDER, a Balloon-Borne CMB Polarimeter”

Event time: 
Thursday, September 13, 2018 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm
Wright Lab (WNSL), 216 See map
272 Whitney Avenue
New Haven, CT 06511
Event description: 

The generation of a stochastic gravitational wave background is a key prediction of cosmological theories of inflation. At large angular scales, these gravitational waves would imprint a unique “B-mode” polarization pattern in the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB), providing a new window into the physics of the early universe. SPIDER is a balloon-borne telescope that has been uniquely optimized to search for this inflationary signal in the CMB over the course of two Antarctic flights. The first of these flights took place in 2015, and I will present an overview of flight performance and preliminary data. I will also discuss preparations for the second flight, which is currently scheduled for December 2019. This flight will include a higher frequency channel to measure galactic foregrounds.