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Title: Sensitivity of the Hydrogen Epoch of Reionization Array and its build-out stages to one-point statistics from redshifted 21 cm observations
Foregrounds with polarization states that are not smooth functions of frequency present a challenge to HI Epoch of Reionization (EoR) power spectrum measurements if they are not cleanly separated from the desired Stokes I signal. The intrinsic polarization impurity of an antenna's electromagnetic response limits the degree to which components of the polarization state on the sky can be separated from one another, leading to the possibility that this frequency structure could be confused for HI emission. We investigate the potential of Faraday rotation by the Earth's ionosphere to provide a mechanism for both mitigation of, and systematic tests for, this contamination. Specifically, we consider the delay power spectrum estimator, which relies on the expectation that foregrounds will be separated from the cosmological signal by a clearly demarcated boundary in Fourier space, and is being used by the Hydrogen Epoch of Reionization Array (HERA) experiment. Through simulations of visibility measurements which include the ionospheric Faraday rotation calculated from real historical ionospheric plasma density data, we find that the incoherent averaging of the polarization state over repeated observations of the sky may attenuate polarization leakage in the power spectrum by a factor of 10 or more. Additionally, this effect provides a way to test for the presence of polarized foreground contamination in the EoR power spectrum estimate.
Authors:
Award ID(s):
1636646
Publication Date:
NSF-PAR ID:
10074727
Journal Name:
Monthly notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Volume:
474
Page Range or eLocation-ID:
4487-4499
ISSN:
1365-2966
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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