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  1. Abstract We describe the measurement and treatment of the telescope beams for the Atacama Cosmology Telescope's fourth data release, DR4. Observations of Uranus are used to measure the central portion (<12 ' ) of the beams to roughly -40 dB of the peak. Such planet maps in intensity are used to construct azimuthally averaged beam profiles, which are fit with a physically motivated model before being transformed into Fourier space. We investigate and quantify a number of percent-level corrections to the beams, all of which are important for precision cosmology. Uranus maps in polarization are used to measure the temperature-to-polarization leakage in the main part of the beams, which is ≲ 1% (2.5%) at 150 GHz (98 GHz). The beams also have polarized sidelobes, which are measured with observations of Saturn and deprojected from the ACT time-ordered data. Notable changes relative to past ACT beam analyses include an improved subtraction of the atmospheric effects from Uranus calibration maps, incorporation of a scattering term in the beam profile model, and refinements to the beam model uncertainties and the main temperature-to-polarization leakage terms in the ACT power spectrum analysis.
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available May 1, 2023
  2. Abstract Observing in six frequency bands from 27 to 280 GHz over a large sky area, the Simons Observatory (SO) is poised to address many questions in Galactic astrophysics in addition to its principal cosmological goals. In this work, we provide quantitative forecasts on astrophysical parameters of interest for a range of Galactic science cases. We find that SO can: constrain the frequency spectrum of polarized dust emission at a level of Δ β d ≲ 0.01 and thus test models of dust composition that predict that β d in polarization differs from that measured in total intensity; measure the correlation coefficient between polarized dust and synchrotron emission with a factor of two greater precision than current constraints; exclude the nonexistence of exo-Oort clouds at roughly 2.9 σ if the true fraction is similar to the detection rate of giant planets; map more than 850 molecular clouds with at least 50 independent polarization measurements at 1 pc resolution; detect or place upper limits on the polarization fractions of CO(2–1) emission and anomalous microwave emission at the 0.1% level in select regions; and measure the correlation coefficient between optical starlight polarization and microwave polarized dust emission in 1° patches for allmore »lines of sight with N H ≳ 2 × 10 20 cm −2 . The goals and forecasts outlined here provide a roadmap for other microwave polarization experiments to expand their scientific scope via Milky Way astrophysics. 37 37 A supplement describing author contributions to this paper can be found at https://simonsobservatory.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/02/SO_GS_Contributions.pdf .« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available April 1, 2023
  3. Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 1, 2023
  4. Abstract We use Atacama Cosmology Telescope (ACT) observations at 98 GHz (2015–2019), 150 GHz (2013–2019), and 229 GHz (2017–2019) to perform a blind shift-and-stack search for Planet 9. The search explores distances from 300 au to 2000 au and velocities up to 6.′3 per year, depending on the distance ( r ). For a 5 Earth-mass Planet 9 the detection limit varies from 325 au to 625 au, depending on the sky location. For a 10 Earth-mass planet the corresponding range is 425 au to 775 au. The predicted aphelion and most likely location of the planet corresponds to the shallower end of these ranges. The search covers the whole 18,000 square degrees of the ACT survey. No significant detections are found, which is used to place limits on the millimeter-wave flux density of Planet 9 over much of its orbit. Overall we eliminate roughly 17% and 9% of the parameter space for a 5 and 10 Earth-mass Planet 9, respectively. These bounds approach those of a recent INPOP19a ephemeris-based analysis, but do not exceed it. We also provide a list of the 10 strongest candidates from the search for possible follow-up. More generally, we exclude (at 95% confidence) themore »presence of an unknown solar system object within our survey area brighter than 4–12 mJy (depending on position) at 150 GHz with current distance 300 au < r < 600 au and heliocentric angular velocity 1 .′ 5 yr − 1 < v · 500 au r < 2 .″ 3 yr − 1 , corresponding to low-to-moderate eccentricities. These limits worsen gradually beyond 600 au, reaching 5–15 mJy by 1500 au.« less
  5. Abstract

    We present a detailed overview of the science goals and predictions for the Prime-Cam direct-detection camera–spectrometer being constructed by the CCAT-prime collaboration for dedicated use on the Fred Young Submillimeter Telescope (FYST). The FYST is a wide-field, 6 m aperture submillimeter telescope being built (first light in late 2023) by an international consortium of institutions led by Cornell University and sited at more than 5600 m on Cerro Chajnantor in northern Chile. Prime-Cam is one of two instruments planned for FYST and will provide unprecedented spectroscopic and broadband measurement capabilities to address important astrophysical questions ranging from Big Bang cosmology through reionization and the formation of the first galaxies to star formation within our own Milky Way. Prime-Cam on the FYST will have a mapping speed that is over 10 times greater than existing and near-term facilities for high-redshift science and broadband polarimetric imaging at frequencies above 300 GHz. We describe details of the science program enabled by this system and our preliminary survey strategies.

  6. Context. Galaxy clusters are an important tool for cosmology, and their detection and characterization are key goals for current and future surveys. Using data from the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE), the Massive and Distant Clusters of WISE Survey (MaDCoWS) located 2839 significant galaxy overdensities at redshifts 0.7 ≲  z  ≲ 1.5, which included extensive follow-up imaging from the Spitzer Space Telescope to determine cluster richnesses. Concurrently, the Atacama Cosmology Telescope (ACT) has produced large area millimeter-wave maps in three frequency bands along with a large catalog of Sunyaev-Zeldovich (SZ)-selected clusters as part of its Data Release 5 (DR5). Aims. We aim to verify and characterize MaDCoWS clusters using measurements of, or limits on, their thermal SZ effect signatures. We also use these detections to establish the scaling relation between SZ mass and the MaDCoWS-defined richness. Methods. Using the maps and cluster catalog from DR5, we explore the scaling between SZ mass and cluster richness. We do this by comparing cataloged detections and extracting individual and stacked SZ signals from the MaDCoWS cluster locations. We use complementary radio survey data from the Very Large Array, submillimeter data from Herschel , and ACT 224 GHz data to assess the impact of contaminating sourcesmore »on the SZ signals from both ACT and MaDCoWS clusters. We use a hierarchical Bayesian model to fit the mass-richness scaling relation, allowing for clusters to be drawn from two populations: one, a Gaussian centered on the mass-richness relation, and the other, a Gaussian centered on zero SZ signal. Results. We find that MaDCoWS clusters have submillimeter contamination that is consistent with a gray-body spectrum, while the ACT clusters are consistent with no submillimeter emission on average. Additionally, the intrinsic radio intensities of ACT clusters are lower than those of MaDCoWS clusters, even when the ACT clusters are restricted to the same redshift range as the MaDCoWS clusters. We find the best-fit ACT SZ mass versus MaDCoWS richness scaling relation has a slope of p 1 = 1.84 −0.14 +0.15 , where the slope is defined as M λ ∝ 15 p 1 and λ 15 is the richness. We also find that the ACT SZ signals for a significant fraction (∼57%) of the MaDCoWS sample can statistically be described as being drawn from a noise-like distribution, indicating that the candidates are possibly dominated by low-mass and unvirialized systems that are below the mass limit of the ACT sample. Further, we note that a large portion of the optically confirmed ACT clusters located in the same volume of the sky as MaDCoWS are not selected by MaDCoWS, indicating that the MaDCoWS sample is not complete with respect to SZ selection. Finally, we find that the radio loud fraction of MaDCoWS clusters increases with richness, while we find no evidence that the submillimeter emission of the MaDCoWS clusters evolves with richness. Conclusions. We conclude that the original MaDCoWS selection function is not well defined and, as such, reiterate the MaDCoWS collaboration’s recommendation that the sample is suited for probing cluster and galaxy evolution, but not cosmological analyses. We find a best-fit mass-richness relation slope that agrees with the published MaDCoWS preliminary results. Additionally, we find that while the approximate level of infill of the ACT and MaDCoWS cluster SZ signals (1–2%) is subdominant to other sources of uncertainty for current generation experiments, characterizing and removing this bias will be critical for next-generation experiments hoping to constrain cluster masses at the sub-percent level.« less