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  1. Abstract

    Low-frequency radio observatories are reaching unprecedented levels of sensitivity in an effort to detect the 21 cm signal from the Cosmic Dawn. High precision is needed because the expected signal is overwhelmed by foreground contamination, largely from so-called diffuse emission—a nonlocalized glow comprising Galactic synchrotron emission and radio galaxies. The impact of this diffuse emission on observations may be better understood through detailed simulations, which evaluate the Radio Interferometry Measurement Equation (RIME) for a given instrument and sky model. Evaluating the RIME involves carrying out an integral over the full sky, which is naturally discretized for point sources but must be approximated for diffuse emission. The choice of integration scheme can introduce errors that must be understood and isolated from the instrumental effects under study. In this paper, we present several analytically defined patterns of unpolarized diffuse sky emission for which the RIME integral is manageable, yielding closed-form or series visibility functions. We demonstrate the usefulness of these RIME solutions for validation by comparing them to simulated data and show that the remaining differences behave as expected with varied sky resolution and baseline orientation and length.

  2. Free, publicly-accessible full text available August 15, 2023
  3. Free, publicly-accessible full text available August 1, 2023
  4. ABSTRACT The 21 cm hyperfine transition of neutral hydrogen offers a promising probe of the large-scale structure of the universe before and during the Epoch of Reionization (EoR), when the first ionizing sources formed. Bright radio emission from foreground sources remains the biggest obstacle to detecting the faint 21 cm signal. However, the expected smoothness of foreground power leaves a clean window in Fourier space where the EoR signal can potentially be seen over thermal noise. Though the boundary of this window is well defined in principle, spectral structure in foreground sources, instrumental chromaticity, and choice of spectral weighting in analysis all affect how much foreground power spills over into the EoR window. In this paper, we run a suite of numerical simulations of wide-field visibility measurements, with a variety of diffuse foreground models and instrument configurations, and measure the extent of contaminated Fourier modes in the EoR window using a delay-transform approach to estimate power spectra. We also test these effects with a model of the Hydrogen Epoch of Reionization Array (HERA) antenna beam generated from electromagnetic simulations, to take into account further chromatic effects in the real instrument. We find that foreground power spillover is dominated by the so-called pitchforkmore »effect, in which diffuse foreground power is brightened near the horizon due to the shortening of baselines. As a result, the extent of contaminated modes in the EoR window is largely constant over time, except when the Galaxy is near the pointing centre.« less
  5. Abstract

    The repeating FRB 20201124A was first discovered by CHIME/FRB in November of 2020, after which it was seen to repeat a few times over several months. It entered a period of high activity in April of 2021, at which time several observatories recorded tens to hundreds more bursts from the source. These follow-up observations enabled precise localization and host-galaxy identification. In this paper, we report on the CHIME/FRB-detected bursts from FRB 20201124A, including their best-fit morphologies, fluences, and arrival times. The large exposure time of the CHIME/FRB telescope toward the location of this source allows us to constrain its rates of activity. We analyze the repetition rates over different spans of time, constraining the rate prior to discovery to <3.4 day−1(at 3σ), and demonstrate a significant change in the event rate following initial detection. Lastly, we perform a maximum-likelihood estimation of a power-law luminosity function, finding a best-fit indexα= −4.6 ± 1.3 ± 0.6, with a break at a fluence threshold ofFmin16.6Jy ms, consistent with the fluence completeness limit of the observations. This index is consistent within uncertainties with those of other repeating FRBs for which it has been determined.