Johanna Nagy (Washington University in St. Louis)
Tue. October 11th, 2022, 11:30 am-12:30 pm
Foldy room, Rockefeller 221
Cosmology with the Next Generation of Cosmic Microwave Background Experiments
Measurements of the polarization of the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) are a powerful probe of the composition and evolution of the Universe. From searching for evidence of inflation shortly after the Big Bang to measuring the optical depth to reionization and probing fundamental particles, precision CMB measurements provide a unique window into many aspects of cosmology. Upcoming balloon- and ground-based experiments will build on technologies demonstrated by current instruments to overcome the challenges presented by increasing sensitivity, mitigating systematic errors, and distinguishing Galactic foregrounds. In particular, an upcoming flight of SPIDER, a balloon-borne telescope, will measure CMB polarization on degree angular scales to search for evidence of inflation and characterize Galactic foregrounds. Later, CMB-S4 will deploy multiple ground-based telescopes to conduct both wide and deep surveys of the microwave sky, with goals including increasing sensitivity to inflationary signals and characterizing fundamental particles. This experiment is highly complementary to Taurus, a new balloon-borne telescope optimized to measure the optical depth to reionization by mapping CMB polarization on the largest angular scales over roughly 70% of the sky. Together and in combination with other datasets, these instruments will reveal new insights about the history and contents of our Universe.