Current models of the observable consequences of cosmic reionization and their detectability

Iliev, Ilian T, Mellema, Garrelt, Pen, Ue-Li, Bond, J Richard and Shapiro, Paul R (2008) Current models of the observable consequences of cosmic reionization and their detectability. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 384 (3). pp. 863-874. ISSN 0035-8711

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A number of large current experiments aim to detect the signatures of the cosmic reionization at redshifts z > 6. Their success depends crucially on understanding the character of the reionization process and its observable consequences and designing the best strategies to use. We use large-scale simulations of cosmic reionization to evaluate the reionization signatures at redshifted 21-cm and small-scale cosmic microwave background (CMB) anisotropies in the best current model for the background universe, with fundamental cosmological parameters given by Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe three-year results. We find that the optimal frequency range for observing the `global step of the 21-cm emission is 120150 MHz, while statistical studies should aim at 140160 MHz, observable by GMRT. Some strongly non-Gaussian brightness features should be detectable at frequencies up to ~190 MHz. In terms of sensitivity-signal trade-off relatively low resolutions, corresponding to beams of at least a few arcminutes, are preferable. The CMB anisotropy signal from the kinetic SunyaevZel'dovich effect from reionized patches peaks at tens of K at arcminute scales and has an rms of ~1 K, and should be observable by the Atacama Cosmology Telescope and the South Pole Telescope. We discuss the various observational issues and the uncertainties involved, mostly related to the poorly known reionization parameters and, to a lesser extend, to the uncertainties in the background cosmology.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Mathematical and Physical Sciences > Physics and Astronomy
Depositing User: Ilian Iliev
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 21:25
Last Modified: 06 Mar 2017 15:47

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