AAS Meeting #194 - Chicago, Illinois, May/June 1999
Session 90. Cosmology and Dark Matter
Display, Thursday, June 3, 1999, 9:20am-4:00pm, Southwest Exhibit Hall

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[90.01] The TopHat-Spinner Experiment for Measuring Anisotropy in the Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation

E. Oh, A. Bier, T. Chen, E. Cheng, D. Cottingham, B. DiCamillo, D. Fixsen, C. Naegli, R. Silverberg, G. Wilson (NASA/GSFC), S. Cordone, J. Gundersen, P. Timbie (UW-Madison), J. Aguirre, J. Bezaire, T. Crawford, A. Golden, L. Knox, S. Meyer (UChicago), P. Christensen, S. Hermit, R. Kristensen, I. Ramussen, K. Omoe, J. Polny (DSRI), L. Piccirillo (Bartol)

We report on the status of the TopHat Spinner - an experiment to measure the anisotropy in the cosmic microwave background radiation (CMBR). The detector system consists of five multi-mode bolometer channels with central frequencies from 150 to 630 GHz with an angular resolution of 20' (FWHM). The instrument is coupled to a spinning (4 rpm) on-axis Cassegrain telescope mounted at the top of the balloon. We have completed two successful engineering flights (top and bottom systems) during the summer of 98 in Palestine, TX, and Fort Sumner, NM, and also developed a compact, light-weight, long hold-time 3He/4He cryostat. The TopHat Spinner system is flight-ready and is approved to launch during the 1999-2000 campaign in Antarctica. It will map a 48 degree diameter disk centered on the South Celestial Pole. Such a measurement will test the leading paradigm for cosmological structural formation and may determine several key cosmological parameters, such as the mean curvature of the early Universe. This effort is a collaboration between the NASA/GSFC, the University of Chicago, the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and the Danish Space Research Institute.

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