AAS 203rd Meeting, January 2004
Session 82 Mass and Energy Matters
Poster, Wednesday, January 7, 2004, 9:20am-6:30pm, Grand Hall

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[82.14] Optimizing the ESSENCE Supernova Survey for Sensitivity to the Equation of State Parameter

G. Miknaitis (University of Washington), P. M. Garnavich (Notre Dame), J. L. Tonry (U. Hawaii), R. C. Smith (CTIO), C. W. Stubbs (Harvard/CfA), S. T. Holland (Notre Dame), B. P. Schmidt, M. E. Salvo (MSSSO/ANU), K. Krisciunas, A. Rest, N. B. Suntzeff (CTIO), A. Becker, R. A. Covarrubias, A. Miceli (U. Washington), R. Chornock, A. V. Filippenko, S. Jha, W. Li (UC Berkeley), P. Challis, R. P. Kirshner, T. Matheson (Harvard/CfA), B. Barris (U Hawaii), A. G. Riess (STScI), S. Blondin, B. Leibundgut, J. Sollerman, J. Spyromilio (ESO), A. Clocchiatti (PUC)

The ESSENCE project is an ongoing program (currently in its 2nd year of 5) designed to place tight constraints on w, the equation of state parameter of the dark energy, via observations of type Ia supernovae at redshifts of 0.2 < z < 0.8. We present work done to determine the optimal observing strategy for constraining w under the program's actual observational constraints. For a given survey implementation (available telescope time, total number of square degrees surveyed, number of passbands and exposure time in each), we estimate the number of type Ia SNe likely to be detected and monitored in bins in redshift, and then weight the error in luminosity distance in each bin accordingly. Constraints on the equation of state parameter vs. the matter density (assuming a flat cosmology) are then derived from the subsequent Hubble diagram. The optimal strategy favors maximizing the area imaged, showing that maximizing the overall number of supernovae observed provides better cosmological results than balancing the numbers at high and low redshifts, for a fixed telescope time.

If you would like more information about this abstract, please follow the link to http://www.ctio.noao.edu/wproject/. This link was provided by the author. When you follow it, you will leave the Web site for this meeting; to return, you should use the Back comand on your browser.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: gm@astro.washington.edu

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