A Calibration Study of the ANITA Instrument
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Publisher:The Ohio State University
Series/Report no.:The Ohio State University. Department of Physics Honors Theses; 2008
The Antarctic Impulsive Transient Antenna (ANITA) is a balloon-borne experiment that flew for 35 days in the 2006/07 austral summer looking for ultra-high energy neutrinos (10^18-10^20eV) interacting within the Antarctic ice. These ultra-high energy neutrinos are believed to be produced primarily through cosmic ray attenuation by the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) via the Greisen-Zatsepin-Kuzmin (GZK) mechanism. This research serves as a study of the observed radio background over the 1GHz (200MHz-1.2GHz) band that ANITA was sensitive to. We look for significant anthropogenic noise anomalies as well as confirmation of a thermal noise background. Radio noise from the sun and galactic center is also observed and confirmed to match predicted values. Analysis of the sun/galactic center radio noise was done using pointing software based on the payload's spatial location given by onboard GPS. We also study the synchronization of the on-board calibration pulsing antennas with the instrument's triggering system. This is necessary to confirm that events observed by hardware triggering have correctly matching information provided by software.
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