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The Einstein@Home Arecibo Radio Pulsar search: Topic 5


What kind of data is used in the search?

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We use data from an ongoing survey made with the largest radio telescope in the world, the 305 meter Arecibo Observatory, Puerto Rico. It is equipped with a detector that can observe seven adjacent fields in the sky simultaneously: the Arecibo L-band Feed Array, or "ALFA". The search for pulsars has been one of ALFA's main tasks, carried out by an international, open group of astronomers, the ALFA Pulsar Consortium.

The survey contains 5 minute long observations for each ALFA field in the sky. In these data sets, our pulsar search aims to find binaries with orbital periods longer than eleven minutes.

Further links

The National Astronomy and Ionosphere Center (NAIC). is the research facility that operates the Arecibo telescope.

The Arecibo telescope photo gallery contains pictures of the telescope from construction to the present time.

A detailed description of the Arecibo telescope can be found here.

ALFA installed at Arecibo
In April 2004, ALFA (hanging from a cable at the left) is brought into the Arecibo telescope's dome, that is housing the receivers in the Gregorian focus of the antenna dish.
Credit: Tony Acevedo/Arecibo Observatory © Cornell University
ALFA inside the dome
The Arecibo L-band Feed Array (ALFA) inside the Gregorian dome.
Credit: B. Knispel, AEI Hannover

Last updated on 10 June 2009

This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) under Grants PHY-1104902, PHY-1104617 and PHY-1105572 and by the Max Planck Gesellschaft (MPG). Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the investigators and do not necessarily reflect the views of the NSF or the MPG.

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