Welcome to Caltech Observational Cosmology!

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Our group develops novel instrumentation in order to study the birth and evolution of the universe. Here are the projects in which we are currently involved:

17Mar2014: Detection of B-mode Polarization at Degree Scales with BICEP2


Background Imaging of Cosmological Extragalactic Polarization (BICEP) has mapped three seasons of degree-scale CMB polarization from the South Pole, and has recently made public its 2-year data release.


BICEP2 extends the BICEP (Background Imaging of Cosmological Extragalactic Polarization) program through the use of monolithic antenna-coupled polarimeter arrays. BICEP2 deployed to the South Pole in November of 2009 and was decommissioned in 2012.


The Background Limited Infrared-Submillimeter Spectrograph (BLISS) is a project designed to prove a rapid survery spectroscopy capability over the full far-IR range. BLISS will study early universe galaxies.


CIBER had its first flight in February 2009! CIBER (Cosmic Infrared Background ExpeRiment) is an attempt to measure photons from the epoch of reionization (c. 1 billion years after the big bang) in a search for signatures of the Universe's first galaxies.


The Herschel Space Observatory is a far-infrared telescope designed to answer questions about how galaxies formed and evolved as well as how stars formed and their relationship to the interstellar medium.

Keck Array

The Keck Array will deploy a suite of three microwave polarimeters to the South Pole in order to search the cosmic microwave background for the signatures of inflation.


MUSIC: more info coming soon!.


Planck has launched! We built the bolometric detectors for the High Frequency Instrument on the Planck Surveyor. Planck will map the entire sky with 5' resolution in 2009-2011.


Spider is a balloon-borne observatory designed to probe the epoch of Inflation through measurements of the CMB polarization on the largest angular scales. Large-format planar arrays and wide area sky coverage enable a definitive measurement of the signature of inflationary gravitational waves in the CMB. Spider's first flight is scheduled for 2012.

Past Projects


The Arcminute Cosmology Bolometer Array Receiver (ACBAR) imaged the CMB at multiple frequencies with 4' resolution from the Viper telescope at the South Pole.


BOLOCAM is a large format, mm-wave camera used at the Caltech Sub-millimeter Observatory to achieve high mapping speed and 1' resolution.


The final flight of Boomerang is complete! In January of 2003, Boomerang flew an exact prototype of the polarized 143 GHz Planck HFI focal plane, resulting in the first bolometric detection of CMB polarization. The first round of analyses of the B03 data are complete, papers and spectra have been made public 7/21/05.