SUPERCONDUCTING TRANSITION EDGE SENSORS FOR GROUND-BASED STUDIES OF COSMIC MICROWAVE BACKGROUND
July 9, 2020 @ 1:30 pm - 2:45 pm CDT
The cosmic microwave background (CMB) is landmark evidence of the Big Bang origin of the universe. The CMB is faint electromagnetic radiation filling all space. It is a crucial source of data on the early universe because it is the oldest electromagnetic radiation in the universe, dating to the epoch of recombination. With a traditional optical telescope, the space between stars and galaxies (the background) is completely dark. However, a sufficiently sensitive radio telescope shows a faint background noise, or glow, almost isotropic, is not associated with any star, galaxy, or other objects. This glow is most energetic in the microwave region of the radio spectrum. An experimental study of CMB is a challenging task that requires a combination of powerful telescopes and very high sensitivity detectors cryocooled to almost absolute zero Kelvin (–460 Fahrenheit). Within this presentation, we will overview the basic principles, physics and R&D challenges of superconducting Transition Edge Sensors (TES) that remained a mainstream technology for ground-based CMB studies during the last decade. Some examples of recently deployed TES arrays at the South Pole Telescope will be discussed.