Title: Probing early universe cosmologies through measurements of cosmic microwave background polarization with SPIDER and the Simons Observatory.
A number of experiments are searching for a tiny signal in the polarization of the CMB with the aim of constraining early universe models and the inflationary paradigm. Among these experiments is SPIDER, a stratospheric payload that completed its first flight from Antarctica in January 2015. The SPIDER collaboration is aiming for another Antarctic flight at the end of 2018. The student will contribute to the analysis of data from the first and second flight of the experiment and through this work generate results of lasting impact for cosmology.
The Simons Observatory Collaboration is deploying a set of telescopes in the Atacama desert in Chile with the goal of having first light in 2021. Numerous design and calibration challenges are associated with the fielding of this new instrument and Stockholm University is developing new techniques in optical instrument design. The student will contribute to this effort by developing algorithms for optical modeling which will be used to refine future instrument configurations.
The proposed work can have components from instrumentation, data-analysis, and theory, however, the work will certainly include aspects from high-performance computing and the analysis of large data sets.
The student will work under the guidance of Prof. Katherine Freese and Dr. Jon Gudmundsson, but the student is also expected to collaborate with other physicists in Stockholm as well as institutions across the world, in particular the University of Oslo and Princeton University.
Closing date: 4 May 2018. Note, however, that applications submitted after the deadline will be considered if the position has not been filled. In that case, please send application material directly to Jon Gudmundsson (e-mail below).