Improving the Resolution and Sensitivity of Microwave Astronomical Observations

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Thiel, Felix M.
Millimetre-wave Astronomy , Astronomical Instrumentation , Star Formation
Millimetre and microwave astronomy has been an ever-expanding field over the past decades with an improvement in computational power, semi-conductors, super-conductors and read-out electronics. This has led to more powerful and sensitive instruments as well as higher resolutions for both single-dish and interferometric observations. In this work I will be giving an overview of my work on one current and one future experiment: TolTEC, a millimetre-wave camera with polarization capabilities on the Large Millimetre Telescope in Mexico currently undergoing commissioning, in particular designing the TolTEC Fields and Filaments survey and BVEX, a K-band balloon-borne Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI) station where I will be presenting my design and sensitivity requirements for the K-band receiver. While TolTEC will deliver science-ready maps of the linear Stokes parameters I, Q, and U in the short term, BVEX will serve as a proof of concept and stepping stone for a future generation VLBI experiment capable of millimetre and sub-millimetre wavelengths.
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