Poursuite possible en thèse
Fast Radio Bursts (FRBs) are extremely powerful and very short bursts in the radio domain. Their origin remains enigmatic. H.E.S.S. is actively participating in follow-up observations of these events. We here exploit a novel idea to search for FRBs exploiting spatial and temporal correlations of events detected by the H.E.S.S. telescope system.
Sujet détaillé/Full description
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H.E.S.S. is a system of Imaging Atmospheric Cherenkov Telescopes that investigates cosmic gamma rays in the energy range from 10s of GeV to 10s of TeV. The name H.E.S.S. stands for High Energy Stereoscopic System, and is also intended to pay homage to Victor Hess , who received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1936 for his discovery of cosmic radiation. The instrument allows scientists to explore gamma-ray sources with intensities at a level of a few thousandths of the flux of the Crab nebula (the brightest steady source of gamma rays in the sky). H.E.S.S. is located in Namibia, near the Gamsberg mountain, an area well known for its excellent optical quality. The first of the four telescopes of Phase I of the H.E.S.S. project went into operation in Summer 2002. A much larger fifth telescope - H.E.S.S. II - is operational since July 2012, extending the energy coverage towards lower energies and further improving sensitivity.
The H.E.S.S. observatory is operated by the collaboration of more than 170 scientists, from 32 scientific institutions and 12 different countries. To date, the H.E.S.S. Collaboration has published over 100 articles in high-impact scientific journals, including the top-ranked ‘Nature’ and ‘Science’ journals.
The H.E.S.S. collaboration is actively participating in follow-up observations of Fast Radio Bursts. Several radio observatories have detected these very powerful but very short bursts over the last years but their origin remains enigmatic. These searches have very recently led to a first joint publication between H.E.S.S. and the SUPERB team at the Parkes radio telescope. This program will continue, with new observations at Parkes to start end 2016. Depending on the available time, the student might participate in the analysis of the obtained VHE follow-up data during the internship.
Another novel and so far unexplored possibility to detect Fast Radio Bursts (and similar, rapid transient phenomena) is proposed here: we’ll scan the low level stream of events recorded by the H.E.S.S. telescopes and search for gamma-rays arriving close in space and time. If a significant excess of these coincident events is found, the student will search archival information and astrophysical databases for potential astrophysical counterparts and sources.
The tools to perform the proposed analyses are readily available within the group at CEA-Saclay but might need some adaption and verifications.
astroparticle physics, transients, radio bursts
data analysis using C++ and/or Python tools
basic knowledge of astrophysics and/or astroparticle physics