Presentation Archive

EXCLAIM: a new balloon mission to map the cosmological history of galaxies

Eric Switzer (NASA Goddard)

May 09, 2019

Abstract: The EXperiment for Cryogenic Large-Aperture Intensity Mapping (EXCLAIM) is a high-altitude balloon-borne spectrometer designed to deepen our understanding of star formation in a cosmological context. It will map the sub-mm emission of redshifted carbon monoxide (CO) and singly-ionized carbon ([Cii]) lines in windows comprising 0 < z < 3.5. These lines trace star formation and its precursors but have only preliminary characterization beyond the nearby universe. Rather than detect individual galaxies, EXCLAIM will measure the statistics of brightness fluctuations of redshifted, cumulative line emission. This form of intensity mapping (IM) is attracting increasing interest and investment as a way to take a census of cosmological line emission and structure. I will review some of the benefits and challenges of IM, ongoing efforts, and describe the new EXCLAIM mission.