Physics Colloquium: Hobby-Eberly Telescope Dark Energy Experiment

02/05/2016 - 3:30pm to 4:30pm
Speaker(s) / Presenter(s): 
Dr. Niv Drory (University of Texas, Austin)
Type of Event (for grouping events):

The Hobby-Eberly Telescope Dark Energy Experiment (HETDEX) will outfit the 10 m HET with an array of 150 integral-field fiber-coupled spectrographs covering 3500-5500A ̊ at ∼ 5A ̊ resolution. These are fed by 75 450-fiber IFUs distributed on a grid within a 20 arcmin field. This instrument, called VIRUS (Hill et al., 2014), will survey a 420 deg2 field in 3 years starting 2015. We will detect 0.8 million Lyman-α emitting (LAE) galaxies at 1.9 < z < 3.5 and more than one million [OII]-emitting galaxies at z < 0.5. The 3-D map of LAEs in a 9 Gpc3 volume will be used to measure the expansion history and the growth of structure at an early epoch (z ∼ 3). HETDEX is designed to provide a 3σ direct detection of dark energy at z ∼ 3 (for w = −1). HETDEX will constrain the evolution of dark energy and will also provide 0.1%-level accuracy on the curvature of the Universe, ten times better than current measurements; HETDEX will also provide competitive constraints on the total neutrino mass and on inflation models.

Refreshments will be served in CP 179 at 3:15 PM

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