The mm-wavelength sky reveals the initial phase of structure formation, at all spatial scales, over the entire observable history of the Universe. Over the past 20 years, advances in mm-wavelength detectors and camera systems have allowed the field to take enormous strides forward – particularly in the study of the Cosmic Microwave Background – but limitations in mapping speeds, sensitivity and resolution have plagued studies of astrophysical phenomena. In fact, limitations due to inherent biases in the ground-based mm-wavelength surveys conducted over the last 2 decades continue to motivate the need for deeper and wider-area maps made with increased angular resolution. TolTEC is a new camera that will fill the focal plane of the 50m diameter Large Millimeter Telescope (LMT) and provide simultaneous, polarization-sensitive imaging at 2.0, 1.4, and 1.1mm wavelengths. The instrument, now under construction, is a cryogenically cooled receiver housing three separate kilo-pixel arrays of Kinetic Inductance Detectors (KIDs) that are coupled to the telescope through a series of silicon lenses and dichroic splitters. TolTEC will be installed and commissioned on the LMT in early 2019 where it will become both a facility instrument and also perform a series of 100 hour “Legacy Surveys” whose data will be publicly available. The initial four surveys in this series: the Clouds to Cores Legacy Survey, the Fields in Filaments Legacy Survey, the Ultra-Deep Legacy Survey and the Large Scale Structure Survey are currently being defined in public working groups of astronomers coordinated by TolTEC Science Team members. Data collection for these surveys will begin in late 2019 with data releases planned for late 2020 and 2021. Herein we describe the instrument concept, provide performance data for key subsystems, and provide an overview of the science, schedule and plans for the initial four Legacy Survey concepts.
The next generation of cosmic microwave background (CMB) experiments, such as CMB-S4, will require large arrays of multi-chroic, polarisation-sensitive pixels. Arrays of lumped-element kinetic inductance detectors (LEKIDs) optically coupled through an antenna and transmission line structure are a promising candidate for such experiments. Through initial investigations of small prototype arrays, we have shown this compact device architecture can produce intrinsic quality factors < 10^5, allowing for MUX ratios to exceed 10^3. Moreover, we have demonstrated that additional noise from two-level systems can be reduced to an acceptable level by removing the dielectric from over the capacitive region of the KID, while retaining the microstrip coupling into the inductor. To maximise the efficiency of future focal planes, it is desirable to observe multiple frequencies simultaneously within each pixel. Therefore, we utilise the proven transmission line coupling scheme to introduce band-defining structures to our pixel architecture. Initially targeting the peak of the CMB at 150-GHz, we present a preliminary study of these narrow-band filters in terms of their spectral bandwidth and out of band rejection. By incorporating simple in-line filters we consider the overall impact of adding such structures to our pixel by investigating detector performance in terms of noise and quality factor. Based on these initial results, we present preliminary designs of an optimised mm-wave diplexer that is used to split-up the 150 GHz atmospheric window into multiple sub-bands, before reaching the absorbing length of the LEKID. We present measurements from a set of prototype filter-coupled detectors as the first demonstration towards construction of large-format, multi-chroic, antenna-coupled LEKIDs with the sensitivity required for future CMB experiments.
The Mexico-UK Sub-millimetre Camera for AsTronomy (MUSCAT) is a large-format, millimetre-wave camera consisting of 1,500 background-limited lumped-element kinetic inductance detectors (LEKIDs) scheduled for deployment on the Large Millimeter Telescope (Volcán Sierra Negra, Mexico) in 2018. MUSCAT is designed for observing at 1.1 mm and will utilise the full 40 field of view of the LMTs upgraded 50-m primary mirror. In its primary role, MUSCAT is designed for high-resolution follow-up surveys of both galactic and extra-galactic sub-mm sources identified by Herschel. MUSCAT is also designed to be a technology demonstrator will provide the first on-sky demonstrations of novel design concepts such as horn-coupled LEKID arrays and closed continuous cycle miniature dilution refrigeration.
Here we describe some of the key design elements of the MUSCAT instrument such as the novel use of continuous sorption refrigerators and a miniature dilutor for continuous 100-mK cooling of the focal plane, broadband optical coupling to Aluminium LEKID arrays using waveguide chokes and anti-reflection coating materials as well as with the general mechanical and optical design of MUSCAT. We will explain how MUSCAT is designed to be simple to upgrade and the possibilities for changing the focal plane unit that allows MUSCAT to act as a demonstrator for other novel technologies such as multi-chroic polarisation sensitive pixels and on-chip spectrometry in the future. Finally, we will report on the current status of MUSCAT's commissioning.