The Greenland Telescope (GLT), currently located at Thule Air Base, is a 12-m single dish telescope operating at frequencies of 86, 230 and 345 GHz. Since April 2018, the GLT has regularly participated in (sub-)mm VLBI observations of supermassive black holes as part of the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) and the Global mm VLBI Array (GMVA). We present the status of scientific commissioning activities at the GLT, including most recently the 345 GHz first light and test observations. The antenna surface accuracy has been improved to ~25 microns through panel adjustments aided by photogrammetry, significantly increasing the antenna efficiency. Through all-sky spectral line pointing observations (SiO masers at 86 GHz and CO at 230 and 345 GHz), we have improved the radio pointing accuracy down to <~ 3" at all 3 frequencies. Due to the pandemic, we are in the process of transitioning GLT commissioning and observing activities to remote operations.
We describe the latest development of the control and monitoring system of the Greenland Telescope (GLT). The GLT is a 12-m radio telescope aiming to carry out the sub-millimeter Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI) observations through the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) and the Global Millimeter VLBI Array (GMVA), to image the shadows of super massive black holes. The telescope is currently located at the Thule Air Base for commissioning before deployed to the Summit Station. The GLT participated in the VLBI observing campaigns in 2018 and 2019 and fringes were successfully detected at 86 and 230 GHz. Our antenna control software was adapted from the Submillimeter Array (SMA), and as a result for single-dish observations we added new routines to coordinate it with other instruments. We are exploring new communication interfaces; we utilized both in-memory and on-disk databases to be part of the interfaces not only for hardware monitoring but also for engineering event logging. We plan to incorporate the system of the James Clerk Maxwell Telescope for the full Linux-based receiver control. The current progress of integrating our receivers, spectrometers, sub-reflector, and continuum detector into control is presented, together with the implementation of the commissioning software for spectral line pointing. We also describe how we built the anti-collision protection and the recovery mechanism for the sub-reflector hexapod.
The Greenland Telescope project has recently participated in an experiment to image the supermassive black hole shadow at the center of M87 using Very Long Baseline Interferometry technique in April of 2018. The antenna consists of the 12-m ALMA North American prototype antenna that was modified to support two auxiliary side containers and to withstand an extremely cold environment. The telescope is currently at Thule Air Base in Greenland with the long-term goal to move the telescope over the Greenland ice sheet to Summit Station. The GLT currently has a single cryostat which houses three dual polarization receivers that cover 84-96 GHz, 213-243 GHz and 271-377 GHz bands. A hydrogen maser frequency source in conjunction with high frequency synthesizers are used to generate the local oscillator references for the receivers. The intermediate frequency outputs of each receiver cover 4-8 GHz and are heterodyned to baseband for digitization within a set of ROACH-2 units then formatted for recording onto Mark-6 data recorders. A separate set of ROACH-2 units operating in parallel provides the function of auto-correlation for real-time spectral analysis. Due to the stringent instrumental stability requirements for interferometry a diagnostic test system was incorporated into the design. Tying all of the above equipment together is the fiber optic system designed to operate in a low temperature environment and scalable to accommodate a larger distance between the control module and telescope for Summit Station. A report on the progress of the above electronics instrumentation system will be provided.
The Greenland Telescope completed its construction, so the commissioning phase has been started since December 2017. Single-dish commissioning has started from the optical pointing which produced the first pointing model, followed by the radio pointing and focusing using the Moon for both the 86 GHz and the 230 GHz receivers. After Venus started to rise from the horizon, the focus positions has been improved for both receivers. Once we started the line pointing using the SiO(2-1) maser line and the CO(2-1) line for the 86 GHz and the 230 GHz receivers, respectively, the pointing accuracy also improved, and the final pointing accuracy turned to be around 3" - 5" for both receivers. In parallel, VLBI commissioning has been performed, with checking the frequency accuracy and the phase stability for all the components that would be used for the VLBI observations. After all the checks, we successfully joined the dress rehearsals and actual observations of the 86 GHz and 230 GHz VLBI observations, The first dress rehearsal data between GLT and ALMA were correlated, and successfully detected the first fringe, which confirmed that the GLT commissioning was successfully performed.
The Greenland Telescope Project (GLT) has successfully commissioned its 12-m sub-millimeter. In January 2018, the fringes were detected between the GLT and the Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA) during a very-long-baseline interferometry (VLBI) exercise. In April 2018, the telescope participated in global VLBI science observations at Thule Air Base (TAB). The telescope has been completely rebuilt, with many new components, from the ALMA NA (North America) Prototype antenna and equipped with a new set of sub-millimeter receivers operating at 86, 230, and 345 GHz, as well as a complete set of instruments and VLBI backends. This paper describes our progress and status of the project and its plan for the coming decade.
We describe the control and monitoring system for the Greenland Telescope (GLT). The GLT is a 12-m radio telescope aiming to carry out the sub-millimeter Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI) observations and image the shadow of the super massive black hole in M87. In November 2017 construction has been finished and commissioning activity has been started. In April 2018 we participated in the VLBI observing campaign for the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) collaboration. In this paper we present the entire GLT control/monitoring system in terms of computers, network and software.
Proc. SPIE. 9914, Millimeter, Submillimeter, and Far-Infrared Detectors and Instrumentation for Astronomy VIII
KEYWORDS: Signal to noise ratio, Astronomy, Clocks, Signal attenuation, Manufacturing, Field programmable gate arrays, Signal processing, Radio telescopes, Analog electronics, Printed circuit board testing, Printed circuit board testing
In this study, the design of a 4 bit, 10-gigasamples-per-second analog-to-digital converter (ADC) printed circuit board
assembly (PCBA) was revised, manufactured, and tested. It is used for digitizing radio telescopes. An Adsantec
ANST7120-KMA flash ADC chip was used, as in the original design. Associated with the field-programmable gate array
platform developed by the Collaboration for Astronomy Signal Processing and Electronics Research community, the
developed PCBA provides data acquisition systems with a wider bandwidth and simplifies the intermediate frequency
section. The current version of the PCBA exhibits an analog bandwidth of up to 10 GHz (3 dB loss), and the chip
exhibits an analog bandwidth of up to 18 GHz. This facilitates second and third Nyquist sampling. The following worstcase
performance parameters were obtained from the revised PCBA at over 5 GHz: spurious-free dynamic range of 12
dB, signal-to-noise and distortion ratio of 2 dB, and effective number of bits of 0.7. The design bugs in the ADC chip
caused the poor performance. The vendor created a new batch run and confirmed that the ADC chips of the new batch
will meet the specifications addressed in its data sheet.
The Array for Microwave Background Anisotropy (AMiBA) is a radio interferometer for research in cosmology,
currently operating 7 0.6m diameter antennas co-mounted on a 6m diameter platform driven by a hexapod
mount. AMiBA is currently the largest hexapod telescope. We briefly summarize the hexapod operation with
the current pointing error model. We then focus on the upcoming
13-element expansion with its potential
difficulties and solutions. Photogrammetry measurements of the platform reveal deformations at a level which
can affect the optical pointing and the receiver radio phase. In order to prepare for the 13-element upgrade, two
optical telescopes are installed on the platform to correlate optical pointing tests. Being mounted on different
locations, the residuals of the two sets of pointing errors show a characteristic phase and amplitude difference
as a function of the platform deformation pattern. These results depend on the telescope's azimuth, elevation
and polarization position. An analytical model for the deformation is derived in order to separate the local
deformation induced error from the real hexapod pointing error. Similarly, we demonstrate that the deformation
induced radio phase error can be reliably modeled and calibrated, which allows us to recover the ideal synthesized
beam in amplitude and shape of up to 90% or more. The resulting array efficiency and its limits are discussed
based on the derived errors.
Using the array of seven 0.6m antennas in Hawaii, we have conducted short observations on several galaxy clusters through
the Sunyaev-Zeldovich effect at 3mm wavelength in 2007. The observations were done with a resolution of 6', and we
have chosen the low redshift (z=0.09-0.32) massive clusters to optimize detection. Major contamination to the data comes
from instrumental offset and ground pickup. We will demonstrate the results based on a simple on source - off source
switching observing scheme. In addition, the performance of a wideband analog 4-lag correlator was also investigated.
The Academia Sinica, Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics (ASIAA) is installing the AMiBA interferometric array telescope at the Mauna Loa Observatory, Hawaii. The 6-meter carbon fiber fully steerable platform is mounted on the Hexapod Mount. After integration and equipment with dummy weights, the platform has been measured by photogrammetry to verify its behavior predicted by Finite Element Analysis. The Hexapod servo control is now operational and equipment of the platform with the initial 7 60-cm dishes, the correlator and electronics is underway. Pointing has started with the aid of the optical telescope. We present the status of the telescope after the servo and initial pointing tests have been carried out. We also present the results of platform measurements by photogrammetry.
AMiBA, as a dual-polarization 86-102 GHz interferometer array, is designed to measure the power spectrum of fluctuations in the cosmic microwave background (CMB) radiation, and to detect the high-redshift clusters of galaxies via the Sunyaev-Zel'dovich Effect (SZE). The operation of AMiBA is about to begin after installation of the first two receivers and correlators onto the 6-meter diameter platform by the end of 2005. The initial setup of the array will consist of 7 antennas with 60 cm diameter reflectors in a hexagonal configuration, aiming at multipoles l ~ 3000. Signals from receivers are cross-correlated in analog lag correlators. The initial operation will focus on characterizing the systematics by observing various known objects on the sky. The expansion to 13 elements with larger dishes will commence once the 7-element array testing is completed.
This is to report on our development for a dual-polarization receiver to detect the cosmic microwave background (CMB) in 85 to 105 GHz band. The receiver is based on a MMIC, HEMT-based LNA developed in the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. A W-band, orthomode transducer (OMT) is used for polarization separation. Most of the RF front-end is located in cryogenics environment at 20K. We have developed a MMIC sub-harmonically pumped diode mixer, operating at 42 GHz, for signal down-conversion. The entire base-band, 2 to 18 GHz, is correlated in a lag-correlator system. The receiver design details and the lab test results will be described in this report.