• Somnath Bharadwaj

      Articles written in Journal of Astrophysics and Astronomy

    • Using HI to probe large scale structures at z∼3

      Somnath Bharadwaj Biman B. Nath Shiv K. Sethi

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      The redshifted 1420 MHz emission from the HI in unresolved damped Lyman-α clouds at high z will appear as a background radiation in low frequency radio observations. This holds the possibility of a new tool for studying the universe at high-z, using the mean brightness temperature to probe the HI content and its fluctuations to probe power spectrum. Existing estimates of the HI density atz−3 imply a mean brightness temperature of 1 mK at 320 MHz. The cross-correlation between the temperature fluctuation across different frequencies and sight lines is predicted to vary from 10−7 K2 to 10−8 K2 over intervals corresponding to spatial scales from 10 Mpc to 40 Mpc for some of the currently favoured cosmological models. Comparing this with the expected sensitivity of the GMRT, we find that this can be detected with ∼ 10 hrs of integration, provided we can distinguish it from the galactic and extragalactic foregrounds which will swamp this signal. We discuss a strategy based on the very distinct spectral properties of the foregrounds as against the HI emission, possibly allowing the removal of the foregrounds from the observed maps.

    • HI fluctuations at large redshifts: I-visibility correlation

      Somnath Bharadwaj Shiv K. Sethi

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      We investigate the possibility of probing the large scale structure in the universe at large redshifts by studying fluctuations in the redshifted 1420 MHz emission from the neutral hydrogen (HI) at early epochs. The neutral hydrogen content of the universe is known from absorption studies forz ≲ 4.5. TheHI distribution is expected to be inhomogeneous in the gravitational instability picture and this inhomogeneity leads to anisotropy in the redshifted HI emission. The best hope of detecting this anisotropy is by using a large low-frequency interferometric instrument like the Giant Meter-Wave Radio Telescope (GMRT). We calculate the visibility correlation function 〈Vv(U) Vv′(U)〉 at two frequenciesi andv′ of the redshiftedHI emission for an interferometric observation. In particular we give numerical results for the two GMRT channels centered aroundν = 325 MHz andν = 610 MHz from density inhomogeneity and peculiar velocity of the HI distribution. The visibility correlation is- 10-10-10-9 Jy2. We calculate the signal-to-noise for detecting the correlation signal in the presence of system noise and show that the GMRT might detect the signal for integration times - 100 hrs. We argue that the measurement of visibility correlation allows optimal use of the uncorrelated nature of the system noise across baselines and frequency channels.

    • HI fluctuations at large redshifts: II — the signal expected for the GMRT

      Somnath Bharadwaj Sanjay K. Pandey

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      For the GMRT, we calculate the expected signal from red-shifted HI emission at two frequency bands centered at 610 and 325 MHz. The study focuses on the visibility-visibility cross-correlations, proposed earlier as the optimal statistical estimator for detecting and analyzing this signal. These correlations directly probe the power spectrum of density fluctuations at the redshift where the radiation originated, and thereby provide a method for studying the large scale structures at large redshifts. We present detailed estimates of the correlations expected between the visibilities measured at different baselines and frequencies. Analytic fitting formulas representing the salient features of the expected signal are also provided. These will be useful in planning observations and deciding an optimal strategy for detecting this signal.

    • HI fluctuations at large redshifts: III — Simulating the signal expected at GMRT

      Somnath Bharadwaj Pennathur Sridharan Srikant

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      We simulate the distribution of neutral hydrogen (HI) at the redshiftsz = 1.3 and 3.4 using a cosmological N-body simulation along with a prescription for assigning HI masses to the particles. The HI is distributed in clouds whose properties are consistent with those of the damped Lyman-a absorption systems (DLAs) seen in quasar spectra. The clustering properties of these clouds are identical to those of the dark matter. We use this to simulate the redshifted HI emission expected at 610 MHz and 325 MHz, two of the observing bands at the GMRT. These are used to predict the correlations expected between the complex visibilities measured at different baselines and frequencies in radio-interferometric observations with the GMRT. The visibility correlations directly probe the power spectrum of HI fluctuations at the epoch when the HI emission originated, and this holds the possibility of using HI observations to study large-scale structures at highz.

    • Prospects for Detecting the 326.5MHz Redshifted 21-cm HI Signal with the Ooty Radio Telescope (ORT)

      Sk. Saiyad Ali Somnath Bharadwaj

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      Observations of the redshifted 21-cm HI fluctuations promise to be an important probe of the post-reionization era (𝑧 ≤ 6). In this paper we calculate the expected signal and foregrounds for the upgraded Ooty Radio Telescope (ORT) which operates at frequency 𝑣𝑜 = 326.5MHz which corresponds to redshift 𝑧 = 3.35. Assuming that the visibilities contain only the HI signal and system noise, we show that a 3𝜎 detection of the HI signal (∼ 1 mK) is possible at angular scales 11' to 3° with ≈ 1000 h of observation. Foreground removal is one of the major challenges for a statistical detection of the redshifted 21 cm HI signal. We assess the contribution of different foregrounds and find that the 326.5MHz sky is dominated by the extragalactic point sources at the angular scales of our interest. The expected total foregrounds are 104−105 times higher than the HI signal.

    • Probing Individual Sources during Reionization and Cosmic Dawn using Square Kilometre Array HI 21-cm Observations

      Kanan K. Datta Raghunath Ghara Suman Majumdar T. Roy Choudhury Somnath Bharadwaj Himadri Roy Abhirup Datta

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      Detection of individual luminous sources during the reionization epoch and cosmic dawn through their signatures in the HI 21-cm signal is one of the direct approaches to probe the epoch. Here, we summarize our previous works on this and present preliminary results on the prospects of detecting such sources using the SKA1-low experiment. We first discuss the expected HI 21-cm signal around luminous sources at different stages of reionization and cosmic dawn. We then introduce two visibility based estimators for detecting such signals: one based on the matched filtering technique and the other relies on simply combing the visibility signal from different baselines and frequency channels. We find that the SKA1-low should be able to detect ionized bubbles of radius $R_{\mathrm {b}} \gtrsim 10$ Mpc with $\sim100 \rm h$ of observations at redshift $z\sim8$ provided that the mean outside neutral hydrogen fraction $\mathrm {x}_{\text {HI}} \gtrsim 0.5$. We also investigate the possibility of detecting HII regions around known bright QSOs such as around ULASJ1120+0641 discovered by Mortlock et al. (Nature 474, 7353 (2011)). We find that a $5σ$ detection is possible with 600 h of SKA1-low observations if the QSO age and the outside $\mathrm {x}_{\text {HI}}$ are at least $\sim2 \times 10^7$ Myr and $\sim0.2$ respectively. Finally, we investigate the possibility of detecting the very first X-ray and Ly- α sources during the cosmic dawn. We consider mini-QSOs like sources which emits in X-ray frequency band. We find that with a total $\sim 1000 \rm h$ of observations, SKA1-low should be able to detect those sources individually with a $∼ 9σ$ significance at redshift z=15. We summarize how the SNR changes with various parameters related to the source properties.

    • Modelling the 21-cm Signal from the Epoch of Reionization and Cosmic Dawn

      T. Roy Choudhury Kanan Datta Suman Majumdar Raghunath Ghara Aseem Paranjape Rajesh Mondal Somnath Bharadwaj Saumyadip Samui

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      Studying the cosmic dawn and the epoch of reionization through the redshifted 21-cm line are among the major science goals of the SKA1. Their significance lies in the fact that they are closely related to the very first stars in the Universe. Interpreting the upcoming data would require detailed modelling of the relevant physical processes. In this article, we focus on the theoretical models of reionization that have been worked out by various groups working in India with the upcoming SKA in mind. These models include purely analytical and semi-numerical calculations as well as fully numerical radiative transfer simulations. The predictions of the 21-cm signal from these models would be useful in constraining the properties of the early galaxies using the SKA data.

    • Line-of-Sight Anisotropies in the Cosmic Dawn and Epoch of Reionization 21-cm Power Spectrum

      Suman Majumdar Kanan K. Datta Raghunath Ghara Rajesh Mondal T. Roy Choudhury Somnath Bharadwaj Sk. Saiyad Ali Abhirup Datta

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      The line-of-sight direction in the redshifted 21-cm signal coming from the cosmic dawn and the epoch of reionization is quite unique in many ways compared to any other cosmological signal. Different unique effects, such as the evolution history of the signal, non-linear peculiar velocities of the matter etc. will imprint their signature along the line-of-sight axis of the observed signal. One of the major goals of the future SKA-LOW radio interferometer is to observe the cosmic dawn and the epoch of reionization through this 21-cm signal. It is thus important to understand how these various effects affect the signal for its actual detection and proper interpretation. For more than one and half decades, various groups in India have been actively trying to understand and quantify the different line-of-sight effects that are present in this signal through analytical models and simulations. In many ways the importance of this sub-field under 21-cm cosmology have been identified, highlighted and pushed forward by the Indian community. In this article, we briefly describe their contribution and implication of these effects in the context of the future surveys of the cosmic dawn and the epoch of reionization that will be conducted by the SKA-LOW.

    • Prospects of Measuring the Angular Power Spectrum of the Diffuse Galactic Synchrotron Emission with SKA1 Low

      Sk. Saiyad Ali Somnath Bharadwaj Samir Choudhuri Abhik Ghosh Nirupam Roy

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      The Diffuse Galactic Syncrotron Emission (DGSE) is the most important diffuse foreground component for future cosmological 21-cm observations. The DGSE is also an important probe of the cosmic ray electron and magnetic field distributions in the turbulent interstellar medium (ISM) of our galaxy. In this paper we briefly review the Tapered Gridded Estimator (TGE) which can be used to quantify the angular power spectrum $C_\ell$ of the sky signal directly from the visibilities measured in radio-interferometric observations. The salient features of the TGE are: (1) it deals with the gridded data which makes it computationally very fast, (2) it avoids a positive noise bias which normally arises from the system noise inherent to the visibility data, and (3) it allows us to taper the sky response and thereby suppresses the contribution from unsubtracted point sources in the outer parts and the side lobes of the antenna beam pattern. We also summarize earlier work where the TGE was used to measure the $C_\ell$ of the DGSE using 150 MHz GMRT data. Earlier measurements of $C_\ell$ are restricted to $\ell \le \ell _{\max } \sim 10^{3}$ for the DGSE, the signal at the larger $\ell$ values is dominated by the residual point sources after source subtraction. The higher sensitivity of the upcoming SKA1 Low will allow the point sources to be subtracted to a fainter level than possible with existing telescopes. We predict that it will be possible to measure the $C_\ell$ of the DGSE to larger values of $\ell _{\max }$ with SKA1 Low. Our results show that it should be possible to achieve $\ell _{\max }\sim 10^{4}$ and $∼10^5$ with 2 minutes and 10 hours of observations respectively.

    • Editorial

      Jayaram N. Chengalur Somnath Bharadwaj

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    • Fisher Matrix-based Predictions for Measuring the z = 3.35 Binned 21-cm Power Spectrum using the Ooty Wide Field Array (OWFA)

      Anjan Kumar Sarkar Somnath Bharadwaj Sk. Saiyad Ali

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      We use the Fisher matrix formalism to predict the prospects of measuring the redshifted 21-cm power spectrum in different $k$-bins using observations with the upcoming Ooty Wide Field Array (OWFA) which will operate at $326.5 {\rm MHZ}$. This corresponds to neutral hydrogen (HI) at $z=3.35$, and a measurement of the 21-cm power spectrum provides a unique method to probe the large-scale structures at this redshift. Our analysis indicates that a $5 \sigma$ detection of the binned power spectrum is possible in the $k$ range $0.05 \leq k \leq 0.3 \, {\rm Mpc}^{-1}$ with $1000$ hours of observation. We find that the signal- to-noise ratio (${\rm SNR}$) peaks in the $k$ range $0.1- 0.2\, {\rm Mpc}^{-1}$ where a $10 \sigma$ detection is possible with $2000$ hours of observations. Our analysis also indicates that it is not very advantageous to observe beyond $1000$ h in a single field-of-view as the (${\rm SNR}$) increases rather slowly beyond this in many of the small $k$-bins. The entire analysis reported here assumes that the foregrounds have been completely removed.

    • Simulating the z = 3.35 HI 21-cm Visibility Signal for the Ooty Wide Field Array (OWFA)

      Suman Chatterjee Somnath Bharadwaj Visweshwar Ram Marthi

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      The upcoming Ooty Wide Field Array (OWFA) will operate at $326.5 \, {\rm MHz}$ which corresponds to the redshifted 21-cm signal from neutral hydrogen (HI) at z = 3.35. We present two different prescriptions to simulate this signal and calculate the visibilities expected in radio-interferometric observations with OWFA. In the first method we use an input model for the expected 21-cm power spectrum to directly simulate different random realizations of the brightness temperature fluctuations and calculate the visibilities. This method, which models the HI signal entirely as a diffuse radiation, is completely oblivious to the discrete nature of the astrophysical sources which host the HI. While each discrete source subtends an angle that is much smaller than the angular resolution of OWFA, the velocity structure of the HI inside the individual sources is well within the reach of OWFA’s frequency resolution and this is expected to have an impact on the observed HI signal. The second prescription is based on cosmological N-body simulations. Here we identify each simulation particle with a source that hosts the HI, and we have the freedom to implement any desired line profile for the HI emission from the individual sources. Implementing a simple model for the line profile, we have generated several random realizations of the complex visibilities. Correlations between the visibilities measured at different baselines and channels provides an unique method to quantify the statistical properties of the HI signal. We have used this to quantify the results of our simulations, and explore the relation between the expected visibility correlations and the underlying HI power spectrum.

    • FRB Event Rate Predictions for the Ooty Wide Field Array

      Siddhartha Bhattacharyya Apurba Bera Somnath Bharadwaj N. D. Ramesh Bhat Jayaram N. Chengalur

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      We developed a generic formalism to estimate the event rate and the redshift distribution of Fast Radio Bursts (FRBs) in our previous publication (Bera et al. 2016), considering FRBs are of an extragalactic origin. In this paper, we present (a) the predicted pulse widths of FRBs by considering two different scattering models, (b) the minimum total energy required to detect events, (c) the redshift distribution and (d) the detection rates of FRBs for the Ooty Wide Field Array (OWFA). The energy spectrum of FRBs is modelled as a power law with an exponent $-\alpha$ and our analysis spans a range $-3\leq \alpha \leq 5$. We find that OWFA will be capable of detecting FRBs with $\alpha\geq 0$. The redshift distribution and the event rates of FRBs are estimated by assuming two different energy distribution functions; a Delta function and a Schechter luminosity function with an exponent $-2\le \gamma \le 2$. We consider an empirical scattering model based on pulsar observations (model I) as well as a theoretical model (model II) expected for the intergalactic medium. The redshift distributions peak at a particular redshift $z_p$ for a fixed value of α, which lie in the range $0.3\leq z_p \leq 1$ for the scattering model I and remain flat and extend up to high redshifts ($z\lesssim 5$) for the scattering model II.

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    • Continuous Article Publication

      Posted on January 27, 2016

      Since January 2016, the Journal of Astrophysics and Astronomy has moved to Continuous Article Publishing (CAP) mode. This means that each accepted article is being published immediately online with DOI and article citation ID with starting page number 1. Articles are also visible in Web of Science immediately. All these have helped shorten the publication time and have improved the visibility of the articles.

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