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Sensivity studies for the Cherenkov Telescope Array
Estudios de sensibilidad para el Cherenkov Telescope Array

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Hassan Collado, Tarek (2016) Sensivity studies for the Cherenkov Telescope Array. [Thesis]

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Abstract

Since the creation of the first telescope in the 17th century, every major discovery in astrophysics has been the direct consequence of the development of novel observation techniques, opening new windows in the electromagnetic spectrum. After Karl Jansky discovered serendipitously the first radio source in 1933, Grote Reber built the first parabolic radio telescope in his backyard, planting the seed of a whole new field in astronomy. Similarly, new technologies in the 1950s allowed the establishment of other fields, such as the infrared, ultraviolet or the X-rays. The highest energy end of the electromagnetic spectrum, the gamma-ray range, represents the last unexplored window for astronomers and should reveal the most extreme phenomena that take place in the Universe. Given the technical complexity of gamma-ray detection and the extremely relative low fluxes, gamma-ray astronomy has undergone a slower development compared to other wavelengths. Nowadays, the great success of consecutive space missions together with the development and refinement of new detection techniques from the ground, has allowed outstanding scientific results and has brought gamma-ray astronomy to a worthy level in par with other astronomy fields. This work is devoted to the study and improvement of the future Cherenkov Telescope Array (CTA), the next generation of ground based gamma-ray detectors, designed to observe photons with the highest energies ever observed from cosmic sources. These results on the sensitivity studies performed for the CTA collaboration evaluate the observatory performance through the analysis of large-scale Monte Carlo (MC) simulations, along with an estimation of its future potential on specific physics cases. Together with the testing and development of the analysis tools employed, these results are critical to understand CTA's future capabilities, the efficiency of different telescope placement approaches and the effect on performance of the construction site, related to parameters such as the altitude or the geomagnetic field. The Northern Hemisphere proposed construction sites were analyzed and evaluated, providing an accurate estimation of their capabilities to host the observatory. As for the CTA layout candidates, an unbiased comparison of the different arrays proposed by the collaboration was performed, using Fermi-LAT catalogs to forecast the performance of each array over specific scientific cases. In addition, the application of machine learning algorithms on gamma-ray astronomy was studied, comparing alternative methods for energy reconstruction and background suppression and introducing new applications to these algorithms, such as the determination of gamma-ray source types through the training of their spectral features. The analysis presented here of both CTA-N and CTA-S candidates represents the most comprehensive study of CTA capabilities performed by the collaboration to date. Experience gained with the improvement of this software will guide the future \gls{cta} analysis pipelines by comparing the attained sensitivity by alternative analysis chains. From these results, both CTA-N and CTA-S candidates "2N" and "2Q" fulfill the sensitivity, angular and energy resolution, effective area and off-axis performance requirements. MC simulations provide an useful test-bench for the different designs within the CTA project, and these results demonstrate their correct implementation would attain the desired performance and potential scientific output.


Item Type:Thesis
Additional Information:

Tesis inédita de la Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Facultad de Ciencias Físicas, Departamento de Física Atómica, Molecular y Nuclear, leída el 28-09-2015

Directors:
DirectorsDirector email
Contreras González, José Luis
Mirabal Barrios, Néstor
Uncontrolled Keywords:Telescopios
Palabras clave (otros idiomas):Telescopes
Subjects:Sciences > Physics > Nuclear physics
ID Code:35143
Deposited On:21 Jan 2016 09:45
Last Modified:06 May 2019 10:52

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