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Microwave Background Radiation

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Studies of the cosmic microwave background radiation revolve about the use of the Sunyaev-Zel'dovich (SZ) effect as a cosmological probe. We are involved with two new SZ experiments: the One Centimetre Receiver Array (OCRA) and the Array for Microwave Background Anisotropy (AMiBA).

Both instruments will ultimately perform blind surveys for galaxy clusters and in the interim are observing clusters known from X-ray and optical surveys in order to constrain physical models of the cluster atmospheres.

We are also investigating other structures induced on the background radiation by relatively local (within a few Gpc) astrophysical phenomena, such as effects due to the propagation of the CMB through changing gravitational fields. (Birkinshaw, Alareedh, Talaganis).