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INTPART-International Partnerships for Excellent Education and Research

Global Component Separation Network

Alternative title: Komponentsepareringsnettverket

Awarded: NOK 4.5 mill.

During the last two decades, new high-precision cosmological observations have revolutionized our understanding of the early universe, to the point at which we are today able to pin-point the age and the composition of the universe to percent accuracy. However, as the precision of each experiment increases, there is one source of uncertainty that eventually will affect all new measurements, namely contaminating radiation emitted from our own Milky Way. To remove these contaminants from the data, one has to perform a process called astrophysical component separation, which is a major branch of contemporary computational cosmology. Furthermore, it is a field in which the University of Oslo (UiO) currently plays an internationally leading role. The network we have established through this INTPART funded project originally spanned eight internationally leading education and research institutions (Caltech, IUCAA, KwaZulu-Natal, Kavli IPMU/Tokyo, Oslo, Princeton, South African Astronomical Observatory, and Toronto) and four state-of-the-art cosmology experiments (COMAP, LiteBIRD, PASIPHAE, and SPIDER). Since then, also Haverford (USA) and NISER (India) has joined the network, and several other institutions have expressed an interest in joining. During the last year, the visibility and impact of the Global Component Separation Network has increased dramatically. This is to a large extent fueled by the organization of the first major international conference by the network, which took place in June 2021. This was a collaboration between the ERC-funded Cosmoglobe project and the current network. Because of the corona situation, this meeting was organized in the form of a digital conference. Despite this, or perhaps because of this, the conference was a massive success, as 18 different experiments and more than 100 participants came together to discuss how the community can create a common model of the Universe across collaborations and experiments. This is the first time in the history of cosmology that the community has come together in this way. As a result of these dramatic developments, this year's edition of the course AST9240 "Cosmological Component Separation", which is hosted by the GCSN, has received far more applications from interested students and postdocs (and even professors!) than there are room for.

During the last two decades, new high-precision cosmological observations have revolutionized our understanding of the early universe, to the point at which we are today able to pin-point the age and the composition of the universe to percent accuracy. However, as the precision of each experiment increases, there is one source of uncertainty that eventually will affect all new measurements, namely contaminating radiation emitted from our own Milky Way. To remove these contaminants from the data, one has to perform a process called astrophysical component separation, which is a major branch of contemporary computational cosmology. Furthermore, it is a field in which the University of Oslo (UiO) currently plays an internationally leading role. In this proposal we propose to establish a network of eight internationally leading education and research institutions (Caltech, IUCAA, KwaZulu-Natal, Kavli IPMU/Tokyo, Oslo, Princeton, South African Astronomical Observatory, and Toronto) and four state-of-the-art cosmology experiments (COMAP, LiteBIRD, PASIPHAE, and SPIDER), and employ this network to enhance both teaching and research in each individual member institution. The main focus of this network lies on education and teaching, and is thus complementary to and will enhance on-going efforts dedicated to the scientific aspects of each experiment. Specifically, we will 1) host a bi-annual summer school for partner students; 2) create a new course in astrophysical component separation at the University of Oslo; 3) facilitate student exchange between parter institutions; and 4) organize work meetings, cross-experiment meetings, and an international conference targeting young scientists, PhD and master students. The long-term goal of the project is to establish this network as an internationally recognized hub for astrophysical component separation effort and computational cosmology. As such, it will consolidate Norway's leading position in the field in the coming decade.

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Funding scheme:

INTPART-International Partnerships for Excellent Education and Research