PILOT: Observing dust emission polarization from the stratosphere
Seminar room (LLR)
The PILOT stratospheric balloon-born experiment is designed to observe the polarization of cosmic dust thermal emission in the Far-Infrared, which is unique in revealing the geometry of the magnetic field in star forming regions of the interstellar medium and some physical properties of dust particles. Accurately measuring the spectral distribution of polarized dust emission is critical to cosmology measurements of the polarization of the Cosmic Microwave Background currently being performed in order to demonstrate inflation in the very early universe. I will describe the PILOT instrument and its science goals and will present early results obtained during the first and second flights of the experiment, which took place recently from Canada and Australia.