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APERTIF UniBoard observes pulsar over 300 MHz

Submitter: Wim van Cappellen for the APERTIF team
Description: APERTIF with the new UniBoard beam former detected its first pulsar. And even better, this is the first-ever pulsar detection with a UniBoard backend!!!

APERTIF has been operating a PAF prototype in a WSRT dish since 2007. First, the former LOFAR-ITS data-recording backend with a bandwidth of 40 MHz was used. In 2010 a LOFAR RSP-based real-time beamformer was installed. This system demonstrated a dual-beam pulsar observation over a limited frequency band. Recently, all the prototyping hardware has been replaced with (nearly) final APERTIF hardware, which includes the new LNA, down conversion unit (DCU), AD unit (ADU) and a UniBoard beamformer. The entire system is running at the required 300 MHz bandwidth. The above plots were generated by observing the pulsar (B0329+54) for 1 hour in two ~10 MHz bands at the two extremes of the 300 MHz frequency band simultaneously. In both frequency bands the pulsar is successfully detected.
Copyright: ASTRON, 2013.
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