Characterising the Apertif primary beam response

Publication date: 
Main author: 
Dénes, H.
IAA authors: 
Hess, K. M.
Dénes, H.;Hess, K. M.;Adams, E. A. K.;Kutkin, A.;Morganti, R.;van der Hulst, J. M.;Oosterloo, T. A.;Moss, V. A.;Adebahr, B.;de Blok, W. J. G.;Ivashina, M. V.;Coolen, A. H. W. M.;Damstra, S.;Hut, B.;Loose, G. M.;Lucero, D. M.;Maan, Y.;Mika, Á.;Norden, M. J.;Oostrum, L. C.;Pisano, D. J.;Smits, R.;van Cappellen, W. A.;van den Brink, R.;van der Schuur, D.;van Diepen, G. N. J.;van Leeuwen, J.;Vohl, D.;Wijnholds, S. J.;Ziemke, J.
Astronomy and Astrophysics
Publication type: 
Context. Phased array feeds (PAFs) are multi-element receivers in the focal plane of a telescope that make it possible to simultaneously form multiple beams on the sky by combining the complex gains of the individual antenna elements. Recently, the Westerbork Synthesis Radio Telescope (WSRT) was upgraded with PAF receivers to carry out several observing programs, including two imaging surveys and a time-domain survey. The Apertif imaging surveys use a configuration of 40 partially overlapping compound beams (CBs) simultaneously formed on the sky and arranged in an approximately rectangular shape. <BR /> Aims: This work is aimed at characterising the response of the 40 Apertif CBs to create frequency-resolved I, XX, and YY polarization empirical beam shapes. The measured CB maps can be used for the image deconvolution, primary beam correction, and mosaicking processes of Apertif imaging data. <BR /> Methods: We used drift scan measurements to measure the response of each of the 40 Apertif CBs. We derived beam maps for all individual beams in I, XX, and YY polarisation in 10 or 18 frequency bins over the same bandwidth as the Apertif imaging surveys. We sampled the main lobe of the beams and the side lobes up to a radius of 0.6 degrees from the beam centres. In addition, we derived beam maps for each individual WSRT dish. <BR /> Results: We present the frequency and time dependence of the beam shapes and sizes. We compared the compound beam shapes derived with the drift scan method to beam shapes derived with an independent method using a Gaussian Process Regression comparison between the Apertif continuum images and the NRAO VLA Sky Survey (NVSS) catalogue. We find a good agreement between the beam shapes derived with the two independent methods.
ADS Bibcode: 
methods: observational;instrumentation: detectors;telescopes;surveys;instrumentation: interferometers;Astrophysics - Instrumentation and Methods for Astrophysics