DSP-Enabled Radio Astronomy: Towards IIIZW35 Reconquest
© Weber et al. 2005
Received: 31 January 2004
Published: 21 September 2005
In radio astronomy, the radio spectrum is used to detect weak emission from celestial sources. By spectral averaging, observation noise is reduced and weak sources can be detected. However, more and more observations are polluted by man-made radio frequency interferences (RFI). The impact of these RFIs on power spectral measurement ranges from total saturation to subtle distortions of the data. To some extent, elimination of artefacts can be achieved by blanking polluted channels in real time. With this aim in view, a complete real-time digital system has been implemented on a set of FPGA and DSP. The current functionalities of the digital system have high dynamic range of 70 dB, bandwidth selection facilities ranging from 875 kHz to 14 MHz, high spectral resolution through a polyphase filter bank with up to 8192 channels with 49 152 coefficients and real-time time-frequency blanking with a robust threshold detector. This receiver has been used to reobserve the IIIWZ35 astronomical source which has been scrambled by a strong satellite RFI for several years.