This document describes how to observe with CPSR II, taking baseband data and then reducing it into folded archives. While every effort is made to ensure that the information is as current as possible, any problems you have that cannot be solved using the manual should be referred to the authors, whose contact information is shown below:
  • Aidan Hotan: ahotan@astro.swin.edu.au, (03) 9214 8502 during business hours.
CPSR II is a baseband recorder, meaning that it samples raw voltages produced by the telescope receiver at the nyquist rate, allowing complete reconstruction of all information (both amplitudes and phases) present in the signal. This generates a huge amount of data (128 Megabytes per second in the present configuration), the recording and analysis of which requires a small supercomputer.



The leftmost rack contains the digital sampler that is connected via the observatory downconversion system to the receivers in the focus cabin. This sampler board was built by our collaborators at Caltech. It accepts two independent 64 MHz bands with dual polarisations for each band. Full polarimetry is therefore possible with CPSR2.

The other rack slots contain the supercomputer, a 30 node cluster of dual CPU Dell 2650 rackmount servers, running at a clock speed of 2.2 GHz. The two machines on the top of these racks have 3 GB of RAM and act as our "primary nodes". They are responsible for distributing data to the rest of the cluster by means of high speed gigabit ethernet. In all, the cluster has over four terabytes of disk storage space and enough processing power to coherently de-disperse data from most low dispersion measure pulsars in real time.

Data gets from the sampler to the primary nodes by means of direct memory access cards (EDT 60's) installed in their PCI slots.

Some photos of the instrument are available here

The manual is split into the following sections:

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408 MHz map of the galactic plane, courtesy of NASA