Vol 19, No 7

The design and implementation of a ROACH2+GPU based correlator on the Tianlai dish array

Chen-Hui Niu, Qun-Xiong Wang, David MacMahon, Feng-Quan Wu, Xue-Lei Chen, Ji-Xia Li, Hai-Jun Tian, Guillaume Shippee, Dan Werthimer, Xiao-Ping Zheng


Abstract A digital correlator is a crucial element in a modern radio telescope. In this paper, we describe a scalable design for the correlator system of the Tianlai pathfinder array, which is an experiment dedicated to testing key technologies for conducting a 21 cm intensity mapping survey. The correlator implements the FX design, which firstly performs a fast Fourier transform (FFT) including polyphase filter bank (PFB) computation using a Collaboration for Astronomy Signal Processing and Electronics Research (CASPER) Reconfigurable Open Architecture Computing Hardware-2 (ROACH2) board, then computes cross-correlations by employing Graphics Processing Units (GPUs). The design has been tested both in laboratory and in actual observation.


Keywords instrumentation: interferometers

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