A New Era in Extragalactic Background Light Measurements: The Cosmic History of Accretion, Nucleosynthesis and ReionizationScience White Paper for the US Astro 2010-2020 Decadal Survey (2009)
Abstract(Brief Summary) What is the total radiative content of the Universe since the epoch of recombination? The extragalactic background light (EBL) spectrum captures the redshifted energy released from the first stellar objects, protogalaxies, and galaxies throughout cosmic history. Yet, we have not determined the brightness of the extragalactic sky from UV/optical to far-infrared wavelengths with sufficient accuracy to establish the radiative content of the Universe to better than an order of magnitude. Among many science topics, an accurate measurement of the EBL spectrum from optical to far-IR wavelengths, will address: What is the total energy released by stellar nucleosynthesis over cosmic history? Was significant energy released by non-stellar processes? Is there a diffuse component to the EBL anywhere from optical to sub-millimeter? When did first stars appear and how luminous was the reionization epoch? Absolute optical to mid-IR EBL spectrum to an astrophysically interesting accuracy can be established by wide field imagingat a distance of 5 AU or above the ecliptic plane where the zodiacal foreground is reduced by more than two orders of magnitude.
Citation InformationAsantha Cooray, Alexandre Amblard, Charles Beichman, Dominic Benford, et al.. "A New Era in Extragalactic Background Light Measurements: The Cosmic History of Accretion, Nucleosynthesis and Reionization" Science White Paper for the US Astro 2010-2020 Decadal Survey (2009)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/mauro_giavalisco/53/