There were a total of 15 Finnish researchers involved in developing the radio receiver for the Planck project, with participation from VTT, Aalto University, DA-Design, the University of Helsinki and the University of Turku.
The Planck observatory contained the world’s most sensitive radio receiver developed under the leadership of VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and Aalto University’s MilliLab. The receiver operated flawlessly from the launch of the space probe until the end of the project – twice as long as anticipated.
The prize was awarded for an analysis of the temperature and polarization of the universe’s microwave background radiation, performed using the European Space Agency’s Planck satellite from 2009 to 2013. The unprecedented accuracy of the measurement results enables the birth, age, composition and geometry of the universe to be more precisely estimated. For example, it was possible to specify the age of the universe more precisely: 13.8 billion years. Read more on Gruber Foundation web pages.
DA-Group developed ultra-sensitive low noise amplifiers (LNA) which they then integrated in an array of 70 GHz radiometric receivers. To achieve the lowest noise levels, required to unmask the CMB signals, the receivers were cooled to 20 Kelvin. At this temperature, these were undoubtedly the most sensive receivers in the world, achieving an overall receiver noise tmperature 25K to 30K, over the frequency range from 63 GHz to 77 GHz.
DA-Group's professionals are honored to have been a part of the successful project and pleased about the Gruber prize.