Macquarie University
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Finding pulsars in a new SETI survey with a GPU based pipeline

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posted on 2022-07-22, 02:27 authored by Tommy Marshman

Breakthrough Listen is the largest and most comprehensive search for signals from advanced extra-terrestrial life ever undertaken. As part of Breakthrough Listen, a high time resolution radio survey of the Galactic plane using the Multibeam receiver on the Parkes 64-m telescope is currently ongoing. The project described in this thesis performs the first search of this dataset for pulsars and assesses the survey’s overall suitability for pulsar searching. We also compare the performance of two search pipelines; a Central Processing Unit PRESTO based pipeline and a Graphics Processing Unit based PEASOUP one. The Graphics Processing Unit based PEASOUP pipeline has a much faster processing speed without a loss of reliability. We re-detected 172 known pulsars in the survey region. We also report the results of a search for new pulsar candidates. Our results suggest further searches of the growing Breakthrough Listen dataset, with broader search parameters, will likely lead to new pulsar discoveries.


Table of Contents

1. Introduction -- 2. Laying the Foundations -- 3. Re-detecting Known Pulsars -- 4. The Road Ahead -- A. Appendix -- References


A thesis submitted to Macquarie University for the degree of Master of Research

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis MRes


Thesis (MRes), Macquarie University, Faculty of Science and Engineering, 2020

Department, Centre or School

Department of Physics and Astronomy

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

Joanne Dawson

Additional Supervisor 1

Shi Dai

Additional Supervisor 2

George Hobbs


Copyright disclaimer: Copyright Tommy Marshman 2021.




viii, 51 pages

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