# HFI data compression

## Contents

## Data compression[edit]

### Data compression scheme[edit]

The output of the readout electronics unit (REU) consists of one
value for each of the 72 science channels (bolometers and thermometers) for each modulation half-period. This number, *S*_{REU}, is the sum of the 40 16-bit ADC signal values measured within the given
half-period. The data processor unit (DPU) performs a lossy
quantization of *S*_{REU}.

We define a compression slice of 254 *S*_{REU} values, corresponding
to about 1.4 s of observation for each detector and to a
strip on the sky about 8° long. The mean <*S*_{REU}> of the data within
each compression slice is computed, and data are demodulated
using this mean:

,

where 1<*i*<254 is the running index within the compression slice.

The mean <*S*_{demod}> of the demodulated data *S*_{demod,i}
is computed and subtracted, and the resulting slice data are quantized
according to a step size *Q* that is fixed per detector:

.

This is the lossy part of the algorithm: the required compression
factor, obtained through the tuning of the quantization step *Q*,
adds a noise of variance approximately 2% to the data. This will be discussed below.

The two means
<*S*_{REU}>
and
<*S*_{demod}>
are computed as
32-bit words and sent through the telemetry, together with the
values.
Variable-length encoding of the *S*_{DPU,i} values is
performed on board, and the inverse decoding is applied on the ground.

### Performance of the data compression during the mission[edit]

Optimal use of the bandpass available for the downlink was obtained initially by using a value
of *Q* = σ/2.5 for all bolometer signals.
After the 12th of December 2009, and only for the 857 GHz detectors, the
value was reset to *Q* = σ/2.0 to avoid data loss
due to exceeding the limit of the downlink rate.
With these settings the load during the mission never exceeded the
allowed bandpass width, as is seen on the next figure.

### Setting the quantization step in flight[edit]

The only parameter that enters the Planck-HFI compression algorithm is
the size of the quantization step, in units of , the white
noise standard deviation for each channel.
This quantity was adjusted during the mission by studying the mean frequency of
the central quantization bin [-*Q*/2,*Q*/2], *p*_{0}, within each compression
slice (254 samples).
For pure Gaussian noise, this frequency is related to the
step size (in units of σ) by
where the approximation is valid for *p*_{0}<0.4.
In Planck, however, the channel signal is not a pure Gaussian, since
glitches and the periodic crossing of the Galactic plane add some
strong outliers to the distribution.
By using the frequency of these outliers above 5σ, *p*_{out}}, simulations show that the following formula gives a valid
estimate:

The following figure shows an example of the

and timelines that were used to monitor and adjust the quantization setting.### Impact of the data compression on science[edit]

The effect of a pure quantization process of step *Q* (in units of σ) on the statistical moments of
a signal is well known (^{[1]})
When the step is typically below the noise level (which is largely the case for Planck)
one can apply the Quantization Theorem which states that the
process is equivalent to the addition of uniform random noise in the
[-*Q*/2,*Q*/2] range.
The net effect of quantization is therefore to add quadratically to the
signal a *Q*^{2}/12 variance. For *Q*≈0.5 this corresponds to a
2% noise level increase.
The spectral effect of the non-linear quantization process is theoretically much more
complicated and depends on the signal and noise details. As a rule of
thumb, a pure quantization adds some auto-correlation function that is
suppressed by a factor exp[-4π^{2}(σ/*Q*)^{2}] ^{[2]}.
Note however that Planck does not perform a pure quantization
process. A baseline is subtracted that
depends on the data (specifically the mean of each compression slice value),
is subtracted. Furthermore, for the science data, circles
on the sky are coadded. Coaddition is again performed when
projecting the rings onto the sky (map-making).
To study the full effect of the Planck-HFI data compression
algorithm on our main science products, we simulated a
realistic data timeline, corresponding to the observation of a pure CMB
sky. The compressed/decompressed signal was then back-projected onto
the sky using the Planck scanning strategy.
The two maps were analysed using the \texttt{anafast} HEALPix
procedure and both reconstructed *C _{l}* were compared. The result is
shown for a quantization step

*Q*=0.5.

It is remarkable that the full procedure of
baseline-subtraction + quantization+ring-making + mapmaking still leads to the 2% increase of the
variance that is predicted by the simple timeline quantization (for *Q*/σ=2).
Furthermore we checked that the noise added by the compression algorithm is white.

It is not expected that the compression brings any non-Gaussianity, since the pure quantization process does not add any skewness and less than 0.001 kurtosis, and coaddition of circles and then rings erases any non-Gaussian contribution according to the central limit theorem.

## References[edit]

- ↑
**A Study of Rough Amplitude Quantization by Means of Nyquist Sampling Theory**, B Widrow, IRE Transactions on Circuit Theory,**CT-3(4)**, 266-276, (1956). - ↑
**On the autocorrelation function of quantized signal plus noise**, E. Banta, Information Theory, IEEE Transactions on,**11**, 114 - 117, (1965).

Readout Electronic Unit

analog to digital converter

Data Processing Unit

(Planck) High Frequency Instrument

Cosmic Microwave background

(Hierarchical Equal Area isoLatitude Pixelation of a sphere, <ref name="Template:Gorski2005">**HEALPix: A Framework for High-Resolution Discretization and Fast Analysis of Data Distributed on the Sphere**, K. M. Górski, E. Hivon, A. J. Banday, B. D. Wandelt, F. K. Hansen, M. Reinecke, M. Bartelmann, ApJ, **622**, 759-771, (2005).