The WMAP mission has now been in place and taking data near the L2 Lagrange point for four years, with two more years still to go. Spectacular results from the analysis of the first year’s worth of data were reported in Feb. 2003, and the second year’s data was initially supposed to appear a year later, in Feb. 2004, but they’re now a year and a half late. For some reporting on this, see this site with cosmology news. Just recently the WMAP team has put up something new on their mission status page, where they state:
While the first-year results were based mainly on temperature measurements, the continued mission operations are now primarily focused on the much weaker polarized signals – an invaluable “stretch” goal of the extended mission. Analyses of these weaker signals are more difficult and continue with steady progress. The data and results will be provided as soon as calibration and systematic error analyses have been completed, and the data files have been adequately documented for use by researchers.
Are they seeing the effects of gravitational waves in this polarization data? Anyone with inside information want to take advantage of the ability to post here anonymously and tell us what is going on? Or e-mail me, I promise to protect the confidentiality of my sources, even going to jail with Judith Miller if necessary.