By Topic

A Generation-X ultra high throughput X-ray astronomy observatory with a new mission architecture

Sign In

Cookies must be enabled to login.After enabling cookies , please use refresh or reload or ctrl+f5 on the browser for the login options.

Formats Non-Member Member
$31 $13
Learn how you can qualify for the best price for this item!
Become an IEEE Member or Subscribe to
IEEE Xplore for exclusive pricing!
close button

puzzle piece

IEEE membership options for an individual and IEEE Xplore subscriptions for an organization offer the most affordable access to essential journal articles, conference papers, standards, eBooks, and eLearning courses.

Learn more about:

IEEE membership

IEEE Xplore subscriptions

1 Author(s)
Gorenstein, Paul ; Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophys., Cambridge, MA, USA

The launch of the Chandra X-ray Observatory in June 1999 together with the X-ray Multi-Mirror Observatory by ESA initiated a new era in X-ray astronomy. This new generation of 1 m class facilities provides astronomers with much better imaging capability, larger collecting power and for the first time, true high resolution spectroscopy. However, most X-ray measurements will still be limited by a small number of photons. To probe more deeply into the early Universe, at the large distances where dust obscures visible light, we require future generation (“Generation-X”) 30-m class telescopes with several orders of magnitude larger collecting area than the above missions or even NASA's next generation Constellation X-ray Mission. However, this cannot be achieved within the architecture of current missions. We describe a new approach based upon formation flying between a large single focus X-ray telescope aboard its own spacecraft and a cluster of smaller spacecraft with detectors and spectrometers, at a quasi-stable point such as the Sun-Earth L2. The telescope mass and volume are too large to be put in space with a single launch. Furthermore we desire that the success of the mission not be dependent upon a single launch. Consequently, the telescope will have to be assembled in situ where humans are not likely to venture. Mirror segments would be delivered over a period of several years and assembled with robotic means. This work was supported was by the NASA Institute of Advanced Concepts

Published in:

Aerospace Conference Proceedings, 2000 IEEE  (Volume:2 )

Date of Conference: