The X-ray Multi-Mirror Mission (XMM-Newton)


Chandra
The European Space Agency's X-ray Multi-Mirror Mission (XMM-Newton) was launched by Ariane 504 on December 10 1999. XMM-Newton is ESA's second cornerstone of the Horizon 2000 Science Programme. It carries high thoughput X-ray telescopes with an unprecedend effective area, and an optical monitor, the first flown on a X-ray observatory. The large collecting area and ability to make long uninterrupted exposures provide highly sensitive observations.

Mission Characteristics

* Lifetime : December 1999 - (nominal 10 year mission)
* Energy Range : 0.1-15 keV
* Special Features : Very large collecting area.
Simulataneous X-ray & Optical observations.
* Payload :
  • Three co-aligned Wolter Type I grazing incidence gold-coated imaging X-ray telescopes each with an effective area of ~ 1500 cm2 @ 1 keV Spatial resolution 6" FWHM. There are three type of instruments :

    • European Photon Imaging Camera
      Metal-Oxide-Silicon (EPIC-MOS; 0.1-15 keV; 2 units)
      The EPIC-MOS are mounted under two telescopes and are used for spectro-imaging. Each units consist of an array of 7 CCDs and each CCD is 600 X 600 pixels
      FOV 33 ´ X 33 ´
      spectral resolution (E/dE) ~ 20-50
      Eff area 922 cm2 @ 1keV

    • European Photon Imaging Camera-PN
      (0.1-15 keV; 1 unit)
      This is an array of 12 CCDs (64 X 200 pixels each) used for spectro-imaging
      FOV 27.5 ´ X 27.5 ´
      spectral resolution (E/dE) ~ 20-50
      Eff area 1227 cm2 @ 1keV

    • Reflection Grating Spectrometer
      (RGS; 0.35-2.5 keV two units) + EPIC-MOS
      The gratings, mounted under two telescopes, deflect about 50% of the X-ray light onto an array of 9 EPIC-MOS CCD detectors.
      Line density ~645 lines mm-1 at the centre
      Spectral resolution (E/dE) 200-800
      Eff area 185 cm2 1 keV
      FOV 5´

  • Optical Monitor (OM; 180-650 nm)
    co-aligned 30 cm optical/UV telescope. FOV ~17´, ~1" spatial resolution.

[XMM-Newton Guest Observer Facility]