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XMM-Newton Guest Observer Facility


Schematic of the XMM-Newton satellite
    (From the VILSPA XMM-Newton Science Operations Center, courtesy of Dornier Satellitensysteme GmbH.)

    In the above figure, the three X-ray mirror modules are visible at the lower left end of the telescope, two of which have Reflection Grating Arrays. At the right end of the telescope is the focal-plane instrumentation: The Epic MOS cameras with their radiators (black with green "horns"), the radiator of the EPIC PN camera (violet) and those of the RGS cameras (orange). The black box at the bottom of the telescope tube is the outgassing device.

    XMM-Newton with its three telescope modules is the most sensitive imaging X-ray observatory in the 250 eV to 12 keV energy range ever flown. The combination of the CCD cameras, grating spectrometer, and high angular resolution replicated nickel mirrors with gold coating provides exceptional spectral and imaging capabilities to study astrophysical sources. The following table provides a general overview of the XMM-Newton specifications.

    XMM-Newton Characteristics
    Focal Length
    7.5 m
    EPIC Energy Range 0.1 - 15.0 keV
    1 - 100 ┼
    Effective Area 75 cm▓ @ 12 keV
    950 cm▓ @ 8 keV
    1620 cm▓ @ 6 keV
    1475 cm▓ @ 2.5 keV
    2485 cm▓ @ 1.5 keV
    1650 cm▓ @ 0.6 keV
    595 cm▓ @ 0.25 keV
    Angular Resolution 15 arc seconds HEW
    6 arc seconds FWHM
    Field of View ~30 arc minutes
    RGS Energy Range 0.4 - 2.5 keV
    Effective Area 160 cm▓ @ 1.5 keV
    94 cm▓ @ 0.6 keV
    Spectral Resolution E/dE~150-800
    Optical Monitor Telescope 30 cm diameter
    Wavelength range 1700-5500 ┼
    Field of View 17 x 17 arc minutes
    From various XMM-Newton web pages.

    The following figure compares the XMM-Newton mirror areas with those of other recent X-ray observatories (note that the detector efficiency has not been included). The figure clearly shows the greater area and extended energy range of XMM-Newton compared to ROSAT, ASCA, and even Chandra.

    Plot comparing the effective areas of recent X-ray telescopes
    From the XMM-Newton Users Handbook.

If you have any questions concerning XMM-Newton send e-mail to

This file was last modified on Thursday, 18-Jul-2002 13:43:30 EDT
Curator:Michael Arida (ADNET);

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