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Proceedings Paper

FIRST (far-infrared and submillimeter space telescope): a major scientific project of ESA
Author(s): Jean-Michel Lamarre
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Paper Abstract

As one of the four Cornerstones of its scientific program 'Horizon 2000', the European Space Agency ESA is studying a Far Infrared and Submillimeter Space Telescope (FIRST). FIRST will open to astronomical observations the 100 micrometers to 1mm spectral region, virtually unexplored with a sub-arcmin angular resolution. The 3 - 4 m diameter telescope will be diffraction limited at (lambda) equals 300 micrometers or less. The fabrication of a single dish of composite materials is considered as the baseline. The expected life time of this system in orbit is five years or more. The Model Payload, defined in order to allow a realistic system study and an evaluation of the possible scientific return, is composed of two focal instruments. The Multifrequency heterodyne spectrometer will give a very high spectral resolution in the 400 to 630 micrometers wavelength range and around 300 micrometers . The Far Infrared Receiver will be an imaging spectrometer covering the 100 - 400 micrometers range with spectral resolutions ranging from 5 to 104 obtained with a set of Fabry-Perot interferometers and filters. FIRST is expected to give unprecedented information on the physics, chemistry and dynamics of interstellar, circumstellar, planetary and cometary gas and dust. Extragalactic physics and deep surveys of cosmological interest will also benefit from this project.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 October 1993
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 2019, Infrared Spaceborne Remote Sensing, (1 October 1993); doi: 10.1117/12.157834
Show Author Affiliations
Jean-Michel Lamarre, Institut d'Astrophysique Spatiale (France)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2019:
Infrared Spaceborne Remote Sensing
Marija S. Scholl, Editor(s)

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