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Testing the X-IFU calibration requirements: an example for quantum efficiency and energy resolution
Author(s): Edoardo Cucchetti; François Pajot; Etienne Pointecouteau; Philippe Peille; Gabriele Betancourt-Martinez; Stephen J. Smith; Marco Barbera; Megan E. Eckart; Simon R. Bandler; Caroline A. Kilbourne; Massimo Cappi; Didier Barret
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Paper Abstract

With its array of 3840 Transition Edge Sensors (TESs) operated at 90 mK, the X-Ray Integral Field Unit (XIFU) on board the ESA L2 mission Athena will provide spatially resolved high-resolution spectroscopy (2.5 eV FWHM up to 7 keV) over the 0.2 to 12 keV bandpass. The in-flight performance of the X-IFU will be strongly affected by the calibration of the instrument. Uncertainties in the knowledge of the overall system, from the filter transmission to the energy scale, may introduce systematic errors in the data, which could potentially compromise science objectives – notably those involving line characterisation e.g. turbulence velocity measurements – if not properly accounted for. Defining and validating calibration requirements is therefore of paramount importance. In this paper, we put forward a simulation tool based on the most up-to-date configurations of the various subsystems (e.g. filters, detector absorbers) which allows us to estimate systematic errors related to uncertainties in the instrumental response. Notably, the effect of uncertainties in the energy resolution and of the instrumental quantum efficiency on X-IFU observations is assessed, by taking as a test case the measurements of the iron K complex in the hot gas surrounding clusters of galaxies. In-flight and ground calibration of the energy resolution and the quantum efficiency is also addressed. We demonstrate that provided an accurate calibration of the instrument, such effects should be low in both cases with respect to statistics during observations.

Paper Details

Date Published: 6 July 2018
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 10699, Space Telescopes and Instrumentation 2018: Ultraviolet to Gamma Ray, 106994O (6 July 2018); doi: 10.1117/12.2312188
Show Author Affiliations
Edoardo Cucchetti, Institut de Recherche en Astrophysique et Planétologie (France)
François Pajot, Institut de Recherche en Astrophysique et Planétologie (France)
Etienne Pointecouteau, Institut de Recherche en Astrophysique et Planétologie (France)
Philippe Peille, Ctr. National d'Études Spatiales (France)
Gabriele Betancourt-Martinez, Institut de Recherche en Astrophysique et Planétologie (France)
Stephen J. Smith, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Univ. of Maryland, Baltimore County (United States)
Marco Barbera, Univ. degli Studi di Palermo (Italy)
Istituto Nazionale di Astrofisica (Italy)
Megan E. Eckart, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Simon R. Bandler, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Caroline A. Kilbourne, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Massimo Cappi, l’Osservatorio di astrofisica e scienza dello spazio di Bologna (Italy)
Didier Barret, Institut de Recherche en Astrophysique et Planétologie (France)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 10699:
Space Telescopes and Instrumentation 2018: Ultraviolet to Gamma Ray
Jan-Willem A. den Herder; Shouleh Nikzad; Kazuhiro Nakazawa, Editor(s)

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