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Proceedings Paper

Readout modes and automated operation of the Swift X-ray Telescope
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Paper Abstract

The Swift X-ray Telescope (XRT) is designed to make astrometric, spectroscopic, and photometric observations of X-ray emission from Gamma-ray Bursts and their afterglows in the energy band 0.2-10 keV. In order to provide rapid-response, automated observations of these randomly occurring objects without ground intervention, the XRT must be able to observe objects covering some seven orders of magnitude in flux, extracting the maximum possible science from each one. This requires a variety of readout modes designed to optimise the information collected in response to shifting scientific priorities as the flux from the burst diminishes. The XRT will support four major readout modes: imaging, two timing modes and photon-counting, with several sub-modes. We describe in detail the readout modes of the XRT. We describe the flux ranges over which each mode will operate, the automated mode switching that will occur and the methods used for collection of bias information for this instrument. We also discuss the data products produced from each mode.

Paper Details

Date Published: 3 February 2004
PDF: 15 pages
Proc. SPIE 5165, X-Ray and Gamma-Ray Instrumentation for Astronomy XIII, (3 February 2004); doi: 10.1117/12.505728
Show Author Affiliations
Joanne E. Hill, The Pennsylvania State Univ. (United States)
David N. Burrows, The Pennsylvania State Univ. (United States)
John A. Nousek, The Pennsylvania State Univ. (United States)
Anthony F. Abbey, Univ. of Leicester (United Kingdom)
Richard M. Ambrosi, Univ. of Leicester (United Kingdom)
Heinrich W. Brauninger, Max-Planck-Institut fuer extraterrestrische Physik (Germany)
Wolfgang Burkert, Max-Planck-Institut fuer extraterrestrische Physik (Germany)
Sergio Campana, Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera (Italy)
Chaitanya Cheruvu, The Pennsylvania State Univ. (United States)
Giancarlo Cusumano, Istituto di Fisica Cosmica ed Applicazioni dell Informazione, CNR (Italy)
Michael J. Freyberg, Max-Planck-Institut fuer extraterrestrische Physik (Germany)
Gisela D. Hartner, Max-Planck-Institut fuer extraterrestrische Physik (Germany)
R. Klar, Southwest Research Institute (United States)
C. Mangels, Southwest Research Institute (United States)
Alberto Moretti, Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera (Italy)
Koji Mori, The Pennsylvania State Univ. (United States)
Dave C. Morris, The Pennsylvania State Univ. (United States)
Alexander D. T. Short, Univ. of Leicester (United Kingdom)
Gianpiero Tagliaferri, Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera (Italy)
D. J. Watson, Univ. of Leicester (United Kingdom)
P. Wood, Southwest Research Institute (United States)
Alan A. Wells, Univ. of Leicester (United Kingdom)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5165:
X-Ray and Gamma-Ray Instrumentation for Astronomy XIII
Kathryn A. Flanagan; Oswald H. W. Siegmund, Editor(s)

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