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Proceedings Paper

On-orbit performance of the Spitzer Space Telescope
Author(s): Thomas L. Roellig; Michael W. Werner; David B. Gallagher; William R. Irace; Giovanni G. Fazio; James R. Houck; George H. Rieke; Robert K. Wilson; Thomas Soifer
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Paper Abstract

The Spitzer Space Telescope (formally known as SIRTF) was successfully launched on August 25, 2003, and has completed its initial in-orbit checkout and science validation and calibration period. The measured performance of the observatory has met or exceeded all of its high-level requirements, it entered normal operations in January 2004, and is returning high-quality science data. A superfluid-helium cooled 85 cm diameter telescope provides extremely low infrared backgrounds and feeds three science instruments covering wavelengths ranging from 3.6 to 160 microns. The telescope optical quality is excellent, providing diffraction-limited performance down to wavelengths below 6.5 microns. Based on the first helium mass and boil-off rate measurements, a cryogenic lifetime in excess of 5 years is expected. This presentation will provide a summary of the overall performance of the observatory, with an emphasis on those performance parameters that have the greatest impact on its ultimate science return.

Paper Details

Date Published: 12 October 2004
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 5487, Optical, Infrared, and Millimeter Space Telescopes, (12 October 2004); doi: 10.1117/12.551037
Show Author Affiliations
Thomas L. Roellig, NASA Ames Research Ctr. (United States)
Michael W. Werner, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
David B. Gallagher, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
William R. Irace, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Giovanni G. Fazio, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (United States)
James R. Houck, Cornell Univ. (United States)
George H. Rieke, Steward Observatory/Univ. of Arizona (United States)
Robert K. Wilson, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Thomas Soifer, California Institute of Technology (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5487:
Optical, Infrared, and Millimeter Space Telescopes
John C. Mather, Editor(s)

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