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Proceedings Paper

MEGA: the next generation Medium Energy Gamma-ray Telescope
Author(s): James M. Ryan; Robert Andritschke; Peter Forbes Bloser; James P. Cravens; Michael L. Cherry; Guido Di Cocco; T. G. Guzik; Dieter H. Hartmann; Stanley H. Hunter; Gottfried Kanbach; R. Marc Kippen; James Kurfess; John R. Macri; Mark L. McConnell; Richard S. Miller; William S. Paciesas; Bernard Phlips; Victor Reglero; J. Gregory Stacy; Mark Strickman; W. Thomas Vestrand; John P. Wefel; Eric Wulf; Andreas Zoglauer; Allen D. Zych
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Paper Abstract

The MEGA mission would enable a sensitive all-sky survey of the medium-energy ?-ray sky (0.3-50 MeV). This mission will bridge the huge sensitivity gap between the COMPTEL and OSSE experiments on the Compton Gamma Ray Observatory, the SPI and IBIS instruments on INTEGRAL and the visionary ACT mission. It will, among other things, serve to compile a much larger catalog of sources in this energy range, perform far deeper searches for supernovae, better measure the galactic continuum emission as well as identify the components of the cosmic diffuse emission. The large field of view will allow MEGA to continuously monitor the sky for transient and variable sources. It will accomplish these goals with a stack of Si-strip detector (SSD) planes surrounded by a dense high-Z calorimeter. At lower photon energies (below ~30 MeV), the design is sensitive to Compton interactions, with the SSD system serving as a scattering medium that also detects and measures the Compton recoil energy deposit. If the energy of the recoil electron is sufficiently high (> 2 MeV), the track of the recoil electron can also be defined. At higher photon energies (above ~10 MeV), the design is sensitive to pair production events, with the SSD system measuring the tracks of the electron and positron. We will discuss the various types of event signatures in detail and describe the advantages of this design over previous Compton telescope designs. Effective area, sensitivity and resolving power estimates are also presented along with simulations of expected scientific results and beam calibration results from the prototype instrument.

Paper Details

Date Published: 11 October 2004
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 5488, UV and Gamma-Ray Space Telescope Systems, (11 October 2004); doi: 10.1117/12.551891
Show Author Affiliations
James M. Ryan, Univ. of New Hampshire (United States)
Robert Andritschke, Max-Planck-Institut fur extraterrestrische Physik (Germany)
Peter Forbes Bloser, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
James P. Cravens, Southwest Research Institute (United States)
Michael L. Cherry, Louisiana State Univ. (United States)
Guido Di Cocco, Istituto di Astrofisica Spaziale e Fisica Cosmica, CNR (Italy)
T. G. Guzik, Louisiana State Univ. (United States)
Dieter H. Hartmann, Clemson Univ. (United States)
Stanley H. Hunter, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Gottfried Kanbach, Max-Planck-Institut fur extraterrestrische Physik (Germany)
R. Marc Kippen, Los Alamos National Lab. (United States)
James Kurfess, Naval Research Lab. (United States)
John R. Macri, Univ. of New Hampshire (United States)
Mark L. McConnell, Univ. of New Hampshire (United States)
Richard S. Miller, Univ. of Alabama in Huntsville (United States)
William S. Paciesas, Univ. of Alabama in Huntsville (United States)
Bernard Phlips, Naval Research Lab. (United States)
Victor Reglero, Univ. de Valencia (Spain)
J. Gregory Stacy, Louisiana State Univ. (United States)
Mark Strickman, Naval Research Lab. (United States)
W. Thomas Vestrand, Los Alamos National Lab. (United States)
John P. Wefel, Louisiana State Univ. (United States)
Eric Wulf, Naval Research Lab. (United States)
Andreas Zoglauer, Max-Planck-Institut fur extraterrestrische Physik (Germany)
Allen D. Zych, Univ. of California/Riverside (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5488:
UV and Gamma-Ray Space Telescope Systems
Guenther Hasinger; Martin J. L. Turner, Editor(s)

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