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Proceedings Paper

The Constellation-X Observatory
Author(s): Jay Bookbinder; Randall Smith; Anne Hornschemeier; Michael Garcia; Nicholas White; Harvey Tananbaum; Robert Petre; Suzanne Romaine; Paul Reid
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Paper Abstract

The Constellation-X Observatory is currently planned as NASA's next major X-ray observatory to be launched towards the end of the next decade. The driving science goals for the mission are to: 1) Trace the evolution of Black Holes with cosmic time and determine their contribution to the energy output of the Universe; 2) Observe matter spiraling into Black Holes to test the predictions of General Relativity; 3) Use galaxy clusters to trace the locations of Dark Matter and follow the formation of structure as a function of distance; 4) Search for the missing baryonic matter; 5) Directly observe the dynamics of Cosmic Feedback to test models for galaxy formation; 6) Observe the creation and dispersion of the elements in supernovae; and 7) Precisely constrain the equation of state of neutron stars. To achieve these science goals requires high resolution (R > 1250) X-ray spectroscopy with 100 times the throughput of the Chandra and XMMNewton. The Constellation-X Observatory will achieve this requirement with a combination of four large X-ray telescopes on a single satellite operating in the 0.25 to 10 keV range. These telescopes will feed X-ray micro-calorimeter arrays and grating spectrometers. A hard X-ray telescope system will provide coverage up to at least 40 keV. We describe the mission science drivers and the mission implementation approach.

Paper Details

Date Published: 16 July 2008
PDF: 15 pages
Proc. SPIE 7011, Space Telescopes and Instrumentation 2008: Ultraviolet to Gamma Ray, 701102 (16 July 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.796906
Show Author Affiliations
Jay Bookbinder, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (United States)
Randall Smith, X-ray Astrophysics Lab., NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Johns Hopkins Univ. (United States)
Anne Hornschemeier, X-ray Astrophysics Lab., NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Michael Garcia, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (United States)
Nicholas White, X-ray Astrophysics Lab., NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Harvey Tananbaum, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (United States)
Robert Petre, X-ray Astrophysics Lab., NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Suzanne Romaine, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (United States)
Paul Reid, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7011:
Space Telescopes and Instrumentation 2008: Ultraviolet to Gamma Ray
Martin J. L. Turner; Kathryn A. Flanagan, Editor(s)

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