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6 July 2018 Simulating x-ray observations of galaxy clusters with the x-ray integral field unit onboard the ATHENA mission
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Abstract
The X-ray Integral Field Unit (X-IFU) is the cryogenic imaging spectrometer onboard the ESA L2 mission Athena. With its array of almost 3840 superconducting Transition Edge Sensors micro-calorimeters, the X-IFU will provide spatially resolved (5" over the field of view) high-resolution spectroscopy (2.5 eV FWHM up to 7 keV) in the 0.2-12 keV energy band. These transformational capabilities will allow the X-IFU to probe the Hot and Energetic Universe, and notably measure the physical properties of large-scale structures with unprecedented accuracy. Starting from numerically-simulated massive (1014M) galaxy clusters at different steps of their evolution, we investigate the capabilities of the X-IFU in recovering chemical abundances, redshift and gas temperature spatial distributions across time, making use of full field-of-view End-To-End simulations of X-IFU observations. This work serve as feasibility study for the Chemical Enrichment of the Universe science objective. We show that using 100 ks observations, the X-IFU will provide an unprecedented spatially-accurate knowledge of the physics of the ICM (abundances, temperature, bulk-motion). We also demonstrate that challenges related to the data analysis of extended sources with very high-resolution spectrometers (e.g. binning, line of sight mixing, particle background) need to be thoroughly addressed to maximise the science of the instrument.
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Edoardo Cucchetti, Etienne Pointecouteau, Philippe Peille, Nicolas Clerc, Elena Rasia, Veronica Biffi, Stefano Borgani, Klaus Dolag, Jörn Wilms, François Pajot, and Didier Barret "Simulating x-ray observations of galaxy clusters with the x-ray integral field unit onboard the ATHENA mission", Proc. SPIE 10699, Space Telescopes and Instrumentation 2018: Ultraviolet to Gamma Ray, 106994L (6 July 2018); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2311957
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