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31 October 1996 EPIC system onboard the ESA XMM
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The European photon imaging camera (EPIC) is one of the two main instruments onboard the ESA X-Ray Cornerstone Mission XMM. It is devoted to performing imaging and spectroscopy of the x-ray sky in the domain 0.1 10 keV with a peak sensitivity in 105 seconds of 2 multiplied by 10-15 erg/cm-2. The x-ray instrumentation is complemented by a radiation monitor which will measure the particle background. The spectral resolution is approximately 140 eV at 6.4 keV and 60 eV at 1 keV. The instrumentation consists of three separate focal plane cameras at the focus of the three XMM telescopes, containing CCDs passively cooled to typically minus 100 degrees via radiators pointing toward the anti-Sun direction. The two cameras with the field of view partially occulted by the RGS grating boxes will have MOS technology CCDs while the third camera, with full field of view, will be based on p-n technology. The CCDs in the focal plane of the cameras will cover the entire 30 foot by 30 foot field of view of the telescope while the pixel size (40 by 40 (mu) for the MOS camera and 150 multiplied by 150 (mu) for the p-n) will be adequate to sample the approximately 20' PSF of the mirrors. In order to cope with a wide range of sky background and source luminosity in the visible/UV band, a filter wheel with six positions has been implemented in each camera. The six positions correspond to: open position, closed position, one thin filter (1600 angstrom of plastic support and 400 angstrom of Al), one medium filter (1600 angstrom of plastic support and 800 angstrom of Al) and one thick filter (approximately 3000 angstrom of plastic support, approximately 1000 angstrom of Al and 300 Angstrom of Sn). The final position will be a redundant filter of type still to be decided. A set of radioactive sources in each camera will allow the calibration of the CCDs in any of the operating modes and with any filter wheel position. Vacuum doors and valves operated will allow the operation of other camera heads on the ground, in a vacuum chamber and/or in a controlled atmosphere, and will protect the CCDs from contamination until the spacecraft is safely in orbit. The MOS camera will have 7 CCDs, each of 600 by 600 pixels arranged in a hexagonal pattern with one central and six peripheral. The p-n camera head will have 12 CCDs, each with 200 multiplied by 64 pixels, in a rectangular arrangement, 4 quadrants of 3 CCDs each. The radiation monitor is based on two separate detectors to monitor the low (electrons greater than 30 keV) and the high (electrons greater than 200 keV and protons greater than 10 MeV) energy particles impinging on the telescope along its orbit.
© (1996) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.


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