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5 March 2003 ASTRO-F mission
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ASTRO-F mission is the first Japanese satellite dedicated to infrared astronomy. The telescope has a 70cm diameter mirror, and is cooled down to 6 K with super-fluid helium assisted by a mechanial cooler system. The primary purpose of this project is to investigate the birth and evolution of galaxies in the early universe through deep, wide-field surveys at wavelengths ranging from 2 to 200 μm, as well as a wide field of observational studies in the infrared wavelength region. The spatial resolution and the point source sensitivity are nearly the same as those of the aperture diffraction limit and the natural background and/or confusion limit, respectively. In the far-infrared wavelength band, ASTRO-F will conduct an all-sky survey like the IRAS survey with several tens of times higher sensitivity and several times better spatial resolution. In the near- and mid-infrared, wide area sky-surveys will be conducted over pre-selected portions of the sky. In addition to these photometric surveys, low-resolution spectroscopic capabilities are available for all wavelength bands. The ASTRO-F mission will produce a fundamental database for the next generation of advanced observatories, for example, the Herschel mission, and NGST, and will complement the SIRTF mission by virtue of its wide sky coverage. The current development status of the ASTRO-F spacecraft, the observation plan, and the data reduction/analysis software are summarized. The launch by an M-V rocket is scheduled for February 2004.
© (2003) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Hiroshi Shibai "ASTRO-F mission", Proc. SPIE 4850, IR Space Telescopes and Instruments, (5 March 2003);


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