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3 February 2004 The Swift X-Ray Telescope
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The Swift Gamma-Ray Explorer is designed to make prompt multiwavelength observations of Gamma-Ray Bursts (GRBs) and GRB Afterglows. The X-ray Telescope (XRT) provides key capabilities that permit Swift to determine GRB positions with a few arcseconds accuracy within 100 seconds of the burst onset. The XRT utilizes a superb mirror set built for JET-X and a state-of-the-art XMM/EPIC MOS CCD detector to provide a sensitive broad-band (0.2-10 keV) X-ray imager with effective area of 135 cm2 at 1.5 keV, field of view of 23.6 x 23.6 arcminutes, and angular resolution of 18 arcseconds (HEW). The detection sensitivity is 2x10-14 erg/cm2/s in 104 seconds. The instrument is designed to provide automated source detection and position reporting within 5 seconds of target acquisition. It can also measure redshifts of GRBs for bursts with Fe line emission or other spectral features. The XRT will operate in an auto-exposure mode, adjusting the CCD readout mode automatically to optimize the science return for each frame as the source fades. The XRT will measure spectra and lightcurves of the GRB afterglow beginning about a minute after the burst and will follow each burst for days as it fades from view.
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