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7 July 2006 ESPRIT: a space interferometer concept for the far-infrared
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In the far-infrared (FIR) / THz regime the angular (and often spectral) resolution of observing facilities is still very restricted despite the fact that this frequency range has become of prime importance for modern astrophysics. ALMA (Atacama Large Millimeter Array) with its superb sensitivity and angular resolution will only cover frequencies up to about 1 THz, while the HIFI instrument for ESA'a Herschel Space Observatory will provide limited angular resolution (10 to 30 arcsec) up to 2 THz. Observations of regions with star and planet formation require extremely high angular resolution as well as frequency resolution in the full THz regime. In order to open these regions for high-resolution astrophysics we propose a heterodyne space interferometer mission, ESPRIT (Exploratory Submm Space Radio-Interferometric Telescope), for the Terahertz regime inaccessible from ground and outside the operating range of the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST).
© (2006) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
W. Wild, Th. de Graauw, F. Helmich, J. Cernicharo, A. Gunst, A. Bos, J.-W. den Herder, B. Jackson, H.-J. Langevelde, P. Maat, J. Martin-Pintado, J. Noordam, A. Quirrenbach, P. Roelfsema, L. Venema, P. Wesselius, and P. Yagoubov "ESPRIT: a space interferometer concept for the far-infrared", Proc. SPIE 6265, Space Telescopes and Instrumentation I: Optical, Infrared, and Millimeter, 62651Z (7 July 2006);

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