29 July 2010 The tracker of the Fermi Large Area Telescope
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Abstract
The Large Area Telescope (LAT) is the primary instrument on the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope (Fermi), an orbital astronomical observatory that was launched on 11 June 2008. Its tracker is a solid-state instrument that converts the gamma rays into electron-positron pairs which it then tracks in order to measure the incoming gamma-ray direction. The tracker comprises 36 planes of single-sided silicon strip detectors, for a total of 73 square meters of silicon, read out by nearly 900,000 amplifier-discriminator channels. The system operates on only 160 W of conditioned power while achieving > 99% single-plane efficiency within its active area and better than 1 channel per million noise occupancy. We describe the tracker's design and performance, and discuss in particular the excellent stability of the hardware response during the first two years of operation on orbit.
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J. Bregeon, L. Baldini, "The tracker of the Fermi Large Area Telescope", Proc. SPIE 7732, Space Telescopes and Instrumentation 2010: Ultraviolet to Gamma Ray, 77320I (29 July 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.858029; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.858029
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