During the ~6 months of the mission, 27 pointed observations (typically a week in duration) were made, resulting in about 55 percent of the sky being observed, including most of the galactic plane.
On 1973 June 8, a failure of the low-voltage power supply ended the collection of data.
An extensive calibration program was carried out on the gamma-ray telescope before SAS-2 was launched. The National Bureau of Standards (NBS) Synchrotron accelerator in Gaithersburg, Maryland was used to study the performance of the telescope in the 20 - 114 MeV range. The performance between 200 - 1000 MeV was studied at the Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron (DESY) accelerator in Hamburg, West Germany.
SAS-2 revealed that the galactic plane gamma-radiation was strongly correlated with galactic structural features, especially when the known strong discrete sources of gamma-radiation were subtracted from the total observed radiation. The SAS-2 results clearly established a high energy (> 35 MeV) component to the diffuse celestial radiation. High-energy gamma-ray emission was also seen from discrete sources such as the Crab and Vela pulsars.
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Last modified: Wednesday, 08-Oct-2003 18:59:46 EDT