The XMM-Newton Guest Observer FacilityXMM-Newton, the X-ray Multi-Mirror Mission, is the second cornerstone of the Horizon 2000 program of the European Space Agency (ESA). XMM-Newton was launched on December 10 1999 at 14:32 GMT (09:32 EST). The observatory consists of three coaligned high throughput 7.5m focal length telescopes with 6 arc second FWHM (15 arc second HPD) angular resolution.
Besides having funded elements of the XMM-Newton instrument package, NASA also provides the NASA Guest Observer Facility (GOF) at the NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC). The GOF provides a clearing house for project-generated technical information and analysis software as well as budget support for U.S. astronomers who apply for XMM-Newton observation time.
XMM-Newton images over a 30 arc minute field of view with moderate spectral resolution using the European Photon Imaging Camera (EPIC), which consists of two MOS and one PN CCD arrays. High-resolution spectral information (E/dE~300) is provided by the Reflection Grating Spectrometer (RGS) that deflects half of the beam on two of the X-ray telescopes. The observatory also has a coaligned 30 cm optical/UV telescope, the Optical Monitor (OM). More detailed information on the instruments can be found under Focal Plane Instrumentation in these pages and in the XMM-Newton Users' Handbook (GSFC or ESAC links).
These pages are intended for members of the scientific community. For members of the general public, or those interested in general astronomy/astrophysics information please go to our Education and Public Outreach and XMM-Newton Learning Center sites.
A Stunning New View of the Eagle Nebula,
Courtesy of XMM-Newton and HerschelImage courtesy ESA (More details here).
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