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GSFC XMM-Newton GOF Status Report #266: XMM-NEWTON NEWS #158


             XMM-NEWTON NEWS #158    ---    12-Dec-2013


            XMM-Newton Science Operations Centre at
             ESA's European Space Astronomy Centre,
P.O. Box - Apdo. 78, 28691 Villanueva de la Canada, Madrid, Spain


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- Version 13.5.0 of the Science Analysis System (SAS) released

- Updated EPIC Timing Mode Calibrations

Version 13.5.0 of the Science Analysis System (SAS) released

An intermediate version  of SAS, v13.5.0, has been  released. The main
improvements  of   this  release  are  related  to   upgrades  in the
calibration of the EPIC cameras:

- EPIC-MOS contamination correction

Part of the temporal evolution of the soft X-ray EPIC-MOS response can
be explained as  due to an increasing layer  of a contaminant, similar
to what has  been observed with the RGS  detectors.  Modelling of this
contaminant as a pure Carbon  layer has been implemented through a new
calibration  file, EMOS[1-2]_CONTAMINATION.CCF.   The introduction of
these files  implies an  upgrade of the  redistribution, as well as a
time-independent tuning of the quantum efficiency.

- EPIC-pn Timing  mode energy scale  refinement

A new method (RDPHA) for correcting the energy scale in PN Timing Mode
is  offered  as  a   non-default  alternative  through  the parameter
'withrdpha' in 'epevents' (note  that the parameter 'runepreject' must
al so be set to 'yes' for this correction to apply). This algorithm is
expected to eventually replace  the current Rate-Dependent CTI (RDCTI)
correction. As of  SASv13.5.0, the RDCTI correction is  applied by the
matatasks  'epchain' and  'epproc' through  the  parameter 'runepfast'
('yes' by default).

A  problem leading  to the  potential  appearance of  outliers in RGS
spectra  when  applying  the   heliocentric  and/or  the  solar angle
correction to the wavelength scale  has been solved. In addition, many
other  less important  improvements  and small  bug  fixes have taken

As usually,  SAS is distributed in  binary form for  several MacOs and
Linux  flavours,  the  latter  both  in 32-bit  and  64-bit versions.
Distribution of SAS  in 32-bit binary versions for  future releases is
under evaluation and may be discontinued in one or two years time.

For more information and to download the software, please go to:


Updated EPIC Timing Mode Calibrations

Two new CCF constituents were made  public which have an impact on the
energy scale in EPIC-pn Timing Mode exposures:

EPN_REJECT_0007.CCF implements the correction for X-ray Loading (XRL),
see http://xmm2.esac.esa.int/docs/documents/CAL-TN-0050-1-1.ps.gz

EPN_CTI_0030.CCF  updates accordingly  the Rate-Dependent  CTI (RDCTI)
correction  and  implements the  new  RDPHA  method  as a non-default
alternative (see the previous item).

Users are referred to the following documents for full details:

- XRL: http://xmm2.esac.esa.int/docs/documents/CAL-SRN-0302-1-5.pdf

- RDCTI: http://xmm2.esac.esa.int/docs/documents/CAL-SRN-0304-1-1.pdf

- RDPHA: http://xmm2.esac.esa.int/docs/documents/CAL-SRN-0306-1-1.pdf

- Expected quality of the energy reconstruction:

The aforementioned changes have no  effect on exposures in Burst Mode,
or in imaging modes.

Yours sincerely,

XMM-Newton SOC

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