html BurstCube


Artist concept of BurstCube in orbit

The BurstCube mission is a Cubesat mission to detect gamma-ray burst events to send rapid alerts and provide initial detection for events, with a special focus on short (<2 s) gamma-ray burst targets and coincident observations with gravitational wave sources. It is proposed to have a six month mission span, but with options to extend operations based on initial success. It is not, however, intended to be a long duration mission, but rather a pathfinder for rapid deployment of low-cost science results.

Mission Characteristics

* Lifetime : Late 2021–2022 (anticipated)
* Energy Range : 50 keV–1 MeV
* Special Features : rapid detection and source localization of gamma-ray burst sources.
* Payload :
  • a set of four Single Quarter Detectors (SQDs) which contain a cylindrical Thallium doped Cesium Iodide (CsI(Tl)) crystals, 6 cm in diameter and 1.9 cm thick, with readouts from an array of 116 low-power low-voltage Silicon photomultipliers. This provides coarse location ability: roughly 90% of short burst sources should be locatable to a 30° radius.

Supporting electronics and communications equipment would provide rapid alerts upon event detection.

* Science Goals:
  • rapid approximate location of gamma-ray burst sources
  • detection of binary neutron star mergers, characterized by short gamma-ray bursts and gravitational wave detection with instruments such as the existing LIGO and future LISA spacecraft programs
* Archive: The HEASARC will host BurstCube products and catalogs.

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Last modified: Thursday, 24-Sep-2020 17:21:49 EDT