3XMM X-ray catalog
Credit: ESA/XMM-Newton/EPIC/M. Watson (University of Leicester)

Spotting The X-ray Universe

The XMM-Newton X-ray telescope was launched in December 1999 and has been obtaining deep, sensitive pictures of X-ray emitting sources in space ever since. Astronomers point XMM's three co-aligned telescopes at objects of particular interest, but XMM's 3 cameras catch other nearby serendipitous sources too. Using the powerful ALICE supercomputer, scientists at the XMM-Newton Survey Science Centre have examined every XMM image and have painstakingly catalogued each and every X-ray source detected by XMM-Newton. This catalog, called the "3XMM Catalog", contains over a half million X-ray sources, including over 370,000 unique sources. The number of sources detected in the 3XMM catalog represents a 50% increase over previous X-ray source catalogs. The image above shows the distribution of the 3XMM sources on the sky; the inset shows individual sources in one region of the survey. Go take a look - you might find something interesting.
Published: August 12, 2013

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Each week the HEASARC brings you new, exciting and beautiful images from X-ray and Gamma ray astronomy. Check back each week and be sure to check out the HEAPOW archive!
Page Author: Dr. Michael F. Corcoran
Last modified Monday, 19-Aug-2013 07:48:58 EDT