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The High Energy X-ray Timing Experiment (HEXTE)

Mission: Rossi X-Ray Timing Explorer (RXTE).

The HEXTE consisted of two clusters each containing four `phoswich scintillation detectors. Each cluster could ``rock'' (beamswitch) along mutually orthogonal directions to provide background measurements 1.5 or 3.0 degrees away from the source every 16 to 128 s. Automatic gain control was provided by using a 241Am radioactive source mounted in each detector's field of view. The HEXTE's basic properties are:

  • Energy range: 15 - 250 keV
  • Energy resolution: 15% at 60 keV
  • Time sampling: 8 microsecond
  • Field of view: 1 degree FWHM
  • Detectors: 2 clusters of 4 NaI/CsI scintillation counters
  • Collecting area: 2 times 800 cm^2
  • Sensitivity: 1 Crab = 360 count/s per HEXTE cluster
  • Background: 50 count/s per HEXTE cluster
Events detected by HEXTE were processed on board by its own data system before insertion into the telemetry stream at an average data rate of 5 kbit/s. Data products included event mode, binned spectra and light curves, and a burst-triggered event buffer.

The HEXTE was designed and built by the Center for Astrophysics & Space Sciences (CASS) at the University of California, San Diego. For more information on the in-flight performance of HEXTE, see the article by Rothschild et al. (1998, ApJ, 496, 538 and the CASS HEXTE website.

The HEXTE principal investigator is Dr. Richard E. Rothschild.

If you have a question about RXTE, please send email to one of our help desks.

This page is maintained by the RXTE GOF and was last modified on Wednesday, 24-Aug-2022 11:10:28 EDT.