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GSFC XMM-Newton GOF Status Report #325: XMM-NEWTON NEWS #200


             XMM-NEWTON NEWS #200    ---    02-Aug-2017


            XMM-Newton Science Operations Centre at
             ESA's European Space Astronomy Centre,
            Villanueva de la Canada,  Madrid, Spain


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- XMM-Newton Users Handbook update for AO-17

- Version 16.1 of the Science Analysis System (SAS) released

- XSAv9.6 release including pipeline products for Solar System
  targets generated in their rest frame

- Documentation updated:
  RGS Calibration Status and XMM-Newton Background documents

- XMM-Newton Users Group:
  Minutes of meeting and presentations available

- Optical Monitor Event on Revolution 3224

- The X-ray Universe 2017:
  Presentations and posters on-line

XMM-Newton Users Handbook update for AO-17

The XMM-Newton Users Handbook (UHB)  has been updated to version 2.15 in
preparation for the next  Announcement of Opportunity (AO-17) which will
open next 22nd of August.

The UHB contains information  on the instrumentation on board XMM-Newton
and  serves  as  the   main  technical  support  document  for  proposal
preparation, based  on which potential  XMM-Newton users can  assess the
technical feasibility of their planned observations.

The XMM-Newton Users Handbook is on-line at


Alternatively, pdf and postscript versions  of the UHB can be downloaded
from the "XMM-Newton Proposer's Info and Manuals" portal:


Version 16.1 of the Science Analysis System (SAS) released

The XMM-Newton  SAS team announces the  release of a  new sub-version of
the SAS: SAS  v16.1.  This version is necessary  for correcting some SAS
v16.0 issues related to source detection that are detailed below.

- eboxdetect:  correction of a  bug introduced  with SASv16.0  that made
  some obvious sources  to be missing in the EPIC source  lists of a few

- emldetect:  reduction  of  the  number  of  spurious  detections,  and
  solution to the problem of missing valid detections close to chip gaps
  or very far off-axis.

- especget: improvement of the performance for large background regions.

- eimageget: solved a problem with tangential plane projections in large

- eimagecombine:  significant  reduction  of  the usage  of  disk  space
  through compression of intermediate files.

This version of SAS is released  in two 64-bit binary versions for Linux
(RHEL  6.8  and Ubuntu  16),  and  two for  Mac  OS  X  (El Capitan  and
Sierra).  The versions  released have  been tested  to run  correctly on
several other platforms.

Binaries are available at


The Pipeline  Processing System (PPS) has  been migrated to  be based on
SAS v16.1, see


Pipeline  products that  were generated  with the  previous  PPS version
(based  on SAS  v16.0) have  been reprocessed,  ingested in  the science
archive and Principal Investigators notified.

XSAv9.6 release including
Pipeline products for Solar System targets generated in their rest frame

A new version of the XMM-Newton Science Archive, XSAv9.6, is available at


This release includes, among other improvements, the postcards generated
for Finding Charts and Spectra of EPIC PPS sources.

XSA now provides  an option  to download PPS products of moving targets,
i.e. Solar System objects, generated in their rest frame coordinates, in
parallel  to  the  standard  PPS products  of  these observations.  Such
products are being generated for the most recently observed Solar System
objects,  and will be generated subsequently  for older observations  of
moving targets.

Documentation updated:
RGS Calibration Status and XMM-Newton Background documents

New versions of the following documents have been released:

- RGS Calibration Status

available from the XMM-Newton Calibration Portal:


- The Behaviour of the XMM-Newton Background

available from the XMM-Newton Background Analysis page:


XMM-Newton Users Group:
Minutes of meeting and presentations available

The  XMM-Newton Users Group  met on  the 11th  and 12th  of May  2017 at
ESAC. The minutes  of the meeting, together with  the presentations, can
be found at


Optical Monitor Event on Revolution 3224

On July 16 and 17,  during a Jupiter observation,  two OM exposures were
performed with the V filter instead of the Blocked filter.  This was due
to an operational error during  the  observation  preparation.  The main
consequence is  some  damage  on  the  detector area  exposed to Jupiter
light.  First evaluation shows a  15-20 % sensitivity depletion patch of
approx  76 x 38 arcsec2,  centred  40 arcsec  offset  from  the  nominal
boresight direction in the -Yaxis direction. The impact on point sources
on-axis is considered negligible at the time of writing this note.

Scientific   observations   are  continuing  normally  with  XMM-Newton,
including  OM.  The evolution of the OM patch is being monitored and  an
update  on the  photometry  calibration  for  targets  in  the patch and
potential impact for targets on-axis is also under work.

The X-ray Universe 2017:
Presentations and posters on-line

The contributions  to the symposium  'The X-ray Universe 2017',  held in
Rome from 6th  to 9th of June 2017, are available  at the conference web


Yours sincerely,

XMM-Newton SOC

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