X-ray optics for WHIMex, the warm hot intergalactic medium explorer

W. Cash, R. McEntaffer, W. Zhang, S. Casement, C. Lillie, M. Schattenburg, M. Bautz, A. Holland, H. Tsunemi, S. O'Dell

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

The x-ray astronomy community has never flown a celestial source spectrograph that can resolve natural line widths in absorption the way the ultraviolet community did with OAO-3 Copernicus back in 1972. Yet there is important science to be mined there, and right now, the large flagship missions like the International X-ray Observatory are not progressing toward launch. WHIMEx is an Explorer concept proposed earlier this year to open up that science regime in the next few years. The concept features a modified off-plane grating spectrograph design that will support high resolution (λ/δλ ∼ 4000) in the soft x-ray band with a high packing density that will enable a modest cost space mission. We discuss the design and capabilities for the WHIMEx mission. Its prime science goal is detecting high temperature oxygen in the Intergalactic Medium, but it has a broad range of science potential cutting across all of x-ray astronomy and should give us a new window on the Universe.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationOptics for EUV, X-Ray, and Gamma-Ray Astronomy V
DOIs
StatePublished - 2011
EventOptics for EUV, X-Ray, and Gamma-Ray Astronomy V - San Diego, CA, United States
Duration: Aug 23 2011Aug 25 2011

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
Volume8147
ISSN (Print)0277-786X

Other

OtherOptics for EUV, X-Ray, and Gamma-Ray Astronomy V
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego, CA
Period8/23/118/25/11

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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