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12 October 2004 On-orbit performance of the Spitzer Space Telescope
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The Spitzer Space Telescope (formally known as SIRTF) was successfully launched on August 25, 2003, and has completed its initial in-orbit checkout and science validation and calibration period. The measured performance of the observatory has met or exceeded all of its high-level requirements, it entered normal operations in January 2004, and is returning high-quality science data. A superfluid-helium cooled 85 cm diameter telescope provides extremely low infrared backgrounds and feeds three science instruments covering wavelengths ranging from 3.6 to 160 microns. The telescope optical quality is excellent, providing diffraction-limited performance down to wavelengths below 6.5 microns. Based on the first helium mass and boil-off rate measurements, a cryogenic lifetime in excess of 5 years is expected. This presentation will provide a summary of the overall performance of the observatory, with an emphasis on those performance parameters that have the greatest impact on its ultimate science return.
© (2004) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Thomas L. Roellig, Michael W. Werner, David B. Gallagher, William R. Irace, Giovanni G. Fazio, James R. Houck, George H. Rieke, Robert K. Wilson, and Thomas Soifer "On-orbit performance of the Spitzer Space Telescope", Proc. SPIE 5487, Optical, Infrared, and Millimeter Space Telescopes, (12 October 2004);


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