Chandra X-Ray Telescope
@stro object for the week of 12/13/1999
courtesy of CXC/TRW
X-Ray Telescope. The
Chandra X-Ray Telescope, part of NASA's "Great Telescopes"
program, was launched by the Space Shuttle (STS-93) on July 23rd,
1999 and officially had first light on August 19th, 1999. "Chandra"
is named for Nobel Laureate Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar. It is the
most powerful x-ray telescope in operation today. Capable of high
resolution it is "...designed to observe X-rays from high energy
regions of the universe, such as hot gas in the remnants of exploded
stars." It operates from a highly elliptical orbit that takes
it as much as 1/3 of the distance to the Moon and back to within
6200 miles of Earth. It is because of this unusual orbit that Chandra
is able to avoid the Earth's distorting radiation belts 85% of the
time and is capable of taking exposures at up to 55 hours at a time.
information for the Chandra X-Ray Telescope:
Observe x-rays from astronomical objects