Wolk, Scott J. High Energy Astrophysics Division, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Last reviewed:June 2020
- Image formation
- Grazing-incidence telescope
- Multilayer telescope
- Image detection
- Microchannel plates
- Charge-coupled devices
- X-ray microcalorimeter
- Related Primary Literature
- Additional Reading
An instrument designed to collect and detect x-rays emitted from a source outside the Earth's atmosphere and to resolve the x-rays into an image. Absorption by the atmosphere requires that x-ray telescopes be carried to high altitudes. Balloons are used for detection systems designed for higher-energy (hard) x-ray observations, whereas rockets and satellites are required for softer x-ray detectors. X-rays lay in the electromagnetic spectrum, between ultraviolet light and gamma-rays (γ-rays) This corresponds to a range from 20 nanometers (2 × 10−8 m) down to 10 picometers (10−11 m), or about 60 eV to 125 keV, with low energy considered "soft" and high energy considered “hard.” See also: Electromagnetic radiation; X-ray astronomy; X-rays
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