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Session 117 - Instrumentation and Techniques.
Oral session, Thursday, January 18
Salon del Rey North, Hilton
HUBE, proposed to NASA as a Medium-class Explorer, if selected will open an important new field of astrophysical research: doing for diffuse UV radiation what IRAS and COBE have already done for the diffuse infrared. Although optimized for the study of the diffuse UV background (that's the B in HUBE), HUBE, as the first sensitive survey instrument in the UV, will discover vast numbers of point sources. In particular, HUBE will discover all of the quasars exploitable spectroscopically by HST and FUSE.
While HUBE will break new ground scientifically, in all other respects it is extremely conservative. There is no detector development involved; the HUBE detectors are simple adaptations of currently-flying (EUVE) detectors, and these detectors are of a kind with which the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory has substantial direct experience.
HUBE will perform an all-sky survey of the cosmic diffuse ultraviolet background radiation and ultraviolet point sources in the wavelength ranges 850-1200 Å\ and 1230-2000 ÅBoth imaging and spectroscopy will be employed to produce a wealth of significant new information on the following important astrophysical problems: the nature of the hot component of the interstellar medium (ISM) and the galactic halo; the distribution of molecular hydrogen in the ISM; the distribution of interstellar dust and the scattering properties of the interstellar grains; the integrated light of galaxies (for study of star formation and galaxy evolution); the possibility of radiation from an ionized intergalactic medium, or (more speculatively) from the decay of neutrinos or more exotic particles of non-zero rest mass; the location and ultraviolet brightness of faint stars, galaxies, and quasars; and spectra of faint point sources, 912-1800 ÅP>
Program listing for Thursday