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Elena Aprile, Karl-Ludwig Giboni, Tomotake Kozu, Uwe Oberlack (Columbia Astrophysics Laboratory, Columbia University), Sandro Ventura (University of Padua, Italy), Tadayoshi Doke, Jun Kikuchi (Waseda University, Japan), Edward L. Chupp, Philip P. Dunphy (University of New Hampshire)
The feasibility of a large volume liquid xenon Compton telescope based on full event imaging in a time projection chamber (TPC) has been demonstrated with the development of the 10l prototype experiment LXeGRIT. The instrument with its 400 cm2 sensitive area and 7~cm drift gap images \gamma-rays in the energy range from about 300~keV to 10~MeV. The TPC provides unique background reduction capabilities due to the precise 3 dimensional localisation of interactions and, together with the great efficiency of the homogeneous detector, addresses the primary instrumental limitations encountered in this energy band. We report on progress in the upgrade of LXeGRIT following its initial engineering test at balloon altitude in the Summer of 1997. A new trigger and data acquisition system has been developed and integrated with the existing detector read-out elecronics. Together with an improved gondola, enhanced data transfer capability, and on-board data storage, the instrument is being prepared for its forthcoming turn-around flight in Fort Sumner, NM, in May 1999. Results from the analysis of calibration data obtained with laboratory sources are presented.
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