AAS 197, January 2001
Session 14. New Space Missions and Instrumentation
Display, Monday, January 8, 2001, 9:30am-7:00pm, Exhibit Hall

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[14.13] The SPEAR Mission of Opportunity: Spectroscopy of Plasma Evolution from Astrophysical Radiation

J. Edelstein, E. Korpela, W.V Dixon (University of California), Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology Collaboration, Korea Astronomy Observatory Collaboration

SPEAR, an instrument to trace the balance and flow of energy in the interstellar medium (ISM) of our Galaxy, will be the primary payload on the KAISTSAT-4 mission (2002 launch) and has been selected by NASA for a Mission of Opportunity Study. The mission will test multi-phase models of the ISM and be used to examine hot gas interaction in superbubbles, to understand shock interactions between supernovae and the ISM, and to understand plasma phenomena found in galactic fountains and halos, active galaxies, galactic clusters, and possibly the intergalactic medium. SPEAR will trace diffuse, hot (T = 104.5 106 K) gas by measuring its emission at FUV wavelengths, resolving the primary lines of both thermal and photoionized plasmas over a broad, simultaneous bandpass. Spectral imaging at arcminute scales over the entire sky will allow for statistical comparisons with global tracers of the multi-phase ISM, and pointings will allow detailed studies of individual targets.


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