AAS 204th Meeting, June 2004
Session 81 Herschel FIR/Sub-mm Astronomy Mission
Special Session Related Poster, Thursday, June 3, 2004, 9:20am-4:00pm, Ballroom

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[81.01] Herschel Space Observatory

G.L. Pilbratt, T. Prusti, A.M. Heras, S. Leeks, A.P. Marston, R. Vavrek (Herschel Science Centre, European Space Agency)

The Herschel Space Observatory (formerly known as FIRST) is the fourth cornerstone mission in the European Space Agency (ESA)science programme. It will perform imaging photometry and spectroscopy in the far infrared and submillimetre part of the spectrum, covering approximately the 55-650 micron range.

Herschel will carry a 3.5 metre diameter passively cooled telescope. The science payload complement - two cameras/medium resolution spectrometers (PACS and SPIRE) and a very high resolution heterodyne spectrometer (HIFI) - will be housed in a superfluid helium cryostat. The ground segment will be jointly developed by the ESA, the three instrument teams, and NASA/IPAC.

The key science objectives emphasize current questions connected to the formation and evolution of galaxies and stars, however, having unique observing capabilities, Herschel will be a facility available to the entire astronomical community. Roughly two thirds of the observing time will be made available to the community through calls for proposals.

An overview of the Herschel spacecraft, instruments, scientific objectives and capabilities from the perspective of the prospective user of this major facility will be given. We also present the cradle to grave data flow from proposals to data products for the users of the Herschel.

If you would like more information about this abstract, please follow the link to http://astro.esa.int/herschel. This link was provided by the author. When you follow it, you will leave the Web site for this meeting; to return, you should use the Back comand on your browser.

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