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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[81.06] Technology and Capibilities of the Herschel Space Observatory's Heterodyne Instrument for Far Infrared (HIFI)

J.C. Pearson (Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology), T.G. Phillips (California Institute of Technology)

The Heterodyne Instrument for Far Infrared (HIFI) on ESAís Herschel Space Observatory is comprised of five SIS receiver channels covering 480-1250 GHz and two HEB receiver channels covering 1410-1910 GHz. Two fixed tuned local oscillator sub-bands are derived from a common synthesizer to provide the front-end frequency coverage for each channel. The local oscillator unit will be passively cooled while the focal plane unit is cooled by superfluid helium and cold helium vapors. The HIFI receivers employ W-band GaAs amplifiers, InP HEMT low noise IF amplifiers, fixed tuned broadband planar diode multipliers, and novel material systems in the SIS and HEB mixers. The HIFI instrument is built by an international consortium lead by Space Research Organization the Netherlands with a substantial contribution by the National Aeronautics and Space Administrationís Jet Propulsion Laboratory. HIFI combines the new receiver technology and a variety of potential observing modes into an extremely power system with unprecedented sensitivity and capability. HIFI will be available for all to use through the Herschel open time proposal process. An overview of the HIFI technology, receiver configuration, functionality and observing capabilities will be presented.


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