AAS Meeting #193 - Austin, Texas, January 1999
Session 35. The Next Generation Space Telescope
Display, Thursday, January 7, 1999, 9:20am-6:30pm, Exhibits Hall 1

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[35.03] Science Data Processing with the Next Generation Space Telescope

J.D. Offenberg, D.J. Fixsen (Raytheon STX), M.A. Nieto-Santisteban (STScI), R. Sengupta (Raytheon STX), S. Stallcup, H.S. Stockman, R. J. Hanisch (STScI), J.C. Mather (NASA/GSFC/LASP)

The Next Generation Space Telescope (NGST), as currently planned, will face a significant source of data loss: cosmic ray events on the detector will cause a loss of up to 10 each observation's data. It is possible to compensate by reading the detector multiple times and then filtering out the cosmic rays, but the data volume thus generated will exceed the downlink capacity by approximately two orders of magnitude. We present one solution to this problem: perform cosmic ray rejection combined with data compression on-board the NGST spacecraft prior to downlink. The cosmic ray rejection algorithm identifies suspected cosmic rays as significantly greater-than-expected increases in pixel intensity as a function of time. An integrated image without cosmic rays is produced and subsequently compressed. We present algorithms and their results on simulated NGST data as well as on data from the HST NICMOS instrument

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