FOXSI's X-ray Optics and Detectors Put the Sun in Focus

Monday, January 6, 2020 - 10:40 in Astronomy & Space

This blog post originated in the 2018 Science Mission Directorate Science and Technology Report. PROJECT Focusing Optics X-ray Solar Imager (FOXSI) sounding rocket KEY POINTS This third flight of the FOXSI experiment featured direct-focusing X-ray optics, 3D-printed collimating devices for limiting background, and high-resolution X-ray detectors. This technology will enable high-fidelity X-ray imaging in astronomy and other fields. The FOXSI X-ray mirror (left) and an X-ray image of the Sun captured by the Photon Energy Imager in soft X-rays (PhoEnIX), one of FOXSI-3’s new cameras (right). X-rays from the Sun help us probe the highest-energy phenomena that occur in our solar system, including solar storms and their origins. The Sun presents some unique challenges to researchers attempting to unravel its high-energy behavior. To deal with these challenges, a sounding rocket experiment team has developed an array of new technologies that can reveal how the Sun emits high-energy radiation, plasma, and particles. The Sun gives off abundant X-rays from...

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