The NASA probe-class mission concept, CETUS (Cosmic Evolution Through Ultraviolet Spectroscopy)

Sara Heap, William Danchi, James H Burge, Kelly Dodson, Anthony Hull, Steven Kendrick, Stephan McCandliss, Gregory Mehle, Lloyd Purves, David Sheikh, Martin Valente, Robert A. Woodruff

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

5 Scopus citations


We report on the early phases of a NASA-sponsored study of CETUS (Cosmic Evolution Through Ultraviolet Spectroscopy), a Probe-class mission concept. By definition, the full lifecycle cost of a Probe mission is greater than $400M (i.e. Explorer missions) and less than $1.00B ("Flagship" missions). The animating idea behind our study is that CETUS can help answer fundamental questions about galaxy evolution by carrying out a massive UV imaging and spectroscopic survey of galaxies and combining its findings with data obtained by other survey telescopes of the 2020's. The CETUS mission concept comprises a 1.5-m wide-field telescope and three scientific instruments: A near-UV multi-object slit spectrograph with a micro-shutter array as the slit device; a near-UV and far-UV camera with angular resolution of 0.42" (near-UV) or 0.55" (far-UV); and a near-UV or far-UV single-object spectrograph aimed at providing access to the UV after Hubble is gone. We describe the scientific rationale for CETUS and the telescope and instruments in their early design phase.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationUV/Optical/IR Space Telescopes and Instruments
Subtitle of host publicationInnovative Technologies and Concepts VIII
EditorsHoward A. MacEwen, James B. Breckinridge, James B. Breckinridge
ISBN (Electronic)9781510612532
StatePublished - 2017
EventUV/Optical/IR Space Telescopes and Instruments: Innovative Technologies and Concepts VIII 2017 - San Diego, United States
Duration: Aug 6 2017Aug 7 2017

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
ISSN (Print)0277-786X
ISSN (Electronic)1996-756X


OtherUV/Optical/IR Space Telescopes and Instruments: Innovative Technologies and Concepts VIII 2017
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego


  • Multi-object spectrograph
  • Probe-class mission
  • UV camera
  • Ultraviolet
  • Wide-field telescope

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'The NASA probe-class mission concept, CETUS (Cosmic Evolution Through Ultraviolet Spectroscopy)'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this