The space infrared telescope facility (SIRTF)

James Fanson, Giovanni Fazio, James Houck, Tim Kelly, George Rieke, Domenick Tenerelli, Milt Whitten

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


This paper describes the design of the Space Infrared Telescope Facility (SIRTF) as the project enters the detailed design phase. SIRTF is the fourth of NASA's Great Observatories, and is scheduled for launch in December 2001. SIRTF provides background limited imaging and spectroscopy covering the spectral range from 3 to 180 jim, complementing the capabilities of the other Great Observatories -the Hubble Space Telescope (lIST), the Advanced X-ray Astrophysics Facility (AXAF), and the Compton Gamma Ray Observatory (CGRO). SIRTF will be the first mission to combine the high sensitivity achievable from a cryogenic space telescope with the imaging and spectroscopic power of the new generation of infrared detector arrays. The scientific capabilities of this combination are so great that SIRTF was designated the highest priority major mission for all of US astronomy in the 1990s.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)478-491
Number of pages14
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - 1998
EventSpace Telescopes and Instruments V - Kona, HI, United States
Duration: Mar 20 1998Mar 20 1998


  • Astronomy
  • Astrophysics
  • Cryogenic
  • Great Observatory
  • Infrared
  • Telescope

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


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