Here's everything you need to know about NASA's upcoming IXPE mission
Cassiopeia A (Cas A), one of the most intensely studied supernova remnants (exploded stars and their remains), is one object that NASA's IXPE mission will study.
- United States
NASA's Imaging X-ray Polarimetry Explorer (IXPE) is the first satellite mission dedicated to measuring the polarization of X-rays from a variety of cosmic sources such as black holes and neutron stars.
The U.S. space agency selected IXPE as a Small Explorer mission in 2017. The mission is a collaboration between NASA and the Italian Space Agency (ASI), led by principal investigator Martin Weisskopf at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama.
IXPE is scheduled to lift off on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida no earlier than December 9, 2021. According to NASA, IXPE will fly three identical space telescopes with cameras capable of measuring the polarization of these cosmic X-rays, allowing scientists to answer fundamental questions about these turbulent and extreme environments where gravitational, electric, and magnetic fields are at their limits.
The X-ray astronomy mission will allow astronomers to discover, for the first time, the hidden details of some of the most exotic astronomical objects in our universe. Cassiopeia A (Cas A), one of the most intensely studied supernova remnants (exploded stars and their remains), is one object that NASA's IXPE mission will study. Cas A is the remnant of a massive star that exploded about 300 years ago.
NASA announced on Friday that the media accreditation is now open for the upcoming launch of the IXPE astrophysics mission. Credentialing deadlines are as follows:
- For International media residing in the U.S. - Friday, Nov 5, 2021
- For U.S. media - Monday, Nov 15, 2021.
Media accreditation is now open for the launch of IXPE, scheduled to lift off from @NASAKennedy no earlier than Dec. 9. Learn about our orbiting observatory, which will track polarized X-rays to study black holes and the remnants of stellar explosions: https://t.co/nzZFmhYeKf pic.twitter.com/663ocdxI3T— NASA (@NASA) October 22, 2021
(To be updated)