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Astro*Dictionary by Michael Erlewine

 

 

 

 

1 article for "Ultraviolet Astronomy"

Ultraviolet Astronomy [Astro*Index]

A largely unexplored field of Astronomy. Both the Earth's atmosphere and interstellar hydrogen absorb most ultraviolet frequencies (3400-500 Angstrom).

Consequently, most ultraviolet astronomy has been performed using instruments carried on orbiting satellites. The OAO-2 satellite (launched in 1968) made a partial sky survey; the TD-1 satellite (1972) surveyed the entire sky, and has led to a catalogue of more than 30,000 ultraviolet sources. The OAO-3 satellite (1972, renamed Copernicus) provided data in the 90-300nm wavelength over a period of 8 years. The ANS (Astronomical Netherlands Satellite, 1974) covered the 155-320nm range. The IUE (International Ultraviolet Explorer (1978) was launched into a mid-Atlantic geosynchronous orbit, and is operated by astronomers in two ground-based observatories (USA and Spain); it covers the waveband 115-320nm with a resolution of 0.01nm; this increased sensitivity has allowed observations of objects as faint as the 17th magnitude.

See also: ♦ Electromagnetic Spectrum ♦ Wavelength

 

Astro*Index Copyright © 1997 Michael Erlewine