- Awareness in space.
What to study?
For prelims and mains: the telescope- features, objectives and significance.
Context: A joint team of German-Russian scientists is all set to launch next week a space telescope- Spectrum-Roentgen-Gamma (SRG).
About the telescope:
It will create a three-dimensional (3D) X-ray map of the universe and unveil unknown supermassive black holes, dark energy and stars.
The telescope will be launched into space on a Russian-built Proton-M rocket from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on June 21, 2019.
The four-year mission will survey the entire sky eight times and track the evolution of the universe and dark energy — a mysterious repulsive force — that is accelerating its expansion.
It also aims to detect up to three million supermassive black holes — many of which are unknown — and X-rays from as many as 700,000 stars in the Milky Way.
The telescope is the first to be sensitive to high-energy ‘hard’ X-rays and map the entire sky.
The SRG will also find how dark matter — the main engine of galaxy formation — is spread in the universe.
The SRG will, however, not detect gamma radiation.
X-ray sky surveys have also been conducted by previous missions, but they were not able to map the entire sky.
While Germany’s ROSAT mission in the 1990s was sensitive only to ‘soft’ X-rays, with energies of about 2 keV, existing missions, such as NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory and NuSTAR, can see high-energy radiation and resolve tiny details of cosmic structures. But, they see only small parts of the sky.
Sources: down to earth.