SOFIA Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy

R. D. Gehrz Lead, SOFIA Community Task Force (SCTF) Department of Astronomy, University of Minnesota
Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

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R. D. Gehrz

Outline
• SOFIA Science • Description of the Observatory and Project Status • Schedule • Summary

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

Science

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

Key Science Topics Related to Origins
• • • • How stars form in our galaxy and other nearby galaxies Chemistry, Mineralogy, and Biology Solar System studies Targets of Opportunity, for example: – Bright Comets – Eruptive variable stars – Galactic and LMC/SMC classical novae – Supernova in our galaxy or other nearby galaxies – Eclipses and Occultations in the Solar System

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

SOFIA and the Chemical Evolution of the Universe

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

The Advantages of SOFIA
• • Above 99% of the water vapor Transmission at 14 km >80% from 1 to 800 µm; emphasis on the obscured IR regions Instrumentation: wide variety, rapidly interchangeable, state-of-the art Mobility: anywhere, anytime Twenty year design lifetime A near-space observatory that comes home after every flight
Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

• • •

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R. D. Gehrz

Unique Science Capabilities
• 8 arcmin diameter FOV allows use of very large detector arrays • Image size is diffraction limited beyond 15 µm, making images 3 times sharper than Spitzer Space Telescope • Because of large aperture and better detectors, sensitivity for imaging and spectroscopy will be similar to the space observatory ISO • Ability to adapt to new technologies • Ability to track temporal events
Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007
R. D. Gehrz

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Expectations for Improvements in Detectors

Due to increases sensitivity and the number of pixels in large format IR detectors, the speed of measurement has doubled every year for the last 40 years
Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007
R. D. Gehrz

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Astrochemistry
SOFIA is a good observatory for studying chemistry in space • • • Most ground state molecular lines in IR or submillimeter Need high spectral resolution throughout which SOFIA has. As sensitive as CSO, but much larger wavelength range is accessible Light molecules: Molecular hydrogen, HD, water, other hydrides in IR and submillimeter The fullerene, C60, has 4 IR lines in SOFIA’s bands
CSO FTS Spectrum of ORION OMC1

Serabyn and Weisstein 1995

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

Occultation astronomy with SOFIA
SOFIA will determine the properties of Dwarf Planets in and beyond the Kuiper Belt
Pluto occultation lightcurve observed on the KAO (1988) probes the atmosphere

• SOFIA can fly anywhere on the Earth, allowing it to position itself under the shadow of an occulting object. • Occultation studies with SOFIA will probe the sizes, atmospheres, and possible satellites of newly discovered planet-like objects in the outer Solar system. • The unique mobility of SOFIA opens up some hundred events per year for study compared to a handful for fixed observatories.
Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007
R. D. Gehrz

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Extrasolar Planet Transits
SOFIA will determine the properties of new extrasolar planets by use of transits with HIPO and FLITECAM working together
Artist concept of planetary transit and the lightcurve of HD 209458b measured by HST revealing the transit signature

Today over 200 extrasolar planets are known, and over 15 transit their primary star: • SOFIA will fly above the scintillating component of the atmosphere and will provide the most sensitive freely pointing observatory for extrasolar planetary transits after HST and before JWST. • SOFIA has instruments that can observe with high signal-to-noise the small variations in stellar flux due to a planet transit and
 Provide good estimates for the mass, size and density of the planet  May reveal the presence of, satellites, and/or planetary rings
Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007
R. D. Gehrz

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Clues to the evolution of galaxies: starbursts triggered by collisions and star formation in low-metallicity environments

NASA/JPL-Caltech/Z. Wang

NASA/JPL-Caltech/V. Gorjian

Antennae Galaxies IRAC @ 8 µ m (red; 160s, 4’ x 4’) HAWC Beam Sizes

Henize 206­ LMC high mass star formation MIPS @ 24 mm (80s, 20’ x 20’) HAWC Fields of view (Current 12x32 array at  53, 89, 155, 216 µ m; Circle is total optical  FOV)
R. D. Gehrz

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

Cold Molecular Hydrogen using HD
SOFIA will study deuterium in the galaxy using the ground state HD line at 112 microns. This will allow determination the cold molecular hydrogen abundance.
Atmospheric transmission around the HD line at 40,000 feet

• Deuterium in the universe is created in the Big Bang. • Measuring the amount of cold HD (T<50K) can best be done with the ground state rotational line at 112 microns. • A GREAT high resolution spectrometer study is possible given ISO detection • HD traces the cold molecular hydrogen (Bergen and Hollenbach). • HD has a much lower excitation temperature and a dipole pole moment that almost compensates for the higher abundance of molecular hydrogen. • In the future, this technique could be used much like the HI 21cm maps but for cold molecular gas.
Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007
R. D. Gehrz

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Classical Nova Explosions

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

Spitzer Spectra of Nova V382 Vel
R. D. Gehrz, et al. 2005, ApJ, in preparation [PID 124]

HI [Ne II] [Ne V] [Ne III] [Ne V] [O IV] [Ne III]

IRS Short-High

IRS Long-High

IRS Short and Long-High Spectra: Abundances and Kinematics
Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007
R. D. Gehrz

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SOFIA’s Instrument Complement
• As an airborne mission, SOFIA supports a unique, expandable instrument suite • SOFIA covers the full IR range with imagers and low, moderate, and high resolution spectrographs • 4 instruments at IOC; 9 instruments at FOC • SOFIA can take full advantage of improvements in instrument technology • Both Facility and PI Instruments

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

SOFIA: Science For the Whole Community
10 8 10 7 Planetary Atmospheres Chemistry of the cold ISM 10 6 Comet Molecules 10 5 Spectral resolution Dynamics of collapsing protostars Dynamics of the Galactic Center

Velocity structure and gas composition in disks and outflows of YSOs Composition/dynamics/physics of the ISM in external galaxies

10 4 PAH & organic molecules 10 3

Nuclear synthesis in supernovae in nearby galaxies Composition of interstellar grains Debris Disk Structure

10 2 KBOs, Planet Transits

10 1

Luminosity and Morphology of Star Formation Galactic and Extra-Galactic Regions

10 0

1

10 Wavelength [µm]

100

1000

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

10 10 10 Spectral resolution 10 10 10 10 10 10

SOFIA Performance: Spectral Resolution of the First Generation Science Instruments 8
7

6

GREAT CASIMIR EXES

5

4

3

FLITECAM FORCAST

FIFI LS

SAFIRE

2

1

HIPO
IRAC

FORCAST SPITZER IRS

MIPS HAWC

0

1

10 Wavelength [µm]

100

1000
R. D. Gehrz

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

Infrared Space Observatories
1000 0.3

Herschel

SAFIR

?
equency (THz)
3 30 2025
R. D. Gehrz

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SOFIA
JWST

SPITZER

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Wavelength (µm
10 1
Ground-based Observatories

2005

2010

2015

2020

SOFIA provides temporal continuity and wide spectral coverage, complementing other infrared observatories.
Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

Overview

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

SOFIA Overview
• 2.5 m (98 inch) telescope in a modified Boeing 747SP aircraft
– Optical to millimeter-wavelengths – Emphasis on the obscured IR (30-300 µ m)

• Operating altitude
– 39,000 to 45,000 feet (12 to 14 km) – Above > 99% of obscuring water vapor

• Joint Program between the US (80%) and Germany (20%) • First Light Science 2009
– – – – – 20 year design lifetime Science Ops at NASA-Ames and Flight Ops at NASA-Dryden Deployments to the Southern Hemisphere and elsewhere >120 8-10 hour flights per year Built on NASA Lear/Kuiper Airborne Observatory Heritage
Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007
R. D. Gehrz

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

Nasmyth: Optical Layout
Pressure bulkhead Spherical Hydraulic Bearing Nasmyth tube
Focal Plane M3-1 M3-2 M2

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Primary Mirror M1 Focal Plane Astronomy Imager and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

The Un-Aluminized Primary Mirror Installed

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

Four First Light Instruments
Working/complete HIPO instrument in Waco on SOFIA during Aug 2004 Working/complete FLITECAM instrument at Lick in 2004/5

Working FORCAST instrument at Palomar in 2005

Successful lab demonstration of GREAT in July 2005

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

Status

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

SOFIA Airborne!

26 April 2007, L-3 Communications, Waco Texas: SOFIA takes to the air for its first test flight after completion of modifications
Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007
R. D. Gehrz

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Early Science with SOFIA
• The aircraft has flown in April 2007 and is now at NASA Dryden FRC for flight certification tests • Early Science is expected to occur in 2009 • Two instruments have been selected for Early Science - FORCAST: a US 5-40 μm imager - GREAT: a German heterodyne 60 to 200 μm Spectrometer - Both have been tested in the lab or on a telescope
Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007
R. D. Gehrz

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Summary

-Program making progress!

-Aircraft structural modifications complete -Telescope installed, several instruments tested on ground observatories -Completed first flight and ferry flight to NASA Dryden -Full envelope flight testing (closed door) has started. -Several subsystems will be installed spring/summer 08 (Door motor drive, coated primary mirror) -First science in ’09 - SOFIA will be one of the primary
facilities for far-IR and sub-millimeter astronomy for many years
Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007
R. D. Gehrz

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Schedule

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

SOFIA Schedule (Major Milestones)
• First Re-Flight • Door Drive Delivered • Open Door Flights at DFRC • First Science • Next Instrument call Occurred April ’07 Winter ’07 Fall ’08 ‘09 ‘10

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

US General Observer Opportunities
• • • First call for science proposals in ’09 Future calls every 12 months First General Observers 2010
• Expect ~ 20 General Observer science flights • Shared risk with Instrument PI’s

• Open Observatory with Facility Instruments

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

Next Call For New Instruments
• The next call for instruments will be at first Science ~FY10 • There will be additional calls every 3 years • There will be one new instrument or upgrade per year • Approximate funding for new instruments $8 M/yr

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

Summary
• SOFIA has unique spectral and temporal coverage – Unique high-resolution spectroscopy: 28 < l < 150 μm – (l/10 μm) arc-sec image quality, unique for 30 < l < ~60 μm – Unique ability to obtain coverage of transient events – Unique long operating lifetime SOFIA will increase its unique complement of capabilities in the future and will be a test-bed of technologies for future Far-IR missions – State-of-the-art large format IR detector arrays – Polarimeteric imaging and spectroscopy SOFIA is a hands-on Far-IR observatory – Will train future mission scientists and instrumentalists SOFIA is on track for first science in 2009
Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007
R. D. Gehrz

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Appendix

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

The Initial SOFIA Instrument Complement
• HIPO: High-speed Imaging Photometer for Occultation • FLITECAM: First Light Infrared Test Experiment CAMera • FORCAST: Faint Object InfraRed CAmera for the SOFIA Telescope • GREAT: German Receiver for Astronomy at Terahetz Frequencies • CASIMIR: CAltech Submillimeter Interstellar Medium Investigations Receiver • FIFI-LS: Field Imaging Far-Infrared Line Spectrometer • HAWC: High-resolution Airborne Wideband Camera •EXES: Echelon-Cross -Echelle Spectrograph •SAFIRE: Submillimeter And Far InfraRed Experiment
Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007
R. D. Gehrz

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SOFIA’s 9 First Generation Instruments
Instrument * HIPO % FLITECAM% FORCAST GREAT ¤ Type fast imager imager/grism imager/(grism?) heterodyne receiver heterodyne receiver imaging grating spectrograph imager imaging echelle spectrograph F-P imaging spectrometer 0.3 - 1.1 1.0 - 5.5 5.6 - 38 158 - 187, 110 - 125, 62 - 65 250 -264, 508 -588 42 - 110, 110 - 210 40 - 300 5 - 28.5 4.5-28.3 150 - 650 Resolution filters filters/R~2E3 filters/(R~2E3) R ~ 1E4 - 1E8 PI E. Dunham I. McLean T. Herter R. Gsten Institution Lowell Obs. UCLA Cornell U. MPIfR

CASIMIR FIFI LS HAWC EXES SAFIRE

¤ ¤ ¤

R ~ 1E4 -1E8 R ~1E3 - 2E3 filters R ~ 3E3 - 1E5 R ~ 1E3 - 2E3

J. Zmuidzinas A. Poglitsch D. A. Harper J. Lacy H. Moseley

CalTech MPE Yerkes Obs. U. Texas Austin NASA GSFC

¤

 * Listed in approximate order of expected in-flight commissioning % Operational (August 2004) § Uses non-commercial detector/receiver technology
Science

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

Science Objectives
• Major Science Programs for SOFIA:
– – – – – Origin of stars and planetary systems Planetary bodies that make up our Solar System Life-cycle of dust and gas in galaxies Composition of the molecular universe Role of star formation and black hole activity in the energetics of luminous galaxies

SOFIA has a unique suite of instruments that cover a wide range of wavelengths at a wide range of spectral resolution. SOFIA will be continuously upgraded with new instrumentation and will serve as an important technology development platform for future space missions. SOFIA is a highly visible icon for education and public outreach and will immerse educators in the scientific process.

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

Learjet-KAO Instrumentalists and their Contributions

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Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

R. D. Gehrz

Great Observatory Operations Costs for FY 08
Observatory HST Chandra Spitzer SOFIA Ops Costs $105M $77M $81M $80M (est) Annual Operating Cost per Hours Hour 4400 (50%) 6400 (75%) 7680 (90%) 960/768 (Total/NASA) $24K $10K $12K $104K

CONCLUSIONS • SOFIA’s total operating costs are comparable to those of the other Great Observatories • SOFIA has fewer operating hours (it’s an airplane) •SOFIA’s costs include servicing missions with new focal plane instruments every few years
Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007
R. D. Gehrz

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Courtesy of Gary Melnick
Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007

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R. D. Gehrz

Courtesy of Gary Melnick
Astronomy and Astrophysics Advisory Committee, October 12, 2007
R. D. Gehrz

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