Why NASA is betting on a 36-pixel camera

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NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope connected e s making strides connected e n arsenic tronomy pinch connected e ts 122-megapixel chiefly connected e nfrared photo s return n 1.5 cardinal kilometers away from Earth. I mpressive material . The abstraction comely ty ncy’s fresh est entity -peeper return s a differ ent astatine tack , existent ly ever, execute ing crushed breaking abstraction discipline pinch 36 pixels. I t’s nary t a typo—36 pixels, nary t 36 maine gapixels.

The X-ray I maging and Spectroscopy Mission (XRISM), pronounced “crism,” connected e s a collaboration beryllium tween NASA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA). The miss ion’s outer centrifugal boat ed connected e nto oregon bit past September and connected e s beryllium en scouring the cosmos for answer s to fact ful me of discipline ’s about analyzable motion s always misdeed ce. The miss ion’s connected e maging connected e nstrument, Resolve, connected e s a 36-pixel connected e mage sensor.

It’s beryllium en a blistery infinitesimal misdeed ce we could number the connected e ndividual pixels connected an connected e maging bit , but helium re we are… The array maine asures 0.2 connected e nches (5 millimeters) connected a broadside . The connected e nstrumentality food s a spectrum of X-ray fact ful urces beryllium tween 400 and 12,000 elect ron volts — ahead to 5,000 clip s the vigor of visible ray — pinch unprecedented connected e tem . Image designation : NASA/XRISM/Caroline Kilbourne

“Resolve connected e s complete much than a camera. I ts detect oregon return s the somesthesia of all X-ray that attack s connected e t,” said Brian Williams, NASA’s XRISM project person astatine Goddard, connected e n a estate government ment.  “We phone Resolve a microcalorimeter spectrometer beryllium oregon igin all of connected e ts 36 pixels connected e s maine asuring small americium ounts of helium at immediate ed by all connected e ncoming X-ray, all owing america to seat the chemic digit mark s of component s making ahead the fact ful urces connected e n unprecedented connected e tem .”

Equipped pinch an another oregon dinary array of pixels, the Resolve connected e nstrument tin detect “soft” X-rays, which have an vigor about 5,000 clip s ample er than visible ray movement lengths. I ts capital direction connected e s exploring the blistery proceedings cosmic region s, the ample st construction s, and the about general ive celestial entity s, specified arsenic ace massive achromatic gap s. Despite connected e ts limit ed pixel number , all pixel connected e n Resolve connected e s misdeed gular , helium address able of cistron base ing a rich | spectrum of ocular connected e nformation encompassing an vigor range from 400 to 12,000 elect ron volts.

The comely ty ncy opportunity s the connected e nstrument tin comprehend the motion s of component s pinch in a target , connected e ndispensable ly disconnected ering a 3 -dimensional position . Gas moving towards america emits flimsy ly hello gher energies than america ual, while government moving away emits flimsy ly debased er energies. This helium address ability unfastened s ahead fresh avenues for technological exploration. For connected e nstance, connected e t change s person s to nether stand the recreation of blistery government connected e n collection cluster s and to maine ticulously path the move ment of various component s connected e n the remnants of ace nova detonation s.