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Los Alamos National Laboratory Research Quarterly, Fall 2002
RAPTOR Science
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RAPTOR'S Fields of View

At each of the RAPTOR-A and -B observatories, four 85-millimeter telephoto lenses provide four digital images that are stitched together to form a 38- by 38-degree wide-field image. On the left is a RAPTOR-A wide-field image of the Orion constellation. At the upper left, the reference star marked by a vertical line is Betelgeuse. The reference star at the lower right (in Orion’s foot) is Rigel. To search for a transient optical event, RAPTOR’s computers measure the positions and brightnesses of up to 250,000 objects in each wide-field image and compare their positions and brightnesses to those of known celestial objects—all in 10 seconds or less. If the computers find an object that appears to be a transient optical event, RAPTOR zooms in with its narrow-field lenses to take movies of the object. On the right is a 4- by 4-degree narrow-field image taken by RAPTOR-A’s 400-millimeter telephoto lens. The three brightest reference stars marked by horizontal lines are the main stars in Orion’s belt.

At each of the RAPTOR-A and -B observatories, four 85-millimeter telephoto lenses provide four digital images that are stitched together to form a 38- by 38-degree wide-field image. On the left is a RAPTOR-A wide-field image of the Orion constellation. At the upper left, the reference star marked by a vertical line is Betelgeuse. The reference star at the lower right (in Orion's foot) is Rigel. To search for a transient optical event, RAPTOR's computers measure the positions and brightnesses of up to 250,000 objects in each wide-field image and compare their positions and brightnesses to those of known celestial objects—all in 10 seconds or less. If the computers find an object that appears to be a transient optical event, RAPTOR zooms in with its narrow-field lenses to take movies of the object. On the right is a 4- by 4-degree narrow-field image taken by RAPTOR-A's 400-millimeter telephoto lens. The three brightest reference stars marked by horizontal lines are the main stars in Orion's belt.

 

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