Research Activities

Current research projects in which Group K scientists are involved include:

The Unconventional Stellar Aspect Satellite

The Unconventional Stellar Aspect (USA) is an X-ray timing experiment that was launched on February 23, 1999 on the Advanced Research and Global Observations Satellite (ARGOS). It is designed for scientific research in X-ray timing and time resolved spectroscopy and also for exploration of application of X-ray sensor technology. Bright galactic X-ray binaries will be used simultaneously for both scientific and applied objectives. To find out more about the USA experiment please visit the USA homepage at

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The Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer Satellite

Group K is involved in analysis of the guest observer data.  The Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer is a Goddard mission which was launched on December 30th, 1995. RXTE is designed to facilitate the study of time variability in the emission of X-ray sources with moderate spectral resolution. Time scales from microseconds to months are covered in an instantaneous spectral range from 2 to 250 keV. It was designed for a required lifetime of two years, with a goal of five years. To find out more about RXTE please visit

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BATSE is one of three of the instruments launched aboard the Compton Gamma-ray Observatory. One of BATSE's primary objectives is study of the mysterious phenomenon of gamma-ray bursts - brief flashes of gamma rays which occur at unpredictable locations in the sky. In 1998, Andrew Lee received his Stanford Ph. D. in Physics for a study of gamma-ray bursts entitled Properties of Time Profiles of Gamma-ray Bursts Using Pulse Decomposition Analysis. You can find out more about BATSE at the CGRO homepage at

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Gamma-ray Large Area Space Telescope

The GLAST Mission is under study for flight in the first decade of the next century. GLAST is a next generation high-energy gamma-ray observatory designed for making observations of celestial gamma-ray sources in the energy band extending from 10 MeV to more than 100 GeV. It follows in the footsteps of the CGRO-EGRET experiment, and is a top priority mission in the Structure and Evolution of the Universe theme area in the NASA Office of Space Science. You can find more general information on the GLAST mission at

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Group K Tools
Some of Group K's research activities are service-oriented and ongoing. One of those activities is the maintainance of an IDL users' library containing documents and procedures useful for the analysis of X-ray timing data.

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Created 4/3/99 by Tim Graves

Last revision - $Date: 1999/05/22 01:30:42 $ $Author: engo $ $Revision: 1.2 $

Owned by SLAC Group K