GLAST first light

OK all you gamma ray fans, the slightly delayed official first light event for GLAST is almost with us.. all systems go on Tuesday the 26th … you can bookmark the streaming video from NASA.

At a coffee time talk a couple of days back Peter Michelson waved a large yellow envelope that he said contained the official first light images, but said that if we saw them he would have to kill us.

5 Responses to GLAST first light

  1. MikeW says:

    very impressive in an understated sort of way, bit of relief compared with HST or Chandra hype

  2. andyxl says:

    So the skymap after three days is as deep as EGRET at end of mission… and the VELA pulse profile is just as good too. The press questioners were unsatisfied though… several of them asking “so whats NEW ?”. The only sensible answer is “come back next year”.

    The Bad Astronomer has already splashed the picture, and the news that GLAST is now called Fermi. All I have to add is a bit of gossip gleaned locally. As you may have spotted, the first light was delayed … I had heard strange rumours about this being “for legal reasons”. Turns out what this meant was that NASA couldn’t locate Fermi’s grandchildren to ask permission to use the name…

  3. Keith A. says:

    Interesting, the story I had heard was that the delay was to avoid the Olympics and thus increase the chances of getting press coverage.

    It makes me wonder what the legal restrictions are on using someone’s name. Is this like copyright which lasts for X years after the death of the author ?

  4. martinselvis says:

    “The MIssion is launched, long live the Next Mission!”
    Time to think if there’s a future here for GeV astronomy…
    That old pessimist, Roger Blandford, said in Cambridge (UK) this summer that there was no hope of affording a super-GLAST. But if Ares V ever gets real, then it can launch 100 tonnes to LEO. Fermi is a piffling 4277 kg overall (Thank you Jonathan.)
    Plenty of room for an order of magnitude improvement in count rate then!
    Plus, the large Ares V payload envelope means longer paths and so (I assume) more accurate positions and lower confusion. [A lower energy coded-aperture device could help a lot too; still lots of space.]
    But that’s linear thinking, with the same technology.
    The bigger gamma-ray breakthrough, will be using Gerry Skinner’s Fresnel lenses that can finally provide high angular resolution and large area. The modest 1000-10^6 km baseline they need is surely not a serious objection.
    Any talk like this at Stanford?

  5. […] Listen live! August 25, 2008 Posted by sarah in: Snippets, science , trackback TweetReblogging the e-Astronomer: NASA has scheduled a media teleconference on the first light of GLAST […]

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