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A DUAL Mission for Nuclear Astrophysics - Focusing gamma rays -

Abstract: Nuclear gamma-rays present an extraordinary scientific potential for the study of the most powerful sources and the most violent events in the Universe. In order to take full advantage of this potential, the next generation of instrumentation for this domain will have to achieve an improvement in sensitivity over present technologies of at least an order of magnitude. The requirements for a future mission naturally can be divided into two subsets: a requirement for medium-sensitivity large-scale exposures, and very deep pointed observations. This duality is naturally addressed by the DUAL mission concept, which employs a wide-FoV Compton telescope performing deep all-sky surveys in combination with a Laue lens that enables simultaneously very deep observations of selected narrow-field targets, utilizing the Compton camera as its focal plane. Over the mission lifetime, a Compton all-sky telescope can produce sensitive surveys in the energy range of hard X / soft gamma rays, i.e. 60 keV to 2 MeV: mapping out the extended distributions of galactic positron annihilation radiation, and of various long-lived cosmic radioactivities; surveying a very large sample of galactic and extragalactic compact sources by characterizing their nonthermal spectra, and study their variability on all timescales; constraining the origin of soft gamma-ray cosmic background radiation. Simultaneous to the all-sky survey, the Laue Lens will observe a number of selected compact sources at gamma-ray lines of highest astrophysical relevance with a narrow line sensitivity of the order of a several 10-7 ph.s^^-2 – i.e. the 511 keV positron annihilation and the 847 keV radioactive decay line of 56Co – by measuring the intensities, shifts and shapes of their gamma-ray lines.
Speaker: Peter von Ballmoos - CESR
Speaker Bio: Researcher at the Centre d'Etude Spatiale des Rayonnements, professor at the University of Toulouse. Main research interrests are the observation, analysis and interpretation of nuclear gamma-ray lines using various balloon and satellite instruments; Co-I of the ESA project INTEGRAL/SPI, PI of the project “first gamma-ray lens” (use of the first Laue diffraction lens) for the French Space Agency CNES.
Poster Link: Poster