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The Infrared Astronomical Satellite (IRAS) missionThe Infrared Astronomical Satellite (IRAS) consists of a spacecraft and a liquid helium cryostat that contains a cooled IR telescope. The telescope's focal plane assembly is cooled to less than 3 K, and contains 62 IR detectors in the survey array which are arranged so that every source crossing the field of view can be seen by at least two detectors in each of four wavelength bands. The satellite was launched into a 900 km-altitude near-polar orbit, and its cryogenic helium supply was exhausted on November 22, 1983. By mission's end, 72 percent of the sky had been observed with three or more hours-confirming scans, and 95 percent with two or more hours-confirming scans. About 2000 stars detected at 12 and 25 microns early in the mission, and identified in the SAO (1966) catalog, have a positional uncertainty ellipse whose axes are 45 x 9 arcsec for an hours-confirmed source.
Document ID
Document Type
Reprint (Version printed in journal)
External Source(s)
Neugebauer, G. (California Institute of Technology Pasadena, CA, United States)
Habing, H. J. (Leiden, Rijksuniversiteit, Sterrewacht Leiden, Netherlands)
Van Duinen, R. (Fokker Amsterdam, Netherlands)
Aumann, H. H. (California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA, United States)
Beichman, C. A. (California Institute of Technology, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena CA, United States)
Baud, B. (California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA, United States)
Beintema, D. A. (Groningen Rijksuniversiteit, Groningen, Netherlands)
Boggess, N. (NASA Headquarters Washington, DC United States)
Clegg, P. E. (Queen Mary College London, United Kingdom)
De Jong, T. (Amsterdam, Universiteit Amsterdam, Netherlands)
Date Acquired
August 12, 2013
Publication Date
March 1, 1984
Publication Information
Publication: Astrophysical Journal, Part 2 - Letters to the Editor
Volume: 278
ISSN: 0004-637X
Subject Category
Distribution Limits