NASA Contributions to the Herschel Space Observatory
Through the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, NASA is
contributing key technology to two of Herschel's three detector instruments:
SPIRE and HIFI
Spectral and Photometric Imaging Receiver (SPIRE)
uses "spider web bolometers", which are 40 times more sensitive
than previous composite bolometers. They were developed by JPL's
Dr. James Bock, SPIRE's Co-Investigator. In recognition of his
innovation, Dr. Bock received the Presidential Early Career Award
for Scientists and Engineers in March, 2002, the highest honor the
U.S. government bestows on outstanding scientists and engineers who
are beginning their independent careers.
Heterodyne Instrument for the Far-Infrared (HIFI)
senses radiation along six wavelength bands. NASA is providing
the mixers and local oscillator chains for the two highest bands,
five and six; other local oscillator components for bands one
through four; and power amplifiers.
NASA's Herschel Science Center
NASA also sponsors the NASA Herschel Science Center
(NHSC), which provides the U.S. astronomical community with scientific and
observational support throughout all phases of the Herschel mission. NHSC is
operated by IPAC, the Infrared Processing and Analysis Center at the California
Institute of Technology.