Hinode (was Solar-B) was launched at 6:36 a.m. on September 23, 2006 (Japan Standard Time).

New XPOW: The Cornucopia Flare

New XPOW: A Solar Squall

New XPOW: Solar Cycle 24

New XRT paper: The coalignment paper, "Calibration of Hinode/XRT for Coalignment" by Keiji Yoshimura and David McKenzie was published in Solar Physics. This paper presents the calibration procedures, database, and implementing software for aligning XRT images with other solar datasets. The new methods described in the paper will be useful tools for the coalignment and calibration between other instruments.

The coalignment webpage has also been updated recently. Those interested in learning how to use the coalignment software can visit their website.

New XPOW: AR12431 Photobombs AR12434

New XPOW: The Faces of Grieving Ghosts

New XPOW: Radiant Boundary

New XPOW: How Many Cusps Do You See?

New XPOW: The Sunset of AR12422

New XPOW: A Solar Prominence with a Chewy Nougat

Big News: XRT straylight increase in June 2015. Fans of XRT may have noticed that the most recent images have a somewhat different appearance, starting on 14-June-2015. The cause is a change in the amount of visible light that is being transmitted to the detector, most likely due to a pinhole in one of the prefilters at the entrance aperture. Because of the differing characteristics of our various focal-plane filters, the increased visible light only affects a few of the passbands. In particular, the Ti-poly and C-poly images are strongly affected, as are the G-band (visible light) images. There is a measurable effect in Al-mesh and Al-poly, but it's very small and should be correctable.

Since the Beryllium images and the thicker Aluminum images are all unaffected, and the Al-poly and Al-mesh images are correctable, XRT still retains the ability to make images in a full range of temperatures, and to distinguish plasmas of different temperatures via all the standard analysis techniques.

Immediate recommendations for users: C-poly, Ti-poly, and G-band images after 14-June should not be used for quantitative analysis, although they might be useful as context images. The XRT Team will be eliminating the C-poly and Ti-poly filters from all future observation programs. G-band images are still useful for calibration purposes and should be considered to be "engineering data". The Al-mesh and Al-poly images are marginally affected, and may be used with care. Their largest component is estimated to be at the ~10 DN/s level, so the effect is negligible for active regions, but more important for dark features. The thicker filters are not significantly affected and may be used as before.

Future calibration: The XRT Team has been working on quantitative analysis for the calibration of Al-mesh and Al-poly. We currently anticipate that the effects of this straylight will be best handled by increasing the pixel errors estimated by xrt_prep.pro (the Level-1 reformatter) for Al-mesh and Al-poly In addition, the XRT Team is investigating the consequences to the temperature response functions, and will provide guidance on that subject. New calibrations and software will be announced here and documented in the XRT Analysis Guide.

New XPOW: Happy 9th Anniversary Hinode

New XPOW: Two Eclipses for the Price of One

New XPOW: The First 3D QSL Map of an Erupting Sigmoid

See the XRT News page for older XRT news items.

The Hinode X-Ray Telescope (XRT) is a high-resolution grazing-incidence telescope, which is a successor to the highly successful Yohkoh Soft X-Ray Telescope (SXT). A primary purpose of the Hinode XRT is to observe the generation, transport, and emergence of solar magnetic fields, as well as the ultimate dissipation of magnetic energy in forms such as flares and pico-flares, coronal heating, and coronal mass ejections. The XRT aboard Hinode observes the dissipation part of the life-cycle story of solar magnetic fields. High-resolution soft X-ray images reveal magnetic field configuration and its evolution, allowing us to observe the energy buildup, storage and release process in the corona for any transient event. One of the unique features of XRT is its wide temperature coverage to see all the coronal features that are not seen with any normal incidence telescope.

The XRT consists of the X-ray and visible light optics, focal plane mechanisms (filters and shutter), and the 2k x 2k CCD camera. The Mission Data Processor (MDP) also plays a vital role for XRT.

The XRT was designed and developed by the Japan-US collaboration between Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO), NASA MSFC, JAXA, and NAOJ. The XRT telescope was tested and calibrated at the XRCF at MSFC, and the CCD camera was tested and calibrated in X-rays at the ATC of the NAOJ with JAXA.

If XRT data is used in a published article or report, please give a proper Acknowledgement:

"Hinode is a Japanese mission developed and launched by ISAS/JAXA, with NAOJ as domestic partner and NASA and STFC (UK) as international partners. It is operated by these agencies in co-operation with ESA and the NSC (Norway)."

If an XRT image is displayed in a popular article, on a website, et cetera, then please acknowledge the contributing institutions:


You may find a list of the XRT instrument papers and other important references that should be considered for inclusion in your XRT science paper HERE.

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