INTEGRAL is providing a new insight into the most violent and exotic objects of the Universe, such as black holes, neutron stars, active galactic nuclei and supernovae. INTEGRAL is also helping us to understand processes such as the formation of new chemical elements and the mysterious gamma-ray bursts, the most energetic phenomena in the Universe. This is possible thanks to INTEGRAL's combination of fine spectroscopy and imaging of gamma-ray emissions in the energy range of 15 keV to 10 MeV and concurrent monitoring in X-ray (4-35 keV) using JEM-X, and optical (500-600 nm) bands, using OMC.
The following topics are steadily being addressed by INTEGRAL:
- Compact Objects (White Dwarfs, Neutron Stars, Black Hole Candidates, High Energy Transients and Gamma-Ray Bursts)
- Extragalactic Astronomy (Galaxies, Clusters, AGN, Seyferts, Blazars, Cosmic Diffuse Background)
- Stellar Nucleosynthesis (Hydrostatic Nucleosynthesis (AGB, WR Stars), Explosive Nucleosynthesis (Supernovae, Novae) )
- Galactic Structure (Cloud Complex Regions, Mapping of continuum and line emission, ISM, CR distribution)
- The Galactic Centre Particle Processes and Acceleration (Transrelativistic Pair Plasmas, Beams, Jets)
- Identification of High Energy Sources (Unidentified Gamma-Ray Objects as a Class)
- PLUS: Unexpected Discoveries A unique aspect of the INTEGRAL mission is the weekly scans of the galactic plane. These are building-up into a detailed survey. Each weekly scan consists of a "slew, stop, stare" profile along a saw-tooth track, inclined at 21o to the galactic equator.
Last Update: 03 Jul 2003