WIRE for Astronomers

 WIRE Logo

Spacecraft Updates from GSFC -- The WIRE spacecraft is on the Pegasus rocket!
Photographs of WIRE -- Photographs of the Assembled Spacecraft.
Photographs of Completed Telescope -- Photos of the completed telescope.
NASA Origins Program, WIRE: The Wide Field Infrared Explorer

The mission of the Wide-Field Infrared Explorer (WIRE) is to discover how galaxies change through time -- galaxy evolution -- and to detect the birth of new galaxies, called proto-galaxies. Understanding how, and how fast, galaxies evolve and form are some of the most important issues in modern astronomy today. Within weeks of the launch of the WIRE spacecraft into low Earth orbit, this small telescope will detect tens of thousands of starburst galaxies -- galaxies where stars are forming at a much higher rate than usual -- as well as an unknown number of proto-galaxies. The IPAC engineering staff and computer facilities will support principal investigator Dr. Perry Hacking and WIRE co-investigators in analyzing and distributing these important new data describing how our Universe has changed over time.

WIRE is a small, focussed and fast-paced mission. Recent advances in detector technology will enable WIRE to make a major contribution to astrophysics despite its small size and modest pricetag. The telescope has a 12" mirror and no moving parts -- the entire instrument could easily fit in the backseat of a small car.

WIRE is part of NASA's Small Explorer Program. Launch is scheduled for March 1999.


The WIRE Objective The WIRE Survey Strategy Sensitivity And Sample Size
Simulated WIRE Images WIRE Technical Specifications The WIRE AI Program
WIRE References Science Operations Team WIRE Team Webpages
WIRE Related Links WIRE Spacecraft Photos WIRE Telescope Photos
WIRE Cryostat Photos WIRE Detector Photos WIRE Electronic Notebook
WIRE for Beginners Latest Updates from GSFC SWIRE Internal (restricted)

Click here to go the NASA homepage Click here to go the JPL homepage Click here to go the IPAC homepage Click here to go the SDL homepage  Click here to go the SMEX homepage

Web Page Updated by  Joe Mabry | Tom Barlow

Last Updated: 1/30/99