The SAX mission
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AbstractSAX denotes the X-Ray Astronomy Satellite selected by the Italian National Space Plan for inclusion in the Science Programme. The purpose of SAX is to perform spectroscopic, spectral and time variability studies of celestial X-Ray sources in the energy band from 1 to 200 KeV. It is intended to continue and expand upon previous observations of such sources. The instrumentation consists of four X-Ray imaging concentrators sensitive from 1 to 10 KeV (one of them extending down to 0.1 KeV), one Gas Scintillation Proportional Counter sensitive from 3 to 120 KeV, a Sodium Iodide Scintillator Crystal in Phoswich configuration operating from 15 KeV to 200 KeV; these detectors are coaligned to a common pointing axis. Three Wide Field Cameras (2–30 KeV) with axis at 90° to that of the narrow field instruments complete the payload.The Satellite launch is foreseen for 1988, in a low altitude (500 Km), low inclination (12°) orbit.The SAX scientific programme is carried out by a Consortium of Italian Institutes, in cooperation with Institutes from Holland; a partecipation of the Space Science Department of ESA is also foreseen.

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