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Search for gamma-ray bursts with SVOM/MXT space telescope : Development and characterization of the onboard scientific software

Abstract : The Gamma-ray Bursts (GRBs) are luminous, powerful, and short flashes of gamma rays followed by a less luminous afterglows from gamma-ray up to radio energies. Their extreme luminosity, which makes them visible across the entire Universe, makes them valuable tools to probe the dawn of the Universe. In this context, SVOM, which is a Sino-French mission, aims at detecting and characterizing GRBs starting at the end of 2023. Onboard, The MXT telescope is designed to detect the soft X-ray afterglows and localize them with a precision below 2 arcmin within a few minutes. The MXT is composed of optics based on the "lobster eyes" principle to focus the X-ray photons, a camera based on a pnCCD to detect the X-ray photons, and a data processing unit that manages the scientific processing in real-time. During this thesis, I developed, tested, and characterized the onboard scientific algorithms. The scientific algorithms studied in this thesis are divided into three parts. First, I designed the image analysis to characterize the noise level in the detector and identify the photon signal above the noise level. Second, I developed the algorithm to localize the GRBs better than 2 arcmin in a few minutes of observation. Finally, I implemented a method to compute the source signal-to-noise ratio in real-time. Furthermore, a simulation has been built to study the scientific performance of the MXT in observing and localizing real GRBs. The MXT localizes about 80% of the GRBs better than 2 arcmin after 10 minutes of observation. The MXT is able to characterize the temporal and spectral properties of the X-ray afterglow. The flight model of the MXT has been thoroughly tested in the Panter X-ray test facility in Germany. The Panter test results have shown that the onboard scientific algorithm can be operated reliably and in a long run.
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Submitted on : Thursday, November 24, 2022 - 2:07:16 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, December 6, 2022 - 4:05:08 AM


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  • HAL Id : tel-03869731, version 1


Shaymaa Hussein. Search for gamma-ray bursts with SVOM/MXT space telescope : Development and characterization of the onboard scientific software. Instrumentation and Methods for Astrophysic [astro-ph.IM]. Université Paris-Saclay, 2022. English. ⟨NNT : 2022UPASP100⟩. ⟨tel-03869731⟩



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