High sensitivity balloon-borne hard X-ray/soft Gamma-ray polarimeter PoGOLite

T. Mizuno, M. Arimoto, M. Axelsson, C. I. Björnsson, G. Bogaert, P. Carlson, W. Craig, Y. Fukazawa, S. Gunji, L. Hjalmarsdotter, T. Kamae, Y. Kanai, Jun Kataoka, J. Katsuta, N. Kawai, M. Kiss, W. Klamra, S. Larsson, G. Madejski, C. Marini BettoloJ. Ng, M. Pearce, F. Ryde, H. Tajima, H. Takahash, T. Takahashi, T. Tanaka, T. Thurston, M. Ueno, G. Varner, H. Yoshida

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

1 Citation (Scopus)


The Polarized Gamma-ray Observer - Lightweight Version (PoGOLite) is a new balloon experiment capable of detecting 10% polarization from a 200 mCrab source in the 25-80 keV energy range in a single 6-hour flight for the first time. Polarization measurements of hard X-rays and soft gamma-rays are expected to provide a powerful probe into high-energy emission mechanisms as well as source geometries. PoGOLite uses Compton scattering and photo-absorption to measure polarization in an array of 217 well-type phoswich detector cells made of plastic and BGO scintillators. The adoption of a well-type phoswich counter concept and a thick polyethylene neutron shield provides a narrow field-of-view (1.25 msr), a large effective area (≥ 250 cm2 at 40-50 keV), a high modulation factor (more than 25 %) and the low background (∼100 mCrab) required to conduct high-sensitivity polarization measurements. Through tests in laboratories and accelerator facilities of a scaled-down prototype with the front-end electronics of flight design and an extensive study by Monte-Carlo simulation, we have demonstrated high instrument performance. PoGOLite will be ready for a first engineering flight in 2009 and a science flight in 2010, during which polarization signals from the Crab Nebula/pulsar, Cygnus X-1 and other objects will be observed.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationIEEE Nuclear Science Symposium Conference Record
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - 2007
Externally publishedYes
Event2007 IEEE Nuclear Science Symposium and Medical Imaging Conference, NSS-MIC - Honolulu, HI
Duration: 2007 Oct 272007 Nov 3


Other2007 IEEE Nuclear Science Symposium and Medical Imaging Conference, NSS-MIC
CityHonolulu, HI


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering

Cite this

Mizuno, T., Arimoto, M., Axelsson, M., Björnsson, C. I., Bogaert, G., Carlson, P., Craig, W., Fukazawa, Y., Gunji, S., Hjalmarsdotter, L., Kamae, T., Kanai, Y., Kataoka, J., Katsuta, J., Kawai, N., Kiss, M., Klamra, W., Larsson, S., Madejski, G., ... Yoshida, H. (2007). High sensitivity balloon-borne hard X-ray/soft Gamma-ray polarimeter PoGOLite. In IEEE Nuclear Science Symposium Conference Record (Vol. 4, pp. 2538-2544). [4436669] https://doi.org/10.1109/NSSMIC.2007.4436669