Welcome to the XMM-Newton Science Operations Centre


The European Space Agency's (ESA) X-ray Multi-Mirror Mission (XMM-Newton) was launched by an Ariane 504 on December 10th 1999. XMM-Newton is ESA's second cornerstone of the Horizon 2000 Science Programme. It carries 3 high throughput X-ray telescopes with an unprecedented effective area, and an optical monitor, the first flown on a X-ray observatory. The large collecting area and ability to make long uninterrupted exposures provide highly sensitive observations.

Since Earth's atmosphere blocks out all X-rays, only a telescope in space can detect and study celestial X-ray sources. The XMM-Newton mission is helping scientists to solve a number of cosmic mysteries, ranging from the enigmatic black holes to the origins of the Universe itself. Observing time on XMM-Newton is being made available to the scientific community, applying for observational periods on a competitive basis.

Read more about the spacecraft, mirrors and instruments and about the XMM-Newton SOC.

News and Highlights

2023-03-diffuse-radio-emission-galaxy-clusterStudy sheds more light on the diffuse radio emission from the galaxy cluster Abell 1213 16-Mar-2023
European astronomers have observed a galaxy cluster known as Abell 1213 using various spacecraft and ground-based facilities. [...] "We used optical SDSS data to study the internal dynamics of the cluster. We also analyzed archival XMM-Newton X-ray data to unveil the properties of its hot intracluster medium..."
Further details on Phys.org web portal.

xmm-newton-x-vision-2023X-ray Vision workshop presentations 9-Mar-2023
The X-ray Vision of the Energetic Universe, a joint IAU I-HOW and COSPAR Capacity Building Workshop in X-ray Astronomy, was held on February 6-17, 2023, in North-West University Potchefstroom, South Africa.
Further details on XMM-Newton web portal.

2023-02-magnetic-field-extremely-ultraluminous-x-rayStudy investigates magnetic field of an extremely ultraluminous X-ray pulsar 16-Feb-2023
Using NASA's Swift spacecraft and ESA's XMM-Newton satellite, astronomers have observed NGC 5907 ULX1—the most luminous ultra-luminous X-ray pulsar known to date. Results of the observational campaign, published February 7 on the pre-print server arXiv, shed more light on the magnetic field of this pulsar.
Further details on Phys.org web portal.

untangling-a-knot-of-galaxy-clustersUntangling a Knot of Galaxy Clusters 2-Feb-2023
Astronomers have captured a spectacular, ongoing collision between at least three galaxy clusters. Data from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory, ESA’s (European Space Agency’s) XMM-Newton, and a trio of radio telescopes is helping astronomers sort out what is happening in this jumbled scene.
Further details on NASA's web portal.

curious_comet_s_rare_close_approachCurious comet’s rare close approach 1-Feb-2023
Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF) today makes its closest approach to Earth before likely leaving our Solar System forever. Many ESA missions have been observing Comet ZTF, even those not focussed on Solar System science. XMM-Newton is one of them, one of the most powerful X-ray telescopes ever placed into orbit.
Further details on ESA's Space & Safety web portal.

meet-the-aas-keynote-speakers-dr-erin-karaMeet the AAS Keynote Speakers: Prof. Erin Kara 23-Jan-2023
At this year’s AAS meeting, Erin Kara is being honored with the 2022 Newton Lacy Pierce Prize in Astronomy for her innovative and sustained contributions to high-energy astrophysics.
Further details on Astrobites web portal.