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


RPS XMM-Newton 18th Announcement of Opportunity (AO-18), 21-Aug-2018
The XMM-Newton Eighteenth Announcement of Opportunity is now open and observing proposals may be submitted.
The deadline is 5 October 2018, 12:00 UT

Further details here on our XMM-Newton SOC website.

X-ray source Students digging into data archive spot mysterious X-ray source, 10-Aug-2018
An enigmatic X-ray source revealed as part of a data-mining project for high-school students shows unexplored avenues hidden in the vast archive of ESA’s XMM-Newton X-ray Observatory.
Further details on ESA's Space Science portal.

Childcare New Horizons in Conference Facilities for XMM-Newton, 05-Jul-2018
XMM-Newton are leading the way in future ways of working, by having introduced a childcare facility option at their international scientific workshop that took place 13-15 June at ESAC.
Further details on our XMM-Newton SOC pages.

Warm-hot intergalactic medium XMM-Newton finds missing intergalactic material, 20-Jun-2018
After a nearly twenty-year long game of cosmic hide-and-seek, astronomers using ESA’s XMM-Newton space observatory have finally found evidence of hot, diffuse gas permeating the cosmos, closing a puzzling gap in the overall budget of ‘normal’ matter in the Universe.
Further details on ESA's Space Science portal.

Black Hole Star Shredded by Rare Breed of Black Hole, 18-Jun-2018
ESA's XMM-Newton observatory has discovered the best-ever candidate for a very rare and elusive type of cosmic phenomenon: a medium-weight black hole in the process of tearing apart and feasting on a nearby star.
Further details on ESA's Space Science portal.

NGC 3199 Star-circling bubble of gas, 11-Jun-2018
This turbulent celestial palette of purple and yellow shows a bubble of gas named NGC 3199, blown by a star known as WR18 (Wolf-Rayet 18). The image was taken by the European Photon Imaging Camera (EPIC) on ESA’s XMM-Newton X-ray space observatory, and marks different patches of gas in different colours.
Further details on ESA's Space in Images portal.

Neutron Star Merger Cosmic Blast Takes Rest at Last, 31-May-2018
Last year, the first detection of gravitational waves linked to a gamma-ray burst triggered a vast follow-up campaign to study the aftermath of the neutron star merger that gave rise to the explosion. ESA's XMM-Newton observations, obtained a few months after the discovery, caught the moment when its X-ray emission stopped increasing...
Further details on ESA's Science & Technology portal.