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Looking for the Spitzer Warm Mission (Cycle-6 and up) SOM? It is located here.

Spitzer Observer's Manual

Please note that this Manual applies to the cryogenic mission ONLY. Please see the Warm Mission Observer's Manual for the warm mission.

The Spitzer Observer's Manual (SOM) is the essential technical reference manual for Spitzer observers. The SOM provides technical information about the design, performance and operational constraints of Spitzer. It includes technical information on planning, editing and submitting Spitzer observations. There are separate Calls for Proposals that include the programmatic information needed to submit a Spitzer proposal.

Getting the Document

VERSION: 8.0, 15 AUG 2007
This version supercedes v7.1, issued 8 Dec 2006.

All files are available in PDF format.
Some figures may not display well on some monitors, but should print satisfactorily.

LOOKING FOR SOMETHING SPECIFIC? Every pdf viewer we have tried (on any platform) allows you to search for keywords. Try clicking on the binoculars icon.

One huge pdf file with all the chapters together.

sectioncontentslength pdf
Start Title page, table of contents (brief and extended), list of tables, Chapters 1-5 (overview of general aspects of Spitzer)82 pages
(pp. i-66)
(2381 kB)
IRAC Chapter 6 (IRAC information)68 pages
(pp. 67-134)
(3891 kB)
IRS Chapter 7 (IRS information)102 pages
(pp. 135-236)
(6557 kB)
MIPS Chapter 8 (MIPS information)94 pages
(pp. 237-330)
(3092 kB)
End Chapter 9 - Appendices, Acronyms, Index14 pages
(pp. 331-344)
(333 kB)

Document Organization

The SOM is divided into four major parts: the Introduction (Chapters 1 and 2), the Observatory chapters (Chapters 3 to 5), and the instrument-specific chapters (6 to 8). The Observatory section includes a technical description of Spitzer, its operational capabilities and constraints, and information about how Spitzer observations are planned and specified.

Each instrument has its own chapter. All three chapters follow the same basic design and include a basic technical instrument description, and overview of the instrument's performance and capabilities, a description of its observing modes, advice on how to best use them, and a discussion of the data reduction pipeline and the characteristics of the data.

Document Update Plans

This manual will be maintained by the SSC. In general, we plan to update the SOM once annually, for each Call for Proposals.

In addition to maintaining the SOM, the SSC maintains instrument calibration and performance updates on the instrument web pages.

Problems in printing/viewing?

  • The files above are available in PDF and postscript.
  • Some figures may not display well on some monitors, but have printed satisfactorily in our testing.
  • Occasionally the Greek letters (sigma, lambda, pi) embedded in the document generate errors or are translated into Roman letters (s, l, p). This is apparently a function of the specific fonts installed on any given system. We have not successfully found a remedy for this problem, but it occurred only about 10% of the time in our testing.
  • Sorry, we do not have printed copies available.

Other Relevant Documents

There are five documents needed to plan, prepare and submit a Spitzer observing proposal:

Also see the Performance Estimation Tool (the PET has sensitivities; there are other tools too), the Proposal Submission Guide, the Observation Planning Cookbook (includes specific examples with AORs!), and even more stuff listed in the proposal kit...

Looking for the Spitzer Warm Mission (Cycle-6 and up) SOM? It is located here.


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This file was last modified on Fri May 22 10:39:46 2009.
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