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Handling the Background in IXPE Polarimetric Data

Presentation #107.03 in the session Instrumentation for Space Missions.

Published onJul 01, 2023
Handling the Background in IXPE Polarimetric Data

Imaging X-ray Polarimetry Explorer (IXPE) is a Small Explorer mission by NASA and Agenzia Spaziale Italiana, launched on 2021 December 9, dedicated to investigating X-ray polarimetry allowing angular-, time-, and energy-resolved observations in the 2–8 keV energy band. IXPE is in the science observation phase since 2022 January; it is comprised of three identical telescopes with grazing-incidence mirrors, each one having in the focal plane a gas pixel detector. In this contribution, we present a possible guideline to obtain an optimal background selection in polarimetric analysis, and a rejection strategy to remove instrumental background. This work is based on the analysis of IXPE observations, aiming to improve as much as possible the polarimetric sensitivity. In particular, the developed strategies have been applied as a case study to the IXPE observation of the 4U 0142+61 magnetar.

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