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Bragg Crystal Spectrometer (BCS)

NSSDCA ID: 1974-077A-04

Mission Name: Ariel 5
Principal Investigator:Prof. Kenneth A. Pounds


This experiment was a polarimeter/spectrometer operating in the 2- to 8-keV range. It used two large plane crystals, lithium hydride and graphite, in a Bragg spectrometer with a honeycomb collimator. It was mounted to view along the satellite spin axis and to examine the radiation of individual X-ray sources for possible polarization and/or the existence of line emissions. In a source of the brightness of the Crab nebula, a polarization of 2.5% could be detected. The experiment also conducted searches for pulsar activity. The nature of the experiment made it possible to examine the polarization of the pulsar itself by looking for different pulsar behavior in the separate polarization components.

Alternate Names

  • Ariel5/BCS
  • BCS
  • Polarimeter/Spectrometer

Funding Agency

  • Unknown (United Kingdom)


  • Solar Physics: X-Ray

Additional Information

Questions and comments about this experiment can be directed to: Coordinated Request and User Support Office



NameRoleOriginal AffiliationE-mail
Dr. Brin A. CookeOther InvestigatorUniversity of
Dr. David J. AdamsOther InvestigatorUniversity of
Dr. R. E. GriffithsOther InvestigatorUniversity of Leicester
Prof. Kenneth A. PoundsPrincipal InvestigatorUniversity of
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