NASA Logo, National Aeronautics and Space Administration
NASA Space Science Data Coordinated Archive Header

Wide-Field/Planetary Camera (WF/PC)

NSSDCA ID: 1990-037B-07

Mission Name: HST
Principal Investigator:Prof. James A. Westphal


The wide-field and planetary camera (WF/PC) investigation uses two cameras of different focal lengths housed in a single radial bay. One is a wide-field camera and the other is a planetary camera. Each camera uses a simple optical mosaic technique in conjunction with four charge-coupled devices (CCD) as detectors, each having 800 by 800 picture elements. The CCDs are thinned for back-side illumination, and their spectral responses are extended from the visible to the vacuum ultraviolet by special processing. The overall quantum efficiency of the instrument exceeds 5% from Lyman alpha (121.6 nm) to 350 nm, rising to about 30% from 450 to 800 nm, then gradually decreasing into the infrared. The combination of the optical mosaic and CCD detectors provides a contiguous field with an overall size of 1600 by 1600 pixels. Focal ratios of f/12.9 and f/30 give field sizes of 2.67 sq arc-min at a resolution of 0.1 arc-s/pixel for the wide-field camera and 68.7 sq arc-s at 0.043 arc-s/pixel for the planetary camera. The instrument contains space for 50 filters as well as polarizers/filters and transmission gratings.

Alternate Names

  • WF/PC

Facts in Brief

Mass: 292 kg
Power (avg): 190 W

Funding Agency

  • NASA-Office of Space Science (United States)


  • Astronomy: Visible
  • Astronomy: Ultraviolet

Additional Information

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



NameRoleOriginal AffiliationE-mail
Dr. Bradford A. SmithCo-InvestigatorUniversity of Arizona
Dr. Arthur D. CodeCo-InvestigatorUniversity of
Dr. William A. BaumCo-InvestigatorLowell Observatory
Mr. G. Edward Danielson, Jr.Co-InvestigatorCalifornia Institute of
Dr. Douglas G. CurrieCo-InvestigatorUniversity of
Dr. James E. GunnCo-InvestigatorPrinceton
Dr. Jerome KristianCo-InvestigatorCalifornia Institute of Technology
Dr. P. Kenneth SeidelmannCo-InvestigatorUS Naval
Dr. Clarence R. LyndsCo-InvestigatorKitt Peak National Observatory
Prof. James A. WestphalPrincipal InvestigatorCalifornia Institute of
[] NASA Logo -