Table of Contents
X-Ray Optics and Instrumentation
Volume 2011, Article ID 285079, 9 pages
Review Article

The Rainwater Memorial Calibration Facility for X-Ray Optics

1DTU Space, Technical University of Denmark, DK-2100 Copenhagen, Denmark
2Columbia University Astrophysics Laboratory, New York, NY 10027, USA
3Space Sciences Laboratory, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720, USA
4Space Radiation Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA 91125, USA
5Physics Division, Physical and Life Science Directorate, LLNL, Livermore, CA 94550, USA

Received 11 February 2011; Accepted 30 June 2011

Academic Editor: Lars Furenlid

Copyright © 2011 Nicolai F. Brejnholt et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope ARray (NuSTAR) is a NASA Small Explorer mission that will carry the first focusing hard X-ray (5–80 keV) telescope to orbit. The ground calibration of the optics posed a challenge as the need to suppress finite source distance effects over the full optic and the energy range of interest were unique requirements not met by any existing facility. In this paper we present the requirements for the NuSTAR optics ground calibration, and how the Rainwater Memorial Calibration Facility, RaMCaF, is designed to meet the calibration requirements. The nearly 175 m long beamline sports a 48 cm diameter 5–100 keV X-ray beam and is capable of carrying out detailed studies of large diameter optic elements, such as the NuSTAR optics, as well as flat multilayer-coated Silicon wafers.