XMM-Newton-NEWS  #99,    02-Dec-2009

XMM-Newton Science Operations Centre at
ESA's European Space Astronomy Centre,
P.O. Box - Apdo. 78, 28691 Villanueva de la Cañada, Madrid, Spain

SOC Home Page: https://www.cosmos.esa.int/web/xmm-newton/
Helpdesk web interface: https://www.cosmos.esa.int/web/xmm-newton/xmm-newton-helpdesk
Helpdesk email address: xmmhelp@sciops.esa.int
News Mailing List: https://www.cosmos.esa.int/web/xmm-newton/newsletter


Update of the BiRD Database

The BiRD database has been updated to include all the RGS public observations taken until September 1st 2009. It contains now 6300 spectra of 2700 different objects.

BiRD is a utility to browse and examine RGS data. Spectra can be selected through different parameters, such as date of observation, class of object or level of exposure. BiRD also provides some basic plotting and visualisation tools, both for the RGS spectra and spectral images, and for the EPIC-pn images taken in parallel.

BiRD is available at the following URL:


Questions and comments about this utility can be sent to   

User Guide to the XMM-Newton SAS: update

XMM-Newton SOC has updated the User Guide to the XMM-Newton Science Analysis System for SAS version 9.0. The guide is available in different formats (postscript, pdf and html) from the XMM-Newton Proposer's Info & Manuals Web page (Section: Data Analysis) at:


Please alert us to significant XMM-Newton results

The XMM-Newton team does not have dedicated resources to systematically monitor astro-ph and the published literature for exciting new results. Therefore we rely on our observers to alert us about interesting new material. ESA does have a team of public affairs officers who will help arrange appropriate publicity, but they can only go to work once they know a result is available. Please remember that the public strongly supports astronomy in part because they enjoy seeing the fruit of our work!

Please contact us through the helpdesk: xmmhelp@sciops.esa.int

ESAC Trainee Opportunities

The European Space Astronomy Centre's (ESAC) Trainee programme offers young scientists a three to six months training contract designed to give valuable work experience and to prepare for future employment in the space industry and/or research.

The ESAC Trainee Project is open to undergraduates in the final few years of their degree and recently graduated students. Applicants should be nationals of ESA Member States or its Cooperating States. They should be fluent in either English or French, which are the official languages of the Agency.

Seven trainee positions are currently available at the XMM-Newton Science Operation Centre at ESAC. The description of these positions (projects 1-7) and a description of the application procedure can be found at:


The deadline for applications is February 5th 2010.

EXSA, a new science archive for EXOSAT

The European X-ray Observatory Satellite, EXOSAT, flew more than two decades ago, between 1983 and 1986:


ESA announces the release of a new EXOSAT Science Archive, EXSA. Images, spectra and light curves are available through an archive interface built with software designed by the Science Archives Team at ESAC.

More details about EXSA and a direct link to the archive can be found at:


Yours sincerely,
XMM-Newton SOC