XMM-Newton-NEWS  #110,    19-Jul-2010

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


XMM-Newton Users Handbook update for AO-10

The XMM-Newton Users Handbook (UHB) has been updated to version 2.8 in preparation for the next Announcement of Opportunity (AO-10).

The AO-10 will open on the 24th of August 2010 with a due date for proposals on the 8th of October 2010 (12:00 UT) (see issue #102 of this Newsletter for further details). The official "Announcement of Opportunity" will be made public in a dedicated issue of this Newsletter and on the XMM-Newton Science Operations Centre web site.

The UHB contains information on the instrumentation on board XMM-Newton and serves as the main technical support document for proposal preparation, based on which potential XMM-Newton users can assess the technical feasibility of their planned observations.

The XMM-Newton Users Handbook is available on-line at:


Alternatively, PDF and postscript versions of the UHB can be downloaded from the "XMM-Newton Proposer's Info and Manuals" portal at:


New interface to the 2XMM-DR3 catalogue

A new interface to the 2nd XMM-Newton Serendipitous Source Catalogue 2XMM-DR3 (see item #106 of this Newsletter), offered by the SSC at Strasbourg's Observatory, is available at:

   http://xcatdb.u-strasbg.fr/ (XCat-DB)

The database provides probabilities of identifications of 2XMM sources with SDSS DR7, GSC2.2, USNO A-2.0, USN0 B-1.0 and 2MASS entries applying a likelihood ratio scheme. A kernel density classification method was used to compute probabilities that each 2XMM sources is of stellar or extragalactic nature. In addition, the XCat-DB contains most of the pipeline products available for each source, including spectra, times series, finding charts, thumbnails and proposed identifications, extracted from about 200 archival catalogues.

Workshop announcement: Charge Exchange 2010

The ESA Faculty at ESAC is pleased to announce the workshop "Charge Exchange", to be held from 29 September to 1 October 2010 in Madrid, Spain.

Among processes occurring in plasmas, the interactions of ions with one another have cross-sections that often exceed by orders of magnitude those of collisions involving free electrons. In particular, the direct transfer of one or more bound electrons between states in colliding ions, often including neutral atoms, is known as charge exchange. Charge exchange accounts for the X-ray emission from comets seen by XMM-Newton, Chandra and Suzaku and is known also to be at work in plasmas in fusion devices, in the heliosphere and in supernova remnant shocks.

This interdisciplinary workshop seeks to bring together the laboratory, fusion and astrophysical communities, to address the role of ion-ion and ion-neutral collisions and charge exchange at large in the cosmos.

Registration and abstract submission are now open at:


Call for XMM-Newton results with potential for ESA press releases

We are looking forward to hearing from you about exciting new results obtained with XMM-Newton observations. Such results represent an important support for the mission.

The XMM-Newton team does not have dedicated resources to systematically monitor astro-ph and the published literature for interesting new material. However, ESA does have a Media Relations Service team, who will help arranging appropriate publicity and press releases. Please remember that they can only start the work once they know that a result is available and that they need some time to accommodate the story, since press releases are organised for several projects.

Contact us through the helpdesk at:


Yours sincerely,
XMM-Newton SOC