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Max-Planck-Institut für extraterrestrische Physik

- Gamma-Ray Astronomy -

Project:   MEGA


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Project MEGA







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MEGA is the prototype of a future telescope for Medium Energy Gamma-Ray Astronomy in the energy range between ~400 keV and ~50 MeV.

A MEGA-like telescope could be an essential component of the next generation fleet of high-energy astrophysics satellite observatories, filling the gap between hard X-rays / low-energy gamma rays (Integral, Astro-H) and high-energy gamma-ray missions such as AGILE and FERMI.

In this energy range MEGA exploits the two dominating interaction mechanisms for gamma rays: Compton scattering and Pair creation. To fulfill this purpose best, MEGA has two detectors: A tracker, consisting of double-sided silicon strip detectors, and a calorimeter, consisting of highly segmented CsI(Tl) bars.

In the tracker the Compton scatter and Pair creation interactions take place and the direction and energy of the participating electrons and positrons is measured. In the calorimeters the Compton scattered gamma rays are stopped and thus their energy and direction is determined. With all this information the origin of the gamma ray on the hemisphere can be reconstructed.


MEGA was designed, built, assembled and calibrated at MPE. For more details see the prototype page.

MEGA is currently on exhibition on the first floor of building X5 near room 1.3.01.

However, while MEGA is now part of history, it's simulation and data analysis tool MEGAlib is more alive than ever, and is used by a large community to perform simulations and data analysis for the next generation of low-to-medium-energy gamma-ray detectors - in space and on ground.

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