Where Is Spitzer Now?

Spitzer's current orientation as seen from Earth.

Position of Spitzer relative to the Earth.

Spitzer's position

Current Observation Details

Target Name CSS_J123146.
RA 2:31:47.00
Declination 33:14:42.00
Program Name SMASH_SA 1
Principal Investigator Johnston
AOT iracmapp
Start Time 2014-09-01 07:48:45 UTC
Duration of Observation 13.04

How To Read The Details

Target Name

This is the name of the object being observed by Spitzer. The name appears as it was input by the observer, and will usually appear as a unique, universally accepted catalog designation rather than a "name" in the traditional sense of the word.

RA

These are the coordinates in the sky where the object is located. They work much like longitude and latitude on Earth. RA is the object's position along the equator, and Declination is its position north or south (positive numbers are the northern sky, and negative numbers are the southern sky).

Declination

These are the coordinates in the sky where the object is located. They work much like longitude and latitude on Earth. RA is the object's position along the equator, and Declination is its position north or south (positive numbers are the northern sky, and negative numbers are the southern sky).

Program Name

When astronomers are granted observing time on Spitzer, their planned observations are defined under a unique program name. Each program has specific goals and objectives, such as the various Legacy Science programs, whose objective is to create a substantial and coherent database of archived observations that can be used by subsequent Spitzer researchers.

Principal Investigator

This is the name of the scientist who leads the team of people who are making the observation on Spitzer.

AOT

This is the specific observing mode that Spitzer is using for its observation. Spitzer has three different instruments (IRAC - The Infrared Array Camera, IRS - The Infrared Spectrograph, and MIPS - The Multiband Imaging Photometer for Spitzer), all of which can be used in several different ways.

Start Time

The time that the observation began. The times are given in UTC (also known as Greenwich Mean Time), which is 8 hours ahead of Pacific Standard Time (7 hours ahead of Pacific Daylight Time).

Duration of Observation

Different observations require different amounts of time to gather all the data. Some observations can be quite quick, and some can take hours.