Princeton University Observatory Princeton, NJ 08540 -
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD 20771
The Interstellar Medium Absorption Profile Spectrograph (IMAPS) is an objective-grating, echelle spectrograph built to observe the spectra of bright, hot stars over the spectral region 950-1150Å, below the wavelength coverage of HST. This instrument has a high wavelength resolving power, making it especially well suited for studies of interstellar absorption lines. Following a series of sounding rocket flights in the 1980's, IMAPS flew on its first Shuttle-launched orbital mission in September 1993, as a partner in the ORFEUS-SPAS program sponsored by the US and German Space Agencies, NASA and DARA.
On ORFEUS-SPAS, IMAPS spent one day of orbital time observing the spectra of 10 O- and early B-type stars. In addition to outlining how IMAPS works, we document some special problems that had an influence on the data, and we explain the specific steps in data reduction that were employed to overcome them. This discussion serves as a basic source of information for people who may use archival data from this flight, as well as those who are interested in some specific properties of the data that will be presented in forthcoming research papers.
IMAPS is scheduled to fly once again on ORFEUS-SPAS in late 1996. On this flight, 50% of the observing time available for IMAPS and two other spectrographs on the mission will be available to guest observers.