Date of Award

Spring 2015

Project Type


Program or Major


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

First Advisor

James M Ryan

Second Advisor

Mark L McConnell

Third Advisor

Karsten Pohl


This dissertation describes the development of a FAst Compton TELescope (FACTEL) instrument. It is designed to be the prototype of a larger Advanced Scintillators COmpton Telescope (ASCOT) aimed for general astronomical observations in the medium energy gamma-ray range between 500 keV and 50 MeV. This dissertation presents the instrument and the observation results from the successful 2011 balloon campaign which took place on September 23rd and 24th at Fort Sumner, New Mexico (Flight 624N). The instrument was at float altitude for twenty-six hours at an average 36 km altitude. The FACTEL prototype achieved a 1-ns Time-of-flight resolution between the two detectors layers of the instrument.