The Advanced Energetic Pair Telescope (AdEPT) is being developed at GSFC as a future NASA MIDEX mission to explore the medium-energy (5–200 MeV) gamma-ray range. The enabling technology for AdEPT is the Three- Dimensional Track Imager (3-DTI), a gaseous time projection chamber. The high spatial resolution 3-D electron tracking of 3-DTI enables AdEPT to achieve high angular resolution gamma-ray imaging via pair production and triplet production (pair production on electrons) in the medium-energy range. The low density and high spatial resolution of 3-DTI allows the electron positron track directions to be measured before they are dominated by Coulomb scattering. Further, the significant reduction of Coulomb scattering allows AdEPT to be the first medium-energy gamma-ray telescope to have high gamma-ray polarization sensitivity. We review the science goals that can be addressed with a medium-energy pair telescope, how these goals drive the telescope design, and the realization of this design with AdEPT. The AdEPT telescope for a future MIDEX mission is envisioned as a 8 m3 active volume filled with argon at 2 atm. The design and performance of the 3-DTI detectors for the AdEPT telescope are described as well as the outstanding instrument challenges that need to be met for the AdEPT mission.


Space Science Center, Physics

Publication Date


Journal Title

SPIE Proceedings



Digital Object Identifier (DOI)


Document Type

Conference Proceeding


© (2012) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE).