A directional detector for gamma-ray astronomy has been developed to image sources in the energy range 0.1 to 5 MeV. An array of 35 gain stabilized bismuth germanate detectors, together with a coded aperture mask based on a uniformly redundant array allows imaging in 4 deg square sky bins over a 16 x 24 deg field-of-view. The position of a strong point source, such as the Crab Nebula, can be determined to within not more than about 1 deg. A complementary 'anti-mask' greatly reduces systematic effects arising from nonuniform background rates amongst the detectors. The telescope has an effective area of 190 sq cm and an energy resolution of 19.5 percent FWHM at 662 keV. Results of laboratory tests of the imaging system, including the ability to image multiple sources, uniformity of response over the field-of-view, and the effect of the 'anti-mask', are in good agreement with computer simulations. Features of the flight detector system are described and results of laboratory tests and computer simulations are reviewed. A balloon flight of the telescope is planned for the fall of 1982.
Advances in Space Research (ISSN 0273-1177); 3; 4, 19; 1983