Wrap-up of Consortium meeting #7

The 7th consortium meeting spread over a full week was held at the Astroparticle and Cosmology Laboratory (ApC) in Paris from March 19th to 24th. The organization of the whole week was led by Damien Prêle. ApC provides a major component of the X-IFU, namely the so-called warm front end electronics, the closest part of the readout chain to the cold electronics of the X-IFU. Those electronics are a key contributor to the instrument performance,  benefiting from the excellent skills of the ApC electronics group. The meeting was attended by about 140 engineers and scientists from all across the world. 18 splinters were organized before and after the 1.5 day plenary sessions. The plenary sessions featured the usual presentations from the X-IFU Consortium and project leads and ESA. CM7 will be remembered as the meeting in which a consolidated baseline of the X-IFU was presented by the CNES project team. This closed a very active period of activity of three months. The main changes is that the cryogenic chain now fulfills plainly the 30% margin policy on thermal budgets, even in the more dramatic case of a cooler failure. This was achieved, assuming that the outer vessel of the Dewar would be cooled at 200 K, a lower dissipation at the 2K stage and updating cooler performances. This is a milestone because a stable configuration for the instrument will enable us to hold the IPRR by the end of 2018. Optimization work will  still continue until June at least, as some promising options have been identified. The CNES team and all the consortium partners involved should be deeply thanked for this major achievement. A mass non-compliance of less than 30 kg remains, but is modest compared to the 30% system level margins of the 7 ton Athena spacecraft. The baseline...

X-IFU Consortium meeting #7

X-IFU Consortium meeting #7 starts on March 19th and will last throughout the week. 140 registered participants are expected at ApC in Paris. Highlights of the meeting should be the presentation of the revised baseline configuration for the instrument, as well as recent progresses in technology.