NASA launched its Imaging X-ray Polarimetry Explorer (IXPE) satellite from the Kennedy Space Center, Florida, in the early hours of December 9.
The IXPE, which was developed in a joint effort with the Italian Space Agency, is NASA’s first satellite dedicated to measuring the polarization of X-rays from supernova remnants, black holes and other high-energy objects.
“This is just the beginning for IXPE. We have much work ahead," Martin Weisskopf, IXPE’s principal investigator, said after the successful launch. "But tonight, we celebrate!” he added.
Polarization is a property of light that holds clues to the environment from which the light originates, NASA said. Credit: NASA via Storyful