A polarized view of the hot and violent universe

Paolo Soffitta, Niccolo’ Bucciantini, Eugene Churazov, Enrico Costa, Michal Dovciak, Hua Feng, Jeremy Heyl, Adam Ingram, Keith Jahoda, Philip Kaaret, Timothy Kallman, Vladimir Karas, Ildar Khabibullin, Henric Krawczynski, Julien Malzac, Frédéric Marin, Herman Marshall, Giorgio Matt, Fabio Muleri, Carole MundellMark Pearce, Pierre Olivier Petrucci, Juri Poutanen, Roger Romani, Andrea Santangelo, Gianpiero Tagliaferri, Roberto Taverna, Roberto Turolla, Jacco Vink, Silvia Zane

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (SciVal)


X-ray polarimetry has long been considered the ‘holy grail’ of X-ray astronomy. Fortunately, after a silence of more than 40 years, the field is now rejuvenating. In fact, an X-ray polarimeter onboard a Cube-sat nano-satellite has been recently successfully operated. IXPE, the Imaging X-ray Polarimetry Explorer, will be launched in 2021 while eXTP, containing a larger version of IXPE, is expected to be launched in 2027. Although at present it is difficult to predict the discoveries that, given their exploratory nature, IXPE and eXTP will obtain, the path for a follow-up mission can already be envisaged. In this paper we describe the scientific goals of such a follow-up mission, and present a medium-size mission profile that can accomplish this task.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1109-1141
Number of pages33
JournalExperimental Astronomy
Issue number3
Early online date10 May 2021
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jun 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Open access funding provided by Istituto Nazionale di Astrofisica within the CRUI-CARE Agreement.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, The Author(s).

Copyright 2021 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Astrophysics
  • Polarimetry
  • X-rays

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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