The Imaging Compton Telescope (COMPTEL) occupies the middle position (in both physical location and energy coverage) on the GRO spacecraft and surveys the gamma-ray sky in the energy range from 0.8 to 30 MeV. Measurements by COMPTEL effectively bridge the gap in observations previously existent between the hard X-ray and high-energy gamma-ray bands. COMPTEL combines a wide field of view (about 1 steradian) with good angular resolution. Its imaging properties make it an ideal instrument for the first comprehensive survey of the sky at MeV-energies. With an energy resolution of 5% to 10% FWHM COMPTEL is also capable of conducting gamma-ray line spectroscopy.
The scientific objectives of the COMPTEL experiment can be grouped under the following headings:
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