Far-Infrared Observations of the Night Sky

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Science  13 Jun 1969:
Vol. 164, Issue 3885, pp. 1271-1273
DOI: 10.1126/science.164.3885.1271


We have flown a telescope cooled to liquid-helium temperatures and made far-infrared observations of the night sky. A gallium-doped germanium detector, sensitive from 5.2 to 130 micrometers, detected a minimum signal of 10-9 watt per square centimeter per steradian referred to 100 micrometers. The origin of this signal can be instrumental, atmospheric, interplanetary, or interstellar. We can place a firm upper limit on the color temperature of a dilute cosmic background flux.

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