IMPORTANT NOTE. PLEASE READ CAREFULLY BEFORE USING SENS-PET: An imaging "Sensitivity Performance Estimation Tool"
(SENS-PET). For user configured Spitzer observing parameters, the
SENS-PET returns an estimate of the sensitivity to both point and
diffuse emission sources, and reports the total integration depth per
pixel. When planning observations that need to measure the flux
density or variations in the flux density of a point source
to a certain precision, it is important to include the Poisson
noise of the source in the estimation of the signal-to-noise
ratio. SENS-PET only includes the read noise of the
instrument and the Poisson noise of the background in the
calculation of the uncertainty. There is a memo and a tool on
the Spitzer Observer's Manual page that help observers to
estimate the uncertainty in a measurement of the source flux
density when taking the point source Poisson noise into account.
This tool is essential for observers interested in variations in
source brightness (as in observations of extrasolar planet transits,
Input: choose expected background level, and
configure Spitzer IRAC, IRS Peak-up imaging, and MIPS imaging instrument
Output: sensitivity and integration depth
per pixel for the selected observing mode.