The Swift Gamma-Ray Burst Mission Italian site U.K. site

Swift Key Projects

Please Note: The Swift Key Projects were relevant early in the mission, but no longer restrict GO proposals.

The Swift Science Team will perform a number of Swift Key Projects that rely critically on Swift data. Below is a list of these identified key projects with brief descriptions. Swift Guest Investigator (GI) proposers should not duplicate the efforts of any of the Key Projects identified below. The Swift GI program aims to enhance the science return of Swift, and so proposals are sought for either fundamentally new projects that do not overlap planned Key Projects, correlative observations at other wavelengths, or theoretical investigations. Proposers who are unsure if their project overlaps a key project are encouraged to contact the Swift Science Center.

Key Project Topics:


  1. GRB catalog The Swift PI and archive scientist will work with other team members to produce a catalog of GRB observations made by the three instruments on Swift with supplementary information from follow-up observations by other observatories. The catalog will form the basis of statistical analyses and GRB class studies.


  1. BAT hard X-ray sky survey catalog The BAT will produce a serendipitous survey based on the GRB pointings, with good coverage of the whole sky over the three-year mission. Assuming uniform coverage, the BAT will provide an exposure of 2.7 x 1010 cm2 s in three years for every point in the sky, yielding a 5 sigma statistical sensitivity of 10-20 milliCrabs in the 10-100 keV band.
  2. Radio loud AGN (blazar) studies with the BAT, XRT and UVOT Swift target of opportunity detailed observations from the optical to the hard X-ray with XRT and UVOT to study all radio loud AGN serendipitously detected in the field of view of the BAT telescope.
  3. Chandra and XMM follow-up observations of BAT survey AGN Members of the Swift Science Team will perform Chandra and XMM-Newton snapshot observations for the BAT-detected AGN without reliable counterparts. These observations should prove extremely useful for counterpart determination. Follow-up optical and near-infrared spectroscopy will then ensue.


  1. BAT bright source monitoring Swift will regularly observe a few dozen bright sources (galactic black holes, accreting pulsars and AGN) with the narrow field instruments (NFI) approximately once a week. This will provide multiwavelength light curves of these objects withone-week time resolution for several years.
  2. XRT serendipitous source catalog New and known sources observed by XRT serendipitously during GRB observations will be cataloged, cross-correlated with other catalogs, and archived.
  3. UVOT survey (serendipitous & deep exposures) & catalog The Swift UV data will complement the sky coverage achieved using XMM-OM. These data will be, in the long term, assembled into a catalog, and in the short term be searched for uncatalogued UV bright objects such as white dwarfs, cataclysmic variables and AGN, with appropriate cross-reference to the X-ray data from the XRT.