Launched in 1999, the XMM-Newton satellite is the major European X-ray observatory-class telescope, carrying also a co-aligned UV/optical monitor telescope, that is operated by the European Space Agency (ESA). The XMM-Newton Survey Science Centre (SSC) has responsibilities within the XMM-Newton project in four main areas:* The compilation of the XMM-Newton Serendipitous Source Catalogue.
In the last 2 tasks the SSC is working closely with the ESA team at the XMM-Newton Science Operations Centre (SOC) based at the European Space Astronomy Centre (ESAC) in Spain. As part of a planned evolution of responsibilities, the pipeline processing system was migrated to the SOC at ESAC in 2011/2012 and ESAC have operated the pipeline for routine processing of XMM-Newton observations since 1 March 2012.
The SSC represents a consortium of 10 institutes in the ESA community. The SSC Director is Dr. Natalie Webb at the Institut de Recherche en Astrophysique et Planétologie. Natalie was manager from July 2013 and replaced Mike Watson as Director in May 2014. A full description of the role of the SSC is given in Watson et al. (2001).