This Introduction to the HST Data Handbooks
is intended to provide an introductory level understanding of topics general to the data from all of the Hubble Space Telescope (HST
) instruments. It introduces methods for: retrieving data produced by observations by the Hubble from HST
archives; understanding the data structure and where to find important information about each Hubble observation within the data files and “Observation Log” files; and software tools and methods for working with data of different types from different HST
of this Introduction provide a stepping stone to understanding the in-depth descriptions of the HST
Data provided in each instrument's individual Data Handbook. In Chapters 1, 4
it introduces several important topics not covered in those handbooks. Throughout the document you will find internet links to reference materials that provide more thorough treatments and to others that provide useful information on additional related topics.
With this version, 8.0, the former Instrument Data Handbooks’ Introduction:
Chapters 1, 2 and 3; and Appendices: A, B and C; have been extracted into Chapters 1-6 respectively of this standalone document instead of having identical copies carried within each separate Instrument's Data Handbook.