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Sample records for astronomical spectrograph calibration

  1. A 12.5 GHz-spaced optical frequency comb spanning >400 nm for near-infrared astronomical spectrograph calibration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quinlan, F.; Ycas, G.; Osterman, S.; Diddams, S. A.

    2010-06-01

    A 12.5 GHz-spaced optical frequency comb locked to a global positioning system disciplined oscillator for near-infrared (IR) spectrograph calibration is presented. The comb is generated via filtering a 250 MHz-spaced comb. Subsequent nonlinear broadening of the 12.5 GHz comb extends the wavelength range to cover 1380-1820 nm, providing complete coverage over the H-band transmission window of earth's atmosphere. Finite suppression of spurious sidemodes, optical linewidth, and instability of the comb has been examined to estimate potential wavelength biases in spectrograph calibration. Sidemode suppression varies between 20 and 45 dB, and the optical linewidth is ~350 kHz at 1550 nm. The comb frequency uncertainty is bounded by +/-30 kHz (corresponding to a radial velocity of +/-5 cm/s), limited by the global positioning system disciplined oscillator reference. These results indicate that this comb can readily support radial velocity measurements below 1 m/s in the near IR.

  2. A 12.5 GHz-spaced optical frequency comb spanning >400 nm for near-infrared astronomical spectrograph calibration

    SciTech Connect

    Quinlan, F.; Diddams, S. A.; Ycas, G.; Osterman, S.

    2010-06-15

    A 12.5 GHz-spaced optical frequency comb locked to a global positioning system disciplined oscillator for near-infrared (IR) spectrograph calibration is presented. The comb is generated via filtering a 250 MHz-spaced comb. Subsequent nonlinear broadening of the 12.5 GHz comb extends the wavelength range to cover 1380-1820 nm, providing complete coverage over the H-band transmission window of earth's atmosphere. Finite suppression of spurious sidemodes, optical linewidth, and instability of the comb has been examined to estimate potential wavelength biases in spectrograph calibration. Sidemode suppression varies between 20 and 45 dB, and the optical linewidth is {approx}350 kHz at 1550 nm. The comb frequency uncertainty is bounded by {+-}30 kHz (corresponding to a radial velocity of {+-}5 cm/s), limited by the global positioning system disciplined oscillator reference. These results indicate that this comb can readily support radial velocity measurements below 1 m/s in the near IR.

  3. A 12.5 GHz-spaced optical frequency comb spanning >400 nm for near-infrared astronomical spectrograph calibration.

    PubMed

    Quinlan, F; Ycas, G; Osterman, S; Diddams, S A

    2010-06-01

    A 12.5 GHz-spaced optical frequency comb locked to a global positioning system disciplined oscillator for near-infrared (IR) spectrograph calibration is presented. The comb is generated via filtering a 250 MHz-spaced comb. Subsequent nonlinear broadening of the 12.5 GHz comb extends the wavelength range to cover 1380-1820 nm, providing complete coverage over the H-band transmission window of earth's atmosphere. Finite suppression of spurious sidemodes, optical linewidth, and instability of the comb has been examined to estimate potential wavelength biases in spectrograph calibration. Sidemode suppression varies between 20 and 45 dB, and the optical linewidth is approximately 350 kHz at 1550 nm. The comb frequency uncertainty is bounded by +/-30 kHz (corresponding to a radial velocity of +/-5 cm/s), limited by the global positioning system disciplined oscillator reference. These results indicate that this comb can readily support radial velocity measurements below 1 m/s in the near IR. PMID:20590223

  4. Faint Object Spectrograph (FOS) calibration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harms, R. J.; Beaver, E. A.; Burbidge, E. M.; Angel, J. R. P.; Bartko, F.; Mccoy, J.; Ripp, L.; Bohlin, R.; Davidsen, A. F.; Ford, H.

    1982-01-01

    The Faint Object Spectrograph (FOS) designed for use with The Space Telescope (ST), is currently preparing for instrument assembly, integration, alignment, and calibration. Nearly all optical and detector elements have been completed and calibrated, and selection of flight detectors and all but a few optical elements has been made. Calibration results for the flight detectors and optics are presented, and plans for forthcoming system calibration are briefly described.

  5. Astronomical capabilities of the Faint Object Spectrograph on Space Telescope

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harms, R. J.

    1982-01-01

    Examples of scientific observing programs planned with the Faint Object Spectrograph on Space Telescope are presented. An overview of the spectrograph design and operation is presented. The expected astronomical performance of the instrument is described in some detail.

  6. WAVELENGTH CALIBRATION OF THE HAMILTON ECHELLE SPECTROGRAPH

    SciTech Connect

    Pakhomov, Yu. V.; Zhao, G.

    2013-10-01

    We present the wavelength calibration of the Hamilton Echelle Spectrograph at Lick Observatory. The main problem with the calibration of this spectrograph arises from the fact that thorium lines are absent in the spectrum of the presumed ThAr hollow-cathode lamp now under operation; numerous unknown strong lines, which have been identified as titanium lines, are present in the spectrum. We estimate the temperature of the lamp's gas which permits us to calculate the intensities of the lines and to select a large number of relevant Ti I and Ti II lines. The resulting titanium line list for the Lick hollow-cathode lamp is presented. The wavelength calibration using this line list was made with an accuracy of about 0.006 Å.

  7. Modelling high resolution Echelle spectrographs for calibrations: Hanle Echelle spectrograph, a case study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chanumolu, Anantha; Jones, Damien; Thirupathi, Sivarani

    2015-06-01

    We present a modelling scheme that predicts the centroids of spectral line features for a high resolution Echelle spectrograph to a high accuracy. Towards this, a computing scheme is used, whereby any astronomical spectrograph can be modelled and controlled without recourse to a ray tracing program. The computations are based on paraxial ray trace and exact corrections added for certain surface types and Buchdahl aberration coefficients for complex modules. The resultant chain of paraxial ray traces and corrections for all relevant components is used to calculate the location of any spectral line on the detector under all normal operating conditions with a high degree of certainty. This will allow a semi-autonomous control using simple in-house, programming modules. The scheme is simple enough to be implemented even in a spreadsheet or in any scripting language. Such a model along with an optimization routine can represent the real time behaviour of the instrument. We present here a case study for Hanle Echelle Spectrograph. We show that our results match well with a popular commercial ray tracing software. The model is further optimized using Thorium Argon calibration lamp exposures taken during the preliminary alignment of the instrument. The model predictions matched the calibration frames at a level of 0.08 pixel. Monte Carlo simulations were performed to show the photon noise effect on the model predictions.

  8. A spectrograph for exoplanet observations calibrated at the centimetre-per-second level.

    PubMed

    Wilken, Tobias; Curto, Gaspare Lo; Probst, Rafael A; Steinmetz, Tilo; Manescau, Antonio; Pasquini, Luca; González Hernández, Jonay I; Rebolo, Rafael; Hänsch, Theodor W; Udem, Thomas; Holzwarth, Ronald

    2012-05-31

    The best spectrographs are limited in stability by their calibration light source. Laser frequency combs are the ideal calibrators for astronomical spectrographs. They emit a spectrum of lines that are equally spaced in frequency and that are as accurate and stable as the atomic clock relative to which the comb is stabilized. Absolute calibration provides the radial velocity of an astronomical object relative to the observer (on Earth). For the detection of Earth-mass exoplanets in Earth-like orbits around solar-type stars, or of cosmic acceleration, the observable is a tiny velocity change of less than 10 cm s(-1), where the repeatability of the calibration--the variation in stability across observations--is important. Hitherto, only laboratory systems or spectrograph calibrations of limited performance have been demonstrated. Here we report the calibration of an astronomical spectrograph with a short-term Doppler shift repeatability of 2.5 cm s(-1), and use it to monitor the star HD 75289 and recompute the orbit of its planet. This repeatability should make it possible to detect Earth-like planets in the habitable zone of star or even to measure the cosmic acceleration directly. PMID:22660320

  9. Calibration and operation of the Faint Object Spectrograph

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harms, R.; Beaver, E.; Burbidge, E.; Hier, R.; Allen, R.; Angel, R.; Bartko, F.; Bohlin, R.; Ford, H.; Davidson, A.

    1984-01-01

    The design and basic performance characteristics of the Faint Object Spectrograph (FOS), one of five instruments built for use on the Space Telescope observatory, is summarized briefly. The results of the recently completed instrument-level calibration are presented with special emphasis on issues affecting plans for FOS astronomical observations. Examples include such fundamental characteristics as: limiting magnitudes (system sensitivity and noise figures), spectral coverage and resolution, scattered light properties, and instrumental polarization and modulation efficiencies. Also gated toward intended users, a rather detailed description of FOS operating modes is given. The discussion begins with the difficulties anticipated during target acquisition and their hoped-for resolution. Both the 'normal' spectroscopic operating modes of the FOS and its 'exotic' features (e.g. spectropolarimetric, time-tagged, and time-resolved modes) are presented. The paper concludes with an overview of the activities to assure proper alignment and operation of the FOS within the entire Space Telescope system (orbital and ground-based).

  10. Performance of a laser frequency comb calibration system with a high-resolution solar echelle spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doerr, H.-P.; Kentischer, T. J.; Steinmetz, T.; Probst, R. A.; Franz, M.; Holzwarth, R.; Udem, Th.; Hänsch, T. W.; Schmidt, W.

    2012-09-01

    Laser frequency combs (LFC) provide a direct link between the radio frequency (RF) and the optical frequency regime. The comb-like spectrum of an LFC is formed by exact equidistant laser modes, whose absolute optical frequencies are controlled by RF-references such as atomic clocks or GPS receivers. While nowadays LFCs are routinely used in metrological and spectroscopic fields, their application in astronomy was delayed until recently when systems became available with a mode spacing and wavelength coverage suitable for calibration of astronomical spectrographs. We developed a LFC based calibration system for the high-resolution echelle spectrograph at the German Vacuum Tower Telescope (VTT), located at the Teide observatory, Tenerife, Canary Islands. To characterize the calibration performance of the instrument, we use an all-fiber setup where sunlight and calibration light are fed to the spectrograph by the same single-mode fiber, eliminating systematic effects related to variable grating illumination.

  11. Astronomical optical frequency comb generation and test in a fiber-fed MUSE spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chavez Boggio, J. M.; Fremberg, T.; Moralejo, B.; Rutowska, M.; Hernandez, E.; Zajnulina, M.; Kelz, A.; Bodenmüller, D.; Sandin, C.; Wysmolek, M.; Sayinc, H.; Neumann, J.; Haynes, R.; Roth, M. M.

    2014-07-01

    We here report on recent progress on astronomical optical frequency comb generation at innoFSPEC-Potsdam and present preliminary test results using the fiber-fed Multi Unit Spectroscopic Explorer (MUSE) spectrograph. The frequency comb is generated by propagating two free-running lasers at 1554.3 and 1558.9 nm through two dispersionoptimized nonlinear fibers. The generated comb is centered at 1590 nm and comprises more than one hundred lines with an optical-signal-to-noise ratio larger than 30 dB. A nonlinear crystal is used to frequency double the whole comb spectrum, which is efficiently converted into the 800 nm spectral band. We evaluate first the wavelength stability using an optical spectrum analyzer with 0.02 nm resolution and wavelength grid of 0.01 nm. After confirming the stability within 0.01 nm, we compare the spectra of the astro-comb and the Ne and Hg calibration lamps: the astro-comb exhibits a much larger number of lines than lamp calibration sources. A series of preliminary tests using a fiber-fed MUSE spectrograph are subsequently carried out with the main goal of assessing the equidistancy of the comb lines. Using a P3d data reduction software we determine the centroid and the width of each comb line (for each of the 400 fibers feeding the spectrograph): equidistancy is confirmed with an absolute accuracy of 0.4 pm.

  12. Absolute calibration of vacuum ultraviolet spectrograph system for plasma diagnostics

    SciTech Connect

    Yoshikawa, M.; Kubota, Y.; Kobayashi, T.; Saito, M.; Numada, N.; Nakashima, Y.; Cho, T.; Koguchi, H.; Yagi, Y.; Yamaguchi, N.

    2004-10-01

    A space- and time-resolving vacuum ultraviolet (VUV) spectrograph system has been applied to diagnose impurity ions behavior in plasmas produced in the tandem mirror GAMMA 10 and the reversed field pinch TPE-RX. We have carried out ray tracing calculations for obtaining the characteristics of the VUV spectrograph and calibration experiments to measure the absolute sensitivities of the VUV spectrograph system for the wavelength range from 100 to 1100 A. By changing the incident angle, 50.6 deg. -51.4 deg., to the spectrograph whose nominal incident angle is 51 deg., we can change the observing spectral range of the VUV spectrograph. In this article, we show the ray tracing calculation results and absolute sensitivities when the angle of incidence into the VUV spectrograph is changed, and the results of VUV spectroscopic measurement in both GAMMA 10 and TPE-RX plasmas.

  13. Calibration of an astrophysical spectrograph below 1 m/s using a laser frequency comb

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phillips, David F.; Glenday, Alexander G.; Li, Chih-Hao; Cramer, Claire; Furesz, Gabor; Chang, Guoqing; Benedick, Andrew J.; Chen, Li-Jin; Kärtner, Franz X.; Korzennik, Sylvain; Sasselov, Dimitar; Szentgyorgyi, Andrew; Walsworth, Ronald L.

    2012-06-01

    We deployed two wavelength calibrators based on laser frequency combs ("astro-combs") at an astronomical telescope. One astro-comb operated over a 100 nm band in the deep red (∼ 800 nm) and a second operated over a 20 nm band in the blue (∼ 400 nm). We used these red and blue astro-combs to calibrate a high-resolution astrophysical spectrograph integrated with a 1.5 m telescope, and demonstrated calibration precision and stability suffici ent to enable detection of changes in stellar radial velocity < 1 m/s.

  14. Calibration of an astrophysical spectrograph below 1 m/s using a laser frequency comb.

    PubMed

    Phillips, David F; Glenday, Alexander G; Li, Chih-Hao; Cramer, Claire; Furesz, Gabor; Chang, Guoqing; Benedick, Andrew J; Chen, Li-Jin; Kärtner, Franz X; Korzennik, Sylvain; Sasselov, Dimitar; Szentgyorgyi, Andrew; Walsworth, Ronald L

    2012-06-18

    We deployed two wavelength calibrators based on laser frequency combs ("astro-combs") at an astronomical telescope. One astro-comb operated over a 100 nm band in the deep red (∼ 800 nm) and a second operated over a 20 nm band in the blue (∼ 400 nm). We used these red and blue astro-combs to calibrate a high-resolution astrophysical spectrograph integrated with a 1.5 m telescope, and demonstrated calibration precision and stability sufficient to enable detection of changes in stellar radial velocity < 1 m/s. PMID:22714437

  15. Internal calibration of astronomical photographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bunclark, P. S.

    Photographic plates have enormous advantages over other two-dimensional detectors in that they have largely uniform sensitivity over a large area. Unfortunately they are dogged by lack of dynamic range and complex response functions. This paper describes a successful method of internal calibration (ie. using only information contained in the images on the plate) which for stars gives a dynamic range of fourteen magnitudes and allows correct photometry of those extended objects which are not saturated.

  16. Astro-comb calibration of an Echelle Spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, C.-H.; Phillips, D. F.; Glenday, A. G.; Benedick, A. J.; Chang, G.; Chen, L.-J.; Cramer, C.; Furesz, G.; Kärtner, F. X.; Sasselov, D.; Szentgyorgyi, A.; Walsworth, R. L.

    2010-07-01

    We describe recent work calibrating a cross-dispersed spectrograph with an "astro-comb" i.e., a high repetition rate, octave spanning femtosecond laser frequency comb; and a filter cavity suppressing laser modes to match the resolution of the spectrograph. Our astro-comb provides ~1500 evenly spaced (~0.6 A) calibration lines of roughly 100 nW per line between 7800 and 8800 Angstroms. The calibration lines of the laser are stabilized to atomic clocks which can be referenced to GPS providing intrinsic stability of the source laser below 1 cm/s in stellar radial velocity sensitivity, as well as long term stability and reproducibility over years. We present calibration of the TRES spectrograph at the 1.5 m telescope at the Fred L Whipple Observatory below 1 m/s radial velocity sensitivity in six orders from 7800-8800 A.

  17. Line profile analysis of an astronomical spectrograph with a laser frequency comb

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Fei; Zhao, Gang; Lo Curto, Gaspare; Wang, Hui-Juan; Liu, Yu-Juan; Wang, Liang; Wang, Wei

    2014-08-01

    We present a study of the spectral line shape associated with a High Resolution Spectrograph on the 2.16 m telescope at the Xinglong Observing Station of National Astronomical Observatories, Chinese Academy of Sciences. This measurement is based on modeling the instrumental line shape obtained by unresolved modes from a Yb-fiber mode-locked laser frequency comb. With the current repetition rate of 250 MHz and 26 GHz mode spacing on the spectrograph, we find the absolute variation of the line center, 0.0597 pixel in the direction of the CCDs, and 0.00275 pixel (~3 m s-1) for relative variation in successive exposures on a short timescale. A novel double-Gaussian model is presented to improve the quality of the fit by a factor of 2.47 in a typical single exposure. We also use analysis with raw moments and central moments to characterize the change in line shape across the detector. A trend in charge transfer efficiency can be found on the E2V 4096 × 4096 CCD that provides a correction for wavelength calibration aiming to reach a level of precision for radial velocity below 1 ms-1.

  18. Calibration of an Astrophysical Spectrograph with an Astro-comb

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phillips, David F.; Glenday, Alex; Li, Chih-Hao; Cramer, Claire; Korzennik, Sylvain; Noah Chang, Guoqing; Chen, Li-Jin; Benedick, Andrew; Kaertner, Franz X.; Sasselov, Dimitar; Szentgyorgyi, Andrew; Walsworth, Ronald L.

    2010-03-01

    Searches for extrasolar planets using the periodic Doppler shift of stellar lines are approaching Earth-like planet sensitivity. To find a 1-Earth-mass planet in an Earth-like orbit, an order of magnitude improvement in state-of-the-art radial velocity spectroscopy is necessary. An astro-comb, the combination of an ocatve-spanning laser frequency comb with a Fabry-Perot cavity, producing evenly spaced frequency markers with the potential for large wavelength coverage is a promising avenue towards improved wavelength calibration. Here we demonstrate the calibration of a high-resolution astrophysical spectrograph below the 1 m/s level in the 800-900 nm spectral band using an octave-spanning Ti:Sapphire laser and an ultra-low dispersion Fabry-Perot filter cavity adjusted for a mode spacing of approximately 31 GHz. Modeling of spectrograph response function and overall system stability and reproducibility will be described.

  19. Calibrating echelle spectrographs with Fabry-Pérot etalons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bauer, F. F.; Zechmeister, M.; Reiners, A.

    2015-09-01

    Context. Over the past decades hollow-cathode lamps have been calibration standards for spectroscopic measurements. Advancing to cm/s radial velocity precisions with the next generation of instruments requires more suitable calibration sources with more lines and fewer dynamic range problems. Fabry-Pérot interferometers provide a regular and dense grid of lines and homogeneous amplitudes, which makes them good candidates for next-generation calibrators. Aims: We investigate the usefulness of Fabry-Pérot etalons in wavelength calibration, present an algorithm to incorporate the etalon spectrum in the wavelength solution, and examine potential problems. Methods: The quasi-periodic pattern of Fabry-Pérot lines was used along with a hollow-cathode lamp to anchor the numerous spectral features on an absolute scale. We tested our method with the HARPS spectrograph and compared our wavelength solution to the one derived from a laser frequency comb. Results: The combined hollow-cathode lamp/etalon calibration overcomes large distortion (50 m/s) in the wavelength solution of the HARPS data reduction software. The direct comparison to the laser frequency comb shows differences of only 10 m/s at most. Conclusions: Combining hollow-cathode lamps with Fabry-Pérot interferometers can lead to substantial improvements in the wavelength calibration of echelle spectrographs. Etalons can provide economical alternatives to the laser frequency comb, especially for smaller projects.

  20. Precision spectroscopy with a frequency-comb-calibrated solar spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doerr, H.-P.

    2015-06-01

    The measurement of the velocity field of the plasma at the solar surface is a standard diagnostic tool in observational solar physics. Detailed information about the energy transport as well as on the stratification of temperature, pressure and magnetic fields in the solar atmosphere are encoded in Doppler shifts and in the precise shape of the spectral lines. The available instruments deliver data of excellent quality and precision. However, absolute wavelength calibration in solar spectroscopy was so far mostly limited to indirect methods and in general suffers from large systematic uncertainties of the order of 100 m/s. During the course of this thesis, a novel wavelength calibration system based on a laser frequency comb was deployed to the solar Vacuum Tower Telescope (VTT), Tenerife, with the goal of enabling highly accurate solar wavelength measurements at the level of 1 m/s on an absolute scale. The frequency comb was developed in a collaboration between the Kiepenheuer-Institute for Solar Physics, Freiburg, Germany and the Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics, Garching, Germany. The efforts cumulated in the new prototype instrument LARS (Lars is an Absolute Reference Spectrograph) for solar precision spectroscopy which is in preliminary scientific operation since~2013. The instrument is based on the high-resolution echelle spectrograph of the VTT for which feed optics based on single-mode optical fibres were developed for this project. The setup routinely achieves an absolute calibration accuracy of 60 cm/s and a repeatability of 2.5 cm/s. An unprecedented repeatability of only 0.32 cm/s could be demonstrated with a differential calibration scheme. In combination with the high spectral resolving power of the spectrograph of 7x10^5 and virtually absent internal scattered light, LARS provides a spectral purity and fidelity that previously was the domain of Fourier-transform spectrometers only. The instrument therefore provides unique capabilities for

  1. SPRED spectrograph upgrade: high resolution grating and improved absolute calibrations

    SciTech Connect

    Stratton, B.C.; Fonck, R.J.; Ida, K.; Jaehnig, K.P.; Ramsey, A.T.

    1986-05-01

    Two improvements to the SPRED multichannel VUV spectrographs used on the TFTR and PBX tokamaks have been made: (1) A new 2100-g/mm grating covering the 100 to 320 A region with 0.4 A resolution (FWHM) has been added to the existing 450 g/mm grating (100 to 1100 A with 2 A resolution), and (2) the TFTR SPRED has been absolutely calibrated using synchrotron radiation from the NBS SURF II facility, while the PBX system has been calibrated using conventional branching ratios along with line ratios from charge-exchange-recombination-excited lines. The availability of high resolution spectra in the 100 to 320 A range provides improved measurements of metallic ion emissions and, when the instrument views across a neutral beam as in PBX, allows carbon and oxygen densities to be measured via charge exchange recombination spectroscopy.

  2. Astronomical age calibration in the Middle Miocene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shackleton, N. J.; Roehl, U.; Raffi, I.

    2001-05-01

    and the astronomical age (13.54 Ma) are secure. The base of the Langian is transgressive and post-dates the first appearance of P. sicana in European sections. It is often approximated in open ocean records by the LO of Helicosphaera ampliaperta (15.8 Ma published age) or by the FO of Discoaster signus (which often coincides with the end of an abundance acme of D. deflandrei; 16.2 Ma published age). The boundary is generally supposed to be close to C5Cn, although the normally magnetised material in the Moria Section must represent C5Dn if the radiometric dates have any credibility. In Leg 154 material the LO of Helicosphaera ampliaperta has an age close to 15.0 Ma; the FO of Discoaster signus is at about 15.6 Ma, and the FO of P. sicana older than 17 Ma making this a very insecurely calibrated boundary. We have correlated the record of DSDP holes 521 and 521A, which have an excellent magnetostratigraphy for C5Cn to C5Bn, to the ODP Leg 154 material, enabling us to estimate the age of the young end of C5Cn as about 15.9 Ma (cf 16.014 in CK95) and the old end of C5Bn as about 15.1 Ma (cf 15.155 in CK95). This interval is characterised by a strong response to eccentricity cycles (both in ODP Leg 154 sites and in DSDP521). After about 14.6 Ma there are very strongly expressed 40-ka dissolution cycles associated with a very shallow CCD until about 14.0 Ma. Published stable isotope data suggest that there was a significant cooling and/or antarctic ice build up at about 14.0 Ma.

  3. Design of a radial velocity spectrograph for the Moletai Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jurgenson, Colby A.; Fischer, Debra A.; McCracken, Tyler M.; Stoll, Rebecca A.; Szymkowiak, Andrew E.; Giguere, Matt J.; Santoro, Fernando G.; Muller, Gary

    2014-07-01

    The Yale Exoplanet Laboratory is under contract to design, build, and deliver a high-resolution (R = 60,000) echelle spectrograph for the Moletai Astronomical Observatory 1.65-meter telescope at the Vilnius University. We present a fiber-fed, white-pupil architecture that will operate from 400 to 880nm. The optomechanical design implements a modular approach for stability and ease of alignment that can be reproduced for other telescopes. It will utilize highperformance off-the-shelf optical components with a custom designed refractive camera for high throughput and good image quality.

  4. The assembly, calibration, and preliminary results from the Colorado high-resolution Echelle stellar spectrograph (CHESS)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoadley, Keri; France, Kevin; Nell, Nicholas; Kane, Robert; Schultz, Ted; Beasley, Matthew; Green, James; Kulow, Jen; Kersgaard, Eliot; Fleming, Brian

    2014-07-01

    The Colorado High-resolution Echelle Stellar Spectrograph (CHESS) is a far ultraviolet (FUV) rocket-borne experiment designed to study the atomic-to-molecular transitions within translucent interstellar clouds. CHESS is an objective echelle spectrograph operating at f/12.4 and resolving power of 120,000 over a band pass of 100 - 160 nm. The echelle flight grating is the product of a research and development project with LightSmyth Inc. and was coated at Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) with Al+LiF. It has an empirically-determined groove density of 71.67 grooves/mm. At the Center for Astrophysics and Space Astronomy (CASA) at the University of Colorado (CU), we measured the efficiencies of the peak and adjacent dispersion orders throughout the 90 - 165 nm band pass to characterize the behavior of the grating for pre-flight calibrations and to assess the scattered-light behavior. The crossdispersing grating, developed and ruled by Horiba Jobin-Yvon, is a holographically-ruled, low line density (351 grooves/mm), powered optic with a toroidal surface curvature. The CHESS cross-disperser was also coated at GSFC; Cr+Al+LiF was deposited to enhance far-UV efficiency. Results from final efficiency and reflectivity measurements of both optics are presented. We utilize a cross-strip anode microchannel plate (MCP) detector built by Sensor Sciences to achieve high resolution (25 μm spatial resolution) and data collection rates (~ 106 photons/second) over a large format (40mm round, digitized to 8k x 8k) for the first time in an astronomical sounding rocket flight. The CHESS instrument was successfully launched from White Sands Missile Range on 24 May 2014. We present pre-flight sensitivity, effective area calculations, lab spectra and calibration results, and touch on first results and post-flight calibration plans.

  5. The ERA2 facility: towards application of a fibre-based astronomical spectrograph for imaging spectroscopy in life sciences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roth, Martin M.; Zenichowski, Karl; Tarcea, Nicolae; Popp, Jürgen; Adelhelm, Silvia; Stolz, Marvin; Kelz, Andreas; Sandin, Christer; Bauer, Svend-Marian; Fechner, Thomas; Jahn, Thomas; Popow, Emil; Roth, Bernhard; Singh, Paul; Srivastava, Mudit; Wolter, Dieter

    2012-09-01

    Astronomical instrumentation is most of the time faced with challenging requirements in terms of sensitivity, stability, complexity, etc., and therefore leads to high performance developments that at first sight appear to be suitable only for the specific design application at the telescope. However, their usefulness in other disciplines and for other applications is not excluded. The ERA2 facility is a lab demonstrator, based on a high-performance astronomical spectrograph, which is intended to explore the innovation potential of fiber-coupled multi-channel spectroscopy for spatially resolved spectroscopy in life science, material sciences, and other areas of research.

  6. ASTROMETRY.NET: BLIND ASTROMETRIC CALIBRATION OF ARBITRARY ASTRONOMICAL IMAGES

    SciTech Connect

    Lang, Dustin; Mierle, Keir; Roweis, Sam; Hogg, David W.; Blanton, Michael

    2010-05-15

    We have built a reliable and robust system that takes as input an astronomical image, and returns as output the pointing, scale, and orientation of that image (the astrometric calibration or World Coordinate System information). The system requires no first guess, and works with the information in the image pixels alone; that is, the problem is a generalization of the 'lost in space' problem in which nothing-not even the image scale-is known. After robust source detection is performed in the input image, asterisms (sets of four or five stars) are geometrically hashed and compared to pre-indexed hashes to generate hypotheses about the astrometric calibration. A hypothesis is only accepted as true if it passes a Bayesian decision theory test against a null hypothesis. With indices built from the USNO-B catalog and designed for uniformity of coverage and redundancy, the success rate is >99.9% for contemporary near-ultraviolet and visual imaging survey data, with no false positives. The failure rate is consistent with the incompleteness of the USNO-B catalog; augmentation with indices built from the Two Micron All Sky Survey catalog brings the completeness to 100% with no false positives. We are using this system to generate consistent and standards-compliant meta-data for digital and digitized imaging from plate repositories, automated observatories, individual scientific investigators, and hobbyists. This is the first step in a program of making it possible to trust calibration meta-data for astronomical data of arbitrary provenance.

  7. Calibrating the Astronomical Extinction Spectrophotometer for NIST Stars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McGraw, John T.; Zimmer, P. C.; Karle, J.; Zirzow, D. C.; Cramer, C.; Lykke, K.; Woodward, J. T.

    2013-01-01

    The NIST Stars program is currently creating a new generation of absolutely calibrated spectroradiometric standard stars traceable to NIST laboratory standards. A fundamental task required to accomplish this is the transfer of the laboratory irradiance standard to telescopes in the field. We describe the system for calibration transfer for the Astronomical Extinction Spectrophotometer (AESOP), a 100mm diameter objective grating spectrometer designed to precisely and accurately measure the spectral energy distribution of bright (V<6) stars. The transfer standard for AESoP is a nearly identical 100mm diameter optical system with no dispersive element, CAL, which is co-mounted with AESoP but can be easily removed and taken to NIST for calibration in their Telescope Calibration Facility (TCF). CAL is designed to measure one wavelength at a time using a novel technique where CAL’s input pupil is imaged onto a CCD read out in TDI mode. The row read rate and on-chip binning can be modulated to match a very large dynamic range, from 100aW at a signal-to-noise ratio of 10 per second to 1nW at a signal-to-noise of >20000 per second. Moreover, CAL never observes the sky, only calibration sources and otherwise has its aperture covered to prevent dust accumulation. In the TCF, CAL measures a wavelength-tunable source that is simultaneous monitored using a NIST working standard photodiode. The responsivity of the photodiode and its distance from the source is accurately known. The distance from CAL to the source, of the order 50m, is also accurately known, as is CAL’s collecting area, allowing highly accurate transfer of the diode calibration to CAL. In AESoP’s mobile calibration lab, CAL and AESoP are mounted side-by-side with apertures aligned and both observe a collimated, tunable source that simultaneously illuminates both systems. AESoP and CAL are currently under field testing. We present calibration data and some initial stellar spectral energy distribution

  8. A flux calibration device for the SuperNova Integral Field Spectrograph (SNIFS)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lombardo, Simona; Aldering, Greg; Hoffmann, Akos; Kowalski, Marek; Kuesters, Daniel; Reif, Klaus; Rigault, Michael

    2014-07-01

    Observational cosmology employing optical surveys often require precise flux calibration. In this context we present SNIFS Calibration Apparatus (SCALA), a flux calibration system developed for the SuperNova Integral Field Spectrograph (SNIFS), operating at the University of Hawaii 2.2 m telescope. SCALA consists of a hexagonal array of 18 small parabolic mirrors distributed over the face of, and feeding parallel light to, the telescope entrance pupil. The mirrors are illuminated by integrating spheres and a wavelength-tunable (from UV to IR) light source, generating light beams with opening angles of 1°. These nearly parallel beams are flat and flux-calibrated at a subpercent level, enabling us to calibrate our "telescope + SNIFS system" at the required precision.

  9. A Laser Frequency Comb System for Absolute Calibration of the VTT Echelle Spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doerr, H.-P.; Steinmetz, T.; Holzwarth, R.; Kentischer, T.; Schmidt, W.

    2012-10-01

    A wavelength calibration system based on a laser frequency comb (LFC) was developed in a co-operation between the Kiepenheuer-Institut für Sonnenphysik, Freiburg, Germany and the Max-Planck-Institut für Quantenoptik, Garching, Germany for permanent installation at the German Vacuum Tower Telescope (VTT) on Tenerife, Canary Islands. The system was installed successfully in October 2011. By simultaneously recording the spectra from the Sun and the LFC, for each exposure a calibration curve can be derived from the known frequencies of the comb modes that is suitable for absolute calibration at the meters per second level. We briefly summarize some topics in solar physics that benefit from absolute spectroscopy and point out the advantages of LFC compared to traditional calibration techniques. We also sketch the basic setup of the VTT calibration system and its integration with the existing echelle spectrograph.

  10. The solar-stellar spectrograph: Project description, data calibration, and initial results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hall, Jeffrey C.; Lockwood, G. W.

    1995-01-01

    The Solar-Stellar Spectrograph (SSS) is a project initiated in the 1980s by scientists from the High Altitude Observatory, Lowell Observatory, the Pennsylvania State Universty, and the Sacramento Peak Observatory. The instrument is comprised of two spectrographs: one is an echelle covering the wavelength range lambda lambda 5000-9200, while the second is a Littrow spectrograph covering the Ca II and H and K region around lambda 3950. This project is designed to address a broad range of outstanding questions regarding the nature of stellar activity cycles. The unique capability of the spectrograph is its ability to record both solar and stellar spectra, allowing more accurate placement of the Sun in the stellar context than has been feasible previously. In this report we discuss the motivation for this project, the instrumental characteristics, the observing programs, the methods being used to reduce, calibrate, and analyze the data, and the connection of our databases to extant databases. A central part of the discussion is the connection of the Sun with the stars both in terms of existing solar and stellar activity indices as well as physical flux. This work resolves a long-standing discrepancy in this area and establishes a protocol for relating the large set of observations from the Mount Wilson Ca II H and K project to physical flux, in preparation for future comparison to our observations and results from theory.

  11. Astronomical Spectroscopy: Calibration Sources for the Near Infrared

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kerber, Florian; Aldenius, Maria; Nave, Gillian; Sansonetti, Craig J.; Ralchenko, Yuri

    2009-05-01

    The European Southern Observatory (ESO) operates a multitude of telescopes and instruments at its La Silla Paranal Observatory in Chile. The most powerful ones are the four 8-m telescopes of the Very Large Telescope (VLT). ESO is currently studying an Extremely Large Telescope (ELT) with a diameter of the primary mirror of 42 m. This telescope will make use of various techniques of adaptive optics (AO) to counter the perturbing effect of Earth's atmosphere. Due to the wavelength dependent performance of AO the European ELT (E-ELT) will be most powerful in the near-infrared (IR) domain. A collaboration of ESO and the US Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) has successfully established wavelength standards in the emission spectrum of Th-Ar hollow cathode lamps for high resolution spectroscopy. This has been a major advancement for near-IR astronomy, which has traditionally relied on atmospheric features for wavelength calibration. ESO and NIST report on joint efforts to identify and establish the best sources for wavelength calibration for the 2nd generation of VLT instrument and for the E-ELT. To this end we are studying the near-IR spectra of various elements. With the focus of astronomy moving toward IR wavelengths the astronomical community will have a need for a large amount of atomic and molecular data in order to perform the scientific analysis of their data. It will be essential that the long-standing and fruitful collaboration between astrophysics and the atomic and molecular physics community continues in the future.

  12. Extreme Ultraviolet Variability Experiment (EVE) Multiple EUV Grating Spectrographs (MEGS): Radiometric Calibrations and Results

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hock, R. A.; Woods, T. N.; Crotser, D.; Eparvier, F. G.; Woodraska, D. L.; Chamberlin, P. C.; Woods, E. C.

    2010-01-01

    The NASA Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO), scheduled for launch in early 2010, incorporates a suite of instruments including the Extreme Ultraviolet Variability Experiment (EVE). EVE has multiple instruments including the Multiple Extreme ultraviolet Grating Spectrographs (MEGS) A, B, and P instruments, the Solar Aspect Monitor (SAM), and the Extreme ultraviolet SpectroPhotometer (ESP). The radiometric calibration of EVE, necessary to convert the instrument counts to physical units, was performed at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Synchrotron Ultraviolet Radiation Facility (SURF III) located in Gaithersburg, Maryland. This paper presents the results and derived accuracy of this radiometric calibration for the MEGS A, B, P, and SAM instruments, while the calibration of the ESP instrument is addressed by Didkovsky et al. . In addition, solar measurements that were taken on 14 April 2008, during the NASA 36.240 sounding-rocket flight, are shown for the prototype EVE instruments.

  13. Transferring the Rb+ hyperfine-structure stability to a Fabry-Perot resonator used as a frequency standard for astronomical spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huke, Philipp; Holzhüter, Hanno; Reiners, Ansgar

    2015-06-01

    We report on the experimental realization of locking a Fabry-Perot interferometer (FPI) onto a stabilized diode laser for the calibration of astronomical spectrographs. The external cavity diode laser (ECDL) is stabilized to the 85Rb+ F* = 2 --> F = 3 transition with a pump-probe setup. The stability of the 85Rb+ reached between optical clocks is on the order of 10-13.1 and can be used to reduce the linewidth / drift of the ECDL to a few kHz.2 The measured linewidth of the transition is around 20 MHz due to unavoidable misalignment between pump- and probe-beam, power- and Doppler-broadening at room temperature.2 The aim is to transfer this stability to a FPI that can be used as optical frequency standard: Therefore the phase of the light reflected from the FPI is observed using the Pound-Drever-Hall method. The theoretically reachable stability of a few mHz/Hz3 is limited by different noise factors. In order to identify these noise factors we a) follow the calculation of noise factors given by, 4 b) calculate the contribution of misalignment and insufficient mode matching by applying the generalized matrix-formalism, 5 and c) estimate the contribution of the initial laser linewidth and the present electronic noise sources.

  14. Calibration of high accuracy radial velocity spectrographs: beyond the Th-Ar lamps

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wildi, Francois; Pepe, Francesco; Lovis, Christophe; Chazelas, Bruno; Wilken, Tobias; Manescau, Antonio; Pasquini, Luca; Holzwarth, Ronald; Stenimetz, Tilo; Udem, Thomas; Hänsch, Theodor; Lo Curto, Gaspare

    2009-08-01

    Since its first light in 2003, the HARPS radial velocity spectrograph (RVS) has performed exquisitely well on the 3.6m ESO telescope at La Silla Observatory (Chile). It now routinely exhibits a measurement noise of 0.5 m/s or 1.7 10-9 on a relative scale. Despite innovative work by Lovis and colleagues [14] to improve the accuracy obtained with the calibration lamps used, there is evidence that still better performance could be achieved by using more stable wavelength standards. In this paper, we present two methods are aim at overcoming the shortcoming of present day calibrators and that could satisfy the need for a cm/s -level calibrator like we are planning on using on the 2nd generation instruments at the VLT and on the ELT instrumentation. A temperature-stabilized Fabry-Perot interferometer has the promise of being stable to a few cm/s and has very uniform line levels and spacings, while a laser comb has already achieved a precision better than 15 cm/s, despite using only one of the 72 orders of the spectrographs.

  15. Calibration of an echelle spectrograph with an astro-comb: a laser frequency comb with very high repetition rate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phillips, David F.; Glenday, Alex; Li, Chih-Hao; Furesz, Gabor; Benedick, Andrew J.; Chang, Guoqing N.; Chen, Li-Jin; Korzennik, Sylvain; Sasselov, Dimitar; Kaertner, Franz X.; Szentgyorgyi, Andrew; Walsworth, Ronald L.

    2012-09-01

    Searches for extrasolar planets using precision radial velocity (PRV) techniques are approaching Earth-like planet sensitivity, however require an improvement of one order of magnitude to identify earth-mass planets in the habitable zone of sun-like stars. A key limitation is spectrograph calibration. An astro-comb, an octave-spanning laser frequency comb and a Fabry-Pérot cavity, producing evenly spaced frequencies with large wavelength coverage, is a promising tool for improved wavelength calibration. We demonstrate the calibration of a high-resolution astrophysical spectrograph below the 1 m/s level in the 8000-9000 Å and 4200 Å spectral bands.

  16. A calibration of the Naval Postgraduate School middle ultraviolet spectrograph and an analysis of the OII 2470 A emission obtained by the middle ultraviolet spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hymas, Hewitt M.

    1994-06-01

    The NPS middle ultraviolet spectrograph, MUSTANG, instrument was tested using standard techniques to determine the wavelength calibration and overall sensitivity. The instrument was launched on March 10, 1994 on a NASA sounding rocket from Poker Flats, Alaska. Post-flight calibration indicates the wavelength calibration did not change as a result of the launch and no significant change in the sensitivity calibration. Ultraviolet dayglow spectra of the earth's ionosphere from 1800 A to 3400 A were obtained during a similar launch on March 19, 1992 from White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico. Data were obtained on the downleg of this earlier experiment and range in altitude from 115 km to 320 km. Analysis of the data from 2420 A to 2490 A was conducted to obtain the intensity profile of the OII 2470.4 A multiplet. The analysis used synthetic spectra generated for the N2 Vegard-Kaplan and the nitric-oxide gamma band emissions.

  17. Extreme Ultraviolet Variability Experiment (EVE) Multiple EUV Grating Spectrographs (MEGS): Radiometric Calibrations and Results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hock, R. A.; Chamberlin, P. C.; Woods, T. N.; Crotser, D.; Eparvier, F. G.; Woodraska, D. L.; Woods, E. C.

    2012-01-01

    The NASA Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO), scheduled for launch in early 2010, incorporates a suite of instruments including the Extreme Ultraviolet Variability Experiment (EVE). EVE has multiple instruments including the Multiple Extreme ultraviolet Grating Spectrographs (MEGS) A, B, and P instruments, the Solar Aspect Monitor (SAM), and the Extreme ultraviolet SpectroPhotometer (ESP). The radiometric calibration of EVE, necessary to convert the instrument counts to physical units, was performed at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Synchrotron Ultraviolet Radiation Facility (SURF III) located in Gaithersburg, Maryland. This paper presents the results and derived accuracy of this radiometric calibration for the MEGS A, B, P, and SAM instruments, while the calibration of the ESP instrument is addressed by Didkovsky et al. ( Solar Phys., 2010, doi:10.1007/s11207-009-9485-8). In addition, solar measurements that were taken on 14 April 2008, during the NASA 36.240 sounding-rocket flight, are shown for the prototype EVE instruments.

  18. Automated model-based calibration of short-wavelength infrared (SWIR) imaging spectrographs.

    PubMed

    Kosec, Matjaž; Bürmen, Miran; Tomaževič, Dejan; Pernuš, Franjo; Likar, Boštjan

    2012-10-01

    Among the variety of available hyperspectral imaging systems, the line-scan technique stands out for its short acquisition time and good signal-to-noise ratio. However, due to imperfections in the camera lens and, in particular, optical components of the imaging spectrograph, the acquired images are spatially and spectrally distorted, which can significantly degrade the accuracy of the subsequent hyperspectral image analysis. In this work, we propose and evaluate an automated method for correction of spatial and spectral distortions introduced by a line-scan hyperspectral imaging system operating in the short wavelength infrared (SWIR) spectral range from 1000 nm to 2500 nm. The proposed method is based on non-rigid registration of the distorted and reference images corresponding to two passive calibration objects. The results of the validation show that the proposed method is accurate, efficient, and applicable for calibration of line-scan hyperspectral imaging systems. Moreover, the design of the method and of the calibration objects allows integration with systems operating in diffuse reflectance or transmittance modes. PMID:23031695

  19. Pre-Flight Calibration Results for the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph, III. Optical Performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bowers, C.; Gull, T.; Kimble, R.; Woodgate, B.; Kaiser, M.; Hartig, G.; Valenti, J.; Hood, D.; Sullivan, J.; Standley, C.; Beck, T.; Plait, P.; Sandoval, J.

    1996-12-01

    The Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) is a versatile, multi-purpose instrument which operates from the ultraviolet to near infrared (115-1000nm) aboard the Hubble Space Telescope (HST). An internal, two mirror relay system replaces COSTAR correcting the spherical aberration and astigmatism present at the STIS field position, about 6 arcminutes from the HST field center. The various STIS modes permit low and medium spectroscopy throughout the spectral range and over the 25 arc-second ultraviolet and 52 arcsecond visible fields. High resolution (30-100,000) echelle spectroscopy capability is provided in the ultraviolet (115-310nm). Broad band imaging is also possible over the complete spectral range and fields and a small selection of narrow and passband filters is available. A wide selection of slits and apertures permits various resolution and spatial scales to be selected in all modes. Coronagraphic stops are provided to permit observations in the visible (310 - 1000nm). On board calibration lamps permit wavelength calibration and flat fields to be obtained. Pre-flight calibration of STIS has been completed. We summarize the optical performance of STIS including measured resolution, scattering and encircled energy characterization in this paper.

  20. The lick-index calibration of the Gemini multi-object spectrographs

    SciTech Connect

    Puzia, Thomas H.; Miller, Bryan W.; Trancho, Gelys; Basarab, Brett; Mirocha, Jordan T.; Butler, Karen E-mail: bmiller@gemini.edu

    2013-06-01

    We present the calibration of the spectroscopic Lick/IDS standard line-index system for measurements obtained with the Gemini Multi-Object Spectrographs known as GMOS-North and GMOS-South. We provide linear correction functions for each of the 25 standard Lick line indices for the B600 grism and two instrumental setups, one with 0.''5 slit width and 1 × 1 CCD pixel binning (corresponding to ∼2.5 Å spectral resolution) and the other with 0.''75 slit width and 2 × 2 binning (∼4 Å). We find small and well-defined correction terms for the set of Balmer indices Hβ, Hγ {sub A}, and Hδ {sub A} along with the metallicity sensitive indices Fe5015, Fe5270, Fe5335, Fe5406, Mg{sub 2}, and Mgb that are widely used for stellar population diagnostics of distant stellar systems. We find other indices that sample molecular absorption bands, such as TiO{sub 1} and TiO{sub 2}, with very wide wavelength coverage or indices that sample very weak molecular and atomic absorption features, such as Mg{sub 1}, as well as indices with particularly narrow passband definitions, such as Fe4384, Ca4455, Fe4531, Ca4227, and Fe5782, which are less robustly calibrated. These indices should be used with caution.

  1. Radiometric calibration of the vacuum-ultraviolet spectrograph SUMER on the SOHO spacecraft with the B detector.

    PubMed

    Schühle, U; Curdt, W; Hollandt, J; Feldman, U; Lemaire, P; Wilhelm, K

    2000-01-20

    The Solar Ultraviolet Measurement of Emitted Radiation (SUMER) vacuum-ultraviolet spectrograph was calibrated in the laboratory before the integration of the instrument on the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) spacecraft in 1995. During the scientific operation of the SOHO it has been possible to track the radiometric calibration of the SUMER spectrograph since March 1996 by a strategy that employs various methods to update the calibration status and improve the coverage of the spectral calibration curve. The results for the A Detector were published previously [Appl. Opt. 36, 6416 (1997)]. During three years of operation in space, the B detector was used for two and one-half years. We describe the characteristics of the B detector and present results of the tracking and refinement of the spectral calibration curves with it. Observations of the spectra of the stars alpha and rho Leonis permit an extrapolation of the calibration curves in the range from 125 to 149.0 nm. Using a solar coronal spectrum observed above the solar disk, we can extrapolate the calibration curves by measuring emission line pairs with well-known intensity ratios. The sensitivity ratio of the two photocathode areas can be obtained by registration of many emission lines in the entire spectral range on both KBr-coated and bare parts of the detector's active surface. The results are found to be consistent with the published calibration performed in the laboratory in the wavelength range from 53 to 124 nm. We can extrapolate the calibration outside this range to 147 nm with a relative uncertainty of ?30% (1varsigma) for wavelengths longer than 125 nm and to 46.5 nm with 50% uncertainty for the short-wavelength range below 53 nm. PMID:18337910

  2. Precise astronomical flux calibration and its impact on studying the nature of the dark energy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stubbs, Christopher W.; Brown, Yorke J.

    2015-12-01

    Measurements of the luminosity of Type Ia supernovae versus redshift provided the original evidence for the accelerating expansion of the Universe and the existence of dark energy. Despite substantial improvements in survey methodology, systematic uncertainty in flux calibration dominates the error budget for this technique, exceeding both statistics and other systematic uncertainties. Consequently, any further collection of Type Ia supernova data will fail to refine the constraints on the nature of dark energy unless we also improve the state of the art in astronomical flux calibration to the order of 1%. We describe how these systematic errors arise from calibration of instrumental sensitivity, atmospheric transmission and Galactic extinction, and discuss ongoing efforts to meet the 1% precision challenge using white dwarf stars as celestial standards, exquisitely calibrated detectors as fundamental metrologic standards, and real-time atmospheric monitoring.

  3. Kyoto Tridimensional Spectrograph II

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sugai, Hajime; Ohtani, Hiroshi; Ishigaki, Tsuyoshi; Hayashi, Tadashi; Ozaki, Shinobu; Hattori, Takashi; Ishii, M.; Sasaki, Minoru; Takeyama, Norihide

    1998-07-01

    We are building the second version of the Kyoto Tridimensional Spectrograph (Ohtani et al., this symposium). This will be mounted on the MAGNUM, a 2-m telescope under construction at Haleakala, and also on the SUBARU. The spectrograph has four observational modes: Fabry-Perot imager, integral field spectrograph (IFS) with a microlens array, long-slit spectrograph, and filter-imaging modes. The new spectrograph is significantly better than the first version in several ways. The IFS has as many as 37 X 37 microlenses, each of which subtends 0' .39 at the MAGNUM. The optics is designed to be used in wide wavelength ranges from 360 nm to 900 nm. The transmission at any wavelength between 370 and 900 nm is designed to exceed 50% for the collimator plus camera system, and to reach almost 40% even at 360 nm. In order to achieve high efficiency at short wavelengths, we use an anti- reflection coated backside-illuminated 2K X 2K CCD. We are also planning a further improvement by using multi-layer anti- reflection coatings for lenses, in collaboration with National Astronomical Observatory, Japan. In order to assure good image quality under a severe weight limit of 150 kg for this instrument, we have carried out mechanical design by calculating the flexure of the instrument for all telescope attitudes with finite element analysis, and succeeded in limiting the maximum flexure to 30 micrometer. This does not degrade image quality. The movements on the CCD of the light from the center of the focal plane have also been simulated, depending on the telescope attitudes. This is important to obtain not only a good image, but also a correct flat field and wavelength calibration in the IFS mode. The movements are expected to be confined almost within one pixel for an attitude, which is considered to be small enough.

  4. Supporting Evidence for the Astronomically Calibrated Age of Fish Canyon Sanidine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rivera, T. A.; Storey, M.; Zeeden, C.; Kuiper, K.; Hilgen, F.

    2010-12-01

    The relative nature of the 40Ar/39Ar radio-isotopic dating technique requires that the age and error of the monitor mineral be accurately known. The most widely accepted monitor for Cenozoic geochronology is the Fish Canyon sanidine (FCs), whose recommended published ages have varied by up to 2% over the past two decades. To reconcile the discrepancy among recommended ages, researchers have turned to the use of (i) intercalibration experiments with primary argon standards, (ii) cross-calibration with U-Pb ages, and (iii) cross-calibration with sanidine-hosted tephras present in astronomically tuned stratigraphic sections. The increasingly robust quality of the astronomical timescale, with precision better than 0.1% for the last 10 million years, suggests this method of intercalibration as the best way to proceed with addressing the true age of FCs. Recently, Kuiper, et al. (2008) determined an astronomically calibrated age of 28.201 ± 0.046 Ma (2σ), based upon the Moroccan Melilla Basin Messâdit section. Here, we provide independent verification for the Kuiper, et al. (2008) FCs age using sanidines extracted from a tephra intercalated in another Mediterranean-based astronomically tuned section. The direct tuning of this section was achieved through correlation to long (~400 kyr) and short (~100 kyr) eccentricity, followed by tuning of basic sedimentary cycles to precession and summer insolation, using the La2004(1,1) astronomical solution (Laskar, et al., 2004). We employed a Nu Instruments Noblesse multi-collector noble gas mass spectrometer for the 40Ar/39Ar experiments, analyzing single crystals of FCs relative to sanidines from the astronomically dated tephra. The use of the multi-collector instrument allowed us to obtain high precision analyses with a level of precision for fully propagated external errors for FCs near the 0.1% goal of EARTHTIME. The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Community's Seventh Framework

  5. Astronomical calibration of the geological timescale: closing the middle Eocene gap

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Westerhold, T.; Röhl, U.; Frederichs, T.; Bohaty, S. M.; Zachos, J. C.

    2015-09-01

    To explore cause and consequences of past climate change, very accurate age models such as those provided by the astronomical timescale (ATS) are needed. Beyond 40 million years the accuracy of the ATS critically depends on the correctness of orbital models and radioisotopic dating techniques. Discrepancies in the age dating of sedimentary successions and the lack of suitable records spanning the middle Eocene have prevented development of a continuous astronomically calibrated geological timescale for the entire Cenozoic Era. We now solve this problem by constructing an independent astrochronological stratigraphy based on Earth's stable 405 kyr eccentricity cycle between 41 and 48 million years ago (Ma) with new data from deep-sea sedimentary sequences in the South Atlantic Ocean. This new link completes the Paleogene astronomical timescale and confirms the intercalibration of radioisotopic and astronomical dating methods back through the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM, 55.930 Ma) and the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary (66.022 Ma). Coupling of the Paleogene 405 kyr cyclostratigraphic frameworks across the middle Eocene further paves the way for extending the ATS into the Mesozoic.

  6. Development of Fiber Fabry-Perot Interferometers as Stable Near-infrared Calibration Sources for High Resolution Spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Halverson, Samuel; Mahadevan, Suvrath; Ramsey, Lawrence; Hearty, Fred; Wilson, John; Holtzman, Jon; Redman, Stephen; Nave, Gillian; Nidever, David; Nelson, Matt; Venditti, Nick; Bizyaev, Dmitry; Fleming, Scott

    2014-05-01

    We discuss the ongoing development of single-mode fiber Fabry-Perot (FFP) Interferometers as precise astrophotonic calibration sources for high precision radial velocity (RV) spectrographs. FFPs are simple, inexpensive, monolithic units that can yield a stable and repeatable output spectrum. An FFP is a unique alternative to a traditional etalon, as the interferometric cavity is made of single-mode fiber rather than an air-gap spacer. This design allows for excellent collimation, high spectral finesse, rigid mechanical stability, insensitivity to vibrations, and no need for vacuum operation. The device we have tested is a commercially available product from Micron Optics.10 Our development path is targeted toward a calibration source for the Habitable-Zone Planet Finder (HPF), a near-infrared spectrograph designed to detect terrestrial-mass planets around low-mass stars, but this reference could also be used in many existing and planned fiber-fed spectrographs as we illustrate using the Apache Point Observatory Galactic Evolution Experiment (APOGEE) instrument. With precise temperature control of the fiber etalon, we achieve a thermal stability of 100 μK and associated velocity uncertainty of 22 cm s-1. We achieve a precision of ≈2 m s-1 in a single APOGEE fiber over 12 hr using this new photonic reference after removal of systematic correlations. This high precision (close to the expected photon-limited floor) is a testament to both the excellent intrinsic wavelength stability of the fiber interferometer and the stability of the APOGEE instrument design. Overall instrument velocity precision is 80 cm s-1 over 12 hr when averaged over all 300 APOGEE fibers and after removal of known trends and pressure correlations, implying the fiber etalon is intrinsically stable to significantly higher precision.

  7. Component Radiometric Calibrations of the EUV Normal-Incidence Spectrograph (EUNIS)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, R. J.; Rabin, D. M.

    2005-12-01

    The EUV Normal-Incidence Spectrograph (EUNIS) is a sounding rocket experiment that will investigate the energetics of the solar corona and hotter transition region through high-resolution imaging spectroscopy with a rapid (2 s) cadence. EUNIS features independent optical systems to record spatially co-aligned spectra simultaneously over its two bandpasses of 170--205 and 300--370 Å. All the components in the detection chain have been characterized, including multilayer telescope mirrors, lithographic slits, multilayer diffraction gratings, microchannel-plate intensifiers, and active-pixel sensors. The results demonstrate that EUNIS is the most sensitive solar EUV spectrograph in existence. Its first flight is scheduled for 2005 November. EUNIS is supported by NASA RTOP 432-03-31.

  8. A laser locked Fabry-Perot etalon with 3 cm/s stability for wavelength calibration of Doppler spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwab, Christian; Gurevich, Yulia; Stuermer, Julian; Fuehrer, Thorsten; Lamoreaux, Steve; Walther, Thomas; Quirrenbach, Andreas

    2015-12-01

    Superior wavelength calibration is a major component in attaining Doppler precision of 10 cm/s and better with high resolution spectrographs. To achieve this goal, current calibration methods like thorium-argon lamps and iodine cells need to be replaced by more precise techniques. The ideal wavelength calibrator has a grid of densely spaced, narrow lines of equal brightness and works over a wide wavelength range. Laser frequency combs have received much attention recently, but they are complex and costly. We present an alternative method that builds on the success of passively stabilized Fabry-Perot etalons: we actively stabilize the etalon to an atomic transition, which provides an absolute frequency reference. We use saturated absorption laser spectroscopy to detect the hyperfine transitions of rubidium at 780 nm, a well-established frequency standard. Then we tune an etalon parameter (for instance, temperature) to keep one etalon peak coincident with the rubidium transition. Our setup is designed to be simple and robust, adaptable to various etalons, and to work in the infrared as well as the visible spectral range. We achieve a locking precision that is equivalent to a Doppler precision of better than 3 cm/s over any reasonable integration time.

  9. Astronomical calibration and global correlation of the Santonian (Cretaceous) based on the marine carbon isotope record

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thibault, N.; Jarvis, I.; Voigt, S.; Gale, A. S.; Attree, K.; Jenkyns, H. C.

    2016-06-01

    High-resolution records of bulk carbonate carbon isotopes have been generated for the Upper Coniacian to Lower Campanian interval of the sections at Seaford Head (southern England) and Bottaccione (central Italy). An unambiguous stratigraphic correlation is presented for the base and top of the Santonian between the Boreal and Tethyan realms. Orbital forcing of carbon and oxygen isotopes at Seaford Head points to the Boreal Santonian spanning five 405 kyr cycles (Sa1 to Sa5). Correlation of the Seaford Head time scale to that of the Niobrara Formation (Western Interior Basin) permits anchoring these records to the La2011 astronomical solution at the Santonian-Campanian (Sa/Ca) boundary, which has been recently dated to 84.19 ± 0.38 Ma. Among the five tuning options examined, option 2 places the Sa/Ca at the 84.2 Ma 405 kyr insolation minimum and appears as the most likely. This solution indicates that minima of the 405 kyr filtered output of the resistivity in the Niobrara Formation correlate to 405 kyr insolation minima in the astronomical solution and to maxima in the filtered δ13C of Seaford Head. We suggest that variance in δ13C is driven by climate forcing of the proportions of CaCO3 versus organic carbon burial on land and in oceanic basins. The astronomical calibration generates a 200 kyr mismatch of the Coniacian-Santonian boundary age between the Boreal Realm in Europe and the Western Interior, due either to diachronism of the lowest occurrence of the inoceramid Cladoceramus undulatoplicatus between the two regions or to remaining uncertainties of radiometric dating and cyclostratigraphic records.

  10. Echelle spectrograph calibration with a frequency comb based on a harmonically mode-locked fiber laser: a proposal.

    PubMed

    McFerran, J J

    2009-05-10

    Details for constructing an astronomical frequency comb suitable as a wavelength reference for échelle spectrographs associated with optical telescopes are outlined. The source laser for the frequency comb is a harmonically mode-locked fiber laser with a central wavelength of 1.56 microm. The means of producing a repetition rate greater than 7 GHz and a peak optical power of approximately 8 kW are discussed. Conversion of the oscillator light into the visible can occur through a two-step process of (i) nonlinear conversion in periodically poled lithium niobate and (ii) spectral broadening in photonic crystal fiber. While not necessarily octave spanning in spectral range to permit the use of an f -to- 2f interferometer for offset frequency control, the frequency comb can be granted accuracy by linking the mode spacing and a comb tooth to separate frequency references. The design avoids the use of a Fabry-Perot cavity to increase the mode spacing of the frequency comb; however, the level of supermode suppression and sideband asymmetry in the fiber oscillator and in the subsequent frequency conversion stages are aspects that need to be experimentally tested. PMID:19424399

  11. Echelle spectrograph calibration with a frequency comb based on a harmonically mode-locked fiber laser: a proposal

    SciTech Connect

    McFerran, J. J.

    2009-05-10

    Details for constructing an astronomical frequency comb suitable as a wavelength reference for echelle spectrographs associated with optical telescopes are outlined. The source laser for the frequency comb is a harmonically mode-locked fiber laser with a central wavelength of 1.56 {mu}m. The means of producing a repetition rate greater than 7 GHz and a peak optical power of {approx}8 kW are discussed. Conversion of the oscillator light into the visible can occur through a two-step process of (i) nonlinear conversion in periodically poled lithium niobate and (ii) spectral broadening in photonic crystal fiber. While not necessarily octave spanning in spectral range to permit the use of an f -to- 2f interferometer for offset frequency control, the frequency comb can be granted accuracy by linking the mode spacing and a comb tooth to separate frequency references. The design avoids the use of a Fabry-Perot cavity to increase the mode spacing of the frequency comb; however, the level of supermode suppression and sideband asymmetry in the fiber oscillator and in the subsequent frequency conversion stages are aspects that need to be experimentally tested.

  12. Toward a continuous 405-kyr-calibrated Astronomical Time Scale for the Mesozoic Era

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hinnov, Linda; Ogg, James; Huang, Chunju

    2010-05-01

    Mesozoic cyclostratigraphy is being assembled into a continuous Astronomical Time Scale (ATS) tied to the Earth's cyclic orbital parameters. Recognition of a nearly ubiquitous, dominant ~400-kyr cycling in formations throughout the era has been particularly striking. Composite formations spanning contiguous intervals up to 50 myr clearly express these long-eccentricity cycles, and in some cases, this cycling is defined by third- or fourth-order sea-level sequences. This frequency is associated with the 405-kyr orbital eccentricity cycle, which provides a basic metronome and enables the extension of the well-defined Cenozoic ATS to scale the majority of the Mesozoic Era. This astronomical calibration has a resolution comparable to the 1% to 0.1% precision for radioisotope dating of Mesozoic ash beds, but with the added benefit of providing continuous stratigraphic coverage between dated beds. Extended portions of the Mesozoic ATS provide solutions to long-standing geologic problems of tectonics, eustasy, paleoclimate change, and rates of seafloor spreading.

  13. A catalogue of photometric sequences (suppl. 3). [for astronomical photograph calibration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Argue, A. N.; Miller, E. W.; Warren, W. H., Jr.

    1983-01-01

    In stellar photometry studies, certain difficulties have arisen because of the lack of suitable photometric sequences for calibrating astronomical photographs. In order to eliminate these difficulties, active observers were contacted with a view to drawing up lists of suitable sequences. Replies from 63 authors offering data on 412 sequences were received. Most data were in the UBV system and had been obtained between 1968 and 1973. These were included in the original catalogue. The Catalogue represents a continuation of the earlier Photometric Catalogue compiled by Sharov and Jakimova (1970). A small supplement containing 69 sequences was issued in 1973. Supplement 2 was produced in 1976 and contained 320 sequences. Supplement 3 has now been compiled. It contains 1271 sequences.

  14. Calibration of a cylindrical RF capacitance probe. [for radio astronomical studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mosier, S. R.; Kaiser, M. L.

    1974-01-01

    The calibration is considered of an RF antenna capacitance probe carried aboard the RAE-1 spacecraft and the correction of the probe for external effects, believed to be primarily due to local positive ion sheaths and/or photoelectron sheaths surrounding the antenna. The RAE-1 spacecraft was launched in July 1968 into a 5850-km. Circular orbit of 121-degree inclination and carried several antenna and radiometer systems covering a frequency range of 0.2 to 9.2 MHz for radio astronomical studies. The RF capacitance probe measurements discussed utilized a 37-meter electric dipole antenna formed by two monopoles made of silver-coated beryllium-copper alloy tapes formed into hollow cylindrical tubes 1.3 cm in diameter.

  15. Near-infrared wavelength calibration of astrophysical spectrographs with the emission spectrum of the CN molecule

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boesch, Andreas; Reiners, Ansgar; Bernath, Peter F.; Seifahrt, Andreas

    2014-07-01

    Many astrophysical applications require precise wavelength calibration of high resolution spectra. Calibration sources for this purpose at near-infrared wavelengths are sparse. We present an experimental setup for an electrodeless microwave discharge lamp that produces molecular band emission spectra. The discharge is sustained inside a glass cell filled with a combination of different gases producing CN molecules with many spectral lines in the wavelength range between 1 μm and 2.5 μm. We investigate this lamp in terms of its usability for wavelength calibration in high resolution spectroscopy. In this conference contribution, we present the experimental setup and the characterization of the calibration source in terms of line identification, line intensities, and line density. We find approximately 20,000 lines in the spectral region of 1 - 2 μm with relative peak intensities in a range of two orders of magnitude. The results from a first endurance test show that the durability of the spectrum requires careful attention in the course of further development.

  16. Current Calibration Efforts and Performance of the HST Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph: Echelle Flux Calibration, the BAR5 Occulter, and Lamp Lifetimes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Monroe, TalaWanda R.; Aloisi, Alessandra; Debes, John H.; Jedrzejewski, Robert I.; Lockwood, Sean A.; Peeples, Molly S.; Proffitt, Charles R.; Riley, Allyssa; Walborn, Nolan R.

    2016-06-01

    The variety of operating modes of the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) on the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) continues to allow STIS users to obtain unique, high quality observations and cutting-edge results 19 years after its installation on HST. STIS is currently the only instrument available to the astronomy community that allows high spectral and spatial resolution spectroscopy in the FUV and NUV, including echelle modes. STIS also supports solar-blind imaging in the FUV. In the optical, STIS provides long-slit, first-order spectra that take advantage of HST's superb spatial resolution, as well as several unique unfiltered coronagraphic modes, which continue to benefit the exoplanet and debris-disk communities. The STIS instrument team monitors the instrument’s health and performance over time to characterize the effects of radiation damage and continued use of the detectors and optical elements. Additionally, the STIS team continues to improve the quality of data products for the user community. We present updates on efforts to improve the echelle flux calibration of overlapping spectral orders due to changes in the grating blaze function since HST Servicing Mission 4, and efforts to push the contrast limit and smallest inner working angle attainable with the coronagraphic BAR5 occulter. We also provide updates on the performance of the STIS calibration lamps, including work to maintain the accuracy of the wavelength calibration for all modes.

  17. Astronomical calibration of the Boreal Santonian (Cretaceous) based on the marine carbon isotope record and correlation to the tropical realm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thibault, Nicolas; Jarvis, Ian; Voigt, Silke; Gale, Andy; Attree, Kevin; Jenkyns, Hugh

    2016-04-01

    New high-resolution records of bulk carbonate carbon isotopes have been generated for the Upper Coniacian to Lower Campanian interval of the reference sections at Seaford Head (southern England) and Bottaccione (Gubbio, central Italy). These records allow for a new and unambiguous stratigraphic correlation of the base and top of the Santonian between the Boreal and Tethyan realms. Orbital forcing of stable carbon and oxygen isotopes can be highlighted in the Seaford Head dataset, and a floating astronomical time scale is presented for the Santonian of the section, which spans five 405 kyr cycles (Sa1 to Sa5). Macro-, micro- and nannofossil biostratigraphy of the Seaford section is integrated along with magnetostratigraphy, carbon-isotope chemostratigraphy and cyclostratigraphy. Correlation of the Seaford Head astronomical time scale to that of the Niobrara Formation (U.S. Western Interior Basin) allows for anchoring these records to the La2011 astronomical solution at the Santonian-Campanian (Sa/Ca) boundary, which has been recently dated to 84.19±0.38 Ma. Five different astronomical tuning options are examined. The astronomical calibration generates a c. 200 kyr mismatch of the Coniacian-Santonian boundary age between the Boreal Realm in Europe and the Western Interior, likely due either to slight diachronism of the first occurrence of the inoceramid Cladoceramus undulatoplicatus between the two regions, or to remaining uncertainties of radiometric dating and the cyclostratigraphic records.

  18. On-orbit calibration of the Special Sensor Ultraviolet Scanning Imager (SSUSI): a far-UV imaging spectrograph on DMSP F-16

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morrison, Daniel; Paxton, Larry J.; Humm, David C.; Wolven, Brian; Kil, Hyosub; Zhang, Yongliang; Ogorzalek, Bernard S.; Meng, Ching-I.

    2002-01-01

    The Special Sensor Ultraviolet Spectrographic Imager (SSUSI) is currently slated for launch on the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program (DMSP) F-16 in November 2001. This instrument consists of a scanning imaging spectrograph (SIS) whose field-of-view is scanned from horizon-to-horizon and a nadir-looking photometer system (NPS). It will provide operational information about the state of the atmosphere above 100 km. The unique problems incurred by the observational requirements (e.g. that we be able to make daytime and nighttime observations) and the design trade-offs needed to meet those requirements were strong drivers on calibration requirements. Those design trade-offs and the expectation that the instrument calibration will change appreciably in-flight have led to the requirement to perform a large instrument characterization in-flight using only natural sources. We focus, in this paper, on the flight characterization of the SSUSI instrument. This includes discussions of the stellar calibration approach for radiometric calibration, measurements of internally scattered light, sensitivity to the South Atlantic Anomaly, measurements of changing pulse height distributions, and measuring changing reflectivity of a nadir viewing scan mirror. In addition, the calibration of the NPS system using natural sources is addressed.

  19. An astronomically calibrated early Paleocene magnetostratigraphy and biostratigraphy at Zumaia (Basque Basin, Northern Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dinarès-Turell, J.; Baceta, J. I.; Pujalte, V.; Orue-Etxebarria, X.; Bernaola, G.; Lorito, S.

    2003-04-01

    .22 m corresponds to the ~110 ky eccentricity cycle. We have used a band-pass filter on the coded lithologic series in the depth domain to extract the latest cycle and subsequently tuned the filter output assuming a value of 110 ky for the period of this eccentricity cycle target and then have re-evaluated the wavelet spectral content. The ~400 ky eccentricity cycle and modulations at longer periods are not significantly present. We provide a cycle-tuned duration for all intervening early Paleocene polarity chrons and estimate relative ages for bioevents. Our chronology is more complete and slightly different but compatible with an astronomically calibrated magnetostratigraphy from ODP Sites 1001A (Caribbean Sea) and 1050C (western North Atlantic) (Röhl et al, 2001), and partly with the standard GPTS of Cande and Kent (1995), which seem to have overestimated the duration of chrons C28 and C27 by 14 and 23% respectively with respect to our cycle-tuned durations. Our data may prove useful in the redefinition of the boundary between the Danian and Selandian stages.

  20. Calibration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kunze, Hans-Joachim

    Commercial spectrographic systems are usually supplied with some wave-length calibration, but it is essential that the experimenter performs his own calibration for reliable measurements. A number of sources emitting well-known emission lines are available, and the best values of their wavelengths may be taken from data banks accessible on the internet. Data have been critically evaluated for many decades by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) of the USA [13], see also p. 3. Special data bases have been established by the astronomy and fusion communities (Appendix B).

  1. GRACES: Gemini remote access to CFHT ESPaDOnS spectrograph through the longest astronomical fiber ever made: experimental phase completed

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chene, André-Nicolas; Padzer, John; Barrick, Gregory; Anthony, Andre; Benedict, Tom; Duncan, Dave; Gigoux, Pedro; Kleinman, Scot; Malo, Lison; Martioli, Eder; Moutou, Claire; Placco, Vinicius; Reshetovand, Vladimir; Rhee, Jaehyon; Roth, Katherine; Schiavon, Ricardo; Tollestrup, Eric V.; Vermeulen, Tom A.; White, John; Wooff, Robert

    2014-07-01

    The Gemini Remote Access to CFHT ESPaDONS Spectrograph has achieved first light of its experimental phase in May 2014. It successfully collected light from the Gemini North telescope and sent it through two 270 m optical fibers to the the ESPaDOnS spectrograph at CFHT to deliver high-resolution spectroscopy across the optical region. The fibers gave an average focal ratio degradation of 14% on sky, and a maximum transmittance of 85% at 800nm. GRACES achieved delivering spectra with a resolution power of R = 40,000 and R = 66,000 between 400 and 1,000 nm. It has a ~8% throughput and is sensitive to target fainter than 21st mag in 1 hour. The average acquisition time of a target is around 10 min. This project is a great example of a productive collaboration between two observatories on Maunakea that was successful due to the reciprocal involvement of the Gemini, CFHT, and NRC Herzberg teams, and all the staff involved closely or indirectly.

  2. THERMAL MODEL CALIBRATION FOR MINOR PLANETS OBSERVED WITH WISE/NEOWISE: COMPARISON WITH INFRARED ASTRONOMICAL SATELLITE

    SciTech Connect

    Mainzer, A.; Masiero, J.; Bauer, J.; Grav, T.; Wright, E.; Cutri, R. M.; Walker, R.; McMillan, R. S.

    2011-08-10

    With thermal infrared observations detected by the NEOWISE project, we have measured diameters for 1742 minor planets that were also observed by the Infrared Astronomical Satellite (IRAS). We have compared the diameters and albedo derived by applying a spherical thermal model to the objects detected by NEOWISE and find that they are generally in good agreement with the IRAS values. We have shown that diameters computed from NEOWISE data are often less systematically biased than those found with IRAS. This demonstrates that the NEOWISE data set can provide accurate physical parameters for the >157,000 minor planets that were detected by NEOWISE.

  3. Laser frequency comb techniques for precise astronomical spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murphy, Michael T.; Locke, Clayton R.; Light, Philip S.; Luiten, Andre N.; Lawrence, Jon S.

    2012-05-01

    Precise astronomical spectroscopic analyses routinely assume that individual pixels in charge-coupled devices (CCDs) have uniform sensitivity to photons. Intra-pixel sensitivity (IPS) variations may already cause small systematic errors in, for example, studies of extra-solar planets via stellar radial velocities and cosmological variability in fundamental constants via quasar spectroscopy, but future experiments requiring velocity precisions approaching ˜1 cm s-1 will be more strongly affected. Laser frequency combs have been shown to provide highly precise wavelength calibration for astronomical spectrographs, but here we show that they can also be used to measure IPS variations in astronomical CCDs in situ. We successfully tested a laser frequency comb system on the Ultra-High-Resolution Facility spectrograph at the Anglo-Australian Telescope. By modelling the two-dimensional comb signal recorded in a single CCD exposure, we find that the average IPS deviates by <8 per cent if it is assumed to vary symmetrically about the pixel centre. We also demonstrate that a series of comb exposures with absolutely known offsets between them can yield tighter constraints on symmetric IPS variations from ˜100 pixels. We discuss measurement of asymmetric IPS variations and absolute wavelength calibration of astronomical spectrographs and CCDs using frequency combs.

  4. Calibration of radio-astronomical data on the cloud. LOFAR, the pathway to SKA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sabater, J.; Sánchez-Expósito, S.; Garrido, J.; Ruiz, J. E.; Best, P. N.; Verdes-Montenegro, L.

    2015-05-01

    The radio interferometer LOFAR (LOw Frequency ARray) is fully operational now. This Square Kilometre Array (SKA) pathfinder allows the observation of the sky at frequencies between 10 and 240 MHz, a relatively unexplored region of the spectrum. LOFAR is a software defined telescope: the data is mainly processed using specialized software running in common computing facilities. That means that the capabilities of the telescope are virtually defined by software and mainly limited by the available computing power. However, the quantity of data produced can quickly reach huge volumes (several Petabytes per day). After the correlation and pre-processing of the data in a dedicated cluster, the final dataset is handled to the user (typically several Terabytes). The calibration of these data requires a powerful computing facility in which the specific state of the art software under heavy continuous development can be easily installed and updated. That makes this case a perfect candidate for a cloud infrastructure which adds the advantages of an on demand, flexible solution. We present our approach to the calibration of LOFAR data using Ibercloud, the cloud infrastructure provided by Ibergrid. With the calibration work-flow adapted to the cloud, we can explore calibration strategies for the SKA and show how private or commercial cloud infrastructures (Ibercloud, Amazon EC2, Google Compute Engine, etc.) can help to solve the problems with big datasets that will be prevalent in the future of astronomy.

  5. Updated Status and Performance for the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taylor, Joanna M.; De Rosa, Gisella; Debes, John H.; Ely, Justin; Fix, Mees B.; Fox, Andrew; Jedrzejewski, Robert I.; Lockwood, Sean A.; Monroe, TalaWanda R.; Oliveira, Cristina M.; Peeples, Molly S.; Penton, Steven V.; Plesha, Rachel; Proffitt, Charles R.; Roman-Duval, Julia; Sahnow, David J.; Sonnentrucker, Paule; Walborn, Nolan R.; White, James

    2016-06-01

    The Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) was installed on the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) in May 2009. COS is designed to perform high-sensitivity medium- and low-resolution spectroscopy of astronomical objects in the far-ultraviolet (FUV) and near-ultraviolet (NUV) wavelength regimes. We present updates on the time-dependent sensitivities of both the NUV and FUV detectors. Additionally, we discuss the appearance and mitigation of transient, isolated regions of increased count rates on the COS FUV detector called “hot spots”. We also present updates to the COS calibration pipeline, CalCOS, that provide improvements to COS data products.

  6. Panchromatic Calibration of Astronomical Observations with State-of-the-Art White Dwarf Model Atmospheres

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rauch, T.

    2016-05-01

    Theoretical spectral energy distributions (SEDs) of white dwarfs provide a powerful tool for cross-calibration and sensitivity control of instruments from the far infrared to the X-ray energy range. Such SEDs can be calculated from fully metal-line blanketed NLTE model-atmospheres that are e.g. computed by the Tübingen NLTE Model-Atmosphere Package (TMAP) that has arrived at a high level of sophistication. TMAP was successfully employed for the reliable spectral analysis of many hot, compact post-AGB stars. High-quality stellar spectra obtained over a wide energy range establish a data base with a large number of spectral lines of many successive ions of different species. Their analysis allows to determine effective temperatures, surface gravities, and element abundances of individual (pre-)white dwarfs with very small error ranges. We present applications of TMAP SEDs for spectral analyses of hot, compact stars in the parameter range from (pre-) white dwarfs to neutron stars and demonstrate the improvement of flux calibration using white-dwarf SEDs that are e.g. available via registered services in the Virtual Observatory.

  7. Updates to the Performance and Calibration of the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph on the Hubble Space Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ely, Justin; Becker, George; Biretta, John; Debes, John; Fox, Andrew; Lockwood, sean; Massa, Derck; Monroe, TalaWanda; Oliveira, Cristina; Jedrzejekski, Robert; Peeples, Molly; Penton, Steven Victor; Plesha, Rachel; Proffitt, Charles; Roman-Duval, Julia; Sahnow, David; Sana, Hugues; Sonnentrucker, Paule G.; Taylor, Joanna; Walborn, Nolan

    2015-08-01

    The Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) on the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) has been on orbit for approximately 18 years and continues to produce high quality scientific results using a diverse complement of operating modes. These include spatially resolved spectroscopy in the UV and optical, high spatial resolution echelle spectroscopy in the UV, and solar-blind imaging in the UV. In addition, STIS possesses unique visible-light coronagraphic modes that keep the instrument at the forefront of exoplanet and debris-disk research. As the instrument's characteristics evolve over the instrument’s lifetime, the instrument team at Space Telescope Science Institute monitors its performance and works towards improving the quality of its products. Here we present updates on the status of the STIS CCD and FUV &NUV MAMA detectors, as well as changes to the CalSTIS reduction pipeline and available instrument modes. As the STIS CCD detector continues to suffer from charge transfer inefficiency (CTI) due to prolonged radiation damage, we also present an update on the on-going effort to develop a stand-alone tool to perform a pixel-based CTI correction on the STIS CCD, for distribution to the community.

  8. New method for atmospheric calibration at the Pierre Auger Observatory using FRAM, a robotic astronomical telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trávníček, Petr; Benzvi, Segev; Boháčová, Martina; Connolly, Brian; Grygar, Jiří; Hrabovský, Miroslav; Kárová, Tatiana; Mandát, Dušan; Nečesal, Petr; Nosek, Dalibor; Nožka, Libor; Palatka, Miroslav; sPech, Miroslav; Prouza, Michael; Řídký, Jan; Schovánek, Petr; Šmída, Radomír; Vitale, Primo; Westerhoff, Stefan

    FRAM - F/(Ph)otometric Robotic Atmospheric Monitor is the latest addition to the atmospheric monitoring instruments of the Pierre Auger Observatory. An optical telescope equipped with CCD camera and photometer, it automatically observes a set of selected standard stars and a calibrated terrestrial source. Primarily, the wavelength dependence of the attenuation is derived and the comparison between its vertical values (for stars) and horizontal values (for the terrestrial source) is made. Further, the integral vertical aerosol optical depth can be obtained. A secondary program of the instrument, the detection of optical counterparts of gamma-ray bursts, has already proven successful. The hardware setup, software system, data taking procedures, and first analysis results are described in this paper.

  9. Update to the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph FUV Calibration: Improved Characterization Below 1150 Angstroms and Improved Absolute Flux Calibration at all Wavelengths

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sonnentrucker, Paule; Bostroem, K. A.; Ely, J.; Debes, J. H.; DiFelice, A.; Hernandez, S.; Hodge, P. E.; Lindsay, K.; Lockwood, S. A.; Massa, D.; Oliveira, C. M.; Roman-Duval, J.; Penton, S. V.; Proffitt, C. R.; Taylor, J. M.

    2014-01-01

    As of Cycle 20, the three COS/FUV "Blue Mode" wavelength settings at G130M/1055, 1096 and 1222, have become available as regular observing modes. We provide updates on the wavelength and flux calibration of these new Blue Mode settings, which allow medium-resolution spectroscopy down to 900A with effective areas comparable to those of FUSE. We discuss also recent improvements to the COS/FUV flux and flat-field calibrations and present the most recent time-dependent sensitivity trends of the FUV and NUV channels.

  10. Astronomically calibrated 40Ar/39Ar age for the Toba supereruption and global synchronization of late Quaternary records

    PubMed Central

    Storey, Michael; Roberts, Richard G.; Saidin, Mokhtar

    2012-01-01

    The Toba supereruption in Sumatra, ∼74 thousand years (ka) ago, was the largest terrestrial volcanic event of the Quaternary. Ash and sulfate aerosols were deposited in both hemispheres, forming a time-marker horizon that can be used to synchronize late Quaternary records globally. A precise numerical age for this event has proved elusive, with dating uncertainties larger than the millennial-scale climate cycles that characterized this period. We report an astronomically calibrated 40Ar/39Ar age of 73.88 ± 0.32 ka (1σ, full external errors) for sanidine crystals extracted from Toba deposits in the Lenggong Valley, Malaysia, 350 km from the eruption source and 6 km from an archaeological site with stone artifacts buried by ash. If these artifacts were made by Homo sapiens, as has been suggested, then our age indicates that modern humans had reached Southeast Asia by ∼74 ka ago. Our 40Ar/39Ar age is an order-of-magnitude more precise than previous estimates, resolving the timing of the eruption to the middle of the cold interval between Dansgaard–Oeschger events 20 and 19, when a peak in sulfate concentration occurred as registered by Greenland ice cores. This peak is followed by a ∼10 °C drop in the Greenland surface temperature over ∼150 y, revealing the possible climatic impact of the eruption. Our 40Ar/39Ar age also provides a high-precision calibration point for other ice, marine, and terrestrial archives containing Toba sulfates and ash, facilitating their global synchronization at unprecedented resolution for a critical period in Earth and human history beyond the range of 14C dating. PMID:23112159

  11. Astronomically calibrated 40Ar/39Ar age for the Toba supereruption and global synchronization of late Quaternary records

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Storey, Michael; Roberts, Richard G.; Saidin, Mokhtar

    2012-11-01

    The Toba supereruption in Sumatra, ∼74 thousand years (ka) ago, was the largest terrestrial volcanic event of the Quaternary. Ash and sulfate aerosols were deposited in both hemispheres, forming a time-marker horizon that can be used to synchronize late Quaternary records globally. A precise numerical age for this event has proved elusive, with dating uncertainties larger than the millennial-scale climate cycles that characterized this period. We report an astronomically calibrated 40Ar/39Ar age of 73.88 ± 0.32 ka (1σ, full external errors) for sanidine crystals extracted from Toba deposits in the Lenggong Valley, Malaysia, 350 km from the eruption source and 6 km from an archaeological site with stone artifacts buried by ash. If these artifacts were made by Homo sapiens, as has been suggested, then our age indicates that modern humans had reached Southeast Asia by ∼74 ka ago. Our 40Ar/39Ar age is an order-of-magnitude more precise than previous estimates, resolving the timing of the eruption to the middle of the cold interval between Dansgaard-Oeschger events 20 and 19, when a peak in sulfate concentration occurred as registered by Greenland ice cores. This peak is followed by a ∼10 °C drop in the Greenland surface temperature over ∼150 y, revealing the possible climatic impact of the eruption. Our 40Ar/39Ar age also provides a high-precision calibration point for other ice, marine, and terrestrial archives containing Toba sulfates and ash, facilitating their global synchronization at unprecedented resolution for a critical period in Earth and human history beyond the range of 14C dating.

  12. Wavelength calibration from 1-5μm for the CRIRES+ high-resolution spectrograph at the VLT

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seemann, U.; Anglada-Escude, G.; Baade, D.; Bristow, P.; Dorn, R. J.; Follert, R.; Gojak, D.; Grunhut, J.; Hatzes, A. P.; Heiter, U.; Ives, D. J.; Jeep, P.; Jung, Y.; Käufl, H.-U.; Kerber, F.; Klein, B.; Lizon, J.-L.; Lockhart, M.; Löwinger, T.; Marquart, T.; Oliva, E.; Paufique, J.; Piskunov, N.; Pozna, E.; Reiners, A.; Smette, A.; Smoker, J.; Stempels, E.; Valenti, E.

    2014-08-01

    CRIRES at the VLT is one of the few adaptive optics enabled instruments that offer a resolving power of 105 from 1 - 5 μm. An instrument upgrade (CRIRES+) is proposed to implement cross-dispersion capabilities, spectro-polarimetry modes, a new detector mosaic, and a new gas absorption cell. CRIRES+ will boost the simultaneous wavelength coverage of the current instrument (~ γ/70 in a single-order) by a factor of 10 in the cross-dispersed configuration, while still retaining a ~> 10 arcsec slit suitable for long-slit spectroscopy. CRIRES+ dramatically enhances the instrument's observing efficiency, and opens new scientific opportunities. These include high-precision radial-velocity studies on the 3 m/s level to characterize extra-solar planets and their athmospheres, which demand for specialized, highly accurate wavelength calibration techniques. In this paper, we present a newly developed absorption gas-cell to enable high-precision wavelength calibration for CRIRES+. We also discuss the strategies and developments to cover the full operational spectral range (1 - 5 μµm), employing cathode emission lamps, Fabry-Perot etalons, and absorption gas-cells.

  13. ECHARPE: a fiber-fed echelle spectrograph for the Pico dos Dias Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dominici, Tania P.; Castilho, Bruno; Gneiding, Clemens D.; Delabre, Bernard A.; Macanhan, Vanessa B. P.; de Arruda, Marcio V.; de Oliveira, Antonio C.; Melendez, Jorge; Vaz, Luiz P. R.; Corradi, Wagner J. B.; Franco, Gabriel A. P.; do Nascimento, Jose D.; Quast, Germano R.; Porto de Mello, Gustavo F.

    2012-09-01

    At least during the last ten years, the Brazilian astronomical community has been asking for an echelle spectrograph for the 1.6 m telescope installed at Pico dos Dias Observatory (Brazópolis, MG, Brazil, OPD/MCTI/LNA). Among the scientific cases are topics related to the chemical evolution of the Galaxy, asteroseismology, chemical composition and chromospheric activities of solar type stars and the relations between solar analogues and terrestrial planets. During 2009 the project finally got started. The called ECHARPE spectrograph (Espectrógrafo ECHelle de Alta Resolução para o telescópio Perkin-Elmer) is being projected to offer a spectral resolution of R ~ 50000, in the range 390-900 nm and with a single exposition. It will be a bench spectrograph with two channels: blue and red, fed by two optical fibers (object, sky or calibration) with aperture of 1.5 or 2.0 arcseconds. The instrument will be placed in one of the telescope pillar ramification, in the originals installations of a Coudé spectrograph and in a specially created environment controlled room. In this work we will present the scientific motivations, the conceptual optical design, the expected performance of the spectrograph, and the status of its development. ECHARPE is expected to be delivered to the astronomical community in 2014, fully prepared and optimized for remote operations.

  14. Development of compact and ultra-high-resolution spectrograph with multi-GHz optical frequency comb

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Endo, Mamoru; Sukegawa, Takashi; Silva, Alissa; Kobayashi, Yohei

    2014-08-01

    In recent years, a calibration method for an astronomical spectrograph using an optical frequency comb (OFC) with a repetition rate of more than ten GHz has been developed successfully [1-5]. But controlling filtering cavities that are used for thinning out longitudinal modes precludes long term stability. The super-mode noise coming from the fundamental repetition rate is an additional problem. We developed a laser-diode pumped Yb:Y2O3 ceramic oscillator, which enabled the generation of 4-GHz (maximum repetition rate of 6.7 GHz) pulse trains directly with a spectrum width of 7 nm (full-width half-maximum, FWHM), and controlled its optical frequency within a MHz level of accuracy using a beat note between the 4-GHz laser and a 246-MHz Yb-fiber OFC. The optical frequency of the Yb-fiber OFC was phase locked to a Rb clock frequency standard. Furthermore we also built a table-top multi-pass spectrograph with a maximum frequency resolution of 600 MHz and a bandwidth of 1 nm using a large-size high-efficiency transmission grating. The resolution could be changed by selecting the number of passes through the grating. This spectrograph could resolve each longitudinal mode of our 4-GHz OFC clearly, and more than 10% throughput was obtained when the resolution was set to 600 MHz. We believe that small and middle scale astronomical observatories could easily implement such an OFC-calibrated spectrograph.

  15. Methods in Astronomical Image Processing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jörsäter, S.

    A Brief Introductory Note History of Astronomical Imaging Astronomical Image Data Images in Various Formats Digitized Image Data Digital Image Data Philosophy of Astronomical Image Processing Properties of Digital Astronomical Images Human Image Processing Astronomical vs. Computer Science Image Processing Basic Tools of Astronomical Image Processing Display Applications Calibration of Intensity Scales Calibration of Length Scales Image Re-shaping Feature Enhancement Noise Suppression Noise and Error Analysis Image Processing Packages: Design of AIPS and MIDAS AIPS MIDAS Reduction of CCD Data Bias Subtraction Clipping Preflash Subtraction Dark Subtraction Flat Fielding Sky Subtraction Extinction Correction Deconvolution Methods Rebinning/Combining Summary and Prospects for the Future

  16. Astronomical timescale calibration for the Permian-Triassic boundary transition interval from global correlation of cyclic marine sequences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, C.; Hinnov, L. A.; Tong, J.; Chen, Z.

    2011-12-01

    The mass extinctions near the Permian-Triassic boundary (PTB) resulted in the greatest dying of life on Earth. The cause of this catastrophe remains enigmatic. High-resolution chronology is crucial to understanding the recorded pattern of biotic evolution and possible causes for the extinctions. Magnetic susceptibility (MS) data from Shangsi, South China shows evidence for astronomical forcing through the PTB interval, with strong 405-kyr cycling. This allows development of an astrochronology for the PTB interval based on the 405-kyr orbital eccentricity metronome that has been proposed for the Mesozoic timescale. Radioisotope dating combined with the 405-kyr tuned MS series from Shangsi shows that the 405-kyr-cycle predominates throughout the PTB interval. In the Permian segment, ~100-kyr cyclicity dominates, and the 100-kyr-scale MS maxima correlate with high-amplitude precession-scale MS variations. Minima in the ~1.5-Myr, 405-kyr and ~100-kyr cycles converge at 252.6 Ma, approximately 200 kyr before the onset of the main mass extinction near the PTB. In the Triassic aftermath, the recorded astronomical signal is different, with predominant 405-kyr cycles and loss of 100 kyr cyclicity, and appearance of ~33 kyr (obliquity scale) cyclicity; 100-kyr cyclicity strengthens again 2 Myr later. This pattern indicates a change in the response of the depositional environment (or magnetic susceptibility) to astronomical forcing before and after the mass extinction interval. The astrochronology interpolates the timescale between the radioisotopically determined absolute dates; this facilitates estimation of ages for specific events in the PTB crisis, including magnetic reversals, biozone boundaries, and the mass extinctions. An estimated ~700 kyr duration for the Mass Extinction Interval (MEI) at Shangsi based on the 405-kyr tuning is supported by eccentricity-tuned estimates of three other sections in China (Meishan, Huangzhishan, and Heping), and two Alpine sections

  17. Suppression of Fiber Modal Noise Induced Radial Velocity Errors for Bright Emission-line Calibration Sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mahadevan, Suvrath; Halverson, Samuel; Ramsey, Lawrence; Venditti, Nick

    2014-05-01

    Modal noise in optical fibers imposes limits on the signal-to-noise ratio (S/N) and velocity precision achievable with the next generation of astronomical spectrographs. This is an increasingly pressing problem for precision radial velocity spectrographs in the near-infrared (NIR) and optical that require both high stability of the observed line profiles and high S/N. Many of these spectrographs plan to use highly coherent emission-line calibration sources like laser frequency combs and Fabry-Perot etalons to achieve precision sufficient to detect terrestrial-mass planets. These high-precision calibration sources often use single-mode fibers or highly coherent sources. Coupling light from single-mode fibers to multi-mode fibers leads to only a very low number of modes being excited, thereby exacerbating the modal noise measured by the spectrograph. We present a commercial off-the-shelf solution that significantly mitigates modal noise at all optical and NIR wavelengths, and which can be applied to spectrograph calibration systems. Our solution uses an integrating sphere in conjunction with a diffuser that is moved rapidly using electrostrictive polymers, and is generally superior to most tested forms of mechanical fiber agitation. We demonstrate a high level of modal noise reduction with a narrow bandwidth 1550 nm laser. Our relatively inexpensive solution immediately enables spectrographs to take advantage of the innate precision of bright state-of-the art calibration sources by removing a major source of systematic noise.

  18. Suppression of fiber modal noise induced radial velocity errors for bright emission-line calibration sources

    SciTech Connect

    Mahadevan, Suvrath; Halverson, Samuel; Ramsey, Lawrence; Venditti, Nick

    2014-05-01

    Modal noise in optical fibers imposes limits on the signal-to-noise ratio (S/N) and velocity precision achievable with the next generation of astronomical spectrographs. This is an increasingly pressing problem for precision radial velocity spectrographs in the near-infrared (NIR) and optical that require both high stability of the observed line profiles and high S/N. Many of these spectrographs plan to use highly coherent emission-line calibration sources like laser frequency combs and Fabry-Perot etalons to achieve precision sufficient to detect terrestrial-mass planets. These high-precision calibration sources often use single-mode fibers or highly coherent sources. Coupling light from single-mode fibers to multi-mode fibers leads to only a very low number of modes being excited, thereby exacerbating the modal noise measured by the spectrograph. We present a commercial off-the-shelf solution that significantly mitigates modal noise at all optical and NIR wavelengths, and which can be applied to spectrograph calibration systems. Our solution uses an integrating sphere in conjunction with a diffuser that is moved rapidly using electrostrictive polymers, and is generally superior to most tested forms of mechanical fiber agitation. We demonstrate a high level of modal noise reduction with a narrow bandwidth 1550 nm laser. Our relatively inexpensive solution immediately enables spectrographs to take advantage of the innate precision of bright state-of-the art calibration sources by removing a major source of systematic noise.

  19. Structure of the spectrograph ESOPO

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sierra, G.; Farah, A.; Gonzalez, J.; Pedrayes, M.; Arroyo, M.; Avila, G.; Cobos, F.; Colorado, E.; Córdova, A.; Costero, R.; Chapa, O.; Echevarria, J.; García, B.; Garfias, F.; Guisa, G.; Granados, F.; Luna, E.; Martínez, B.; Michel, R.; Murillo, F.; Murillo, J.; Quechol, S.; Quiroz, F.; Tejada, C.

    2008-07-01

    The structure of the spectrograph ESOPO is the stiff mount that will maintain fixed all optics elements, electronics and mechanical subsystems. The ESOPO spectrograph is a project of the "Instituto de Astronomia de la Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico" (IAUNAM) to upgrade its 2.1m telescope as a competitive facility for the next decade. The scientific purpose is to obtain a modern high efficient intermediate-low dispersion spectrograph optimized for the 3500 - 9000 Å spectral interval with a spectral resolution of 500 <= R <= 5000. It is to be used at the cassegrain f/7.5 focus of the 2.1 m telescope for general astronomical purposes. This work presents the mechanical design process and the form in which the structure was verified to comply with the ESOPO's top level image quality and stability requirements. The latter was not a lineal process. The way we resolved it is to run FEAs on the complete system and with the instrument in different operation positions during a normal cycle of observations. These results are validated through the error budget of the ESOPO. The structure is currently under construction.

  20. Untangling the Palaeocene climatic rhythm: an astronomically calibrated Early Palaeocene magnetostratigraphy and biostratigraphy at Zumaia (Basque basin, northern Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dinarès-Turell, Jaume; Baceta, Juan Ignacio; Pujalte, Victoriano; Orue-Etxebarria, Xabier; Bernaola, Gilen; Lorito, Stefano

    2003-12-01

    forcing at the Milankovitch band masking the full expression of the low-frequency astronomical periods. We provide a cycle-tuned duration for all intervening Early Palaeocene polarity chrons and estimate relative ages for bioevents. The cycle-tuned chronology indicates that the CK95 GPTS overestimates the duration of chrons C28 and C27 by 20 and 26% respectively. Our data may prove useful to better constrain Early Palaeocene biostratigraphy of calcareous plankton and in the redefinition of the boundary between the Danian and Selandian stages.

  1. Curved VPH gratings for novel spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clemens, J. Christopher; O'Donoghue, Darragh; Dunlap, Bart H.

    2014-07-01

    The introduction of volume phase holographic (VPH) gratings into astronomy over a decade ago opened new possibilities for instrument designers. In this paper we describe an extension of VPH grating technology that will have applications in astronomy and beyond: curved VPH gratings. These devices can disperse light while simultaneously correcting aberrations. We have designed and manufactured two different kinds of convex VPH grating prototypes for use in off-axis reflecting spectrographs. One type functions in transmission and the other in reflection, enabling Offnerstyle spectrographs with the high-efficiency and low-cost advantages of VPH gratings. We will discuss the design process and the tools required for modelling these gratings along with the recording layout and process steps required to fabricate them. We will present performance data for the first convex VPH grating produced for an astronomical spectrograph.

  2. Astronomical calibration of the Toarcian Stage: Implications for sequence stratigraphy and duration of the early Toarcian OAE

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boulila, Slah; Galbrun, Bruno; Huret, Emilia; Hinnov, Linda A.; Rouget, Isabelle; Gardin, Silvia; Bartolini, Annachiara

    2014-01-01

    The Toarcian Oceanic Anoxic Event (T-OAE) of the early Jurassic period involves one of the largest perturbations of the carbon cycle in the past 250 Ma, recorded by a pronounced negative carbon-isotope excursion (CIE). Numerous studies have focused on potential causes of the T-OAE and CIE, but are hampered by an uncertain timescale. Here we present high-resolution (∼2 kyr) magnetic susceptibility (MS) measurements from the marine marls of the Sancerre-Couy drill-core, southern Paris Basin, spanning the entire Toarcian Stage. The MS variations document a rich series of sub-Milankovitch to Milankovitch frequencies (precession, obliquity and eccentricity) with the periodic g2-g5 (405 kyr) and quasi-periodic g4-g3 (∼2.4 Myr Cenozoic mean periodicity) eccentricity terms being the most prominent. The MS-related g4-g3 variation reflects third-order eustatic sequences, and constrains the sequence stratigraphic framework of the Toarcian Stage. In addition, MS variations reveal a modulation of g2-g5 by g4-g3 eccentricity related cycles, suggesting that sea-level change was the main control on the deposition of the Toarcian Sancerre marls, in tune with the astro-climatic frequencies. The stable 405 kyr cyclicity constrains a minimum duration of the Toarcian Stage to ∼8.3 Myr, and the well documented CIE, associated with the T-OAE, to ∼300 to 500 kyr. The 405 kyr MS timescale calibrates the periodicity of the prominent high-frequency δC13 cycles that occur in the decreasing part of the CIE to 30 to 34 kyr, consistent with the Toarcian obliquity period predicted for an Earth experiencing sustained tidal dissipation.

  3. Updated Status and Performance for the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph Onboard the Hubble Space Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taylor, Joanna M.; Aloisi, A.; Bacinski, J.; Bostroem, K. A.; Debes, J. H.; Roman-Duval, J.; Ely, J.; DiFelice, A.; Hernandez, S.; Kriss, G. A.; Hodge, P.; Lindsay, K.; Lockwood, S. A.; Massa, D.; Oliveira, C. M.; Osten, R. A.; Penton, S. V.; Proffitt, C. R.; Sahnow, D. J.; Sonnentrucker, P.; Wheeler, T.

    2013-06-01

    The Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) was installed on the Hubble Space Telescope in May 2009. Although COS was initially designed to perform high-sensitivity medium- and low-resolution spectroscopy of astronomical objects in the 1150-3200 Å wavelength range, new wavelength settings have recently become available that allow medium-resolution spectroscopy down to 900 Å, at effective areas comparable to those of FUSE. Here we provide an update on the implementation of the new short wavelength settings G130M/1222, 1096, and 1055. We discuss changes to the Far-Ultraviolet (FUV) and Near-Ultraviolet (NUV) dark rates, FUV pulse height filtering, new and improved flux calibrations for FUV Lifetime Positions 1 and 2, changes in sensitivity for both the NUV and FUV channels, and give a general overview of the calibration projects undertaken in Cycles 19 and 20.

  4. ESOPO a Medium Resolution Optical Spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farah, A.; Chapa, O.; Cobos, F.; Colorado, E.; Costero, R.; Echevarria, J.; García, B.; Garfias, F.; González, J.; Granados, F.; Guisa, G.; Luna, E.; Martínez, B.; Murillo, F.; Pedrayes, M.; Pérez, F.; Quirós, F.; Tejada, C.; Sierra, G.

    2009-05-01

    The Instituto de Astronomía, of the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, after an internal licitation, determined to design and manufacture a Medium Resolution Optical Spectrograph. The instrument will be attached to the 2.1 m telescope at the National Astronomical Observatory at San Pedro Mártir, México. The project was granted to the ESOPO group, winner of the call for proposals. The basic purpose of the project is to equip the observatory with a modern and more efficient spectrograph. Its main goal is to solve astronomical problems that require an ample optical range with a spectral resolution between 500 and 5000. These projects include observations of extended stellar objects, external galaxies, and stars inside our galaxy. In this work we present the scientific goals of ESOPO spectrograph, its translation to high level requirements, its optical design as well as its mechanical design and optomechanics for 24 lenses. The error budget for image quality and motion are included. Finally, management, organization, and first light date of the project are described.

  5. NRES: The Network of Robotic Echelle Spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Siverd, Robert; Eastman, Jason D.; Brown, Timothy M.; Hygelund, John; Henderson, Todd; Tufts, Joseph; Van Eyken, Julian C.; Barnes, Stuart

    2015-01-01

    Las Cumbres Observatory Global Network (LCOGT) is building the Network of Robotic Echelle Spectrographs (NRES), which will consist of six identical, optical (390 - 860 nm) high-precision spectrographs, each fiber-fed simultaneously by two 1 meter telescopes and a thorium argon calibration source, one at each of our observatory sites in the Northern and Southern hemispheres. Thus, NRES will be a single, globally-distributed, autonomous observing facility using twelve 1-m telescopes. Simulations suggest we will achieve long-term radial velocity precision of better than 3 m/s in less than an hour for stars brighter than V = 12. We have been funded with NSF MRI and ATI grants, and expect our first spectrograph to be deployed in mid 2015, with the full network operation of all 6 units beginning in 2016. We will discuss the NRES design, goals, robotic operation, and status, as well as the early results from our prototype spectrograph.

  6. Rocket instrument for far-UV spectrophotometry of faint astronomical objects.

    PubMed

    Hartig, G F; Fastie, W G; Davidsen, A F

    1980-03-01

    A sensitive sounding rocket instrument for moderate (~10-A) resolution far-UV (lambda1160-lambda1750-A) spectrophotometry of faint astronomical objects has been developed. The instrument employs a photon-counting microchannel plate imaging detector and a concave grating spectrograph behind a 40-cm Dall-Kirkham telescope. A unique remote-control pointing system, incorporating an SIT vidicon aspect camera, two star trackers, and a tone-encoded command telemetry link, permits the telescope to be oriented to within 5 arc sec of any target for which suitable guide stars can be found. The design, construction, calibration, and flight performance of the instrument are discussed. PMID:20220923

  7. Rocket instrument for far-UV spectrophotometry of faint astronomical objects

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hartig, G. F.; Fastie, W. G.; Davidsen, A. F.

    1980-01-01

    A sensitive sounding rocket instrument for moderate (about 10-A) resolution far-UV (1160-1750-A) spectrophotometry of faint astronomical objects has been developed. The instrument employes a photon-counting microchannel plate imaging detector and a concave grating spectrograph behind a 40-cm Dall-Kirkham telescope. A unique remote-control pointing system, incorporating an SIT vidicon aspect camera, two star trackers, and a tone-encoded command telemetry link, permits the telescope to be oriented to within 5 arc sec of any target for which suitable guide stars can be found. The design, construction, calibration, and flight performance of the instrument are discussed.

  8. A high-resolution Fourier transform spectrometer for astronomical observations and development of wavelength standards

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lemke, Ulrike; Reiners, Ansgar; Schäfer, Sebastian

    2012-09-01

    At the Institute for Astrophysics Goettingen (IAG), we are purchasing a high resolution Fourier Transform Spectrograph (FTS) for astronomical observations and development of calibration standards aiming at high wavelength precision. Astronomical spectrographs that work in the regime of very high resolution (resolving powers λ/δλ>=105) now achieve unprecedented precision and stability. Precise line shifts can be investigated to conclude for an objects radial velocity relative to the observer. As a long-term scientific goal, the evolution of galaxy redshift due to dark energy can be monitored. Also, the detection of lower mass, down to Earth-like planets will become feasible. Here, M-dwarfs are promising objects where an orbiting exo-Earth can cause a wavelength shift large enough to be detected. Emitting mainly in the near infrared (NIR), these objects require novel calibration standards. Current schemes under consideration are gas cathode lamps (e.g. CN, UNe) and a highly stable Fabry-Perot interferometer (FPI) to act as a cost-efficient alternative to the laser frequency comb (LFC, [1]). In addition to experiments exploring novel wavelength calibration types, light will be fed from our telescopes at IAG. A Vacuum Tower Telescope (VTT) for solar observations and the 50 cm Cassegrain telescope allow to investigate stellar and spatially resolved light at our facilities.

  9. Production-line assembly of 150+ VIRUS spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marshall, J. L.; Vattiat, Brian; DePoy, D. L.; Hill, Gary J.; Collins, Amanda D.; Lee, Hanshin; Allen, Richard D.; Kelz, Andreas; Bauer, Svend M.; Popow, Emil

    2010-07-01

    The Visual Integral-Field Replicable Unit Spectrograph (VIRUS) instrument is being built to support observations for the Hobby-Eberly Telescope Dark Energy Experiment (HETDEX) project. The instrument consists of 150+ identical fiber-fed integral field optical spectrographs. This instrument provides a unique challenge in astronomical instrumentation: each of the 150+ instruments must be identical and each component must be interchangeable amongst every other spectrograph in order to ease assembly and maintenance of the instrument. In this paper we describe plans for the production-line assembly of the spectrographs. In particular, we discuss the assembly procedures and design choices that will ensure uniformity of the spectrographs and support the project schedule.

  10. Astronomical observatories

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ponomarev, D. N.

    1983-01-01

    The layout and equipment of astronomical observatories, the oldest scientific institutions of human society are discussed. The example of leading observatories of the USSR allows the reader to familiarize himself with both their modern counterparts, as well as the goals and problems on which astronomers are presently working.

  11. Elliptical x-ray analyzer spectrograph application to a laser-produced plasma

    SciTech Connect

    Tanaka, T.J.; Palmer, M.A.; Henke, B.L.

    1985-01-01

    This spectrograph was designed to record a range of 100 to 2000 eV x-rays on calibrated Kodak Rar-2497 film. Using point calibrations and theoretical models, the spectrograph efficiency was predicted. Basic spectrograph geometry and photographic calibrations are presented in companion papers. A 20 J, 6 ns duration Nd:glass laser pulse was focussed upon planar targets of gold, aluminum, teflon and boron carbide. Sample spectra for line and x-ray yields analysis are presented.

  12. Blind Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hockey, Thomas A.

    2011-01-01

    The phrase "blind astronomer” is used as an allegorical oxymoron. However, there were and are blind astronomers. What of famous blind astronomers? First, it must be stated that these astronomers were not martyrs to their craft. It is a myth that astronomers blind themselves by observing the Sun. As early as France's William of Saint-Cloud (circa 1290) astronomers knew that staring at the Sun was ill-advised and avoided it. Galileo Galilei did not invent the astronomical telescope and then proceed to blind himself with one. Galileo observed the Sun near sunrise and sunset or through projection. More than two decades later he became blind, as many septuagenarians do, unrelated to their profession. Even Isaac Newton temporarily blinded himself, staring at the reflection of the Sun when he was a twentysomething. But permanent Sun-induced blindness? No, it did not happen. For instance, it was a stroke that left Scotland's James Gregory (1638-1675) blind. (You will remember the Gregorian telescope.) However, he died days later. Thus, blindness little interfered with his occupation. English Abbot Richard of Wallingford (circa 1291 - circa 1335) wrote astronomical works and designed astronomical instruments. He was also blind in one eye. Yet as he further suffered from leprosy, his blindness seems the lesser of Richard's maladies. Perhaps the most famous professionally active, blind astronomer (or almost blind astronomer) is Dominique-Francois Arago (1786-1853), director until his death of the powerful nineteenth-century Paris Observatory. I will share other _ some poignant _ examples such as: William Campbell, whose blindness drove him to suicide; Leonhard Euler, astronomy's Beethoven, who did nearly half of his life's work while almost totally blind; and Edwin Frost, who "observed” a total solar eclipse while completely sightless.

  13. A tunable laser system for precision wavelength calibration of spectra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cramer, Claire

    2010-02-01

    We present a novel laser-based wavelength calibration technique that improves the precision of astronomical spectroscopy, and solves a calibration problem inherent to multi-object spectroscopy. We have tested a prototype with the Hectochelle spectrograph at the MMT 6.5 m telescope. The Hectochelle is a high-dispersion, fiber-fed, multi-object spectrograph capable of recording up to 240 spectra simultaneously with a resolving power of 40000. The standard wavelength calibration method uses of spectra from ThAr hollow-cathode lamps shining directly onto the fibers. The difference in light path between calibration and science light as well as the uneven distribution of spectral lines are believed to introduce errors of up to several hundred m/s in the wavelength scale. Our tunable laser wavelength calibrator is bright enough for use with a dome screen, allowing the calibration light path to better match the science light path. Further, the laser is tuned in regular steps across a spectral order, creating a comb of evenly-spaced lines on the detector. Using the solar spectrum reflected from the atmosphere to record the same spectrum in every fiber, we show that laser wavelength calibration brings radial velocity uncertainties down below 100 m/s. We also present results from studies of globular clusters, and explain how the calibration technique can aid in stellar age determinations, studies of young stars, and searches for dark matter clumping in the galactic halo. )

  14. Designing Echelle Spectrographs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dantzler, A.

    1987-01-01

    Performance numbers and output maps computed from inputs supplied by user. Echelle Spectrograph Design Aid program (EGRAM) aids in design of spectrographic systems that utilize echelle/first-order crossdisperser combinations. Optical combination causes two-dimensional echellogram to fall on detector. Describes echellogram with enough detail to enable user to judge effectively feasibility of spectrograph design. By iteratively altering system parameters, desired echellogram achieved without making physical model. Calculates system parameters accurately to first order and compare favorably to results from raytracing techniques. EGRAM written in two versions. FORTRAN 77, and Microsoft BASIC A.

  15. Combining laser frequency combs and iodine cell calibration techniques for Doppler detection of exoplanets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cahoy, Kerri; Fischer, Debra; Spronck, Julien; DeMille, David

    2010-07-01

    Exoplanets can be detected from a time series of stellar spectra by looking for small, periodic shifts in the absorption features that are consistent with Doppler shifts caused by the presence of an exoplanet, or multiple exoplanets, in the system. While hundreds of large exoplanets have already been discovered with the Doppler technique (also called radial velocity), our goal is to improve the measurement precision so that many Earth-like planets can be detected. The smaller mass and longer period of true Earth analogues require the ability to detect a reflex velocity of ~10 cm/s over long time periods. Currently, typical astronomical spectrographs calibrate using either Iodine absorptive cells or Thorium Argon lamps and achieve ~10 m/s precision, with the most stable spectrographs pushing down to ~2 m/s. High velocity precision is currently achieved at HARPS by controlling the thermal and pressure environment of the spectrograph. These environmental controls increase the cost of the spectrograph, and it is not feasible to simply retrofit existing spectrometers. We propose a fiber-fed high precision spectrograph design that combines the existing ~5000-6000 A Iodine calibration system with a high-precision Laser Frequency Comb (LFC) system from ~6000-7000 A that just meets the redward side of the Iodine lines. The scientific motivation for such a system includes: a 1000 A span in the red is currently achievable with LFC systems, combining the two calibration methods increases the wavelength range by a factor of two, and moving redward decreases the "noise" from starspots. The proposed LFC system design employs a fiber laser, tunable serial Fabry-Perot cavity filters to match the resolution of the LFC system to that of standard astronomical spectrographs, and terminal ultrasonic vibration of the multimode fiber for a stable point spread function.

  16. Women Astronomers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Warner, Deborah Jean

    1979-01-01

    Traces the role of women in the scientific community in the United States since the mid-nineteenth century. Specific concern is directed towards the education and career opportunities of female astronomers. (MA)

  17. Multiple object fiber optics spectrograph feed for the Hale telescope

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tubbs, E. F.; Goss, W. C.; Cohen, J. G.

    1982-01-01

    The preliminary design for a computer-controlled fiber-optics feed linking the 5-m Hale telescope at Palomar Observatory to the entrance slit of an astronomical spectrograph is presented. A 76-mm square field will be divided into ten strips containing two movable fibers each; the fibers can be moved by stepper-motor-driven lead screws to any position on the strip. The device is designed to allow the simultaneous spectrographic observation of many astronomical objects in a small angular field. A prototype feed using two fibers and manually commanded digital control is described in detail. Test observations of two bright O stars made in April, 1981 using the prototype with the Hale telescope are considered sufficiently positive to warrant construction of the 20-fiber feed, which would enhance the spectrographic-survey effectiveness of the telescope by a factor of ten.

  18. Airborne spectrograph for the thermal IR: Broadband Array Spectrograph System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Russell, Ray W.; Hackwell, John; Lynch, David; Mazuk, Ann

    1995-01-01

    Spectroscopic studies in the 'fingerprint' region of the thermal IR from 3 to 14 microns of celestial dust components and the overall energy distribution of the sources are best served by moderate spectral resolution (R = lambda/Delta lambda approximately 30 to 200), high sensitivity observations. Spectral purity and the reproducibility of the spectral shape are critical as well, when using the spectral shape to assign temperatures to dust grains or to gas clouds based on the wavelength and shape of molecular bands. These sensor attributes are also important to the use of wavelengths and ratios of solid state features to derive compositions of dust grains in celestial sources. The advent of high quality linear arrays of blocked impurity band (BIB) detectors of Si:As permitted the development of a state-of-the-art, patented, cooled prism spectrograph. Developed at The Aerospace Corporation largely with in-house funds, the Broadband Array Spectrograph System (BASS) has been used for a variety of remote sensing applications, but especially for IR astronomical studies on the Kuiper Airborne Observatory and at the NASA Infrared Telescope Facility (IRTF). The attributes of the spectrograph, specifically having the pupil imaged onto the 2 linear 58 element detector arrays so that the effects of guiding errors are minimized, being able to maximally exploit the limited observing time by acquiring all 116 spectral channels simultaneously, and having all spectral channels imaged through the same aperture so that spectral mapping is readily and reliably accomplished, afford the scientist with a unique opportunity to conduct both surveys of examples of many different types of sources as well as in-depth studies of a given class of object by thoroughly sampling the class members. This duality was demonstrated with the BASS through a combination of KAO flights where spectral maps were obtained as part of in-depth studies of specific source regions (such as Orion and W3) and

  19. Observations of Resolved Stellar Populations with the JWST Near Infrared Spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gilbert, Karoline; Beck, Tracy L.; Karakla, Diane M.

    2015-01-01

    The James Webb Space Telescope's (JWST) Near Infrared Spectrograph (NIRSpec) will provide a multi-object spectroscopy mode through the four Micro-Shutter Arrays (MSAs). Each MSA is a grid of contiguous shutters that can be configured to form slits on more than 100 astronomical targets simultaneously. The combination of JWST's sensitivity and superb resolution in the infrared and NIRSpec's full wavelength coverage over 1 to 5 micrometers will open new parameter space for studies of galaxies and resolved stellar populations alike. We present a NIRSpec MSA observing scenario for obtaining spectroscopy of individual stars in external galaxies. We examine the multiplexing capability of the MSA as a function of the possible MSA configuration design choices, and investigate the primary sources of error in velocity measurements and the prospects for minimizing them. We discuss how this and other use cases are being used to guide development of the NIRSpec user interfaces, including proposal planning and pipeline calibrations.

  20. The Near Infrared Spectrograph on the James Webb Space Telescope: Instrument Overview and User Interface Development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gilbert, Karoline; Beck, Tracy; Karakla, Diane M.; Kassin, Susan; Keyes, Tony; Muzerolle, James; Pavlovsky, Cheryl; Soderblom, David; Ubeda, Leonardo

    2015-08-01

    The Near Infrared Spectrograph (NIRSpec) on the James Webb Space Telescope will provide astronomers the ability to observe through fixed slits, the integral field unit, or in multi-object mode with the micro-shutter array, at spectral resolutions of R ˜ 100, 1000, and 2700. The combination of JWST’s sensitivity and superb resolution in the infrared and NIRSpec’s full wavelength coverage from 0.6 to 5 μm will open new parameter space for studies of galaxies and resolved stellar populations alike. We will provide a general overview of the NIRSpec instrument and the user interface development, including proposal planning and the data calibration and reduction pipeline. We will discuss the capabilities of NIRSpec for survey science, and introduce the science use cases that are being used to drive development of the NIRSpec user interfaces.

  1. NRES: The Network of Robotic Echelle Spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Siverd, Robert; Brown, Timothy M.; Hygelund, John; Henderson, Todd; Tufts, Joseph; Eastman, Jason; Van Eyken, Julian C.; Barnes, Stuart

    2016-01-01

    Las Cumbres Observatory Global Network (LCOGT) is building the Network of Robotic Echelle Spectrographs (NRES), which will consist of six identical, optical (390 - 860 nm) high-precision spectrographs, each fiber-fed simultaneously by up to two 1-meter telescopes and a thorium argon calibration source. We plan to install one at up to 6 observatory sites in the Northern and Southern hemispheres, creating a single, globally-distributed, autonomous spectrograph facility using up to twelve 1-m telescopes. Simulations suggest we will achieve long-term radial velocity precision of 3 m/s in less than an hour for stars brighter than V = 12. We have been funded with NSF MRI and ATI grants, and expect our first spectrograph to be deployed in early 2016, with the full network operation of 5 or 6 units beginning in 2017. We will briefly overview the NRES design, goals, robotic operation, and status. In addition, we will discuss early results from our prototype spectrograph, the laboratory and on-sky performance of our first production unit, and the ongoing software development effort to bring this resource online.

  2. NRES: The Network of Robotic Echelle Spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Siverd, Robert; Brown, Timothy M.; Henderson, Todd; Hygelund, John; Tufts, Joseph; Eastman, Jason; Barnes, Stuart; Van Eyken, Julian C.

    2016-06-01

    Las Cumbres Observatory Global Network (LCOGT) is building the Network of Robotic Echelle Spectrographs (NRES), which will consist of six identical, optical (390 - 860 nm) high-precision spectrographs, each fiber-fed simultaneously by up to two 1-meter telescopes and a thorium argon calibration source. We plan to install one at up to 6 observatory sites in the Northern and Southern hemispheres, creating a single, globally-distributed, autonomous spectrograph facility using up to twelve 1-m telescopes. Simulations suggest we will achieve long-term radial velocity precision of 3 m/s in less than an hour for stars brighter than V = 12. We have been funded with NSF MRI and ATI grants, and expect to deploy the first spectrograph in fall 2016, with the full network operation of 5 or 6 units beginning in 2017. We will briefly overview the NRES design, goals, robotic operation, and status. In addition, we will discuss early results from our prototype spectrograph, the laboratory and on-sky performance of our first production unit, initial science results, and the ongoing software development effort to bring this resource online.

  3. Astronomical kaleidoscope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gaina, Alex

    2005-10-01

    The entry contains two Moon eclipses (a picture of a total eclipse and a photo of a penumbral one), photographs of monuments of few greatest astronomers: Nikolay Kopernik, Tiho Brahe and Johannes Kepler, a photo from the JENAM-1995 (Catania, Sicily) as well as photographs of few astronomers related with Moldova and Romania: V. Grigorevskii, N. Donitch, V.Nadolschi, D. Mangeron, two nice clocks in Prague, as well as a map of the Sanctuary in Orheiul -Vechi (Bessarabia) with an supposed ancient calendar.

  4. Astronomical Polarimetry : new concepts, new instruments, new measurements & observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Snik, F.

    2009-10-01

    All astronomical sources are polarized to some degree. Polarimetry is therefore a powerful astronomical technique. It furnishes unique diagnostics of e.g. magnetic fields and scattering media. This thesis presents new polarimetric concepts, instruments, and measurements targeting astronomical science questions. The first part of the thesis describes three novel polarimetric concepts. -A dedicated passive liquid crystal device known as a theta cell is introduced to enable one-shot observations of astronomical targets exhibiting a centrosymmetric polarization pattern. -A new passive measurement concept for broad-band linear polarization is introduced. It is based on a sinusoidal modulation of the spectrum, and is particularly suitable for instruments for which classical spatial and/or temporal polarization modulation is unfavorable. -Calibration of polarimetric instruments is usually limited by non-ideal effects of the calibration optics themselves. A mathematical frame-work based on Fourier analysis is introduced to tackle various non-ideal effects in polarimetric calibration. The second part of the thesis presents the designs and first results of three very different astronomical polarimeters. -The ultra-stable high-resolution HARPS spectrograph is successfully upgraded with a dual-beam polarimetric module. It furnishes direct observations of magnetic fields on stars. -The Small Synoptic Second Solar Spectrum Telescope (S5T) is designed to accurately monitor the variation of weak, turbulent magnetic fields on the Sun during a solar cycle. Such measurements are crucial for the understanding of local dynamo action in the solar photosphere. The prototype shows the feasibility of the instrument concept. -The Spectropolarimeter for Planetary EXpolaration (SPEX) is designed to study a planet's or moon's atmosphere from orbit. The additional information from the polarization measurement of scattered sunlight allows for determination of microphysical properties of

  5. Sky subtraction with fiber spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lissandrini, C.; Cristiani, S.; La Franca, F.

    1994-11-01

    The sky-subtraction performance of multifiber spectrographs is discussed, analyzing in detail the case of the OPTOPUS system at the 3.6-m European Space Observatory (ESO) telescope at La Silla. A standard technique, based on flat fields obtained with a uniformly illuminated screen on the dome, provides poor results. A new method has been developed, using the (O I) emission line at 5577 A as a calibrator of the fiber transmittance, taking into account the diffuse light and the influence of each fiber on the adjacent ones, and correcting for the effects of the image distortions on the sky sampling. In this way the accuracy of the sky subtraction improves from 2%-8% to 1.3%-1.6%.

  6. PRISM Spectrograph Optical Design

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chipman, Russell A.

    1995-01-01

    The objective of this contract is to explore optical design concepts for the PRISM spectrograph and produce a preliminary optical design. An exciting optical configuration has been developed which will allow both wavelength bands to be imaged onto the same detector array. At present the optical design is only partially complete because PRISM will require a fairly elaborate optical system to meet its specification for throughput (area*solid angle). The most complex part of the design, the spectrograph camera, is complete, providing proof of principle that a feasible design is attainable. This camera requires 3 aspheric mirrors to fit inside the 20x60 cm cross-section package. A complete design with reduced throughput (1/9th) has been prepared. The design documents the optical configuration concept. A suitable dispersing prism material, CdTe, has been identified for the prism spectrograph, after a comparison of many materials.

  7. Immersion echelle spectrograph

    DOEpatents

    Stevens, Charles G.; Thomas, Norman L.

    2000-01-01

    A small spectrograph containing no moving components and capable of providing high resolution spectra of the mid-infrared region from 2 microns to 4 microns in wavelength. The resolving power of the spectrograph exceeds 20,000 throughout this region and at an optical throughput of about 10.sup.-5 cm.sup.2 sr. The spectrograph incorporates a silicon immersion echelle grating operating in high spectral order combined with a first order transmission grating in a cross-dispersing configuration to provide a two-dimensional (2-D) spectral format that is focused onto a two-dimensional infrared detector array. The spectrometer incorporates a common collimating and condensing lens assembly in a near aberration-free axially symmetric design. The spectrometer has wide use potential in addition to general research, such as monitoring atmospheric constituents for air quality, climate change, global warming, as well as monitoring exhaust fumes for smog sources or exhaust plumes for evidence of illicit drug manufacture.

  8. Astronomical Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neuenschwander, D. E.; Finkenbinder, L. R.

    2004-05-01

    Just as quetzals and jaguars require specific ecological habitats to survive, so too must planets occupy a tightly constrained astronomical habitat to support life as we know it. With this theme in mind we relate the transferable features of our elementary astronomy course, "The Astronomical Basis of Life on Earth." Over the last five years, in a team-taught course that features a spring break field trip to Costa Rica, we have introduced astronomy through "astronomical ecosystems," emphasizing astronomical constraints on the prospects for life on Earth. Life requires energy, chemical elements, and long timescales, and we emphasize how cosmological, astrophysical, and geological realities, through stabilities and catastrophes, create and eliminate niches for biological life. The linkage between astronomy and biology gets immediate and personal: for example, studies in solar energy production are followed by hikes in the forest to examine the light-gathering strategies of photosynthetic organisms; a lesson on tides is conducted while standing up to our necks in one on a Pacific beach. Further linkages between astronomy and the human timescale concerns of biological diversity, cultural diversity, and environmental sustainability are natural and direct. Our experience of teaching "astronomy as habitat" strongly influences our "Astronomy 101" course in Oklahoma as well. This "inverted astrobiology" seems to transform our student's outlook, from the universe being something "out there" into something "we're in!" We thank the SNU Science Alumni support group "The Catalysts," and the SNU Quetzal Education and Research Center, San Gerardo de Dota, Costa Rica, for their support.

  9. User Support for the HST Spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gonnella, A. M.; Christensen, J. A.; Hulbert, S. J.

    1997-12-01

    Plans for user support of the HST spectrographs include the two archival instruments, GHRS and FOS, as well as the currently operational STIS. Support for users of STIS covers the range of proposal preparation, calibration and visits to the institute, whereas support for the archival instruments is not as broad. We describe the ways in which an observer can find support through our extensive World Wide Web resources and the Space Telescope help desk.

  10. Single Mode, Extreme Precision Doppler Spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwab, Christian; Leon-Saval, Sergio G.; Betters, Christopher H.; Bland-Hawthorn, Joss; Mahadevan, Suvrath

    2014-04-01

    The `holy grail' of exoplanet research today is the detection of an earth-like planet: a rocky planet in the habitable zone around a main-sequence star. Extremely precise Doppler spectroscopy is an indispensable tool to find and characterize earth-like planets; however, to find these planets around solar-type stars, we need nearly one order of magnitude better radial velocity (RV) precision than the best current spectrographs provide. Recent developments in astrophotonics (Bland-Hawthorn & Horton 2006, Bland-Hawthorn et al. 2010) and adaptive optics (AO) enable single mode fiber (SMF) fed, high resolution spectrographs, which can realize the next step in precision. SMF feeds have intrinsic advantages over multimode fiber or slit coupled spectrographs: The intensity distribution at the fiber exit is extremely stable, and as a result the line spread function of a well-designed spectrograph is fully decoupled from input coupling conditions, like guiding or seeing variations (Ihle et al. 2010). Modal noise, a limiting factor in current multimode fiber fed instruments (Baudrand & Walker 2001), can be eliminated by proper design, and the diffraction limited input to the spectrograph allows for very compact instrument designs, which provide excellent optomechanical stability. A SMF is the ideal interface for new, very precise wavelength calibrators, like laser frequency combs (Steinmetz et al. 2008, Osterman et al. 2012), or SMF based Fabry-Perot Etalons (Halverson et al. 2013). At near infrared wavelengths, these technologies are ready to be implemented in on-sky instruments, or already in use. We discuss a novel concept for such a spectrograph.

  11. An Opto-MEMS Multiobject Spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kearney, K.; Ninkov, Z.; Zwarg, D.

    2000-05-01

    Optical MEMS (Micro-Electro-Mechanical-Structures) are an enabling technology for a new class of optical instrumentation designs. An opto-MEMS device consists of an array of microfabricated structures, each of which modulates the phase and/or amplitude of an incident light beam. Typically the devices consist of an array of moveable micromirrors - each of which reflects an incident beam in a unique direction (tilt), or with a unique phase shift (piston). One widely available opto-MEMS device is the Texas Instruments' Digital Micromirror Device (DMD). The DMD is an array of 16 micron x 16 micron square mirrors postioned on a 17 micron pitch. Each mirror can tilt +/- 10 degrees from the normal - reflecting a normally incident light beam +/- 20 degrees. By positioning the DMD in an intermediate image plane in an optical system, portions of the image can be directed into- or out-of the input pupil of the follow-on imaging optics. RIT is utilizing the DMD to construct a prototype multiobject spectrograph (RIT-MOS) for visible observations with terrestrial telescopes. The DMD array replaces the input slit of an imaging spectrograph, forming a 'virtual', programmable slit assembly. By acquiring a pre-image of the astronomical field, it is possible to select a multidude of objects, and to program the DMD to pass only those objects into the input optics of the imaging spectrograph. We will report on the design and characterizatotion of the RIT-MOS, as well as preliminary imaging results.

  12. Astronomical instruments.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rai, R. N.

    Indian astronomers have devised a number of instruments and the most important of these is the armillary sphere. The earliest armillary spheres were very simple instruments. Ptolemy in his Almagest enumerates at least three. The simplest of all was the equinoctial armilla. They had also the solstitial armilla which was a double ring, erected in the plane of the meridian with a rotating inner circle. This was used to measure the solar altitude.

  13. Astronomical superhighways

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leach, D. C.

    1995-08-01

    The expansion of data supply has been prolific over the past decade. Publishers of text are only just beginning to consider what the aim of their publications should be in the light of competition from computer databases. Increasingly sources of data are becoming linked into a global network. The modem has revolutionised the way many astronomers interact with the outside world and each other. Access to data sources world wide can now be undertaken with a simple telephone call and a desktop computer.

  14. The GlobalJetWatch spectrographs: a fibre-fed spectrograph for small telescopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clarke, Fraser J.; Gosling, Andrew J.; Doolin, Sam; Goodall, Paul; Perez, Sebastian; Pattinson, Paul; Makin, Rick; Blundell, Katherine M.

    2008-07-01

    The GlobalJetWatch project (www.globaljetwatch.net) will place small (0.5-metre) commerical telescopes in four schools around the world. Each telescope will be equipped with a custom designed spectrograph, currently being built by the Astrophysics sub-department of the University of Oxford. The scientific goal of the project is to provide continual monitoring of a rosetta stone object, the micro-quasar SS433. In addition, the project has a significant out-reach element, aiming to involve school children on four-continents in front-line astronomical research. The spectrograph is a fibre-fed fixed format cross-dispersed echellete design providing R~6000 spectra from 4300-8500 in a single exposure. The spectrograph is built almost entirely from off-the-shelf components. The four GlobalJetWatch sites (Australia, India, South Africa, Chile) will be commissioned in 2008/09. Here we present the baseline design of the spectrograph, and initial results from the prototype on-sky commissioning in Oxford.

  15. CEOI microslice spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Content, Robert; Blake, Simon; Dunlop, Colin; Nandi, David; Sharples, Ray; Talbot, Gordon; Shanks, Tom; Donoghue, Danny; Galiatsatos, Nikolaos; Luke, Peter

    2012-09-01

    We developed the technology of microslice integral field units some years ago as the next step in SAURON type microlens IFU design with typically 5 times more spatial elements (spaxels) for the same spectrograph and spectral length aiming at 1,000,000 spaxels IFUs. A full instrument for laboratory demonstration composed of the fore-optics, the IFU, the spectrograph and the detector has now been built and tested. It has about 10,000 spatial elements and spectra 150 pixel long. Our IFU has 5 cylindrical microlens arrays along the optical axis as opposed to one hexagonal array in the previous design. Instead of imaging pupils on the spectrograph input focal plane, our IFU images short slitlets 17 pixel long that keep the spatial information along the spatial direction then giving 17 spaxels per slitlet instead of one in pupil imaging. This removes most of the lost space between spectra leaving place for more and keeps the spatial information over the element size while pupil images lose it. The fore-optics re-images the field on the input of the IFU. They are made of cylindrical optics to get the desired different magnifications in both directions. All the optics and detector fit in a cylinder 35 mm in diameter and 280 mm long. With a different set of fore-optics on a 4-m telescope, a field of 43" x 6.7" with spatial elements of 0.14" x 0.22" could be observed so 12 of these mini-spectrographs would cover a field surface area of about 1 arcmin2 and 120,000 spaxels.

  16. Immersion echelle spectrograph

    SciTech Connect

    Stevens, C.G.; Thomas, N.L.

    2000-06-20

    A small spectrograph is disclosed containing no moving components and capable of providing high resolution spectra of the mid-infrared region from 2 microns to 4 microns in wavelength. The resolving power of the spectrograph exceeds 20,000 throughout this region and at an optical throughput of about 10{sup {minus}5}cm{sup 2}sr. The spectrograph incorporates a silicon immersion echelle grating operating in high spectral order combined with a first order transmission grating in a cross-dispersing configuration to provide a two-dimensional (2-D) spectral format that is focused onto a two-dimensional infrared detector array. The spectrometer incorporates a common collimating and condensing lens assembly in a near aberration-free axially symmetric design. The spectrometer has wide use potential in addition to general research, such as monitoring atmospheric constituents for air quality, climate change, global warming, as well as monitoring exhaust fumes for smog sources or exhaust plumes for evidence of illicit drug manufacture.

  17. The Science of Calibration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kent, S. M.

    2016-05-01

    This paper presents a broad overview of the many issues involved in calibrating astronomical data, covering the full electromagnetic spectrum from radio waves to gamma rays, and considering both ground-based and space-based missions. These issues include the science drivers for absolute and relative calibration, the physics behind calibration and the mechanisms used to transfer it from the laboratory to an astronomical source, the need for networks of calibrated astronomical standards, and some of the challenges faced by large surveys and missions.

  18. A nonmarine record of eccentricity forcing through the Upper Triassic of southwest England and its correlation with the Newark Basin astronomically calibrated geomagnetic polarity time scale from North America

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kemp, David B.; Coe, Angela L.

    2007-11-01

    The Late Triassic was a time of major environmental change, yet the precise chronology of events is poorly constrained owing to the nonmarine nature of most preserved Upper Triassic strata and the difficulty in correlating sections. St. Audrie's Bay, southwest England, has been the focus of many studies on this interval of time and is one of the proposed sections for the base Jurassic global stratotype section and point (GSSP). In this study, lacustrine deposits exposed at St. Audrie's Bay have been used to construct a floating astronomical time scale for ˜3.7 m.y. of the Late Triassic based on the recognition of ˜100 k.y. eccentricity cycles in rock color. In addition, we have correlated this time scale with an existing magnetostratigraphy through the same succession and produced an astronomically calibrated record of geomagnetic polarity. Using a novel statistical procedure, we have determined the correlation between this succession and the Late Triassic geomagnetic polarity time scale of the Newark Basin, North America, on which the current (2004) geological time scale is based. Our results show unequivocally that the studied St. Audrie's Bay succession represents part of the Norian and we demonstrate for the first time that cyclostratigraphy can be used in the correlation of Mesozoic strata between North America and Europe.

  19. THE COSMIC ORIGINS SPECTROGRAPH

    SciTech Connect

    Green, James C.; Michael Shull, J.; Snow, Theodore P.; Stocke, John; Froning, Cynthia S.; Osterman, Steve; Beland, Stephane; Burgh, Eric B.; Danforth, Charles; France, Kevin; Ebbets, Dennis; Heap, Sara H.; Leitherer, Claus; Sembach, Kenneth; Linsky, Jeffrey L.; Savage, Blair D.; Siegmund, Oswald H. W.; Spencer, John; Alan Stern, S.; Welsh, Barry; and others

    2012-01-01

    The Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) is a moderate-resolution spectrograph with unprecedented sensitivity that was installed into the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) in 2009 May, during HST Servicing Mission 4 (STS-125). We present the design philosophy and summarize the key characteristics of the instrument that will be of interest to potential observers. For faint targets, with flux F{sub {lambda}} Almost-Equal-To 1.0 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup -14} erg cm{sup -2} s{sup -1} A{sup -1}, COS can achieve comparable signal to noise (when compared to Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph echelle modes) in 1%-2% of the observing time. This has led to a significant increase in the total data volume and data quality available to the community. For example, in the first 20 months of science operation (2009 September-2011 June) the cumulative redshift pathlength of extragalactic sight lines sampled by COS is nine times than sampled at moderate resolution in 19 previous years of Hubble observations. COS programs have observed 214 distinct lines of sight suitable for study of the intergalactic medium as of 2011 June. COS has measured, for the first time with high reliability, broad Ly{alpha} absorbers and Ne VIII in the intergalactic medium, and observed the He II reionization epoch along multiple sightlines. COS has detected the first CO emission and absorption in the UV spectra of low-mass circumstellar disks at the epoch of giant planet formation, and detected multiple ionization states of metals in extra-solar planetary atmospheres. In the coming years, COS will continue its census of intergalactic gas, probe galactic and cosmic structure, and explore physics in our solar system and Galaxy.

  20. A new mass spectrograph.

    PubMed

    Matsuo, T; Ishihara, M

    1993-05-01

    The optical designs of two new types of mass spectrographs were studied. The first is a system that possesses a specially shaped magnet output boundary to satisfy the double-focusing condition for a wide mass range. The focal plane is usually curved. The second system is one in which a parallel ion beam is generated before the magnet, forming a straight double-focusing line. By introducing a quadrupole lens doublet such that the ion beam may be deflected in the same direction through the electric and magnetic fields, the overall image magnification can be arbitrarily controlled and stigmatic focusing achieved for the median ray. PMID:24234934

  1. Construction and status of the CHARIS high contrast imaging spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Groff, Tyler D.; Kasdin, N. J.; Limbach, Mary A.; Galvin, Michael; Carr, Michael A.; Knapp, Gillian; Brandt, Timothy; Loomis, Craig; Jarosik, Norm; Mede, Kyle; McElwain, Michael W.; Janson, Markus; Guyon, Olivier; Jovanovic, Nemanja; Takato, Naruhisa; Martinache, Frantz; Hayashi, Masahiko

    2014-07-01

    Princeton University is building the Coronagraphic High Angular Resolution Imaging Spectrograph (CHARIS), an integral field spectrograph (IFS) for the Subaru telescope. CHARIS is funded by the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan and is designed to take high contrast spectra of brown dwarfs and hot Jovian planets in the coronagraphic image provided by the Coronagraphic Extreme Adaptive Optics (SCExAO) and the AO188 adaptive optics systems. The project is now in the build and test phase at Princeton University. Once laboratory testing has been completed CHARIS will be integrated with SCExAO and AO188 in the winter of 2016. CHARIS has a high-resolution characterization mode in J, H, and K bands. The average spectral resolution in J, H, and K bands are R82, R68, and R82 respectively, the uniformity of which is a direct result of a new high index material, L-BBH2. CHARIS also has a second low-resolution imaging mode that spans J,H, and K bands with an average spectral resolution of R19, a feature unique to this instrument. The field of view in both imaging modes is 2.07x2.07 arcseconds. SCExAO+CHARIS will detect objects five orders of magnitude dimmer than their parent star down to an 80 milliarcsecond inner working angle. The primary challenge with exoplanet imaging is the presence of quasi-static speckles in the coronagraphic image. SCExAO has a wavefront control system to suppress these speckles and CHARIS will address their impact on spectral crosstalk through hardware design, which drives its optical and mechanical design. CHARIS constrains crosstalk to be below 1% for an adjacent source that is a full order of magnitude brighter than the neighboring spectra. Since CHARIS is on the Nasmyth platform, the optical alignment between the lenslet array and prism is highly stable. This improves the stability of the spectra and their orientation on the detector and results in greater stability in the wavelength solution for the data pipeline. This means less

  2. Design and Construction of VUES: The Vilnius University Echelle Spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jurgenson, Colby; Fischer, Debra; McCracken, Tyler; Sawyer, David; Giguere, Matt; Szymkowiak, Andrew; Santoro, Fernando; Muller, Gary

    2016-03-01

    In February 2014, the Yale Exoplanet Laboratory was commissioned to design, build, and deliver a high resolution (R=60,000) spectrograph for the 1.65m telescope at the Molėtai Astronomical Observatory. The observatory is operated by the Institute of Theoretical Physics and Astronomy at Vilnius University. The Vilnius University Echelle Spectrograph (VUES) is a white-pupil design that is fed via an octagonal fiber from the telescope and has an operational bandpass from 400nm to 880nm. VUES incorporates a novel modular optomechanical design that allows for quick assembly and alignment on commercial optical tables. This approach allowed the spectrograph to be assembled and commissioned at Yale using lab optical tables and then reassembled at the observatory on a different optical table with excellent repeatability. The assembly and alignment process for the spectrograph was reduced to a few days, allowing the spectrograph to be completely disassembled for shipment to Lithuania, and then installed at the observatory during a 10-day period in June of 2015.

  3. The Faulkes Telescope Optical Spectrographs and Swift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Brien, Paul

    The Faulkes Telescope project funded primarily by the Dill Faulkes Educational Trust is currently constructing two 2-m robotic telescopes to be located in Hawaii and Australia. These will be the largest and most powerful telescopes ever built dedicated for use by schools and colleges. We have been awarded funding to build two optical spectrographs to be permanently mounted on these telescopes by the end of 2003. At this time an astronomical satellite called Swift will be launched by NASA. Swift is dedicated to the study of gamma-ray bursts the most powerful explosive events in the Universe. The Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Leicester has provided the X-ray camera for Swift and is a partner in the Faulkes Telescopes project. To enhance both projects we intend to use the Faulkes Telescope optical spectrographs to study the gamma-ray bursts identified by Swift. These data will also be made available to schools thereby raising the profile of physics and astronomy in the educational community.

  4. The Robotic FLOYDS Spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sand, D.

    I will discuss the twin FLOYDS robotic spectrographs, operating at the 2m Faulkes Telescopes North and South. The FLOYDS instruments were designed with supernova classification and monitoring in mind, with a very large wavelength coverage (˜320 to 1000 nm) and a resolution (R ˜ 300 - 500, wavelength dependent) well-matched to the broad features of these and other transient and time domain events. Robotic acquisition of spectroscopic targets is the key ingredient for making robotic spectroscopy possible, and FLOYDS uses a slit-viewing camera with a ˜ 4‧ × 6‧ field to either do direct world coordinate system fitting or standard blind offsets to automatically place science targets into the slit. Future work includes an 'all-electronic' target of opportunity mode, which will allow for fast transient spectroscopy with no human necessary, even for inputting information into a phase 2 GUI. Initial science highlights from FLOYDS will also be presented.

  5. Spectrographic imaging system

    DOEpatents

    Morris, Michael D.; Treado, Patrick J.

    1991-01-01

    An imaging system for providing spectrographically resolved images. The system incorporates a one-dimensional spatial encoding mask which enables an image to be projected onto a two-dimensional image detector after spectral dispersion of the image. The dimension of the image which is lost due to spectral dispersion on the two-dimensional detector is recovered through employing a reverse transform based on presenting a multiplicity of different spatial encoding patterns to the image. The system is especially adapted for detecting Raman scattering of monochromatic light transmitted through or reflected from physical samples. Preferably, spatial encoding is achieved through the use of Hadamard mask which selectively transmits or blocks portions of the image from the sample being evaluated.

  6. The Cosmic Origins Spectrograph

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Green, James C.; Froning, Cynthia S.; Osterman, Steve; Ebbets, Dennis; Heap, Sara H.; Leitherer, Claus; Linsky, Jeffrey L.; Savage, Blair D.; Sembach, Kenneth; Shull, J. Michael; Siegmund, Oswald H. W.; Snow, Theodore P.; Spencer, John; Stern, S. Alan; Stocke, John; Welsh, Barry; Beland, Stephane; Burgh, Eric B.; Danforth, Charles; France, Kevin; Keeney, Brian; McPhate, Jason; Penton, Steven V; Andrews, John; Morse, Jon

    2010-01-01

    The Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) is a moderate-resolution spectrograph with unprecedented sensitivity that was installed into the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) in May 2009, during HST Servicing Mission 4 (STS-125). We present the design philosophy and summarize the key characteristics of the instrument that will be of interest to potential observers. For faint targets, with flux F(sub lambda) approximates 1.0 X 10(exp -14) ergs/s/cm2/Angstrom, COS can achieve comparable signal to noise (when compared to STIS echelle modes) in 1-2% of the observing time. This has led to a significant increase in the total data volume and data quality available to the community. For example, in the first 20 months of science operation (September 2009 - June 2011) the cumulative redshift pathlength of extragalactic sight lines sampled by COS is 9 times that sampled at moderate resolution in 19 previous years of Hubble observations. COS programs have observed 214 distinct lines of sight suitable for study of the intergalactic medium as of June 2011. COS has measured, for the first time with high reliability, broad Lya absorbers and Ne VIII in the intergalactic medium, and observed the HeII reionization epoch along multiple sightlines. COS has detected the first CO emission and absorption in the UV spectra of low-mass circumstellar disks at the epoch of giant planet formation, and detected multiple ionization states of metals in extra-solar planetary atmospheres. In the coming years, COS will continue its census of intergalactic gas, probe galactic and cosmic structure, and explore physics in our solar system and Galaxy.

  7. Echelle spectrograph software design aid

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dantzler, A. A.

    1985-01-01

    A method for mapping, to first order, the spectrograms that result from echelle spectrographic systems is discussed. An in-depth description of the principles behind the method are given so that software may be generated. Such software is an invaluable echelle spectrograph design aid. Results from two applications are discussed.

  8. Interferometric resolution boosting for spectrographs

    SciTech Connect

    Erskine, D J; Edelstein, J

    2004-05-25

    Externally dispersed interferometry (EDI) is a technique for enhancing the performance of spectrographs for wide bandwidth high resolution spectroscopy and Doppler radial velocimetry. By placing a small angle-independent interferometer near the slit of a spectrograph, periodic fiducials are embedded on the recorded spectrum. The multiplication of the stellar spectrum times the sinusoidal fiducial net creates a moir{acute e} pattern, which manifests high detailed spectral information heterodyned down to detectably low spatial frequencies. The latter can more accurately survive the blurring, distortions and CCD Nyquist limitations of the spectrograph. Hence lower resolution spectrographs can be used to perform high resolution spectroscopy and radial velocimetry. Previous demonstrations of {approx}2.5x resolution boost used an interferometer having a single fixed delay. We report new data indicating {approx}6x Gaussian resolution boost (140,000 from a spectrograph with 25,000 native resolving power), taken by using multiple exposures at widely different interferometer delays.

  9. Compact low resolution spectrograph, an imaging and long slit spectrograph for robotic telescopes

    SciTech Connect

    Rabaza, O.; Zeman, J.; Hudec, R.; Sabau-Graziati, L.

    2013-11-15

    The COmpact LOw REsolution Spectrograph (COLORES) is a compact and lightweight (13 kg) f/8 imaging spectrograph designed for robotic telescopes, now installed and operating on the TELMA, a rapid-slewing 60 cm telescope of the BOOTES-2 observatory in Málaga (Spain). COLORES is a multi-mode instrument that enables the observer to seamlessly switch between low-dispersion spectroscopy and direct imaging modes during an observation. In this paper, we describe the instrument and its development, from the initial scientific requirements through the optical design process to final configuration with theoretical performance calculations. The mechanical and electronic design is described, methods of calibration are discussed and early laboratory and scientific results are shown.

  10. Compact low resolution spectrograph, an imaging and long slit spectrograph for robotic telescopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rabaza, O.; Jelinek, M.; Castro-Tirado, A. J.; Cunniffe, R.; Zeman, J.; Hudec, R.; Sabau-Graziati, L.; Ruedas-Sánchez, J.

    2013-11-01

    The COmpact LOw REsolution Spectrograph (COLORES) is a compact and lightweight (13 kg) f/8 imaging spectrograph designed for robotic telescopes, now installed and operating on the TELMA, a rapid-slewing 60 cm telescope of the BOOTES-2 observatory in Málaga (Spain). COLORES is a multi-mode instrument that enables the observer to seamlessly switch between low-dispersion spectroscopy and direct imaging modes during an observation. In this paper, we describe the instrument and its development, from the initial scientific requirements through the optical design process to final configuration with theoretical performance calculations. The mechanical and electronic design is described, methods of calibration are discussed and early laboratory and scientific results are shown.

  11. A new fiber slit assembly for the FOCES spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kellermann, Hanna; Grupp, Frank; Brucalassi, Anna; Lang-Bardl, Florian; Franik, Christian; Hopp, Ulrich; Bender, Ralf

    2015-09-01

    After successful operation at the Calar Alto telescope until 2009, and extensive lab tests at the Munich University Observatory the high resolution Échelle spectrograph FOCES (Fiber Optics Cassegrain Échelle Spectrograph) is now about to be reinstalled at the 2 m Wendelstein Observatory in the German Alps. For this new phase of operation FOCES will be equipped with new components that will improve time stability and wavelength calibration. With these modifications FOCES will meet the requirements for performing precision radial velocity measurements on a competitive level. One of the key features of the upgraded spectrograph is the new calibration system, which uses a laser frequency comb as reference light source. Another aspect is the possibility to perform simultaneous wavelength calibration, while recording science data. For this purpose a new 4-fiber slit has been developed, which opens up the possibility to feed light from different sources at the same time through the entrance slit of the spectrograph. We present a detailed characterization of this new device, based on the results of extensive lab tests performed at the Munich University Observatory.

  12. Update on the Gemini High-Resolution Optical SpecTrograph (GHOST)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Margheim, Steven J.; Ghost Instrument Team

    2015-01-01

    The Gemini High-Resolution Opitcal SpecTrograph (GHOST) is under development for the Gemini telescopes in collaboration with the Austrailian Astronomical Observatory (AAO), the NRC-Herzberg in Canada, and the Australian National University (ANU). The latest design and project plan will be presented and the scientific role of the instrument will be discussed.

  13. Efficiently mating fibers to spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brodie, Jean P.; Donnelly, R. H.; Epps, Harland W.; Radovan, Matthew V.; Craig, William W.

    1994-06-01

    We describe the conversion of an existing f/8 Cassegrain spectrograph to a floor-mounted spectrograph fed by 94 fibers from the f/5 prime focus of the Shane 3-meter telescope at Lick Observatory. The spectrography forms part of the automated Multi- Object Spectrograph system developed as a collaboration between UCO/Lick Observatory and the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Fibers from a robotic fiber-positioner at prime focus degrade the f/5.5 beam from the telescope (after it has passed through a wide-field prime focus corrector) into roughly a f/4.5 beam. If the 4/8 spectrograph were fed directly with this f/4.5 beam approximately 68% of the light would be lost. A simple optical system has been designed that converts the light from the fibers into the f/ratio expected by the spectrograph. The conversion optics are mounted at the entrance to the spectrograph. We describe focal ratio degradation tests of a variety of optical fibers and the design of the `pseudoslit' which mounts the fibers in a line at the input to the conversion optics.

  14. Astronomical application of IR CID technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rank, D. M.

    1984-01-01

    A portable microcomputer data system was developed to test a 2 x 64-element Si:Bi charge injection device (CID) infrared detector array on the Lick Observatory Shane telescope. An existing 0.5 m spectrograph was used for the tests after modification, and a spectral resolution of 1000 was achieved. Slow device response, due to the low background conditions in the spectrograph were shown. Astronomical data were later obtained, and a device read noise on the order of a few hundred electrons was achieved. The signal to noise ratios of the resulting spectra were about a factor of five lower than what could have been achieved with discrete photoconductive detectors. It is concluded that the CID array is competitive for applications in backgrounds lower than those used in the tests.

  15. Astronomical Institute of Athens

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murdin, P.

    2000-11-01

    The Astronomical Institute of Athens is the oldest research institute of modern Greece (it faces the Parthenon). The Astronomical Institute (AI) of the National Observatory of Athens (NOA) started its observational projects in 1847. The modern computer and research center are housed at the Penteli Astronomical Station with major projects and international collaborations focused on extragalactic ...

  16. The development of ground-based infrared multi-object spectrograph based on the microshutter array

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moon, Dae-Sik; Sivanandam, Suresh; Kutyrev, Alexander S.; Moseley, Samuel H.; Graham, James R.; Roy, Aishwarya

    2014-07-01

    We report on our development of a near-infrared multi-object spectrograph for ground-based applications using the micro-shutter array, which was originally developed for the Near Infrared Spectrograph of the James Webb Space Telescope. The micro-shutter array in this case acts as a source selector at a reimaged telescope focal plane. The developed spectrograph will be implemented either with ground-layer adaptive optics system or multi-conjugate adaptive optics system on a large telescope. This will enable for the first time fully reconfigurable infrared multi-object spectroscopy with adaptive optics systems. We envision studying diverse astronomical objects with our spectrograph, including high-redshift galaxies, galaxy clusters and super star clusters.

  17. LOTUS: a low-cost, ultraviolet spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steele, I. A.; Marchant, J. M.; Jermak, H. E.; Barnsley, R. M.; Bates, S. D.; Clay, N. R.; Fitzsimmons, A.; Jehin, E.; Jones, G.; Mottram, C. J.; Smith, R. J.; Snodgrass, C.; de Val-Borro, M.

    2016-08-01

    We describe the design, construction and commissioning of LOTUS; a simple, low-cost long-slit spectrograph for the Liverpool Telescope. The design is optimized for near-UV and visible wavelengths and uses all transmitting optics. It exploits the instrument focal plane field curvature to partially correct axial chromatic aberration. A stepped slit provides narrow (2.5x95 arcsec) and wide (5x25 arcsec) options that are optimized for spectral resolution and flux calibration respectively. On sky testing shows a wavelength range of 3200-6300 Angstroms with a peak system throughput (including detector quantum efficiency) of 15 per cent and wavelength dependant spectral resolution of R=225-430. By repeated observations of the symbiotic emission line star AG Peg we demonstrate the wavelength stability of the system is less than 2 Angstroms rms and is limited by the positioning of the object in the slit. The spectrograph is now in routine operation monitoring the activity of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko during its current post-perihelion apparition.

  18. LOTUS: A low cost, ultraviolet spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steele, I. A.; Marchant, J. M.; Jermak, H. E.; Barnsley, R. M.; Bates, S. D.; Clay, N. R.; Fitzsimmons, A.; Jehin, E.; Jones, G.; Mottram, C. J.; Smith, R. J.; Snodgrass, C.; de Val-Borro, M.

    2016-05-01

    We describe the design, construction and commissioning of LOTUS; a simple, low-cost long-slit spectrograph for the Liverpool Telescope. The design is optimized for near-UV and visible wavelengths and uses all transmitting optics. It exploits the instrument focal plane field curvature to partially correct axial chromatic aberration. A stepped slit provides narrow (2.5 × 95 arcsec) and wide (5 × 25 arcsec) options that are optimized for spectral resolution and flux calibration respectively. On sky testing shows a wavelength range of 3200-6300 Å with a peak system throughput (including detector quantum efficiency) of 15 per cent and wavelength dependant spectral resolution of R = 225 - 430. By repeated observations of the symbiotic emission line star AG Peg we demonstrate the wavelength stability of the system is <2 Å rms and is limited by the positioning of the object in the slit. The spectrograph is now in routine operation monitoring the activity of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko during its current post-perihelion apparition.

  19. LOTUS: a low-cost, ultraviolet spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steele, I. A.; Marchant, J. M.; Jermak, H. E.; Barnsley, R. M.; Bates, S. D.; Clay, N. R.; Fitzsimmons, A.; Jehin, E.; Jones, G.; Mottram, C. J.; Smith, R. J.; Snodgrass, C.; de Val-Borro, M.

    2016-08-01

    We describe the design, construction and commissioning of a simple, low-cost long-slit spectrograph for the Liverpool Telescope. The design is optimized for near-UV and visible wavelengths and uses all transmitting optics. It exploits the instrument focal plane field curvature to partially correct axial chromatic aberration. A stepped slit provides narrow (2.5 × 95 arcsec) and wide (5 × 25 arcsec) options that are optimized for spectral resolution and flux calibration, respectively. On sky testing shows a wavelength range of 3200-6300 Å with a peak system throughput (including detector quantum efficiency) of 15 per cent and wavelength dependent spectral resolution of R = 225-430. By repeated observations of the symbiotic emission line star AG Peg, we demonstrate the wavelength stability of the system is <2 Å rms and is limited by the positioning of the object in the slit. The spectrograph is now in routine operation monitoring the activity of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko during its current post-perihelion apparition.

  20. Extreme luminosity imaging conical spectrograph

    SciTech Connect

    Pikuz, S. A.; Shelkovenko, T. A.; Mitchell, M. D.; Chandler, K. M.; Douglass, J. D.; McBride, R. D.; Jackson, D. P.; Hammer, D. A.

    2006-10-15

    A new configuration for a two-dimensional (2D) imaging x-ray spectrograph based on a conically bent crystal is introduced: extreme luminosity imaging conical spectrograph (ELICS). The ELICS configuration has important advantages over spectrographs that are based on cylindrically and spherically bent crystals. The main advantages are that a wide variety of large-aperture crystals can be used, and any desired magnification in the spatial direction (the direction orthogonal to spectral dispersion) can be achieved by the use of different experimental arrangements. The ELICS can be set up so that the detector plane is almost perpendicular to the incident rays, a good configuration for time-resolved spectroscopy. ELICSs with mica crystals of 45x90 mm{sup 2} aperture have been successfully used for imaging on the XP and COBRA pulsed power generators, yielding spectra with spatial resolution in 2D of Z pinches and X pinches.

  1. Radioastronomy at the National Astronomical Observatory of Colombia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guevara Gómez, J. C.; Calvo-Mozo, B.; Martinez Oliveros, J. C.

    2015-12-01

    Colombia is located in the northern tip of South America close to the amazon rain forest. This makes astronomical observations in the visible range very challenging, as cloud coverage is relatively high. Hence, radio astronomy becomes a natural and good choice. We present the design, characterization and first results of the Observatorio Astronomico Nacional solar radio spectrograph. This instrument is a Log-Periodic Dipole Array Antenna (LPDA) working between 100 MHz and 1 GHz optimized for solar observations. The radio spectrograph is a working prototype for a more ambitious solar radio interferometer, that will be the first instrument of this kind in Colombia.

  2. MMT and Magellan infrared spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McLeod, Brian A.; Fabricant, Daniel; Geary, John; Martini, Paul; Nystrom, George; Elston, Richard; Eikenberry, Stephen S.; Epps, Harland

    2004-09-01

    We present the preliminary design for the MMT and Magellan Infrared Spectrograph (MMIRS). MMIRS is a fully refractive imager and multi-object spectrograph that uses a 2048x2048 pixel Hawaii2 HgCdTe array. It offers a 7'x7' imaging field of view and a 4'x7' field of view for multi-object spectroscopy. Dispersion is provided by a set of 5 grisms providing R=3000 at J, H, or K, or R=1300 in J+H or H+K.

  3. X-ray spectrograph design

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chrisp, M. P.

    1983-01-01

    An aberration theory is applied to spectrograph design. The initial system considered has a toroidal mirror in front of a concave grating spectrograph, giving spatial resolution perpendicular to the dispersion direction. The accuracy of the theory is shown by comparison of spot diagrams obtained from the aberrations with those produced by raytracing. The major aberrations affecting the vignetting at the intermediate slit and the spatial resolution are identified. A new system, using a holographic grating to give a flat focal plane, is then designed and optimized. It has increased spatial resolution over the wavelength range and is particularly suitable for microchannel array detectors.

  4. Fibre positioning algorithms for the WEAVE spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Terrett, David L.; Lewis, Ian J.; Dalton, Gavin; Abrams, Don Carlos; Aguerri, J. Alfonso L.; Bonifacio, Piercarlo; Middleton, Kevin; Trager, Scott C.

    2014-07-01

    WEAVE is the next-generation wide-field optical spectroscopy facility for the William Herschel Telescope (WHT) in La Palma, Canary Islands, Spain. It is a multi-object "pick and place" fibre fed spectrograph with more than one thousand fibres, similar in concept to the Australian Astronomical Observatory's 2dF1 instrument with two observing plates, one of which is observing the sky while other is being reconfigured by a robotic fibre positioner. It will be capable of acquiring more than 10000 star or galaxy spectra a night. The WEAVE positioner concept uses two robots working in tandem in order to reconfigure a fully populated field within the expected 1 hour dwell-time for the instrument (a good match between the required exposure times and the limit of validity for a given configuration due to the effects of differential refraction). This presents additional constraints and complications for the software that determines the optimal path from one configuration to the next, particularly given the large number of fibre crossings implied by the 1000 fibre multiplex. This paper describes the algorithms and programming techniques used in the prototype implementations of the field configuration tool and the fibre positioner robot controller developed to support the detailed design of WEAVE.

  5. Kyoto tridimensional spectrograph II: progress

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sugai, Hajime; Ohtani, Hiroshi; Ozaki, Shinobu; Hattori, Takashi; Ishii, Motomi; Ishigaki, Tsuyoshi; Hayashi, Tadashi; Sasaki, Minoru; Takeyama, Norihide

    2000-08-01

    We are building the Kyoto tridimensional spectrograph II and are planning to mount it on Subaru telescope. The spectrograph has four observational modes: Fabry-Perot imager, integral field spectrograph (IFS) with a microlens array, long-slit spectrograph, and filter-imaging modes. The optics is designed to be used in wide wavelength range from 360 nm to 900 nm. The design well matches with high spatial resolution of Subaru: 0 inch .06 pixel-1 in Fabry- Perot mode, for which we actually will use binning before adaptive optics at optical wavelengths becomes available, and 0 inch .1 lens-1 in microlens array mode. These well sample image sizes obtained by Subaru, which are about 0 inch .4 in relatively good conditions. We have evaluated a point spread function of our cylindrical microlens array and found that it consists of a diffraction pattern and more extended component which probably comes from border regions between microlenses. With a suitable mask at the micro pupil position, the crosstalk between spectra will be limited down to a few percent. With a suitable mask at the micro pupil position, the crosstalk between spectra will be limited down to a few percent. We have succeeded in synchronizing frequency switching of Fabry-Perot etalons with the movement of charge on the CCD. This technique enables to average out all temporal variations between each passband.

  6. Holographic spectrograph for space telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ditto, Thomas D.; Lysenko, Sergiy; Crenshaw, Melissa

    2013-09-01

    A spectrograph is described which is made with dual Holographic Optical Elements (HOEs) which are identical and parallel to each other. Both optics are collimating transmission HOEs with focal points that are at equal and opposite distances from each other. The identical HOEs are formed by the interference of a plane wave parallel to the grating plane with an off-axis spherical wave originating in the near-field. In playback, a spectrum can be formed from a point source radiator placed at the position of the recording spherical wave. If played back at an arbitrary wavelength other than the recording wavelength, the image exhibits coma. This spectrograph is intended for an unusual configuration where many nearly monochromatic sources of known wavelengths are separately positioned relative to the first HOE. The special application is in a space telescope capable of resolving spectra from habitable planets within 10 pc. HOEs of this type could be fabricated on membrane substrates with a low areal mass and stowable on rolls for insertion into the second Lagrange point. The intended application is for a 50 x 10 meter class primary objective holographic space telescope with 50 x 10 m HOEs in the spectrograph. We present a computer model of the spectrograph.. Experimental results are compared with predictions from theory. A single HOE is shown to perform over a wider bandwidth and is demonstrated.

  7. Armenian Astronomical Heritage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mickaelian, A. M.

    2014-10-01

    A review is given on the Armenian Astronomical Heritage from ancient times to nowadays. Armenian ancient astronomy includes the division of the skies into constellations, rock art, ancient Armenian calendar, ancient observatories (such as Metsamor and Karahunge), records of astronomical events (such as Halley's Comet recorded on Tigranes the Great's coin), ancient names of celestial bodies (planets, stars, constellations), etc. The Medieval Armenian astronomy includes two more calendars, Anania Shirakatsi's scientific heritage, the record of 1054 Supernova, sky maps by Luca Vanandetsi and Mkhitar Sebastatsi, etc. Modern Armenian astronomical heritage first of all consists of the famous Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory founded in 1946 by Viktor Ambartsumian, as well as Yerevan Astronomical Observatory, Armenian Astronomical Society, Armenian Virtual Observatory, Yerevan State University Department of Astrophysics, Astrofizika journal, and brilliant young students who systematically win high positions at International Astronomical Olympiads.

  8. Effective Area of the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph below 1150 Å

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCandliss, Stephan R.; France, K.; Osterman, S.; Green, J. C.; McPhate, J. B.; Wilkinson, E.; COS

    2010-01-01

    The G140L segment B channel (R 2,000) of the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) recently installed on the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) has an effective area consistent with 10 cm2 in the bandpass between the Lyman edge at 912 Å and Lyβ. It has a slight plateau of 20 cm2 near 1050 Å and rises to a peak in excess of 1100 cm2 longward of 1140 Å. Up until now the general astronomical community has had only limited access to a low resolving power R 2,000 far-UV spectrograph, extending down to the Lyman limit, in the form of the shuttle carried instruments; the Hopkins Ultraviolet Telescope and the Berkeley Extreme and Far-UV Spectrograph. The low resolving power provides a unique capability to reach extremely faint flux limits and will enable new science investigations, such as those seeking to quantify the escape fraction of Lyman continuum photons from galaxies at low redshift, study the He II Gunn-Peterson effect in the redshift range 2 < z < 2.8, measure CO/H2 in dense interstellar environments, or make observations of the O VI λλ 1032, 1038 doublet. Observations of point sources will have the highest spectral resolution, since the small 2."5 diameter entrance aperture of COS is not optimized for extended source observations.

  9. The Astronomical Telescope of New York: a new 12-meter astronomical telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sebring, T.; Junquist, R.; Stutzki, C.; Sebring, P.; Baum, S.

    2012-09-01

    The Astronomical Corporation of New York has commissioned a study of a 12-meter class telescope to be developed by a group of NY universities. The telescope concept builds on the basic principles established by the Keck telescopes; segmented primary mirror, Ritchey Chretien Nasmyth instrument layout, and light weight structures. New, lightweight, and low cost approaches are proposed for the primary mirror architecture, dome structure and mechanisms, telescope mount approach, and adaptive optics. Work on the design is supported by several NY based corporations and universities. The design offers a substantially larger aperture than any existing Visible/IR wavelength telescope at historically low cost. The concept employs an adaptive secondary mirror and laser guide star adaptive optics. Two First Light instruments are proposed; A High resolution near infrared spectrograph and a near infrared Integral field spectrograph/imager.

  10. Optical Comb from a Whispering Gallery Mode Resonator for Spectroscopy and Astronomy Instruments Calibration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Strekalov, Dmitry V.; Yu, Nam; Thompson, Robert J.

    2012-01-01

    The most accurate astronomical data is available from space-based observations that are not impeded by the Earth's atmosphere. Such measurements may require spectral samples taken as long as decades apart, with the 1 cm/s velocity precision integrated over a broad wavelength range. This raises the requirements specifically for instruments used in astrophysics research missions -- their stringent wavelength resolution and accuracy must be maintained over years and possibly decades. Therefore, a stable and broadband optical calibration technique compatible with spaceflights becomes essential. The space-based spectroscopic instruments need to be calibrated in situ, which puts forth specific requirements to the calibration sources, mainly concerned with their mass, power consumption, and reliability. A high-precision, high-resolution reference wavelength comb source for astronomical and astrophysics spectroscopic observations has been developed that is deployable in space. The optical comb will be used for wavelength calibrations of spectrographs and will enable Doppler measurements to better than 10 cm/s precision, one hundred times better than the current state-of-the- art.

  11. The development of WIFIS: a wide integral field infrared spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sivanandam, Suresh; Chou, Richard C. Y.; Moon, Dae-Sik; Ma, Ke; Millar-Blanchaer, Maxwell; Eikenberry, Stephen S.; Chun, Moo-Young; Kim, Sang Chul; Raines, Steven N.; Eisner, Joshua

    2012-09-01

    We present the current results from the development of a wide integral field infrared spectrograph (WIFIS). WIFIS offers an unprecedented combination of etendue and spectral resolving power for seeing-limited, integral field observations in the 0.9 - 1.8 μm range and is most sensitive in the 0.9 - 1.35 μ,m range. Its optical design consists of front-end re-imaging optics, an all-reflective image slicer-type, integral field unit (IFU) called FISICA, and a long-slit grating spectrograph back-end that is coupled with a HAWAII 2RG focal plane array. The full wavelength range is achieved by selecting between two different gratings. By virtue of its re-imaging optics, the spectrograph is quite versatile and can be used at multiple telescopes. The size of its field-of-view is unrivalled by other similar spectrographs, offering a 4.511x 1211 integral field at a 10-meter class telescope (or 2011 x 5011 at a 2.3-meter telescope). The use of WIFIS will be crucial in astronomical problems which require wide-field, two-dimensional spectroscopy such as the study of merging galaxies at moderate redshift and nearby star/planet-forming regions and supernova remnants. We discuss the final optical design of WIFIS, and its predicted on-sky performance on two reference telescope platforms: the 2.3-m Steward Bok telescope and the 10.4-m Gran Telescopio Canarias. We also present the results from our laboratory characterization of FISICA. IFU properties such as magnification, field-mapping, and slit width along the entire slit length were measured by our tests. The construction and testing of WIFIS is expected to be completed by early 2013. We plan to commission the instrument at the 2.3-m Steward Bok telescope at Kitt Peak, USA in Spring 2013.

  12. KIDSpec: an MKID based medium resolution integral field spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Brien, Kieran; Thatte, Niranjan; Mazin, Benjamin

    2014-07-01

    We present a novel concept for a highly sensitive, medium spectral resolution optical through near-IR spectrograph. KIDSpec, the Kinetic Inductance Detector Spectrograph, uses the intrinsic energy resolving capability of an array of optical/IR-sensitive MKIDs to distinguish multiple orders from a low line-density (echelle) grating. MKID arrays have a wide bandpass (0.1-2.5um) and good quantum efficiency, making them strong candidates for replacing CCDs in many astronomical instruments. By acting as an `order resolver', the MKID array replaces the cross-disperser in an echelle spectrograph. This greatly simplifies the optical layout of the spectrograph and enables longer slits than are possible with cross-dispersed instruments. KIDSpec would have similar capabilities to ESO's X-shooter instrument. It would provide an R=4000-10,000 spectrum covering the entire optical and near-IR spectral range. In addition to a `long-slit' mode, the IFU would provide a small (~50 spaxel) field-of-view for spatially resolved sources. In addition, the photon-counting operation of MKIDs and their photon-energy resolving ability enable a read-noise free spectrum with perfect cosmic ray removal. The spectral resolution would be sufficient to remove the bright night-sky lines without the additional pixel noise, making the instrument more sensitive than an equivalent semiconductor-based instrument. KIDSpec would enhance many existing high-profile science cases, including transient (GRB, SNe, etc.) follow-up, redshift determination of faint objects and transit spectroscopy of exoplanets. In addition it will enable unique science cases, such as dynamical mass estimates of the compact objects in ultra-compact binaries.

  13. Nicolaus Copernicus Astronomical Center

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murdin, P.

    2000-11-01

    Nicolaus Copernicus Astronomical Center is the largest astronomical institution in Poland, located in Warsaw and founded in 1956. At present it is a government-funded research institute supervised by the Polish Academy of Sciences and licensed by the government of Poland to award PhD and doctor habilitatus degrees in astronomy and astrophysics. In September 1999 staff included 21 senior scientist...

  14. Astronomers Working in Industry.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bless, Robert C.; King, Ivan R.

    1981-01-01

    Four scientists, trained as astronomers, describe their astronomical training and present careers in non-astronomy, industrial jobs. They recount some of the differences, positive and negative, between industrial and academic employment, and comment on some of the attitudes they perceive academic and industrial scientists hold toward each other.…

  15. American Astronomical Society (AAS)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murdin, P.

    2000-11-01

    Founded in 1899, the AAS is a non-profit scientific society created to promote the advancement of astronomy and closely related branches of science. Its membership consists primarily of professional researchers in the astronomical sciences, but also includes educators, students and others interested in the advancement of astronomical research. About 85% of the membership is drawn from North Ame...

  16. Astronomical Software Directory Service

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hanisch, R. J.; Payne, H.; Hayes, J.

    1998-01-01

    This is the final report on the development of the Astronomical Software Directory Service (ASDS), a distributable, searchable, WWW-based database of software packages and their related documentation. ASDS provides integrated access to 56 astronomical software packages, with more than 16,000 URL's indexed for full-text searching.

  17. EGRAM- ECHELLE SPECTROGRAPH DESIGN AID

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dantzler, A. A.

    1994-01-01

    EGRAM aids in the design of spectrographic systems that utilize an echelle-first order cross disperser combination. This optical combination causes a two dimensional echellogram to fall on a detector. EGRAM describes the echellogram with enough detail to allow the user to effectively judge the feasibility of the spectrograph's design. By iteratively altering system parameters, the desired echellogram can be achieved without making a physical model. EGRAM calculates system parameters which are accurate to the first order and compare favorably to results from ray tracing techniques. The spectrographic system modelled by EGRAM consists of an entrance aperture, collimator, echelle, cross dispersion grating, focusing options, and a detector. The system is assumed to be free of aberrations and the echelle, cross disperser, and detector should be planar. The EGRAM program is menu driven and has a HELP facility. The user is prompted for information such as minimum and maximum wavelengths, slit dimensions, ruling frequencies, detector geometry, and angle of incidence. EGRAM calculates the resolving power and range of order numbers covered by the echellogram. A numerical map is also produced. This tabulates the order number, slit bandpass, and high/middle/low wavelengths. EGRAM can also compute the centroid coordinates of a specific wavelength and order (or vice versa). EGRAM is written for interactive execution and is written in Microsoft BASIC A. It has been implemented on an IBM PC series computer operating under DOS. EGRAM was developed in 1985.

  18. The Astronomical League

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stevens, J. A.; Stevens, B. L.

    2000-10-01

    Founded over fifty years ago, the League is the largest general astronomy society in the world. It is a recognized non-profit, educational organization, promoting the science of astronomy. This includes astronomical education, research, individual observing of the heavens and coordination between the amateur and professional astronomy communities. The Astronomical League publishes a quarterly newsletter, the "Reflector", which details amateur activities and amateur collaboration with professional astronomers. The League's Observing Clubs hone the skills of the amateur astronomer in using their telescopes. These clubs provide awards to encourge observing and learning the sky. More general awards are presented to encourage amateur astronomy and the science of astronomy. These include the National Young Astronomer Award, amd the Horkheimer Planetary Imaging Award. They also sponsor conventions on both the National and Regional levels. This year's national is in Ventura, California, next year, near Washington, D.C.

  19. Calibration beads containing luminescent lanthanide ion complexes

    EPA Science Inventory

    The reliability of lanthanide luminescence measurements, by both flow cytometry and digital microscopy, will be enhanced by the availability of narrow-band emitting lanthanide calibration beads. These beads can also be used to characterize spectrographic instruments, including mi...

  20. Odessa Astronomical Calendar-2003

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karetnikov, V. G.; Mihalchuk, V. V.; Bazey, A. A.; Andronov, I. L.; Volyanskaya, M. Yu.; Garbuzov, G. A.; Komarov, N. S.; Koshkin, N. I.; Pozigun, V. A.; Ryabov, M. I.

    2002-10-01

    The Odessa Astronomical Calendar is intended for a wide range of readers, who are interested in the problems of astronomy and in the applications of the astronomical data. The items, of information, assembled in the Calendar may be useful to professional workers requiring a definition of time of sets and rises of the Sun and the Moon and approach of twilights, as well as to the amateurs astronomers and other citizens. The Calendar may be used for astronomical education at schools, hymnasia, lycea, colleges and institutes. In this issue of the Calendar, besides a description of the main astronomical events of the year and the tables of the positions of celestial bodies and time of observations of astronomical events on the celestial sphere, there are also included sketches on interesting problems of astronomy and, as the appendix, the instruction on observations of comets. The Odessa Astronomical Calendar is published in Russian and is intended for the inhabitants of southern region of Ukraine. The Calendar is published every year with a constant part and series of articles, which change every year.

  1. The Astronomers' Data Manifesto

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Norris, R. P.

    2006-08-01

    A draft manifesto is presented for discussion. The manifesto sets out guidelines to which the astronomical community should aspire to maximise the rate and cost-effectiveness of scientific discovery. The challenges are not underestimated, but can still be overcome if astronomers, observatories, journals, data centres, and the Virtual Observatory Alliance work together to overcome the hurdles. The key points of the manifesto are: 1. All major tables, images, and spectra published in journals should appear in the astronomical data centres. 2. All data obtained with publicly-funded observatories should, after appropriate proprietary periods, be placed in the public domain. 3. In any new major astronomical construction project, the data processing, storage, migration, and management requirements should be built in at an early stage of the project plan, and costed along with other parts of the project. 4. Astronomers in all countries should have the same access to astronomical data and information. 5. Legacy astronomical data can be valuable, and high-priority legacy data should be preserved and stored in digital form in the data centres. 6. The IAU should work with other international organisations to achieve our common goals and learn from our colleagues in other fields.

  2. The Lifetimes of Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abt, Helmut A.

    2015-08-01

    For members of the American Astronomical Society, I collected data on their lifetimes from (1) 489 obituaries published in 1991-2015, (2) about 127 members listed as deceased but without published obituaries, and (3) a sample of AAS members without obituaries or not known to the AAS as being deceased. These show that the most frequent lifetimes is 85 years. Of 674 deceased members with known lifetimes, 11.0 ± 1.3% lived to be 90 or more years. In comparison to the astronomers, the most frequent lifetime for the general population is 77 years, showing that astronomers live an average of 8 years longer than the general population.

  3. Astronomical Video Suites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Francisco Salgado, Jose

    2010-01-01

    Astronomer and visual artist Jose Francisco Salgado has directed two astronomical video suites to accompany live performances of classical music works. The suites feature awe-inspiring images, historical illustrations, and visualizations produced by NASA, ESA, and the Adler Planetarium. By the end of 2009, his video suites Gustav Holst's The Planets and Astronomical Pictures at an Exhibition will have been presented more than 40 times in over 10 countries. Lately Salgado, an avid photographer, has been experimenting with high dynamic range imaging, time-lapse, infrared, and fisheye photography, as well as with stereoscopic photography and video to enhance his multimedia works.

  4. America's foremost early astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rubincam, David Parry; Rubincam, Milton, II

    1995-05-01

    The life of 18th century astronomer, craftsman, and patriot David Rittenhouse is detailed. As a craftsman, he distinguished himself as one of the foremost builders of clocks. He also built magnetic compasses and surveying instruments. The finest examples of his craftsmanship are considered two orreries, mechanical solar systems. In terms of astronomical observations, his best-known contribution was his observation of the transit of Venus in 1769. Rittenhouse constructed the first diffraction grating. Working as Treasurer of Pennsylvania throughout the Revolution, he became the first director of the Mint in 1792. Astronomical observations in later life included charting the position of Uranus after its discovery.

  5. Astronomical optical frequency comb generation in nonlinear fibres and ring resonators: optimization studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chavez Boggio, J. M.; Fremberg, T.; Bodenmüller, D.; Wysmolek, M.; Sanyic, H.; Fernando, H.; Neumann, J.; Kracht, D.; Haynes, R.; Roth, M. M.

    2012-09-01

    We here discuss recent progress on astronomical optical frequency comb generation at innoFSPEC-Potsdam. Two different platforms (and approaches) are numerically and experimentally investigated targeting medium and low resolution spectrographs at astronomical facilities in which innoFSPEC is currently involved. In the first approach, a frequency comb is generated by propagating two lasers through three nonlinear stages - the first two stages serve for the generation of low-noise ultra-short pulses, while the final stage is a low-dispersion highly-nonlinear fibre where the pulses undergo strong spectral broadening. In our approach, the wavelength of one of the lasers can be tuned allowing the comb line spacing being continuously varied during the calibration procedure - this tuning capability is expected to improve the calibration accuracy since the CCD detector response can be fully scanned. The input power, the dispersion, the nonlinear coefficient, and fibre lengths in the nonlinear stages are defined and optimized by solving the Generalized Nonlinear Schrodinger Equation. Experimentally, we generate the 250GHz line-spacing frequency comb using two narrow linewidth lasers that are adiabatically compressed in a standard fibre first and then in a double-clad Er/Yb doped fibre. The spectral broadening finally takes place in a highly nonlinear fibre resulting in an astro-comb with 250 calibration lines (covering a bandwidth of 500 nm) with good spectral equalization. In the second approach, we aim to generate optical frequency combs in dispersion-optimized silicon nitride ring resonators. A technique for lowering and flattening the chromatic dispersion in silicon nitride waveguides with silica cladding is proposed and demonstrated. By minimizing the waveguide dispersion in the resonator two goals are targeted: enhancing the phase matching for non-linear interactions and producing equally spaced resonances. For this purpose, instead of one cladding layer our design

  6. H2O, CO2, and CH4 Monitoring at Astronomical Telescope Sites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kausch, Wolfgang; Noll, Stefan; Szyszka, Cezary; Jones, Amy M.; Smette, Alain; Kimeswenger, Stefan; Barden, Marco; Sana, Hugues; Horst, Hannes

    2013-04-01

    Astronomical observatories that offer near-IR spectrographs can, in principle, be used as sites for monitoring greenhouse gases. In particular, observations for calibration purposes of so-called telluric standard stars are suitable. These are usually white dwarfs or hot stars, which show nearly no intrinsic spectral features in the required wavelength range. Therefore, absorption features in their spectrum arise mainly from the influence of the Earth's atmosphere and indicate its state and composition during the observation. Since calibration observations are taken several times per night, the temporal coverage is high. The European Southern Observatory (ESO) provides one of the world-wide largest telescope sites in the Atacama Desert of Chile. The Very Large Telescope located on Cerro Paranal (2635m) consists of four 8m class telescopes and a number of smaller ones incorporating a wide range of instruments. One of the most versatile instruments is X-Shooter, which has gone in operation in October 2009. It is a medium resolution spectrograph (R = 3000 - 18000) covering the entire wavelength range from 0.3 - 2.5μm simultaneously. Therefore, spectral features of water, oxygen, methane, and carbon dioxide are visible. We have taken all publically available X-Shooter spectra in the ESO data archive starting from October 2009 to establish a set of telluric standard star observations (~ 1400 per year). We have developed an algorithm which is able to determine molecular column densities by fitting spectral absorption features with the help of the LBLRTM radiative transfer code package and the HITRAN line database. By scaling molecular abundance profiles iteratively, a best fit is achieved incorporating a Levenberg-Marquard ?2-minimisation algorithm. A similar method based on spectroscopy and profile scaling is used by the TCCON network. This algorithm is applied to the X-Shooter spectra in order to determine a time-dependent evolution of the H2O, CH4, and CO2 content of

  7. Decoding Astronomical Concepts

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Durisen, Richard H.; Pilachowski, Catherine A.

    2004-01-01

    Two astronomy professors, using the Decoding the Disciplines process, help their students use abstract theories to analyze light and to visualize the enormous scale of astronomical concepts. (Contains 5 figures.)

  8. An astronomical murder?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Belenkiy, Ari

    2010-04-01

    Ari Belenkiy examines the murder of Hypatia of Alexandria, wondering whether problems with astronomical observations and the date of Easter led to her becoming a casualty of fifth-century political intrigue.

  9. Lunar orbital photography of astronomical phenomena.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mercer, R. D.; Dunkelman, L.; Ross, C. L.; Worden, A.

    1972-01-01

    This paper reports further progress on photography of faint astronomical and geophysical phenomena accomplished during the recent Apollo missions. Command module pilots have been able to photograph such astronomical objects as the solar corona, zodiacal light-corona transition region, lunar libration region, and portions of the Milky Way. The methods utilized for calibration of the film by adaptation of the High Altitude Observatory sensitometer are discussed. Kodak 2485 high-speed recording film was used in both 35-mm and 70-mm formats. The cameras used were Nikon f/1.2 55-mm focal length and Hasselblad f/2.8 80-mm focal length. Preflight and postflight calibration exposures were included on both the flight and control films, corresponding to luminances extending from the inner solar corona to as faint as 1/10 of the luminance of the light of the night sky. The photographs obtained from unique vantage points available during lunar orbit are discussed.

  10. The COS Calibration Pipeline

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hodge, Philip E.; Kaiser, M. E.; Keyes, C. D.; Ake, T. B.; Aloisi, A.; Friedman, S. D.; Oliveira, C. M.; Shaw, B.; Sahnow, D. J.; Penton, S. V.; Froning, C. S.; Beland, S.; Osterman, S.; Green, J.; COS/STIS STScI Team; IDT, COS

    2008-05-01

    The Cosmic Origins Spectrograph, COS, (Green, J, et al., 2000, Proc SPIE, 4013) will be installed in the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) during the next servicing mission. This will be the most sensitive ultraviolet spectrograph ever flown aboard HST. The program (CALCOS) for pipeline calibration of HST/COS data has been developed by the Space Telescope Science Institute. As with other HST pipelines, CALCOS uses an association table to list the data files to be included, and it employs header keywords to specify the calibration steps to be performed and the reference files to be used. COS includes both a cross delay line detector for the far ultraviolet (FUV) and a MAMA detector for the near ultraviolet (NUV). CALCOS uses a common structure for both channels, but the specific calibration steps differ. The calibration steps include pulse-height filtering and geometric correction for FUV, and flat-field, deadtime, and Doppler correction for both detectors. A 1-D spectrum will be extracted and flux calibrated. Data will normally be taken in TIME-TAG mode, recording the time and location of each detected photon, although ACCUM mode will also be supported. The wavelength calibration uses an on-board spectral line lamp. To enable precise wavelength calibration, default operations will simultaneously record the science target and lamp spectrum by executing brief (tag-flash) lamp exposures at least once per external target exposure.

  11. Calibration issues for MUSE

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kelz, Andreas; Roth, Martin; Bauer, Svend; Gerssen, Joris; Hahn, Thomas; Weilbacher, Peter; Laux, Uwe; Loupias, Magali; Kosmalski, Johan; McDermid, Richard; Bacon, Roland

    2008-07-01

    The Multi-Unit Spectroscopic Explorer (MUSE) is an integral-field spectrograph for the VLT for the next decade. Using an innovative field-splitting and slicing design, combined with an assembly of 24 spectrographs, MUSE will provide some 90,000 spectra in one exposure, which cover a simultaneous spectral range from 465 to 930nm. The design and manufacture of the Calibration Unit, the alignment tests of the Spectrograph and Detector sub-systems, and the development of the Data Reduction Software for MUSE are work-packages under the responsibility of the AIP, who is a partner in a European-wide consortium of 6 institutes and ESO, that is led by the Centre de Recherche Astronomique de Lyon. MUSE will be operated and therefore has to be calibrated in a variety of modes, which include seeing-limited and AO-assisted operations, providing a wide and narrow-field-of-view. MUSE aims to obtain unprecedented ultra-deep 3D-spectroscopic exposures, involving integration times of the order of 80 hours at the VLT. To achieve the corresponding science goals, instrumental stability, accurate calibration and adequate data reduction tools are needed. The paper describes the status at PDR of the AIP related work-packages, in particular with respect to the spatial, spectral, image quality, and geometrical calibration and related data reduction aspects.

  12. Multi-Object Spectroscopy with the James Webb Space Telescope’s Near Infrared Spectrograph: Observing Resolved Stellar Populations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gilbert, Karoline; Karakla, Diane M.; Beck, Tracy

    2015-08-01

    The James Webb Space Telescope’s (JWST) Near Infrared Spectrograph (NIRSpec) will provide a multi-object spectroscopy mode through the four Micro-Shutter Arrays (MSAs). Each MSA is a grid of contiguous shutters that can be configured to form slits on more than 100 astronomical targets simultaneously. The combination of JWST’s sensitivity and superb resolution in the infrared and NIRSpec’s full wavelength coverage from 0.6 to 5 μm will open new parameter space for studies of galaxies and resolved stellar populations alike. We describe a NIRSpec MSA observing scenario for obtaining spectroscopy of individual stars in an external galaxy, and investigate the technical challenges posed by this scenario. We examine the multiplexing capability of the MSA as a function of the possible MSA configuration design choices, and investigate the primary sources of error in velocity measurements and the prospects for minimizing them. We give examples of how this and other use cases are guiding development of the NIRSpec user interfaces, including proposal planning and pipeline calibrations.

  13. The SAURON project - I. The panoramic integral-field spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bacon, R.; Copin, Y.; Monnet, G.; Miller, Bryan W.; Allington-Smith, J. R.; Bureau, M.; Carollo, C. M.; Davies, Roger L.; Emsellem, Eric; Kuntschner, Harald; Peletier, Reynier F.; Verolme, E. K.; de Zeeuw, P. Tim

    2001-09-01

    A new integral-field spectrograph, SAURON, is described. It is based on the TIGER principle, and uses a lenslet array. SAURON has a large field of view and high throughput, and allows simultaneous sky subtraction. Its design is optimized for studies of the stellar kinematics, gas kinematics, and line-strength distributions of nearby early-type galaxies. The instrument design and specifications are described, as well as the extensive analysis software which was developed to obtain fully calibrated spectra, and the associated kinematic and line-strength measurements. A companion paper will report on the first results obtained with SAURON on the William Herschel Telescope.

  14. Optical filters on board the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coffelt, Everett L.; Martella, Mark A.

    1996-11-01

    The space telescope imaging spectrograph (STIS) instrument is due to be installed on board the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) in 1997. STIS uses 20 filters located on a wheel that can rotate any one of 88 apertures or combination filter/aperture in to the beam path. The instrument incorporates a continuous range of spectral response from the VUV (115.0 nm) to 1 micrometer. Therefore, filters that perform in the VUV are discussed as well as filters that operate in the near infrared. Neutral density filters are also being used for on-board calibration from 300 nm to Lyman-Alpha (121.6 nm).

  15. Women Astronomers: Australia: Women astronomers in Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhathal, Ragbir

    2001-08-01

    Ragbir Bhathal summarizes the role played by women astronomers in Australia's astronomy, now and in the past. Australia has a great tradition in astronomy, from the early observations of Aboriginal people through the colonial drive to explore and understand, culminating in the established excellence of research there today. Women have contributed to this achievement in no small way, yet their contribution has been unremarked, if not ignored. Here I summarize the historical and present state of affairs and look forward to a brighter and more equitable future.

  16. CUBES: cassegrain U-band Brazil-ESO spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barbuy, B.; Bawden Macanhan, V.; Bristow, P.; Castilho, B.; Dekker, H.; Delabre, B.; Diaz, M.; Gneiding, C.; Kerber, F.; Kuntschner, H.; La Mura, G.; Maciel, W.; Meléndez, J.; Pasquini, L.; Pereira, C. B.; Petitjean, P.; Reiss, R.; Siqueira-Mello, C.; Smiljanic, R.; Vernet, J.

    2014-11-01

    CUBES is a high-efficiency, medium-resolution ( R˜20,000) ground based UV (300-400 nm) spectrograph, to be installed in the cassegrain focus of one of ESO's VLT unit telescopes in 2017/18. The CUBES project is a joint venture between ESO and IAG/USP, and LNA/MCTI. CUBES will provide access to a wealth of new and relevant information for stellar as well as extragalactic sources. Main science cases include the study of beryllium and heavy elements in metal-poor stars, the direct determination of carbon, nitrogen and oxygen abundances by study of molecular bands in the UV range, as well as the study of active galactic nuclei and the quasar absorption lines. With a streamlined modern instrument design, high efficiency dispersing elements and UV-sensitive detectors, it will give a significant gain in sensitivity over existing ground based medium-high resolution spectrographs, enabling vastly increased sample sizes accessible to the astronomical community. We present here a brief overview of the project including the status, science cases and a discussion of the design options.

  17. Improved ground calibration results from Southwest Research Institute Ultraviolet Radiometric Calibration Facility (UV-RCF)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davis, Michael W.; Greathouse, Thomas K.; Gladstone, G. Randall; Retherford, Kurt D.; Slater, David C.; Stern, S. Alan; Versteeg, Maarten H.

    2014-07-01

    Four compact planetary ultraviolet spectrographs have been built by Southwest Research Institute and successfully operated on different planetary missions. These spectrographs underwent a series of ground radiometric calibrations before delivery to their respective spacecraft. In three of the four cases, the in-flight measured sensitivity was approximately 50% lower than the ground measurement. Recent tests in the Southwest Research Institute Ultraviolet Radiometric Calibration Facility (UV-RCF) explain the discrepancy between ground and flight results. Revised ground calibration results are presented for the Rosetta-Alice, New Horizons-Alice, the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Lyman- Alpha Mapping Project, and Juno-Ultraviolet Spectrograph (UVS) and are then compared to the original ground and flight calibrations. The improved understanding of the calibration system reported here will result in improved ground calibration of the upcoming Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer (JUICE)-UVS.

  18. A dual-channel, focusing x-ray spectrograph with uniform dispersion for Z pinch plasmas measurement

    SciTech Connect

    Yang Qingguo; Li Zeren; Chen Guanhua; Ye Yan; Huang Xianbin; Cai Hongchun; Li Jing; Xiao Shali

    2012-01-15

    A dual-channel, focusing x-ray spectrograph with uniform dispersion (i.e., the linear dispersion of this spectrograph is a constant) is described for measuring the x-ray spectra emission from the hot, dense Al Z pinch plasmas. The spectrograph uses double uniform-dispersed crystals (e.g., a Quartz 1010 crystal and a Mica 002 crystal) as dispersion elements and a double-film box as detector to achieve the simultaneous recording of the time integrated spectrum covering a wide spectral range of {approx}5-9 A. Since this spectrograph disperse the x-rays on the detector plane with uniform spacing for every wavelength, it needs not the calibration of the wavelength with spatial coordinate, thereby own the advantages of easiness and veracity for spectra identification. The design of this spectrograph and the example of experiment on the ''Yang'' accelerator are presented.

  19. Wide range magnetic electron spectrograph

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Coplan, M. A.; Wang, L.-J.; Moore, J. H.; Hoffman, R. A.

    1989-01-01

    An electron spectrogrpah is described that covers electron energies from 400 eV to 200 keV with an energy resolution of 10 percent. This overlaps the range of electrostatic deflection devices at low energy and solid state detectors at high energy. The spectrograph uses magnetic deflection of the electrons to achieve energy separation and images the full range of energies on a single plane. The magnetic circuit uses the fringing field of two axially located magnets to attain the large energy range. Six separate electron beams can be dispersed in the field, each entering the circuit from a different angle. This is a particular advantage when measuring plasma electron three-dimensional velocity distributions. The angular response of the instrument is particularly favorable and the stray magnetic field is sufficiently low to meet spacecraft requirements.

  20. A near-infrared spectrograph for the Discovery Channel Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roe, H. G.; Dunham, E. W.; Bida, T. A.; Hall, J. C.; Degroff, W.

    2011-10-01

    Lowell Observatory is constructing the Discovery Channel Telescope (DCT) at Happy Jack, Arizona, approximately an hour from Lowell's main campus in Flagstaff, Arizona. The DCT is a 4.3-m optical/ infrared telescope. Construction of the telescope is complete and First Light of the DCT is planned for 2012Q2. In its initial configuration instruments will be co-mounted on a rotatable/selectable cube at the Cassegrain focus. Motorized deployable fold mirrors enable rapid switching amongst instruments. In the future the Nasmyth foci will be available for larger instruments as well. The first generation of instruments on DCT include: the Large Monolithic Imager (LMI), the Near-Infrared High-Throughput Spectrograph (NIHTS, pronounced "nights"), and the DeVeny optical spectrograph. The LMI contains a single large 6.1x6.1 K detector with a 12.5 arcmin2 FOV. NIHTS is a low resolution efficient near-infrared spectrograph and is the subject of this presentation. The DeVeny is Lowell's existing optical spectrograph with resolutions available between 500 and 4000. NIHTS is a low-resolution high-throughput infrared spectrograph covering 0.9-2.4 μm in a single fixed spectral setting at a resolution of »100. For simplicity and replicability NIHTS contains no moving parts. The science detector is a 10242 HAWAII-1 array. The fixed slit plate features an 80" long slit with several different slit widths (2,3,4 and 12 pixels) available along its length. The widest slit width is designed to allow accurate flux calibration, while the 3 and 4-pixel slits are closely matched to typical seeing at the DCT site (0.86" mean). Different resolutions will be rapidly selectable by dithering the telescope, and a typical observation is anticipated to involve a sequence of dithers both at the desired resolution and at SED resolution for calibration purposes. Offset guiding and wavefront sensing to control the active optics of the primary mirror are provided by the facility via deployable probes in

  1. Field Raman spectrograph for environmental analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Haas, J.W. III; Forney, R.W.; Carrabba, M.M.

    1995-10-01

    This project entails the development of a compact raman spectrograph for field screening and monitoring of a wide variety of wastes, pollutants, and corrosion products in tanks, and environmental materials. The design of a fiber optic probe for use with the spectrograph is also discussed.

  2. Ultraviolet-visible spectrograph optics: ODIN project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Powell, Ian; Bewsher, Amanda

    1995-10-01

    We describe one of the possible designs for the UV-visible spectrograph optics to be employed in the ODIN project. The spectrograph will be used in a future satellite mission for aeronomy observations and will image a column of atmosphere just above the Earth's surface onto a two-dimensional CCD array with the spatial and spectral content aligned orthogonal to one another.

  3. Photonic Spectrograph for new Technology Telescope (PSTT)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, H. R. A.; PSTT Colaboration

    We outline a high stability precision infrared spectrograph intended for the New Technology Telescope at ESO's La Silla Observatory. This spectrograph known as PSTT (Photonic Spectrograph for new Technology Telescope) is intended to incorporate a number of new technologies that have recently become available, e.g., reformatting photonic lanterns, broadband laser combs and 4k2 infrared arrays. Elements such as OH suppression and an integrated photonic spectrograph should also be considered. The intention is to deliver a high resolution infrared spectrograph that can deliver sub-m/s radial velocity precision to the ESO community. This will enable the opportunity to discover and characterise Earth-mass planets around nearby objects as well as follow-up on results from transit surveys from the ground and space.

  4. High-resolving mass spectrographs and spectrometers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wollnik, Hermann

    2015-11-01

    Discussed are different types of high resolving mass spectrographs and spectrometers. In detail outlined are (1) magnetic and electric sector field mass spectrographs, which are the oldest systems, (2) Penning Trap mass spectrographs and spectrometers, which have achieved very high mass-resolving powers, but are technically demanding (3) time-of-flight mass spectrographs using high energy ions passing through accelerator rings, which have also achieved very high mass-resolving powers and are equally technically demanding, (4) linear time-of-flight mass spectrographs, which have become the most versatile mass analyzers for low energy ions, while the even higher performing multi-pass systems have only started to be used, (5) orbitraps, which also have achieved remarkably high mass-resolving powers for low energy ions.

  5. A Portable Ultra-Stable Calibration Source for Precision RV Measurements in NIR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Ji; Ge, J.; Wan, X.; Delgado, A.; Jakeman, H.

    2011-09-01

    In the next decade, astronomers are aiming at reaching 0.1 m/s RV precision, which will enable discoveries of Earth-like planets around solar-type stars. However, the RV precision is currently limited by stellar activity, the stability and bandwidth of RV calibration sources. We proposed to use an ultra-stable monolithic Michelson interferometer as an RV calibration source. This monolithic interferometer source has several advantages over the conventional RV calibration sources: (1), it produces sinusoidal spectral features which can be easily processed, unlike gas absorption cells or emission lamps, which spectral line distributions are extremely nonuniform; (2), it has a wide spectral coverage from visible to near infrared (NIR); (3), it is designed to be thermal-stable (thermally compensated) so that the thermal induced RV drift is very small; (4), it is also field compensated to ensure a high optical efficiency so that a spatially incoherent continuum light source is suitable for producing bright calibration light (unlike the faint ThAr emission lamp); (5). it is extremely compact ( 10x10x10 cm3) and low cost compared to the bulky (more than 1x1x1 m3) and extremely high cost laser frequency combs. With the help of the proposed RV calibration source, the search of exoplanets around M dwarfs or even L, T dwarfs can be extended to the NIR band. The predicted sub m/s RV calibration precision will enable the discovery of Earth-like planets in the habitable zone around M dwarfs. The proposed calibration source may be quite useful for calibrating future space instruments for possible space RV exoplanet searches in the IR region where RV measurements are free of contamination of the Earth's telluric lines, which is a serious issue for ground-based IR RV observations. We will present our latest results of the calibration source on its application for both Echelle spectrograph and the instrument adopting DFDI method.

  6. NRAO Astronomer Honored by American Astronomical Society

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2011-01-01

    Dr. Scott Ransom, an astronomer at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO), received the American Astronomical Society's (AAS) Helen B. Warner Prize on January 11, at the society's meeting in Seattle, Washington. The prize is awarded annually for "a significant contribution to observational or theoretical astronomy during the five years preceding the award." Presented by AAS President Debra Elmegreen, the prize recognized Ransom "for his astrophysical insight and innovative technical leadership enabling the discovery of exotic, millisecond and young pulsars and their application for tests of fundamental physics." "Scott has made landmark contributions to our understanding of pulsars and to using them as elegant tools for investigating important areas of fundamental physics. We are very proud that his scientific colleagues have recognized his efforts with this prize," said NRAO Director Fred K.Y. Lo. A staff astronomer at the NRAO since 2004, Ransom has led efforts using the National Science Foundation's Green Bank Telescope and other facilities to study pulsars and use them to make advances in areas of frontier astrophysics such as gravitational waves and particle physics. In 2010, he was on a team that discovered the most massive pulsar yet known, a finding that had implications for the composition of pulsars and details of nuclear physics, gravitational waves, and gamma-ray bursts. Ransom also is a leader in efforts to find and analyze rapidly-rotating millisecond pulsars to make the first direct detection of the gravitational waves predicted by Albert Einstein. In other work, he has advanced observational capabilities for finding millisecond pulsars in globular clusters of stars and investigated how millisecond pulsars are formed. A graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point, NY, Ransom served as an artillery officer in the U.S. Army. After leaving the Army, he earned a Ph.D. at Harvard University in 2001, and was a postdoctoral fellow

  7. Nikolay N. Donitch - the astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gaina, Alex B.; Volyanskaya, M. Yu.

    1999-08-01

    The article is devoted to milestones of life and scientific activity of the eminent astronomer Nikolay Nikolaevich Donitch (Nicolae N. Donici) (1874-1956), a graduate from the Odessa (Novorossiski) university. He was a wellknown expert in the field of reseacrh of objects of Solar system. A person highly cultured, which built the first in Bessarabia (actually a part of the Republic of Moldova) observatory. He was borne in Kishinev (Chisinau) in a nobles family of notable Moldavian landersmen. N.D. graduated from the Richelieu lyceym in Odessa and afterwards, in 1897, graduated from the Odessa (Novorossiysky) University. A.K. Kononovich (1850-1910)headed the chair of astronomy and the Observatory at that time - a foremost authority in the field of astrophysics and stellar astronomy. Many of his disciples became eminent scientists of their time. N. Donitch was among them. N.D. worked till 1918 at Pulkovo Observatory and became a master in the field of studying of such phenomena as solar and lunar eclipses. To observe the Sun N.D., could afford to design and manufacture a spectroheliograph, the first in Russia, with the assistance of a famous Odessa mechanic J.A. Timchenko. This instrument enabled him to obtain topquality photos of the Sun's surface and prominences. It was mounted together with coelostat in the private observatory of N.D. , built in the village Staryie Doubossary in 1908. Besides the heliograoph, the observatory was equiped with a five inch refractor-equatorial with numerous instruments for various observations. Of the other instruments should be mentioned : "a comet triplet" - an instrument consisting of guiding refractor, a photographic camera and a spectrograph with an objective prism. N.D. was lucky enough to observe rare astronomical phenomena. He observed the transit of Mercury through the disk of the Sun on November 14, 1907 and showed the athmosphere absence around this planet, observed the Halley's comet in 1910, the bright Pons-Winneke comet

  8. A ground support electronic interface for the ionospheric spectroscopy and atmospheric chemistry (ISAAC) ultraviolet spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Macquarrie, Jeffrey A.

    1994-12-01

    This thesis details the design and development of an electronic Ground Support Equipment (GSE) interface for the Naval Postgraduate School's (NPS) Ionospheric Spectroscopy and Atmospheric Chemistry (ISAAC) spectrograph. The ISAAC spectrograph, which was designed at NPS and built by Research Support Instruments, Inc., is intended to observe atmospheric airglow and auroral emissions in the ultraviolet (1800A to 3300A) wavelength region. It is to be included as one of several sensors flown onboard the Advanced Research and Global Observation Satellite (ARGOS), which is scheduled for an early 1996 launch. The GSE was developed in order to allow ground testing and calibration of the instrument prior to and during integration with the satellite bus. The GSE includes hardware to provide the connections between various components of the spectrograph and a Macintosh computer with an installed I/O card. The GSE also includes a user-friendly software interface written with LabVIEW 2.2 that provides the ability to view spectra obtained from the instrument and to remotely control mechanical functions of the spectrograph. An initial wavelength calibration of the spectrograph has been performed using the completed GSE.

  9. Updated Status and Performance of the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolfe, Michael A.; Dixon, W. V.; Mason, E.; Proffitt, C.; Aloisi, A.; Oliveira, C.; Bohlin, R. C.; Osten, R.; Bostroem, K. A.; Zheng, W.; Pascucci, I.; Niemi, S.; York, B.; Sonnentracker, P.; Diaz, R.; Ely, J. C.

    2011-05-01

    A description is provided of the overall performance of the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph after Cycle 17 and through the first half of Cycle 18. Most aspects of performance are still found to be consistent with extrapolations of the trends seen during Cycle 17 calibrations. Many of the characteristics of the instrument have changed over time, and we present here an update on its current performance based on the latest Cycle 18 calibration observations. We discuss changes in the CCD and MAMA dark currents, provide updates on the sensitivity of STIS modes, echelle blaze function, discuss changes, if any, in number of hot pixels, flat fields, charge transfer inefficiency, read noise, and spurious charge.

  10. Astronomical education in Mongolia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dulmaa, A.; Tsolmon, R.; Lkhagvajav, Ch.; Jargalsuren, Sh.; Bayartungalag, B.; Zaya, M.

    2011-06-01

    The history, current situation, education and future directions of modern Mongolian space science and astronomy is reviewed. This paper discusses recent efforts to develop astronomy education and research capacity in Mongolia with cooperation of the International Astronomical Union. Various capacity-building initiatives in space science including remote sensing in Mongolia are discussed.

  11. Ancient Chinese Astronomical Technologies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walsh, Jennifer Robin

    2004-05-01

    I am interested in the astronomical advances of the Ancient Chinese in measuring the solar day. Their development of gnomon & ruler, sundial, and water clock apparatuses enabled Chinese astronomers to measure the annual solar orbit and solar day more precisely than their contemporaries. I have built one of each of these devices to use in collecting data from Olympia, Washington. I will measure the solar day in the Pacific Northwest following the methodology of the ancient Chinese. I will compare with my data, the available historical Chinese astronomical records and current records from the United States Naval Observatory Master Clock. I seek to understand how ancient Chinese investigations into solar patterns enabled them to make accurate predictions about the movement of the celestial sphere and planets, and to develop analytic tests of their theories. Mayall, R. Newton; Sundials: their construction and use. Dover Publications 2000 North, John; The Norton History of Astronomy and Cosmology W.W. Norton& Co. 1995 Zhentao Xu, David W. Pankenier, Yaotiao Jiang; East Asian archaeoastronomy : historical records of astronomical observations of China, Japan and Korea Published on behalf of the Earth Space Institute by Gordon and Breach Science Publishers, c2000

  12. Misconceptions of Astronomical Distances

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Miller, Brian W.; Brewer, William F.

    2010-01-01

    Previous empirical studies using multiple-choice procedures have suggested that there are misconceptions about the scale of astronomical distances. The present study provides a quantitative estimate of the nature of this misconception among US university students by asking them, in an open-ended response format, to make estimates of the distances…

  13. Poznan acute Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murdin, P.

    2000-11-01

    This Poznan acute Astronomical Observatory is a unit of the Adam Mickiewicz University, located in Poznan acute, Poland. From its foundation in 1919, it has specialized in astrometry and celestial mechanics (reference frames, dynamics of satellites and small solar system bodies). Recently, research activities have also included planetary and stellar astrophysics (asteroid photometry, catalysmic b...

  14. Astronomical Microdensitometry Conference

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Klinglesmith, D. A. (Editor)

    1984-01-01

    The status of the current microdensitometers used for digitizing astronomical imagery is discussed. The tests and improvements that have and can be made to the Photometric Data System PDS microdensitometer are examined. The various types of microdensitometers that currently exist in the world are investigated. Papers are presented on the future needs and the data processing problems associated with digitizing large images.

  15. Svetloe Radio Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smolentsev, Sergey; Rahimov, Ismail

    2013-01-01

    This report summarizes information about the Svetloe Radio Astronomical Observatory activities in 2012. Last year, a number of changes took place in the observatory to improve some technical characteristics and to upgrade some units to their required status. The report provides an overview of current geodetic VLBI activities and gives an outlook for the future.

  16. Zelenchukskaya Radio Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smolentsev, Sergey; Dyakov, Andrei

    2013-01-01

    This report summarizes information about Zelenchukskaya Radio Astronomical Observatory activities in 2012. Last year a number of changes took place in the observatory to improve some technical characteristics and to upgrade some units to the required status. The report provides an overview of current geodetic VLBI activities and gives an outlook for the future.

  17. Korean Astronomical Calendar, Chiljeongsan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Eun Hee

    In fifteenth century Korea, there was a grand project for the astronomical calendar and instrument making by the order of King Sejong 世宗 (1418-1450). During this period, many astronomical and calendrical books including Islamic sources in Chinese versions were imported from Ming 明 China, and corrected and researched by the court astronomers of Joseon 朝鮮 (1392-1910). Moreover, the astronomers and technicians of Korea frequently visited China to study astronomy and instrument making, and they brought back useful information in the form of new published books or specifications of instruments. As a result, a royal observatory equipped with 15 types of instrument was completed in 1438. Two types of calendar, Chiljeongsan Naepyeon 七政算內篇 and Chiljeongsan Oepyeon 七政算外篇, based on the Chinese and Islamic calendar systems, respectively, were published in 1444 with a number of calendrical editions such as corrections and example supplements (假令) including calculation methods and results for solar and lunar eclipses.

  18. The Knorre astronomers' dynasty

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pinigin, G.

    2009-06-01

    We attempt to throw light upon the poorly known astronomical dynasty of Knorre and describe its contribution to astronomy. The founder of the dynasty, Ernst Christoph Friedrich Knorre (1759-1810), was born in Germany in 1759, and since 1802 he was a Professor of Mathematics at the Tartu University, and observer at its temporary observatory. He determined the first coordinates of Tartu by stellar observations. Karl Friedrich Knorre (1801-1883) was the first director of the Naval Observatory in Nikolaev since the age of 20, provided the Black Sea navy with accurate time and charts, trained mariners in astronomical navigation, and certified navigation equipment. He compiled star maps and catalogues, and determined positions of comets and planets. He also participated in Bessel's project of the Academic Star Charts, and was responsible for Hora 4, published by the Berlin Academy of Sciences. This sheet permitted to discover two minor planets, Astraea and Flora. Viktor Knorre (1840-1919) was born in Nikolaev. In 1862 he left for Berlin to study astronomy. After defending his thesis for a doctor's degree, he went to Pulkovo as an astronomical calculator in 1867. Since 1873 Viktor worked as an observer of the Berlin Observatory Fraunhofer refractor. His main research focussed on minor planets, comets and binary stars. He discovered the minor planets Koronis, Oenone, Hypatia and Penthesilea. Viktor Knorre also worked on improving astronomical instrumentation, e.g. the Knorre / Heele equatorial telescope mounting.

  19. Panchromatic spectrograph with supporting monochromatic imagers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Broadfoot, A. L.; Sandel, B. R.; Knecht, D.; Viereck, R.; Murad, E.

    1992-01-01

    The Arizona Imager/Spectrograph is a set of imaging spectrographs and 2D imagers for space flight. Nine nearly identical spectrographs record wavelengths from 114 to 1090 nm with a resolution of 0.5-1.3 nm. The spatial resolution along the slit is electronically selectable and can reach 192 elements. Twelve passband imagers cover wavelengths in the 160-900-nm range and have fields of view from 2 to 21 deg. The spectrographs and imagers rely on intensified CCD detectors to achieve substantial capability in an instrument of minimum mass and size. By use of innovative coupling techniques only two CCDs are required to record images from 12 imagers, and single CCDs record spectra from pairs of spectrographs. The fields of view of the spectrographs and imagers are coaligned, and all spectra and images can be exposed simultaneously. A scan platform can rotate the sensor head about two orthogonal axes. The Arizona imager/spectrograph is designed for investigations of the interaction between the Space Shuttle and its environment. It is scheduled for flight on a Shuttle subsatellite.

  20. The League of Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, Nancy H.; Brandel, A.; Paat, A. M.; Schmitz, D.; Sharma, R.; Trujillo, J.; Laws, C. S.

    2014-01-01

    The League of Astronomers is committed to engaging the University of Washington (UW) and the greater Seattle communities through outreach, research, and events. Since its re-founding two years ago, the LOA has provided a clear connection between the UW Astronomy Department, undergraduate students, and members of the public. Weekly outreach activities such as public star parties and planetarium talks in both the UW Planetarium and the Mobile Planetarium have connected enthusiastic LOA volunteers with hundreds of public observers. In addition, collaboration with organizations like the Seattle Astronomical Society and the UW Society of Physics Students has allowed the LOA to reach an even greater audience. The club also provides opportunities for undergraduate students to participate in research projects. The UW Student Radio Telescope (SRT) and the Manastash Ridge Observatory (MRO) both allow students to practice collecting their own data and turning it into a completed project. Students have presented many of these research projects at venues like the UW Undergraduate Research Symposium and meetings of the American Astronomical Society. For example, the LOA will be observing newly discovered globular clusters at the Dominion Astrophysical Observatory (DAO) in Victoria, B.C. and constructing color-magnitude diagrams. The LOA also helps engage students with the Astronomy major through a variety of events. Bimonthly seminars led by graduate students on their research and personal experiences in the field showcase the variety of options available for students in astronomy. Social events hosted by the club encourage peer mentoring and a sense of community among the Astronomy Department’s undergraduate and graduate students. As a part of one of the nation’s largest undergraduate astronomy programs, members of the League of Astronomers have a unique opportunity to connect and interact with not only the Seattle public but also the greater astronomical community.

  1. Astronomical Data in Undergraduate courses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clarkson, William I.; Swift, Carrie; Hughes, Kelli; Burke, Christopher J. F.; Burgess, Colin C.; Elrod, Aunna V.; Howard, Brittany; Stahl, Lucas; Matzke, David; Bord, Donald J.

    2016-06-01

    We present status and plans for our ongoing efforts to develop data analysis and problem-solving skills through Undergraduate Astronomy instruction. While our initiatives were developed with UM-Dearborn’s student body primarily in mind, they should be applicable for a wide range of institution and of student demographics. We focus here on two strands of our effort.Firstly, students in our Introductory Astronomy (ASTR 130) general-education course now perform several “Data Investigations”, in which they interrogate the Hubble Legacy Archive to illustrate important course concepts. This was motivated in part by the realization that typical public data archives now include tools to interrogate the observations that are sufficiently accessible that introductory astronomy students can use them to perform real science, albeit mostly at a descriptive level. We are continuing to refine these investigations, and, most importantly, to critically assess their effectiveness in terms of the student learning outcomes we wish to achieve. This work is supported by grant HST-EO-13758, provided by NASA through a grant from the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASA contract NAS 5-26555.Secondly, at the advanced-undergraduate level, students taking courses in our Astronomy minor are encouraged to gain early experience in techniques of astronomical observation and analysis that are used by professionals. We present two example projects from the Fall 2015 iteration of our upper-division course ASTR330 (The Cosmic Distance Ladder), one involving Solar System measurements, the second producing calibrated aperture photometry. For both projects students conducted, analysed, and interpreted observations using our 0.4m campus telescope, and used many of the same analysis tools as professional astronomers. This work is supported partly from a Research Initiation and Seed grant from the

  2. The Schmidt-Czerny-Turner spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McClure, Jason P.

    2014-09-01

    Since the invention of the CCD detector in 1969 by George Smith and Willard Boyle, incremental innovations to the dispersive imaging spectrograph have slowly materialized in response the abounding advances in CCD detector technology. The modern Czerny-Turner type spectrograph, arguably the most commonly used instrument in optical spectroscopy, fails to uphold the ever increasing needs today's researchers demand, let alone tomorrow's. This paper discusses an innovative solution to the Czerny-Turner imaging spectrograph bridging a more than 20 year gap in development and understanding. A manifold of techniques in optical spectroscopy both advantaged and enabled by this innovation are expounded upon.

  3. Thomas Kuhn's Influence on Astronomers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shipman, Harry L.

    2000-01-01

    Surveys the astronomical community on their familiarity with the work of Thomas Kuhn. Finds that for some astronomers, Kuhn's thought resonated well with their picture of how science is done and provided perspectives on their scientific careers. (Author/CCM)

  4. High School Teachers as Astronomers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sather, Robert

    1977-01-01

    Discusses a joint research program between several high school teachers and solar system astronomers in which data were collected on photoelectric observations of asteroids and minor planets via astronomical telescopes. (MLH)

  5. Successful "First Light" for VLT High-Resolution Spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1999-10-01

    Great Research Prospects with UVES at KUEYEN A major new astronomical instrument for the ESO Very Large Telescope at Paranal (Chile), the UVES high-resolution spectrograph, has just made its first observations of astronomical objects. The astronomers are delighted with the quality of the spectra obtained at this moment of "First Light". Although much fine-tuning still has to be done, this early success promises well for new and exciting science projects with this large European research facility. Astronomical instruments at VLT KUEYEN The second VLT 8.2-m Unit Telescope, KUEYEN ("The Moon" in the Mapuche language), is in the process of being tuned to perfection before it will be "handed" over to the astronomers on April 1, 2000. The testing of the new giant telescope has been successfully completed. The latest pointing tests were very positive and, from real performance measurements covering the entire operating range of the telescope, the overall accuracy on the sky was found to be 0.85 arcsec (the RMS-value). This is an excellent result for any telescope and implies that KUEYEN (as is already the case for ANTU) will be able to acquire its future target objects securely and efficiently, thus saving precious observing time. This work has paved the way for the installation of large astronomical instruments at its three focal positions, all prototype facilities that are capable of catching the light from even very faint and distant celestial objects. The three instruments at KUEYEN are referred to by their acronyms UVES , FORS2 and FLAMES. They are all dedicated to the investigation of the spectroscopic properties of faint stars and galaxies in the Universe. The UVES instrument The first to be installed is the Ultraviolet Visual Echelle Spectrograph (UVES) that was built by ESO, with the collaboration of the Trieste Observatory (Italy) for the control software. Complete tests of its optical and mechanical components, as well as of its CCD detectors and of the complex

  6. GRASSP (GRAnada Sprite Spectrograph and Polarimeter). Design and implementation.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Passas, María; Sánchez, Justo; Gordillo-Vázquez, Francisco J.; Luque, Alejandro; Parra-Rojas, Francisco C.

    2013-04-01

    Transient luminous events (TLEs) are short optical emissions that occur in the upper atmosphere above storm systems. They appear between 15 and 90 km altitude and last between less than a millisecond to up to two seconds. So far there are no polarization studies of TLEs, nor high-resolution spectroscopy results which could help us to understand the kinetics and electrodynamics of these kind of optical emissions. The GRASSP (Granada Sprite Spectrograph and Polarimeter) instrument has been developed to measure simultaneously the polarization and the spectra of the light emitted from these TLEs with medium spectral resolution (0.45nm). By consulting a real-time lightning database, the telescope aims automatically to the region of the sky where a TLE is predicted to appear. The instrument is located outside the 2.2 m dome of the German-Spanish Astronomical Center at Calar Alto, Sierra de Los Filabres, north of Almería (Andalucía, Southern Spain), at 2168 meters above mean sea level. From this location we can observe the western Mediterranean Sea zone (37°-45°N; 2°W-6°E) with an elevation of 10°-35° above the horizon, a region where the most TLE activity in Europe takes place. GRASSP is a prototype which consists of a spectrograph and a polarimeter, both installed on a telescope mount. The 6-channel imaging polarimeter will cover a spectral range from 500 - 750 nm, with a polarized / unpolarized sensitivity smaller than 5 %. It will present a circular field of view of 5° and a CCD of 2000 × 2000 pixels with a FOV of 15 µm/px. The goal is to find the 4 Stokes parameters in a single shot. To do so, the polarimeter consists of seven circular windows disposed over a telescope surface, six of them are located around the border of the circle and the last one is located in the center. This single window will show the unfiltered image and the six remaining ones include a different polarizer ( 0° 45° 90° 180° linear polarizers and left and right circular

  7. Misconceptions about astronomical magnitudes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schulman, Eric; Cox, Caroline V.

    1997-10-01

    The present system of astronomical magnitudes was created as an inverse scale by Claudius Ptolemy in about 140 A.D. and was defined to be logarithmic in 1856 by Norman Pogson, who believed that human eyes respond logarithmically to the intensity of light. Although scientists have known for some time that the response is instead a power law, astronomers continue to use the Pogson magnitude scale. The peculiarities of this system make it easy for students to develop numerous misconceptions about how and why to use magnitudes. We present a useful exercise in the use of magnitudes to derive a cosmologically interesting quantity (the mass-to-light ratio for spiral galaxies), with potential pitfalls pointed out and explained.

  8. Astronomers without borders

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simmons, Mike

    2011-06-01

    ``Astronomers Without Borders'' is a new global organisational dedicated to furthering understanding and goodwill across national and cultural boundaries using the universal appeal of astronomy and space science. A growing network of affiliate organisations brings together clubs, magazines and other organizations involved in astronomy and space science. Forums, galleries, video conferences and other interactive technologies are used to connect participants around the world. Sharing of resources and direct connections through travel programs are also planned. One project, ``The World at Night'' (TWAN), has become an Special Project of IYA2009. TWAN creates wide-angle images of the night sky in important natural and historic settings around the world, dramatically demonstrating the universal nature and appeal of the night sky. ``Astronomers Without Borders'' is also a leader of the 100 Hours of Astronomy IYA2009 Global Cornerstone Project.

  9. Astronomers as Software Developers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pildis, Rachel A.

    2016-01-01

    Astronomers know that their research requires writing, adapting, and documenting computer software. Furthermore, they often have to learn new computer languages and figure out how existing programs work without much documentation or guidance and with extreme time pressure. These are all skills that can lead to a software development job, but recruiters and employers probably won't know that. I will discuss all the highly useful experience that astronomers may not know that they already have, and how to explain that knowledge to others when looking for non-academic software positions. I will also talk about some of the pitfalls I have run into while interviewing for jobs and working as a developer, and encourage you to embrace the curiosity employers might have about your non-standard background.

  10. Astronomical Fourier spectropolarimetry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Forbes, F. F.; Fymat, A. L.

    1974-01-01

    Spectra of the Stokes polarization parameters of Venus (resolution 0.5 per cm) are presented. They were obtained at the Cassegrain focus of the 154-cm telescope of the National Mexican Observatory, Baja California, Mexico, July 12 and 13, 1972, with the Fourier Interferometer Polarimeter (FIP). A preliminary, limited analysis of four spectral features and of the CO2 rotational band structures at 6080 and 6200 per cm has demonstrated that spectral polarization is indeed present. These experimental results, confirmed by two series of observations, provide substantiation for this theoretically predicted phenomenon. They also tend to show that the FIP represents a novel astronomical tool for variable spectral resolution studies of both the intensity and the state of polarization of astronomical light sources.

  11. Microcomputers and astronomical navigation.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Robin-Jouan, Y.

    1996-04-01

    Experienced navigators remember ancient astronomical navigation and its limitations. Using microcomputers in small packages and selecting up-to-date efficient methods will overcome many of these limitations. Both features lead to focus on observations, and encourage an increase in their numbers. With no intention of competing with satellite navigation, sextant navigation in the open sea can then be accessed again by anybody. It can be considered for demonstrative use or as a complement to the GPS.

  12. The simulated space proton environment for radiation effects on Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Becher, Jacob; Fowler, Walter

    1992-01-01

    The space telescope imaging spectrograph (STIS) is a second generation instrument planned for the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) which is currently in orbit. Candidate glasses and other transmitting materials are being considered for order sorters, in-flight calibration filters, detector windows, and calibration lamps. The glasses for in-flight calibration filters showed significant drop in UV transmission, but can probably still be used on STIS. The addressed topics include the Hubble radiation environment, simulation of orbital exposure at Harvard Cyclotron Laboratory, measurement of spectral transmission, and comments on individual samples.

  13. Astrobiology: An astronomer's perspective

    SciTech Connect

    Bergin, Edwin A.

    2014-12-08

    In this review we explore aspects of the field of astrobiology from an astronomical viewpoint. We therefore focus on the origin of life in the context of planetary formation, with additional emphasis on tracing the most abundant volatile elements, C, H, O, and N that are used by life on Earth. We first explore the history of life on our planet and outline the current state of our knowledge regarding the delivery of the C, H, O, N elements to the Earth. We then discuss how astronomers track the gaseous and solid molecular carriers of these volatiles throughout the process of star and planet formation. It is now clear that the early stages of star formation fosters the creation of water and simple organic molecules with enrichments of heavy isotopes. These molecules are found as ice coatings on the solid materials that represent microscopic beginnings of terrestrial worlds. Based on the meteoritic and cometary record, the process of planet formation, and the local environment, lead to additional increases in organic complexity. The astronomical connections towards this stage are only now being directly made. Although the exact details are uncertain, it is likely that the birth process of star and planets likely leads to terrestrial worlds being born with abundant water and organics on the surface.

  14. Cosmic Origins Spectrograph: Servicing Mission Observatory Verification Overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keyes, Charles D.; Sahnow, D.; Aloisi, A.; Biagetti, C.; Osterman, S.; Froning, C.; Penton, S.; Green, J.; Oliveira, C.; Osten, R.; Niemi, S.; STScI COS Team; COS IDT Team

    2010-01-01

    The Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) was installed onboard the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) in May, 2009 as part of the most recent servicing mission (SM4). COS is optimized for observing faint point sources at moderate spectral resolutions and is the most sensitive UV spectrograph ever flown on HST. The FUV channel, which is 10 to 30 times more sensitive than STIS, covers the wavelength range from 1150 to 1800 A with medium resolution gratings (G130M/G160M) and from 900 to 2400 A. with a low resolution grating (G140L). The medium resolution gratings in the NUV channel (G185M/G225M/G285M) cover 1700 to 3200 A., while the low resolution grating (G230L) covers 1700 to 3200 A. As part of the overall HST Servicing Mission Observatory Verification (SMOV), COS on-orbit functionality was verified via an extensive set of 34 observing programs comprising nearly 2800 individual exposures. We present a thorough discussion of the organization, inter-relationships, and dependencies of the programs in the verification plan. Sequential activities were executed that concentrated on the general areas of initial instrument checkout; detector HV turn-on and operation; initial detector characterization; NUV focus and alignment; FUV focus and alignment; initial target acquisition verification; wavelength calibration; and thorough target acquisition assessment, all leading to enabling of basic science functionality. Finally science-related calibrations and verifications were performed including flux calibration, flat field characterization, spectroscopic performance verification, high S/N operation, and thermal and structural stability measurements. Several companion presentations describe results from specific programs and verification areas in more detail.

  15. On Tokugawa Bakufu's astronomical officials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamada, Keiji

    2005-06-01

    Tokugawa Bakufu's astronomical office, established in 1684, is the post for calendar reform. The reform was conducted when the calendar did not predict peculiar celestial phenomena, such as solar or lunar eclipses. It was, so to speak, the theme of the ancient astronomy. From removal of the embargo on importing western science books in 1720, Japanese astronomers studied European astronomy and attempted to apply its knowledge to calendar making. Moreover, they knew the Copernican system and also faced several modern astronomical subjects. The French astronomer Lalande's work "ASTRONOMY" exerted particularly strong influence on astronomers. This paper overviews the activities of Paris observatory and French astronomers in the 17th and 18th centuries, and survey what modern astronomical subjects were. Finally, it sketches a role of the Edo observatory played in the Japanese cultural history.

  16. Astronomical Software Directory Service

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hanisch, Robert J.; Payne, Harry; Hayes, Jeffrey

    1997-01-01

    With the support of NASA's Astrophysics Data Program (NRA 92-OSSA-15), we have developed the Astronomical Software Directory Service (ASDS): a distributed, searchable, WWW-based database of software packages and their related documentation. ASDS provides integrated access to 56 astronomical software packages, with more than 16,000 URLs indexed for full-text searching. Users are performing about 400 searches per month. A new aspect of our service is the inclusion of telescope and instrumentation manuals, which prompted us to change the name to the Astronomical Software and Documentation Service. ASDS was originally conceived to serve two purposes: to provide a useful Internet service in an area of expertise of the investigators (astronomical software), and as a research project to investigate various architectures for searching through a set of documents distributed across the Internet. Two of the co-investigators were then installing and maintaining astronomical software as their primary job responsibility. We felt that a service which incorporated our experience in this area would be more useful than a straightforward listing of software packages. The original concept was for a service based on the client/server model, which would function as a directory/referral service rather than as an archive. For performing the searches, we began our investigation with a decision to evaluate the Isite software from the Center for Networked Information Discovery and Retrieval (CNIDR). This software was intended as a replacement for Wide-Area Information Service (WAIS), a client/server technology for performing full-text searches through a set of documents. Isite had some additional features that we considered attractive, and we enjoyed the cooperation of the Isite developers, who were happy to have ASDS as a demonstration project. We ended up staying with the software throughout the project, making modifications to take advantage of new features as they came along, as well as

  17. Summary of the COS Cycle 20 Calibration Program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roman-Duval, Julia; Aloisi, Alessandra; Bostroem, K. Azalee; Ely, Justin; Holland, Stephen; Lockwood, Sean; Oliveira, Cristina; Penton, Steven; Proffitt, Charles; Sahnow, David; Sonnentrucker, Paule; Welty, Alan D.; Wheeler, Thomas

    2015-06-01

    We summarize the Cycle 20 calibration program for the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) on the Hubble Space Telescope, covering the time period from November 2012 through October 2013. We give an overview of the Calibration plan and status summaries for each of the individual proposals comprising the C20 Calibration program.

  18. Summary of the COS Cycle 21 Calibration Program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sana, Hugues; Fox, Andrew; Roman-Duval, Julia; Ely, Justin; Bostroem, K. Azalee; Lockwood, Sean; Oliveira, Cristina; Penton, Steve; Proffitt, Charles; Sahnow, David; Sonnentrucker, Paule; Welty, Alan D.; Wheeler, Thomas

    2015-09-01

    We summarize the Cycle 21 calibration program for the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) on the Hubble Space Telescope, covering the time period from November 2013 through October 2014. We give an overview of the Calibration plan and status summaries for each of the individual proposals comprising the C21 Calibration program.

  19. Infrared Astronomical Satellite (IRAS) Catalogs and Atlases. Explanatory Supplement

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Beichman, C. A. (Editor); Neugebauer, G. (Editor); Habing, H. J. (Editor); Clegg, P. E. (Editor); Chester, T. J. (Editor)

    1985-01-01

    The Infrared Astronomical Satellite (IRAS) mission is described. An overview of the mission, a description of the satellite and its telescope system, and a discussion of the mission design, requirements, and inflight modifications are given. Data reduction, flight tests, flux reconstruction and calibration, data processing, and the formats of the IRAS catalogs and atlases are also considered.

  20. MEGARA: a new generation optical spectrograph for GTC

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gil de Paz, A.; Gallego, J.; Carrasco, E.; Iglesias-Páramo, J.; Cedazo, R.; Vílchez, J. M.; García-Vargas, M. L.; Arrillaga, X.; Carrera, M. A.; Castillo-Morales, A.; Castillo-Domínguez, E.; Eliche-Moral, M. C.; Ferrusca, D.; González-Guardia, E.; Lefort, B.; Maldonado, M.; Marino, R. A.; Martínez-Delgado, I.; Morales Durán, I.; Mujica, E.; Páez, G.; Pascual, S.; Pérez-Calpena, A.; Sánchez-Penim, A.; Sánchez-Blanco, E.; Tulloch, S.; Velázquez, M.; Zamorano, J.; Aguerri, A. L.; Barrado y Naváscues, D.; Bertone, E.; Cardiel, N.; Cava, A.; Cenarro, J.; Chávez, M.; García, M.; Guichard, J.; Gúzman, R.; Herrero, A.; Huélamo, N.; Hughes, D.; Jiménez-Vicente, J.; Kehrig, C.; Márquez, I.; Masegosa, J.; Mayya, Y. D.; Méndez-Abreu, J.; Mollá, M.; Muñoz-Tuñón, C.; Peimbert, M.; Pérez-González, P. G.; Pérez Montero, E.; Rodríguez, M.; Rodríguez-Espinosa, J. M.; Rodríguez-Merino, L.; Rosa-González, D.; Sánchez-Almeida, J.; Sánchez Contreras, C.; Sánchez-Blázquez, P.; Sánchez Moreno, F. M.; Sánchez, S. F.; Sarajedini, A.; Serena, F.; Silich, S.; Simón-Díaz, S.; Tenorio-Tagle, G.; Terlevich, E.; Terlevich, R.; Torres-Peimbert, S.; Trujillo, I.; Tsamis, Y.; Vega, O.; Villar, V.

    2014-07-01

    MEGARA (Multi-Espectrógrafo en GTC de Alta Resolución para Astronomía) is an optical Integral-Field Unit (IFU) and Multi-Object Spectrograph (MOS) designed for the GTC 10.4m telescope in La Palma. MEGARA offers two IFU fiber bundles, one covering 12.5x11.3 arcsec2 with a spaxel size of 0.62 arcsec (Large Compact Bundle; LCB) and another one covering 8.5x6.7 arcsec2 with a spaxel size of 0.42 arcsec (Small Compact Bundle; SCB). The MEGARA MOS mode will allow observing up to 100 objects in a region of 3.5x3.5 arcmin2 around the two IFU bundles. Both the LCB IFU and MOS capabilities of MEGARA will provide intermediate-to-high spectral resolutions (RFWHM~6,000, 12,000 and 18,700, respectively for the low-, mid- and high-resolution Volume Phase Holographic gratings) in the range 3650-9700ÅÅ. These values become RFWHM~7,000, 13,500, and 21,500 when the SCB is used. A mechanism placed at the pseudo-slit position allows exchanging the three observing modes and also acts as focusing mechanism. The spectrograph is a collimator-camera system that has a total of 11 VPHs simultaneously available (out of the 18 VPHs designed and being built) that are placed in the pupil by means of a wheel and an insertion mechanism. The custom-made cryostat hosts an E2V231-84 4kx4k CCD. The UCM (Spain) leads the MEGARA Consortium that also includes INAOE (Mexico), IAA-CSIC (Spain), and UPM (Spain). MEGARA is being developed under a contract between GRANTECAN and UCM. The detailed design, construction and AIV phases are now funded and the instrument should be delivered to GTC before the end of 2016.

  1. Progress on the Gemini High-Resolution Optical SpecTrograph (GHOST) design

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ireland, Michael; Anthony, Andre; Burley, Greg; Chisholm, Eric; Churilov, Vladimir; Dunn, Jennifer; Frost, Gabriella; Lawrence, Jon; Loop, David; McGregor, Peter; Martell, Sarah; McConnachie, Alan; McDermid, Richard M.; Pazder, John; Reshetov, Vlad; Robertson, J. G.; Sheinis, Andrew; Tims, Julia; Young, Peter; Zhelem, Ross

    2014-07-01

    The Gemini High-Resolution Optical SpecTrograph (GHOST) is the newest instrument being developed for the Gemini telescopes, in a collaboration between the Australian Astronomical Observatory (AAO), the NRC - Herzberg in Canada and the Australian National University (ANU). We describe the process of design optimisation that utilizes the unique strengths of the new partner, NRC - Herzberg, the design and need for the slit viewing camera system, and we describe a simplification for the lenslet-based slit reformatting. Finally, we out- line the updated project plan, and describe the unique scientific role this instrument will have in an international context, from exoplanets through to the distant Universe.

  2. Apollo 16 far-ultraviolet camera/spectrograph - Instrument and operations.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Carruthers, G. R.

    1973-01-01

    A far-ultraviolet camera/spectrograph experiment was designed and constructed for studies of the terrestrial upper atmosphere and geocorona, the interplanetary medium, and celestial objects from the lunar surface. The experiment was successfully operated during the Apollo 16 mission 21-23 April 1972. Discussed are the design and operating principles of the instrument, the actual events and operations during the Apollo 16 mission, and also anomalies encountered and suggested improvements for future experiments of this type. This experiment demonstrated the utility of the electronographic technique in space astronomy, as well as the great potential of the lunar surface as a base for astronomical observations.

  3. On astronomical drawing [1846

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smyth, Charles Piazzi

    Reprinted from the Memoirs of the Royal Astronomical Society 15, 1846, pp. 71-82. With annotations and illustrations added by Klaus Hentschel. The activities of the Astronomer Royal for Scotland, Charles Piazzi Smyth (1819-1900), include the triangulation of South African districts, landscape painting, day-to-day or tourist sketching, the engraving and lithographing of prominent architectural sites, the documentary photography of the Egyptian pyramids or the Tenerife Dragon tree, and `instant photographs' of the clouds above his retirement home in Clova, Ripon. His colorful records of the aurora polaris, and solar and terrestrial spectra all profited from his trained eye and his subtle mastery of the pen and the brush. As his paper on astronomical drawing, which we chose to reproduce in this volume, amply demonstrates, he was conversant in most of the print technology repertoire that the 19th century had to offer, and carefully selected the one most appropriate to each sujet. For instance, he chose mezzotint for the plates illustrating Maclear's observations of Halley's comet in 1835/36, so as to achieve a ``rich profundity of shadows, the deep obscurity of which is admirably adapted to reproduce those fine effects of chiaroscuro frequently found in works where the quantity of dark greatly predominates.'' The same expertise with which he tried to emulate Rembrandt's chiaroscuro effects he applied to assessing William and John Herschel's illustrations of nebulae, which appeared in print between 1811 and 1834. William Herschel's positive engraving, made partly by stippling and partly by a coarse mezzotint, receives sharp admonishment because of the visible ruled crossed lines in the background and the fact that ``the objects, which are also generally too light, [have] a much better definition than they really possess.'' On the other hand, John Herschel's illustration of nebulae and star clusters, given in negative, ``in which the lights are the darkest part of the

  4. A spectrograph instrument concept for the Prime Focus Spectrograph (PFS) on Subaru Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vivès, Sébastien; Le Mignant, David; Madec, Fabrice; Jaquet, Marc; Prieto, Eric; Martin, Laurent; Le Fèvre, Olivier; Gunn, James; Carr, Michael; Smee, Stephen; Barkhouser, Robert; Sugai, Hajime; Tamura, Naoyuki

    2012-09-01

    We describe the conceptual design of the spectrograph opto-mechanical concept for the SuMIRe Prime Focus Spectrograph (PFS) being developed for the SUBARU telescope. The SuMIRe PFS will consist of four identical spectrographs, each receiving 600 fibers from a 2400 fiber robotic positioner at the prime focus. Each spectrograph will have three channels covering in total, a wavelength range from 380 nm to 1300 nm. The requirements for the instrument are summarized in Section 1. We present the optical design and the optical performance and analysis in Section 2. Section 3 introduces the mechanical design, its requirements and the proposed concepts. Finally, the AIT phases for the Spectrograph System are described in Section 5.

  5. The Rapid Acquisition Imaging Spectrograph Experiment (RAISE) Sounding Rocket Investigation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Laurent, Glenn T.; Hassler, Donald M.; Deforest, Craig; Slater, David D.; Thomas, Roger J.; Ayres, Thomas; Davis, Michael; de Pontieu, Bart; Diller, Jed; Graham, Roy; Michaelis, Harald; Schuele, Udo; Warren, Harry

    2016-03-01

    We present a summary of the solar observing Rapid Acquisition Imaging Spectrograph Experiment (RAISE) sounding rocket program including an overview of the design and calibration of the instrument, flight performance, and preliminary chromospheric results from the successful November 2014 launch of the RAISE instrument. The RAISE sounding rocket payload is the fastest scanning-slit solar ultraviolet imaging spectrograph flown to date. RAISE is designed to observe the dynamics and heating of the solar chromosphere and corona on time scales as short as 100-200ms, with arcsecond spatial resolution and a velocity sensitivity of 1-2km/s. Two full spectral passbands over the same one-dimensional spatial field are recorded simultaneously with no scanning of the detectors or grating. The two different spectral bands (first-order 1205-1251Å and 1524-1569Å) are imaged onto two intensified Active Pixel Sensor (APS) detectors whose focal planes are individually adjusted for optimized performance. RAISE reads out the full field of both detectors at 5-10Hz, recording up to 1800 complete spectra (per detector) in a single 6-min rocket flight. This opens up a new domain of high time resolution spectral imaging and spectroscopy. RAISE is designed to observe small-scale multithermal dynamics in Active Region (AR) and quiet Sun loops, identify the strength, spectrum and location of high frequency waves in the solar atmosphere, and determine the nature of energy release in the chromospheric network.

  6. Astronomical Fourier spectrometer.

    PubMed

    Connes, P; Michel, G

    1975-09-01

    A high resolution near ir Fourier spectrometer with the same general design as previously described laboratory instruments has been built for astronomical observations at a coudé focus. Present spectral range is 0.8-3.5 microm with PbS and Ge detectors and maximum path difference 1 m. The servo system can accommodate various recording modes: stepping or continuous scan, path difference modulation, sky chopping. A real time computer is incorporated into the system, which has been set up at the Hale 500-cm telescope on Mount Palomar. Samples of the results are given. PMID:20154966

  7. Astronomical Instruments in India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sarma, Sreeramula Rajeswara

    The earliest astronomical instruments used in India were the gnomon and the water clock. In the early seventh century, Brahmagupta described ten types of instruments, which were adopted by all subsequent writers with minor modifications. Contact with Islamic astronomy in the second millennium AD led to a radical change. Sanskrit texts began to lay emphasis on the importance of observational instruments. Exclusive texts on instruments were composed. Islamic instruments like the astrolabe were adopted and some new types of instruments were developed. Production and use of these traditional instruments continued, along with the cultivation of traditional astronomy, up to the end of the nineteenth century.

  8. MUSE: feeding and mounting 24 spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nicklas, Harald; Seifert, Walter; Xu, Wenli; Hofmann, Denni; Köhler, Christof; Loupias, Magali

    2008-07-01

    The Multi Unit Spectroscopic Explorer MUSE is an integral field device containing 24 spectrographs at the Nasmyth focus of the VLT unit telescope. The total field size of 1'x1' needs to be split and separated into 24 sub-fields which are relayed along a central structure into the entrance aperture of the individual spectrographs. The realization of the optics for field splitting and separation as well as the relay optics to direct the light of the individual fields to the spectrographs is described here. A very tight link exists between the relay optics system layout and the mechanical arrangement of the spectrographs in the common central structure. A compact mounting is essential due to the restricted space for such a large instrument even on the VLT Nasmyth platform. A suitable arrangement of vertical and horizontal stacking of the spectrographs was found enabling their feeding from the unobstructed front side of the instrumental structure. The central instrument mount was designed as a stiff structure absorbing print-through effects due to thermal mismatch with the telescope platform but rigid enough to withstand earthquakes.

  9. MIRADAS - The Next-Generation Near-Infrared Spectrograph for the GTC

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eikenberry, S. S.

    2013-05-01

    We describe the Mid-resolution InfRAreD Astronomical Spectrograph (MIRADAS) being developed by the MIRADAS Consortium institutions (including the University of Florida, Universidad de Barcelona, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Instituto Astrofísica de Canarias, Institut de Física d' Altes Energies, Institut d' Estudis Espacials de Catalunya and Universidad Nacional Autonoma de México) for the Gran Telescopio Canarias. MIRADAS is the most powerful astronomical instrument of its kind ever envisioned. The combination of the collecting area of GTC and the multi-object mid-resolution near-infrared spectra provided by MIRADAS make its capabilities unparalleled for addressing some of the leading scientific challenges of the coming decades, with an observing efficiency more than an order of magnitude greater than current capabilities for 10-meter-class telescopes. We briefly review the science drivers for the instrument, the basic design features, and the current status of the instrument development.

  10. XXXVI Polish Astronomical Society Meeting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Różańska, Agata; Bejger, Michał

    2014-12-01

    XXXVI meeting of Polish Astronomical Society was held in Warsaw on Sept. 11-14, 2013. The conference brought together 150 astronomers working in different institutes in Poland and abroad. The highlight of the Congress was the first awarding of the Paczynski's Medal. The first laureate of the Medal is Professor Martin Rees from University of Cambridge. Medal was given by the President of the Polish Astronomical Society prof. Bozena Czerny.

  11. Strasbourg's "First" astronomical observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heck, André

    2011-08-01

    The turret lantern located at the top of the Strasbourg Hospital Gate is generally considered as the first astronomical observatory of the city, but such a qualification must be treated with caution. The thesis of this paper is that the idea of a tower-observatory was brought back by a local scholar, Julius Reichelt (1637-1717), after he made a trip to Northern Europe around 1666 and saw the "Rundetårn" (Round Tower) recently completed in Copenhagen. There, however, a terrace allowed (and still allows) the full viewing of the sky, and especially of the zenith area where the atmospheric transparency is best. However, there is no such terrace in Strasbourg around the Hospital Gate lantern. Reichelt had also visited Johannes Hevelius who was then developing advanced observational astronomy in Gdansk, but nothing of the kind followed in Strasbourg. Rather, the Hospital Gate observatory was built essentially for the prestige of the city and for the notoriety of the university, and the users of this observing post did not make any significant contributions to the progress of astronomical knowledge. We conclude that the Hospital Gate observatory was only used for rudimentary viewing of bright celestial objects or phenomena relatively low on the horizon.

  12. Really Bad Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hockey, Thomas A.

    2009-01-01

    What happens when even Percival Lowell stops believing in your Mars observations? History can be troubling. This I learned while editing the Biographical Encyclopedia of Astronomers (Springer, 2007). There have been astronomers who do not fit our commonly held, and clung to, conceptual model: a sociological system that sifts out generally like-minded and sensible colleagues. I refer to those individuals who (for at least a time) successfully entered the mainstream profession, but now disturb our worldview that says prosperity as a scientist usually is achieved by a rational being holding certain common values. My List of Shame includes examples from each of the last four centuries. Not "crack pot” cosmologists, these were hard-working observers for whom the end justified the means. And they all got away with it. Each person I discuss was vetted by the professional establishment of the day. Yet you will learn how to be fired from a major observatory, banned from prominent journals. But only after damage to the science is done. Be afraid.

  13. Grigor Narekatsi's astronomical insights

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poghosyan, Samvel

    2015-07-01

    What stand out in the solid system of Gr. Narekatsi's naturalistic views are his astronomical insights on the material nature of light, its high speed and the Sun being composed of "material air". Especially surprising and fascinating are his views on stars and their clusters. What astronomers, including great Armenian academician V. Ambartsumian (scattering of stellar associations), would understand and prove with much difficulty thousand years later, Narekatsi predicted in the 10th century: "Stars appear and disappear untimely", "You who gather and scatter the speechless constellations, like a flock of sheep". Gr. Narekatsti's reformative views were manifested in all the spheres of the 10th century social life; he is a reformer of church life, great language constructor, innovator in literature and music, freethinker in philosophy and science. His ideology is the reflection of the 10th century Armenian Renaissance. During the 9th-10th centuries, great masses of Armenians, forced to migrate to the Balkans, took with them and spread reformative ideas. The forefather of the western science, which originated in the period of Reformation, is considered to be the great philosopher Nicholas of Cusa. The study of Gr. Narekatsti's logic and naturalistic views enables us to claim that Gr. Narekatsti is the great grandfather of European science.

  14. Astronomer's Proposal Tool

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Krueger, Tony

    2005-01-01

    Astronomer's Proposal Tool (APT) is a computer program that assists astronomers in preparing their Phase 1 and Phase 2 Hubble Space Telescope science programs. APT is a successor to the Remote Proposal Submission System 2 (RPS2) program, which has been rendered obsolete by more recent advances in computer software and hardware. APT exploits advances associated with widespread use of the Internet, multiplatform visual development software tools, and overall increases in the power of desktop computer hardware, all in such a way as to make the preparation and submission of proposals more intuitive and make observatory operations less cumbersome. APT provides documentation and help that are friendly, up to date, and easily accessible to users of varying levels of expertise, while defining an extensible framework that is responsive to changes in both technology and observatory operations. APT consists of two major components: (1) a set of software tools that are intuitive, visual, and responsive and (2) an integrated software environment that unifies all the tools and makes them interoperable. The APT tools include the Visual Target Tuner, Proposal Editor, Exposure Planner, Bright Object Checker, and Visit Planner.

  15. Professional Ethics for Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marvel, K. B.

    2005-05-01

    There is a growing recognition that professional ethics is an important topic for all professional scientists, especially physical scientists. Situations at the National Laboratories have dramatically proven this point. Professional ethics is usually only considered important for the health sciences and the legal and medical professions. However, certain aspects of the day to day work of professional astronomers can be impacted by ethical issues. Examples include refereeing scientific papers, serving on grant panels or telescope allocation committees, submitting grant proposals, providing proper references in publications, proposals or talks and even writing recommendation letters for job candidates or serving on search committees. This session will feature several speakers on a variety of topics and provide time for questions and answers from the audience. Confirmed speakers include: Kate Kirby, Director Institute for Theoretical Atomic and Molecular Physics - Professional Ethics in the Physical Sciences: An Overview Rob Kennicutt, Astrophysical Journal Editor - Ethical Issues for Publishing Astronomers Peggy Fischer, Office of the NSF Inspector General - Professional Ethics from the NSF Inspector General's Point of View

  16. An Ultraviolet Imaging Spectrograph for JIMO

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hendrix, A. R.; Esposito, L. W.; Pryor, W. R.; Stewart, A. I. F.; McClintock, W. E.; Hansen, C. J.

    2003-01-01

    It is vital to include an ultraviolet spectrograph as part of the JIMO payload to Europa, Ganymede and Callisto. Ultraviolet measurements are key for understanding the atmospheres, auroral activity and surfaces of these icy satellites, and a UV imaging spectrograph will also complement a visible camera and near-IR spectrometer, to achieve full wavelength coverage in remote sensing of the icy satellites. The UV instrument proposed for JIMO will be similar to that currently on board the Cassini spacecraft. The design draws on the experience of building UV spectrometers for Mariner, Pioneer, Galileo and Cassini. It will have three spectrographic channels that provide images and spectra of the atmosphere, aurorae and surface: An EUV channel (800-110 nm), an FUV channel (110 to 190 nm) range, and an NUV channel (180 to 350 nm).

  17. Thermal gradient analysis for the ESOPO spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farah, A.; González, J. Jesús; Sierra, G.; Hernández, J. V.; Pedrayes, M.; Echevarría, J.; Costero, R.; Avila, G.; Arroyo, M.; Cobos, F.; Colorado, E.; Cordova, A.; Chapa, O.; Garcia, B.; Garfias, F.; Granados, F.; Guisa, G.; Luna, E.; Martínez, B.; Michel, R.; Murillo, F.; Pérez, F.; Quechol, S.; Quirós, F.; Tejada, C.

    2008-07-01

    ESOPO will be a spectrograph of medium resolution for the 2.1 m telescope of the National Observatory at San Pedro Martir, Baja California, Mexico. It has been developed by the Instituto de Astronomia of the Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico (IA-UNAM). The main goal of this instrument is to modernize the capabilities of making science with that particular telescope. It is planned to achieve a spectral resolution between 500 and 5000. ESOPO is split into two arms; each one specialized in a specific wavelength range covering together all the visible light. A very important issue in spectrographs is to avoid inside thermal gradients. Different temperatures in the optical elements produce mechanical movements and image quality degradation during an exposition. The error budget analysis developed for ESOPO allows establishing the required limits for temperature gradients. In this paper is described the thermal analysis of the spectrograph, including specifications, finite element models, thermal equations and expected thermal gradients.

  18. National Student Solar Spectrograph Competition overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Larimer, Randal M.; DesJardins, Angela; Shaw, Joseph A.; Kankelborg, Charles C.; Palmer, Christopher; Springer, Larry; Key, Joey; Knighton, W. Berk; Repasky, Kevin S.; Pust, Nathan J.; Hobish, Mitchell K.; Wilson, Edmond W.; Fitzgerald, Carrie; Fitzgerald, Ryan; Trickel, Thomas; Jensen, Clyde; Dorsett, Skye; Anderson, Matt; Boger, Jim; McCrady, Nate; Naylor, Jaylene; Battle, Laurie

    2012-10-01

    The yearly National Student Solar Spectrograph Competition (NSSSC) is Montana Space Grant Consortium's Education and Public Outreach (EP/O) Program for NASA's Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) mission. The NSSSC is designed to give schools with less aerospace activity such as Minority Serving Institutions and Community Colleges an opportunity for hands on real world research experience. The NSSSC provides students from across the country the opportunity to work as part of an undergraduate interdisciplinary team to design, build and test a ground based solar spectrograph. Over the course of nine months, teams come up with their own science goals and then build an instrument to collect data in support of their goals. Teams then travel to Bozeman, MT to demonstrate their instruments and present their results in a competitive science fair environment. This paper and poster will discuss the 2011-2012 competition along with results as well as provide information on the 2012 -2013 competition opportunities.

  19. Progress on LAMOST High Resolution Spectrograph Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, KaI

    2015-08-01

    To explore more science case, LAMOST doesn't only has strong power on celestial spectral survey but also reserves an access to high resolution spectrograph with a few optional fibers. This commissioned spectrograph gets high resolution of R=30,000 - 60,000 at a broad visible band from 370nm to 760nm. With the consideration about site seeing variation in future, single science fiber covers wider field on sky of 4.5arcsec instead of the present 3.3arcsec. An oversize Echelle R4 grating and a pre-slit image slicer are adopted to relieve the spectrograph resolution pressure. High resolution observation will parallel to the low resolution spectral survey at a small cost of losing a few fibers (10 - 20) on telescope focal plane. These science fibers will locate at the different sky areas for more approciate choice. The presentation will give the detailed design introduction and the current project status.

  20. Getting Astronomers Involved in the IYA: Astronomer in the Classroom

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koenig, Kris

    2008-05-01

    The Astronomer in the Classroom program provides professional astronomers the opportunity to engage with 3rd-12th grade students across the nation in grade appropriate discussions of their recent research, and provides students with rich STEM content in a personalized forum, bringing greater access to scientific knowledge for underserved populations. 21st Century Learning and Interstellar Studios, the producer of the 400 Years of the Telescope documentary along with their educational partners, will provide the resources necessary to facilitate the Astronomer in the Classroom program, allowing students to interact with astronomers throughout the IYA2009. PROGRAM DESCRIPTION One of hundreds of astronomers will be available to interact with students via live webcast daily during Spring/Fall 2009. The astronomer for the day will conduct three 20-minute discussions (Grades 3-5 /6-8/9-12), beginning with a five-minute PowerPoint on their research or area of interest. The discussion will be followed by a question and answer period. The students will participate in real-time from their school computer(s) with the technology provided by 21st Century Learning. They will see and hear the astronomer on their screen, and pose questions from their keyboard. Teachers will choose from three daily sessions; 11:30 a.m., 12:00 p.m., 12:30 p.m. Eastern Time. This schedule overlaps all US time zones, and marginalizes bandwidth usage, preventing technological barriers to web access. The educational partners and astronomers will post materials online, providing easy access to information that will prepare teachers and students for the chosen discussion. The astronomers, invited to participate from the AAS and IAU, will receive a web cam shipment with instructions, a brief training and conductivity test, and prepaid postage for shipment of the web cam to the next astronomer on the list. The anticipated astronomer time required is 3-hours, not including the time to develop the PowerPoint.

  1. Goddard High Resolution Spectrograph SV/GTO Project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ebbets, Dennis

    1999-01-01

    Contract number NAS5-30433, known at Ball Aerospace as the GHRS SV/GTO project, supported our participation in the post-launch activities of the Goddard High Resolution Spectrograph aboard the Hubble Space Telescope. The period of performance was December 1988 through December 1998. The contract supported the involvement of Dr Dennis Ebbets in the work of the GHRS Investigation Definition Team, and several of the Ball people in the documentation and publication of results. Three main categories of tasks were covered by this contract; in-orbit calibration of the GHRS, guaranteed time observations, and education and public outreach. The nature and accomplishments of these tasks are described in the report. This summary makes many references to publications in the scientific and technical literature. Appendix A is extracted from a complete bibliography, and lists those papers that are directly related to work performed under this GHRS contract. The tasks related to the in-orbit calibration of the GHRS were by far the largest responsibility during the first six years of the project. During this period Dr. Ebbets was responsible for the definition of calibration requirements, design of experiments, preparation of observing proposals, tracking their implementation and execution, and coordinating the analysis and publication of the results. Prior to the launch of HST in 1990 the observing proposals were developed in cooperation with the scientists on the GHRS DDT, engineers at Ball Aerospace, the operations staff at the STScI, and project coordinators at GSFC.

  2. Integrating the HERMES spectrograph for the AAT

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heijmans, Jeroen; Asplund, Martin; Barden, Sam; Birchall, Michael; Carollo, Daniela; Bland-Hawthorn, Joss; Brzeski, Jurek; Case, Scott; Churilov, Vladimir; Colless, Matthew; Dean, Robert; De Silva, Gayandhi; Farrell, Tony; Fiegert, Kristin; Freeman, Kenneth; Gers, Luke; Goodwin, Michael; Gray, Doug; Heald, Ron; Heng, Anthony; Jones, Damien; Kobayashi, Chiaki; Klauser, Urs; Kondrat, Yuriy; Lawrence, Jon; Lee, Steve; Mathews, Darren; Mayfield, Don; Miziarski, Stan; Monnet, Guy J.; Muller, Rolf; Pai, Naveen; Patterson, Robert; Penny, Ed; Orr, David; Sheinis, Andrew; Shortridge, Keith; Smedley, Scott; Smith, Greg; Stafford, Darren; Staszak, Nicholas; Vuong, Minh; Waller, Lewis; Whittard, Denis; Wylie de Boer, Elisabeth; Xavier, Pascal; Zheng, Jessica; Zhelem, Ross; Zucker, Daniel

    2012-09-01

    The High Efficiency and Resolution Multi Element Spectrograph, HERMES is an optical spectrograph designed primarily for the GALAH, Galactic Archeology Survey, the first major attempt to create a detailed understanding of galaxy formation and evolution by studying the history of our own galaxy, the Milky Way1. The goal of the GALAH survey is to reconstruct the mass assembly history of the of the Milky way, through a detailed spatially tagged abundance study of one million stars in the Milky Way. The spectrograph will be based at the Anglo Australian Telescope (AAT) and be fed with the existing 2dF robotic fibre positioning system. The spectrograph uses VPH-gratings to achieve a spectral resolving power of 28,000 in standard mode and also provides a high resolution mode ranging between 40,000 to 50,000 using a slit mask. The GALAH survey requires a SNR greater than 100 aiming for a star brightness of V=14. The total spectral coverage of the four channels is about 100nm between 370 and 1000nm for up to 392 simultaneous targets within the 2 degree field of view. Current efforts are focused on manufacturing and integration. The delivery date of spectrograph at the telescope is scheduled for 2013. A performance prediction is presented and a complete overview of the status of the HERMES spectrograph is given. This paper details the following specific topics: The approach to AIT, the manufacturing and integration of the large mechanical frame, the opto-mechanical slit assembly, collimator optics and cameras, VPH gratings, cryostats, fibre cable assembly, instrument control hardware and software, data reduction.

  3. Mass producing an efficient NIR spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, John C.; Henderson, Charles P.; Herter, Terry L.; Matthews, Keith; Skrutskie, Michael F.; Adams, Joseph D.; Moon, Dae-Sik; Smith, Roger; Gautier, Nick; Ressler, Michael; Soifer, B. T.; Lin, Sean; Howard, James; LaMarr, John; Stolberg, Todd M.; Zink, Jeff

    2004-09-01

    Four institutions are collaborating to design and build three near identical R ~2700 cross-dispersed near-infrared spectrographs for use on various 5-10 meter telescopes. The instrument design addresses the common observatory need for efficient, reliable near-infrared spectrographs through such features as broad wavelength coverage across 6 simultaneous orders (0.8 - 2.4 microns) in echelle format, real-time slit viewing through separate optics and detector, and minimal moving parts. Lastly, the collaborators are saving money and increasing the likelihood of success through economies of scale and sharing intellectual capital.

  4. The Spartan-281 Far Ultraviolet Imaging Spectrograph

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Carruthers, George R.; Heckathorn, Harry M.; Dufour, Reginald J.; Opal, Chet B.; Raymond, John C.

    1988-01-01

    The U.S. Naval Research Laboratory's Far Ultraviolet Imaging Spectrograph (FUVIS), currently under development for flight as a Spartan shuttle payload, is designed to perform spectroscopy of diffuse sources in the FUV with very high sensitivity and moderate spatial and spectral resolution. Diffuse nebulae, the general galactic background radiation, and artificially induced radiation associated with the Space Shuttle vehicle are sources of particular interest. The FUVIS instrument will cover the wavelength range of 970-2000 A with selectable resolutions of 5 and 30 A. It is a slit imaging spectrograph having 3 arcmin spatial resolution along its 2.7 deg long slit.

  5. Initial results from VIRUS production spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tuttle, Sarah E.; Allen, Richard D.; Chonis, Taylor S.; Cornell, Mark E.; DePoy, Darren L.; Hill, Gary J.; Lee, Hanshin; Marshall, Jennifer L.; Prochaska, Travis; Rafal, Marc D.; Savage, Richard D.; Vattiat, Brian L.

    2012-09-01

    The Hobby-Eberly Telescope Dark Energy Experiment (HETDEX) uses a novel technique of replicated spectrographs (VIRUS) to measure dark energy at intermediate redshifts (2 < z < 4). VIRUS contains over 30,000 fibers and over 160 independent and identical channels. Here we report on the construction and characterization of the initial batch of VIRUS spectrograph cameras. Assembly of the first batch of 16 is in progress. A brief overview of the assembly is presented, and where available performance is compared to specification.

  6. Gauribidanur Low-Frequency Solar Spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kishore, P.; Kathiravan, C.; Ramesh, R.; Rajalingam, M.; Barve, Indrajit V.

    2014-10-01

    A new radio spectrograph, dedicated to observe the Sun, has been recently commissioned by the Indian Institute of Astrophysics (IIA) at the Gauribidanur Radio Observatory, about 100 km North of Bangalore. The instrument, called the Gauribidanur Low-frequency Solar Spectrograph (GLOSS), operates in the frequency range≈40 - 440 MHz. Radio emission in this frequency range originates close to the Sun, typically in the radial distance range r≈1.1 - 2.0 R⊙. This article describes the characteristics of the GLOSS and the first results.

  7. Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph Co-Investigator Support

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Weistrop, Donna

    2003-01-01

    The purpose of this contract has been to support investigation of astronomical problems primarily using data from the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) on the Hubble Space Telescope (HST). As a Co-investigator on STIS, I participated in several projects, which will be described below. The research resulted in 19 papers in refereed journals, 8 papers published in conference proceedings, and 27 papers presented at meetings. There are still at least four papers submitted or in press, as well as some additional research yet to be written up for publication. The research has also produced one master's thesis and two PhD dissertations currently underway, with one to be completed Spring 2003. Undergraduates have participated in the analysis of supporting observations. One student has published some of his results in a web- based refereed publication for undergraduate research (www.jyi.org). I have given several talks to the general public describing results from the HST as well as the results of my research. I have been named the UNLV Regents' Outstanding Faculty Member for 1995 and received the 2002 College of Science Distinguished Researcher's Award as a result of these activities.

  8. Immanuel Halton, the astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barber, P. M.

    1996-02-01

    Immanuel Halton was born in Cumberland, studied at Grays Inn, London during the later stages of the English Civil War and, during the Commonwealth, entered the service of Henry Howard, later 6th Duke of Norfolk. He pursued his mathematical and astronomical interests while auditor to the Duke of Norfolk. He met with John Flamsteed, encouraged the latter's interest in mathematics and astronomy and became his first patron, as well as contributing observations to Flamsteed's published works. Immanuel ended his days at Wingfield Manor, Derbyshire. A short biographical piece on Immanuel Halton appeared in the Journal in the early 1950s, consisting mostly of quotations from Flamsteed's 'Self Inspections' and Baily's 'Life of Flamsteed'. 1996 is the 350th anniversary of Flamsteed's birth, and it is hoped that this fuller account will flesh out the bones of his first patron.

  9. Astronomers against Newton.

    PubMed

    Higgitt, Rebekah

    2004-03-01

    Francis Baily's publication of the manuscripts of John Flamsteed, the first Astronomer Royal, provoked a furious response. Flamsteed had quarrelled with Isaac Newton, and described him in terms unforgivable to those who claimed him as a paragon of all virtues, both moral and scientific. Baily was condemned for putting Flamsteed's complaints in the public sphere. However, his supporters saw his work as a critique of the excessive hero-worship accorded to Newton. Written when the word 'scientist' had been newly coined, this work and the debates it provoked gives us an insight into contemporary views of the role of the man of science and of the use of science to back political, religious and moral positions. PMID:15036924

  10. Astronomical tides and earthquakes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Xiaoping; Mao, Wei; Huang, Yong

    2001-03-01

    A review on the studies of correlation between astronomical tides and earthquakes is given in three categories, including (1) earthquakes and the relative locations of the sun, the moon and the earth, (2) earthquakes and the periods and phases of tides and (3) earthquakes and the tidal stress. The first two categories mainly investigate whether or not there exist any dominant pattern of the relative locations of the sun, the moon and the earth during earthquakes, whether or not the occurrences of earthquakes are clustered in any special phase during a tidal period, whether or not there exists any tidal periodic phenomenon in seismic activities, By empasizing the tidal stress in seismic focus, the third category investigates the relationship between various seismic faults and the triggering effects of tidal stress, which reaches the crux of the issue. Possible reasons to various inconsistent investigation results by using various methods and samples are analyzed and further investigations are proposed.

  11. The Amateur Astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moore, Patrick

    This 2000 Edition of Sir Patrick Moore’s classic book has been completely revised in the light of changes in technology. Not only do these changes include commercially available astronomical telescopes and software, but also what we know and understand about the universe. There are many new photographs and illustrations. Writing in the easy-going style that made him famous as a writer and broadcaster, Sir Patrick introduced astronomy and amateur observing together, so that his reader gets an idea of what he is observing at the same time as how to observe. Almost half the book is Appendices. These are hugely comprehensive and provide hints and tips, as well as data (year 2000 onwards) for pretty well every aspect of amateur astronomy. This is probably the only book in which all this information is collected in one place.

  12. East Asian astronomical records

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stephenson, F. Richard

    Chinese, Japanese and Korean celestial observations have made major contributions to Applied Historical Astronomy, especially in the study of supernovae, comets, Earth's rotation (using eclipses) and solar variability (via sunspots and aurorae). Few original texts now survive; almost all extant records exist only in printed versions, often with the loss of much detail. The earliest Chinese astronomical observations extend back to before 1000 BC. However, fairly systematic records are only available since 200 BC - and even these have suffered losses through wars, etc. By around AD 800, many independent observations are available from Japan and Korea and these provide a valuable supplement to the Chinese data. Throughout East Asia dates were expressed in terms of a luni-solar calendar and conversion to the Julian or Gregorian calendar can be readily effected.

  13. ALE: Astronomical LIDAR for Extinction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zimmer, Peter C.; McGraw, J. T.; Gimmestad, G.; Roberts, D.; Stewart, J.; Dawsey, M.; Fitch, J.; Smith, J.; Townsend, A.; Black, B.

    2006-12-01

    The primary impediment to precision all-sky photometry is the scattering or absorption of incoming starlight by the aerosols suspended in, and the molecules of, the Earth's atmosphere. The University of New Mexico (UNM) and the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI) are currently developing the Astronomical LIDAR (LIght Detection And Ranging) for Extinction (ALE), which is undergoing final integration and initial calibration at UNM. ALE is based upon a 527nm laser operated at a pulse repetition rate of 1500 pps, and rendered eyesafe by expanding its beam through a 32cm diameter transmitter. The alt-az mounted ALE will operate in multiple modes, including mapping the sky to obtain a quantitative measurement of extinction sources, measuring a monochromatic extinction coefficient by producing Langely plots, and monitoring extinction in the direction in which a telescope is observing. A primary goal is to use the Rayleigh scattered LIDAR return from air above 20km as a quasi-constant illumination source. Air above this altitude is generally free from aerosols and the variations in density are relatively constant over intervals of a few minutes. When measured at several zenith angles, the integrated line-of-sight extinction can be obtained from a simple model fit of these returns. The 69 microjoule exit pulse power and 0.6m aperture receiver will allow ALE to collect approximately one million photons per minute from above 20km, enough to enable measurements of the monochromatic vertical extinction to better than 1% under photometric conditions. Along the way, ALE will also provide a plethora of additional information about the vertical and horizontal distributions of low-lying aerosols, dust or smoke in the free troposphere, and high cirrus, as well as detect the passage of boundary layer atmospheric gravity waves. This project is funded by NSF Grant 0421087.

  14. Radiation events in astronomical CCD images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, Alan R.; McDonald, Richard J.; Hurley, D. C.; Holland, Steven E.; Groom, Donald E.; Brown, William E.; Gilmore, David K.; Stover, Richard J.; Wei, Mingzhi

    2002-04-01

    The remarkable sensitivity of depleted silicon to ionizing radiation is a nuisance to astronomers. 'Cosmic rays' degrade images because of struck pixels, leading to modified observing strategies and the development of algorithms to remove the unwanted artifacts. In the new-generation CCD's with thick sensitive regions, cosmic-ray muons make recognizable straight tracks and there is enhanced sensitivity to ambient gamma radiation via Compton-scattered electrons ('worms'). Beta emitters inside the dewar, for example high-potassium glasses such as BK7 , also produce worm-like tracks. The cosmic-ray muon rate is irreducible and increases with altitude. The gamma rays are mostly by- products of 40K decay and the U and Th decay chains; these elements commonly appear as traces in concrete and other materials. The Compton recoil event rate can be reduced significantly by the choice of materials in the environment and dewar and by careful shielding. Telescope domes appear to have significantly lower rates than basement laboratories and Coude spectrograph rooms. Radiation sources inside the dewar can be eliminated by judicious choice of materials. Cosmogenic activation during high-altitude fights does not appear to be a problem. Our conclusion are supported by tests at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory low-level counting facilities in Berkeley and at Oroville, California (180 m underground).

  15. Radiation events in astronomical CCD images

    SciTech Connect

    Smith, A.R.; McDonald, R.J.; Hurley, D.L.; Holland, S.E.; Groom, D.E.; Brown, W.E.; Gilmore, D.K.; Stover, R.J.; Wei, M.

    2001-12-18

    The remarkable sensitivity of depleted silicon to ionizing radiation is a nuisance to astronomers. ''Cosmic rays'' degrade images because of struck pixels, leading to modified observing strategies and the development of algorithms to remove the unwanted artifacts. In the new-generation CCD's with thick sensitive regions, cosmic-ray muons make recognizable straight tracks and there is enhanced sensitivity to ambient gamma radiation via Compton-scattered electrons (''worms''). Beta emitters inside the dewar, for example high-potassium glasses such as BK7, also produce worm-like tracks. The cosmic-ray muon rate is irreducible and increases with altitude. The gamma rays are mostly by-products of the U and Th decay chains; these elements always appear as traces in concrete and other materials. The Compton recoil event rate can be reduced significantly by the choice of materials in the environment and dewar and by careful shielding. Telescope domes appear to be significantly cleaner than basement laboratories and Coude spectrograph rooms. Radiation sources inside the dewar can be eliminated by judicious choice of materials. Cosmogenic activation during high-altitude flights does not appear to be a problem. Our conclusions are supported by tests at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory low-level counting facilities in Berkeley and at Oroville, California (180 m underground).

  16. Visualizing Astronomical Data with Blender

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kent, Brian R.

    2013-06-01

    Astronomical data take on a multitude of forms—catalogs, data cubes, images, and simulations. The availability of software for rendering high-quality three-dimensional graphics lends itself to the paradigm of exploring the incredible parameter space afforded by the astronomical sciences. The software program Blender gives astronomers a useful tool for displaying data in a manner used by three-dimensional (3D) graphics specialists and animators. The interface to this popular software package is introduced with attention to features of interest in astronomy. An overview of the steps for generating models, textures, animations, camera work, and renders is outlined. An introduction is presented on the methodology for producing animations and graphics with a variety of astronomical data. Examples from subfields of astronomy with different kinds of data are shown with resources provided to members of the astronomical community. An example video showcasing the outlined principles and features is provided along with scripts and files for sample visualizations.

  17. VXMS: the VISTA extreme multiplex spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Content, Robert; Shanks, Tom; Sharples, Ray; Bramall, David; Percival, Will

    2012-09-01

    A study for a spectrograph delivering at least 10000 slits for galaxies and 20000 for stars over a 2.5 deg2 field have been completed as an answer to the call for proposal for future VISTA MOS instrumentation. In a single night, 65000 galaxy redshifts can be measured to z~0.7 and beyond for measuring the Baryon Acoustic Oscillation (BAO) scale and many other science goals. The design features ten cloned spectrographs which give a smaller total weight and length than a unique spectrograph to make it placable in the space envelope of the Cassegrain focus. The clones use a transparent design including a grism in which all optics are about the size or smaller than the clone rectangular subfield so that they can be tightly packed with little gaps between subfields. Only low cost glasses are used; the variations in chromatic aberrations between bands are compensated by changing a box containing the grism and two adjacent lenses. Two bands cover the 550nm to 900nm wavelength range at resolution of 1100 for blue end and 3000 for red end while another cover the Calcium triplet at 5000. An optional box does imaging but we studied different innovative methods for acquisition without imaging. A new 2.3° corrector was designed that places the pupil before and relatively near the focal plane which permits to give more space at the back of the spectrographs by placing them in a hedgehog configuration. An offaxis field lens in each spectrograph permits to control the pupil position.

  18. Ground support electronic interface for the ionospheric spectroscopy and atmospheric chemistry (ISAAC) ultraviolet spectrograph. Master`s thesis

    SciTech Connect

    MacQuarrie, J.A.

    1994-12-01

    This thesis details the design and development of an electronic Ground Support Equipment (GSE) interface for the Naval Postgraduate School`s (NPS) Ionospheric Spectroscopy and Atmospheric Chemistry (ISAAC) spectrograph. The ISAAC spectrograph, which was designed at NPS and built by Research Support Instruments, Inc., is intended to observe atmospheric airglow and auroral emissions in the ultraviolet (1800A to 3300A) wavelength region. It is to be included as one of several sensors flown onboard the Advanced Research and Global Observation Satellite (ARGOS), which is scheduled for an early 1996 launch. The GSE was developed in order to allow ground testing and calibration of the instrument prior to and during integration with the satellite bus. The GSE includes hardware to provide the connections between various components of the spectrograph and a Macintosh computer with an installed I/O card. The GSE also includes a user-friendly software interface written with LabVIEW 2.2 that provides the ability to view spectra obtained from the instrument and to remotely control mechanical functions of the spectrograph. An initial wavelength calibration of the spectrograph has been performed using the completed GSE.

  19. The infrared imaging spectrograph (IRIS) for TMT: overview of innovative science programs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wright, Shelley A.; Larkin, James E.; Moore, Anna M.; Do, Tuan; Simard, Luc; Adamkovics, Maté; Armus, Lee; Barth, Aaron J.; Barton, Elizabeth; Boyce, Hope; Cooke, Jeffrey; Cote, Patrick; Davidge, Timothy; Ellerbroek, Brent; Ghez, Andrea M.; Liu, Michael C.; Lu, Jessica R.; Macintosh, Bruce A.; Mao, Shude; Marois, Christian; Schoeck, Matthias; Suzuki, Ryuji; Tan, Jonathan C.; Treu, Tommaso; Wang, Lianqi; Weiss, Jason

    2014-07-01

    IRIS (InfraRed Imaging Spectrograph) is a first light near-infrared diffraction limited imager and integral field spectrograph being designed for the future Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT). IRIS is optimized to perform astronomical studies across a significant fraction of cosmic time, from our Solar System to distant newly formed galaxies (Barton et al. [1]). We present a selection of the innovative science cases that are unique to IRIS in the era of upcoming space and ground-based telescopes. We focus on integral field spectroscopy of directly imaged exoplanet atmospheres, probing fundamental physics in the Galactic Center, measuring 104 to 1010 M supermassive black hole masses, resolved spectroscopy of young star-forming galaxies (1 < z < 5) and first light galaxies (6 < z < 12), and resolved spectroscopy of strong gravitational lensed sources to measure dark matter substructure. For each of these science cases we use the IRIS simulator (Wright et al. [2], Do et al. [3]) to explore IRIS capabilities. To highlight the unique IRIS capabilities, we also update the point and resolved source sensitivities for the integral field spectrograph (IFS) in all five broadband filters (Z, Y, J, H, K) for the finest spatial scale of 0.004" per spaxel. We briefly discuss future development plans for the data reduction pipeline and quicklook software for the IRIS instrument suite.

  20. Astronomical dating in the 19th century

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hilgen, Frederik J.

    2010-01-01

    Today astronomical tuning is widely accepted as numerical dating method after having revolutionised the age calibration of the geological archive and time scale over the last decades. However, its origin is not well known and tracing its roots is important especially from a science historic perspective. Astronomical tuning developed in consequence of the astronomical theory of the ice ages and was repeatedly used in the second half of the 19th century before the invention of radio-isotopic dating. Building upon earlier ideas of Joseph Adhémar, James Croll started to formulate his astronomical theory of the ice ages in 1864 according to which precession controlled ice ages occur alternatingly on both hemispheres at times of maximum eccentricity of the Earth's orbit. The publication of these ideas compelled Charles Lyell to revise his Principles of Geology and add Croll's theory, thus providing an alternative to his own geographical cause of the ice ages. Both Croll and Lyell initially tuned the last glacial epoch to the prominent eccentricity maximum 850,000 yr ago. This age was used as starting point by Lyell to calculate an age of 240 million years for the beginning of the Cambrium. But Croll soon revised the tuning to a much younger less prominent eccentricity maximum between 240,000 and 80,000 yr ago. In addition he tuned older glacial deposits of late Miocene and Eocene ages to eccentricity maxima around 800,000 and 2,800,000 yr ago. Archibald and James Geikie were the first to recognize interglacials during the last glacial epoch, as predicted by Croll's theory, and attempted to tune them to precession. Soon after Frank Taylor linked a series of 15 end-moraines left behind by the retreating ice sheet to precession to arrive at a possible age of 300,000 yr for the maximum glaciation. In a classic paper, Axel Blytt (1876) explained the scattered distribution of plant groups in Norway to precession induced alternating rainy and dry periods as recorded by the

  1. Demonstrator of a multi-object spectrograph based on the 2048×1080 DMD

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zamkotsian, Frederic; Spano, Paolo; Bon, William; Lanzoni, Patrick

    2012-03-01

    Multi-Object Spectrographs (MOS) are the major instruments for studying primary galaxies and remote and faint objects. Current object selection systems are limited and/or difficult to implement in next generation MOS for space and ground-based telescopes. A promising solution is the use of MOEMS devices such as micromirror arrays which allow the remote control of the multi-slit configuration in real time. We are developing a Digital Micromirror Device (DMD) - based spectrograph demonstrator. We want to access the largest FOV with the highest contrast. The selected component is a DMD chip from Texas Instruments in 2048 × 1080 mirrors format, with a pitch of 13.68μm. Such component has been also studied by our team in early phase EUCLID-NIS study. Our optical design is an all-reflective spectrograph design with F/4 on the DMD component, including two arms, one spectroscopic channel and one imaging channel, thanks to the two stable positions of DMD micromirrors. This demonstrator permits the study of key parameters such as throughput, contrast and ability to remove background and spoiler sources, PSF effect. This study will be conducted in the visible with possible extension in the IR. The breadboard has been designed and is under realization before integration on a bench simulating an astronomical FOV. The demonstrator is of prime importance for characterizing the actual performance of this new family of instruments, as well as investigating the operational procedures on astronomical objects. If this demonstrator is successful, next step will be a demonstrator instrument placed on the Telescopio Nazionale Galileo.

  2. The system software development for prime focus spectrograph on Subaru Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shimono, Atsushi; Tamura, Naoyuki; Sugai, Hajime; Karoji, Hiroshi

    2012-09-01

    The Prime Focus Spectrograph (PFS) is a wide field multi-fiber spectrograph using the prime focus of the Subaru telescope, which is capable of observing up to 2400 astronomical objects simultaneously. The instrument control software will manage the observation procedure communicating with subsystems such as the fiber positioner "COBRA", the metrology camera system, and the spectrograph and camera systems. Before an exposure starts, the instrument control system needs to access to a database where target lists provided by observers are stored in advance, and accurately position fibers onto astronomical targets as requested therein. This fiber positioning will be carried out interacting with the metrology system which measures the fiber positions. In parallel, the control system can issue a command to point the telescope to the target position and to rotate the instrument rotator. Finally the telescope pointing and the rotator angle will be checked by imaging bright stars and checking their positions on the auto-guide and acquisition cameras. After the exposure finishes, the data are collected from the detector systems and are finalized as FITS files to archive with necessary information. The observation preparation software is required, given target lists and a sequence of observation, to find optimal fiber allocations with maximizing the number of guide stars. To carry out these operations efficiently, the control system will be integrated seamlessly with a database system which will store information necessary for observation execution such as fiber configurations. In this article, the conceptual system design of the observation preparation software and the instrument control software will be presented.

  3. XEphem: Interactive Astronomical Ephemeris

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Downey, Elwood Charles

    2011-12-01

    XEphem is a scientific-grade interactive astronomical ephemeris package for UNIX-like systems. Written in C, X11 and Motif, it is easily ported to systems. Among other things, XEphem: computes heliocentric, geocentric and topocentric information for all objects; has built-in support for all planets; the moons of Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Earth; central meridian longitude of Mars and Jupiter; Saturn's rings; and Jupiter's Great Red Spot; allows user-defined objects including stars, deepsky objects, asteroids, comets and Earth satellites; provides special efficient handling of large catalogs including Tycho, Hipparcos, GSC; displays data in configurable tabular formats in conjunction with several interactive graphical views; displays a night-at-a-glance 24 hour graphic showing when any selected objects are up; displays 3-D stereo Solar System views that are particularly well suited for visualizing comet trajectories; quickly finds all close pairs of objects in the sky; and sorts and prints all catalogs with very flexible criteria for creating custom observing lists. Its capabilities are listed more fully in the user manual introduction.

  4. Virtual Astronomical Pipelines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dave, R.; Protopapas, P.; Lehner, M.

    2007-10-01

    The sheer magnitude of databases and data rates in new surveys makes it hard to develop pipelines to enable both the analysis of data and the federation of these databases for correlation and followup. There is thus a compelling need to facilitate the creation and management of dynamic workflow pipelines that enable correlating data between separate, parallel streams; changing the workflow in response to an event; using the NVO to obtain additional needed information from databases; and modifying the observing program of a primary survey to follow-up a transient or moving object. This paper describes such a Virtual Astronomical Pipeline (VAP) system which is running in the TAOS project. The software enables components in the pipeline to react to events encapsulated in XML messages, modifying and subsequently routing these messages to multiple other components. This architecture allows for the bootstrapping of components individually in the development process and for dynamic reconfiguration of the pipeline as a response to external and internal events. The software will be extended for future work in combining the results of surveys and followups into a global virtual pipeline.

  5. Generation of an astronomical optical frequency comb in three fibre-based nonlinear stages

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chavez Boggio, J. M.; Rieznik, A. A.; Zajnulina, M.; Böhm, M.; Bodenmüller, D.; Wysmolek, M.; Sayinc, H.; Neumann, Jörg; Kracht, Dietmar; Haynes, R.; Roth, M. M.

    2012-06-01

    The generation of a broadband optical frequency comb with 80 GHz spacing by propagation of a sinusoidal wave through three dispersion-optimized nonlinear stages is numerically investigated. The input power, the dispersion, the nonlinear coefficient, and lengths are optimized for the first two stages for the generation of low-noise ultra-short pulses. The final stage is a low-dispersion highly-nonlinear fibre where the ultra-short pulses undergo self-phase modulation for strong spectral broadening. The modeling is performed using a Generalized Nonlinear Schrodinger Equation incorporating Kerr and Raman nonlinearities, self-steepening, high-order dispersion and gain. In the proposed approach the sinusoidal input field is pre-compressed in the first fibre section. This is shown to be necessary to keep the soliton order below ten to minimize the noise build-up during adiabatic pulse compression, when the pulses are subsequently amplified in the next fibre section (rare-earth-doped-fibre with anomalous dispersion). We demonstrate that there is an optimum balance between dispersion, input power and nonlinearities, in order to have adiabatic pulse compression. It is shown that the intensity noise grows exponentially as the pulses start to be compressed in the amplifying fibre. Eventually, the noise decreases and reaches a minimum when the pulses are maximally compressed. A train of 70 fs pulses with up to 3.45 kW peak power and negligible noise is generated in our simulations, which can be spectrally broadened in a highly-nonlinear fibre. The main drawback of this compression technique is the small fibre length tolerance where noise is negligible (smaller than 10 cm for erbium-doped fibre length of 15 m). We finally investigate how the frequency comb characteristics are modified by incorporating an optical feedback. We show that frequency combs appropriate for calibration of astronomical spectrographs can be improved by using this technique.

  6. Computer version of astronomical ephemerides.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Choliy, V. Ya.

    A computer version of astronomical ephemerides for bodies of the Solar System, stars, and astronomical phenomena was created at the Main Astronomical Observatory of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine and the Astronomy and Cosmic Physics Department of the Taras Shevchenko National University. The ephemerides will be distributed via INTERNET or in the file form. This information is accessible via the web servers space.ups.kiev.ua and alfven.ups.kiev.ua or the address choliy@astrophys.ups.kiev.ua.

  7. Pipeline Calibration for STIS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hodge, P. E.; Hulbert, S. J.; Lindler, D.; Busko, I.; Hsu, J.-C.; Baum, S.; McGrath, M.; Goudfrooij, P.; Shaw, R.; Katsanis, R.; Keener, S.; Bohlin, R.

    The CALSTIS program for calibration of Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph data in the OPUS pipeline differs in several significant ways from calibration for earlier HST instruments, such as the use of FITS format, computation of error estimates, and association of related exposures. Several steps are now done in the pipeline that previously had to be done off-line by the user, such as cosmic ray rejection and extraction of 1-D spectra. Although the program is linked with IRAF for image and table I/O, it is written in ANSI C rather than SPP, which should make the code more accessible. FITS extension I/O makes use of the new IRAF FITS kernel for images and the HEASARC FITSIO package for tables.

  8. ESPRESSO front end: modular opto-mechanical integration for astronomical instrumentation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riva, M.; Aliverti, Matteo; Moschetti, Manuele; Landoni, M.; Dell'Agostino, S.; Pepe, F.; Mégevand, D.; Zerbi, F. M.; Cristiani, S.; Cabral, A.

    2014-08-01

    The opto-mechanical conceptual design for the Front-End unit and the calibration unit of the ESPRESSO Spectrograph is described in this paper. The front end system exploits a modular concept. Each FEU receive the beam directly from the relative Telescope Coudé Train and the calibration light from the calibration unit. On the other side the FEU feeds the fibers that carry the light to the spectrograph, corresponding in number and size to the scientific observing modes conceived for Espresso. The selection is made through a Toggling Unit. Purpose of the Front/End is to provide the needed connection between the input signal, i.e. Object light, Sky light, Calibration light, and the given output fiber in any of the foreseen observing modes.

  9. Astronomical Applications for a Quadrant Detector Instrument

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ries, Paul A.; Hunter, Todd R.; Ghigo, Frank

    2009-01-01

    The quadrant detector (QD) instrument on the 100m Green Bank Telescope (GBT) is designed to detect the motions of the feedarm. Feedarm motions are thought to be one of the main causes of dynamic pointing errors under windy conditions. The quadrant detector should therefore be able to predict the contributions of the feedarm to pointing error at any given time. The purpose of this paper is to provide a calibration of the quadrant detector so that it can be used to provide real-time pointing errors of the telescope. A number of methods were tried to determine this calibration including using a model based purely on engineering surveys of the telescope and a model based on observing astronomical sources with half power tracks. Half power tracks consist of moving a bright point source to the half power point of the telescope's beam in order to infer pointing errors from the changes in the observed flux. To determine the effectiveness of this calibration, it was checked by a number of methods. First, the calibration had to be reliable in additional half power tracks. Second, the calibration was used to try to enhance images reconstructed from the MUSTANG bolometer array. Third, the QD was used to try to correct the received flux from a source distorted by feedarm motions. Lastly, the QD was checked against qualitative constraints based on the geometry of its location. The QD passed all of these tests and was shown to successfully predict the GBT pointing error when the pointing errors inferred from the QD were greater than two arcseconds. Therefore, the QD can be used in a number of practical manners both during observations and afterwards, such as for flagging bad data, correcting pointing for MUSTANG data reduction, and performing archival analysis on how frequently the telescope has a certain pointing accuracy.

  10. Astronomical Applications for a Quadrant Detector Instrument

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ries, Paul A.; Hunter, Todd R.; Ghigo, Frank D.; Mason, Brian S.

    2009-01-01

    The quadrant detector (QD) instrument on the 100m Green Bank Telescope (GBT) is designed to detect the motions of the feedarm. Feedarm motions are thought to be one of the main causes of dynamic pointing errors under windy conditions. The quadrant detector should therefore be able to predict the contributions of the feedarm to pointing error at any given time. The purpose of this paper is to provide a calibration of the quadrant detector so that it can be used to provide real-time pointing errors of the telescope. A number of methods were tried to determine this calibration including using a model based purely on engineering surveys of the telescope and a model based on observing astronomical sources with half-power tracks. Half-power tracks consist of moving a bright point source to the half power point of the telescope's beam in order to infer pointing errors from the changes in the observed flux. To determine the effectiveness of this calibration, it was checked by a number of methods. First, the calibration had to be reliable in additional half power tracks. Second, the calibration was used to try to enhance images reconstructed from the MUSTANG bolometer array. Third, the QD was used to try to correct the received flux from a source distorted by feedarm motions. Lastly, the QD was checked against qualitative constraints based on the geometry of its location. The QD passed all of these tests and was shown to successfully predict the GBT pointing error when the pointing errors inferred from the QD were greater than two arcseconds. Therefore, the QD can be used in a number of practical manners both during observations and afterwards, such as for flagging bad data, correcting pointing for MUSTANG data reduction, and performing archival analysis on how frequently the telescope has a certain pointing accuracy.

  11. Spectrograph Instrumental Profiles - Dependence on Dispersion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andersen, J.; Dravins, D.

    1982-04-01

    Spectrograph instrumental profiles (including stray light far away from the central peak) have been measured in blue and red light for the three cameras in the coudé spectrograph of the 1.52-m telescope at Observatoire de Haute-Provence. The different dispersions 0.7, 1.2, and 2.0 nm mm-1 are obtained using the same ruled diffraction grating. On a linear distance scale in the focal plane the profiles are rather similar down to a 10-3 intensity level, but on a wavelength scale the profiles improve with increasing dispersion, indicating the presence of a stray light component other than that caused by diffraction by grating irregularities. The effects of these instrumental profiles on observed spectra are illustrated by numerical convolutions with the solar spectrum.

  12. The Wide Field Spectrograph (WiFeS)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dopita, Michael; Hart, John; McGregor, Peter; Oates, Patrick; Bloxham, Gabe; Jones, Damien

    2007-08-01

    This paper describes the Wide Field Spectrograph (WiFeS) under construction at the Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics (RSAA) of the Australian National University (ANU) for the ANU 2.3 m telescope at the Siding Spring Observatory. WiFeS is a powerful integral field, double-beam, concentric, image-slicing spectrograph designed to deliver excellent throughput, wavelength stability, spectrophotometric performance and superb image quality along with wide spectral coverage throughout the 320 950 nm wavelength region. It provides a 25×38 arcsec field with 0.5 arcsec sampling along each of twenty five 38×1 arcsec slitlets. The output format is optimized to match the 4096×4096 pixel CCD detectors in each of two cameras individually optimized for the blue and the red ends of the spectrum, respectively. A process of “interleaved nod-and-shuffle” will be applied to permit quantum noise-limited sky subtraction. Using VPH gratings, spectral resolutions of 3000 and 7000 are provided. The full spectral range is covered in a single exposure at R=3000, and in two exposures in the R=7000 mode. The use of transmissive coated optics, VPH gratings and optimized mirror coatings ensures a throughput (including telescope atmosphere and detector) >30% over a wide spectral range. The concentric image-slicer design ensures an excellent and uniform image quality across the full field. To maximize scientific return, the whole instrument is configured for remote observing, pipeline data reduction, and the accumulation of calibration image libraries.

  13. First Results From MAVEN's Imaging UV Spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schneider, N.; McClintok, W. E.; Stewart, A. I. F.; Deighan, J.; Clarke, J. T.; Holsclaw, G. M.; Montmessin, F.; Lefevre, F.; Chaufray, J. Y.; Jain, S. K.; Stiepen, A.; Chaffin, M. S.; Crismani, M.; Matta, M.; Evans, J. S.; Stevens, M. H.; Yelle, R. V.; Jakosky, B. M.

    2015-10-01

    We report the first results from The Imaging Ultraviolet Spectrograph (IUVS) aboard the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile and EvolutioN (MAVEN)spacecraft orbiting Mars. The instrument is accomplishing its goals of characterizing the atmospheric composition and structure, enabling studies of atmospheric escape that will contribute to our understanding of Mars'atmospheric evolution. In addition, the instrument has made unexpected discoveries concerning meteor showers, aurora and nightglow on Mars.

  14. A Measurement System for Spectrographic Plates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nylén, Per

    1982-02-01

    An analysis system for measurement and data processing of spectra, recorded on spectrographic plates, is described. The system uses diode arrays for line profile scanning and a television camera for survey. The positions are measured using a Heidenhain equipment, and a micro-computer guides and controls the system. The computer is programmed to support the operator with utility routines for data collection and processing and for operator guidance.

  15. A Spectrograph for BigBOSS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    CARTON, Pierre-Henri; Bebek, C.; Cazaux, S.; Ealet, A.; Eppelle, D.; Kneib, J.; Karst, P.; levi, M.; magneville, C.; Palanque-Delabrouille, N.; Ruhlmann-Kleider, V.; Schlegel, D.; Yeche, C.

    2012-01-01

    The Big-Boss spectrographs assembly will take in charge the light from the fiber output to the detector, including the optics, gratings, mechanics and cryostats. The 5000 fibers are split in 10 bundles of 500 ones. Each of these channel feed one spectrograph. The full bandwidth from 0.36µm to 1.05µm is split in 3 bands. Each channel is composed with one collimator (doublet lenses), a VPH grating, and a 6 lenses camera. The 500 fiber spectrum are imaged onto a 4kx4k detector thanks to the F/2 camera. Each fiber core is imaged onto 4 pixels. Each channel of the BigBOSS spectrograph will be equipped with a single-CCD camera, resulting in 30 cryostats in total for the instrument. Based on its experience of CCD cameras for projects like EROS and MegaCam, CEA/Saclay has designed small and autonomous cryogenic vessels which integrate cryo-cooling, CCD positioning and slow control interfacing capabilities. The use of a Linear Pulse Tube with its own control unit, both developed by Thales Cryogenics BV, will ensure versatility, reliability and operational flexibility. CCD's will be cooled down to 140K, with stability better than 1K. CCD's will be positioned within 15µm along the optical axis and 50µm in the XY Plan. Slow Control machines will be directly interfaced to an Ethernet network, which will allow them to be operated remotely. The concept of spectrograph leads to a very robust concept without any mechanics (except the shutters). This 30 channels has a impressive compactness with its 3m3 volume. The development of such number of channel will drive to a quasi mass production philosophy.

  16. Spectrograph Measures Contamination Of Optical Elements

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Flint, Bruce K.; Fancy, Robert D.; Jarratt, Robert V., Jr.

    1989-01-01

    Scanning-monochromator spectrograph designed to measure contamination on surfaces of optical elements as function of time. Repeatedly exposes samples to environment, then measures their transmittances or reflectances over range of wavelengths. Intended for use at vacuum-ultraviolet wavelengths to evaluate effects of outgassing, heating, and cooling on optical instruments. Principle of operation also applicable to spectral monitoring of time-dependent contamination at other wavelengths and in laboratory, industrial, or other settings.

  17. Conversational high resolution mass spectrographic data reduction

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Romiez, M. P.

    1973-01-01

    A FORTRAN 4 program is described which reduces the data obtained from a high resolution mass spectrograph. The program (1) calculates an accurate mass for each line on the photoplate, and (2) assigns elemental compositions to each accurate mass. The program is intended for use in a time-shared computing environment and makes use of the conversational aspects of time-sharing operating systems.

  18. Astronomical Significance of Ancient Monuments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simonia, I.

    2011-06-01

    Astronomical significance of Gokhnari megalithic monument (eastern Georgia) is considered. Possible connection of Amirani ancient legend with Gokhnari monument is discussed. Concepts of starry practicality and solar stations are proposed.

  19. Islamic Astronomical Instruments and Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heidarzadeh, Tofigh

    This chapter is a brief survey of astronomical instruments being used and developed in Islamic territories from the eighth to the fifteenth centuries as well as a concise account of major observatories and observational programs in this period.

  20. Annotations of a Public Astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adamo, A.

    2011-06-01

    Angelo Adamo is an Italian astronomer and artist interested in inspiring people with scientifically-based tales. He has recently published two illustrated books exploring the relationships between mankind and cosmos through physics, art, literature, music, cartoons, and movies.

  1. Designing the optimal semi-warm NIR spectrograph for SALT via detailed thermal analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolf, Marsha J.; Sheinis, Andrew I.; Mulligan, Mark P.; Wong, Jeffrey P.; Rogers, Allen

    2008-07-01

    The near infrared (NIR) upgrade to the Robert Stobie Spectrograph (RSS) on the Southern African Large Telescope (SALT), RSS/NIR, extends the spectral coverage of all modes of the optical spectrograph. The RSS/NIR is a low to medium resolution spectrograph with broadband, spectropolarimetric, and Fabry-Perot imaging capabilities. The optical and NIR arms can be used simultaneously to extend spectral coverage from 3200 Å to approximately 1.6 μm. Both arms utilize high efficiency volume phase holographic gratings via articulating gratings and cameras. The NIR camera incorporates a HAWAII-2RG detector with an Epps optical design consisting of 6 spherical elements and providing subpixel rms image sizes of 7.5 +/- 1.0 μm over all wavelengths and field angles. The NIR spectrograph is semi-warm, sharing a common slit plane and partial collimator with the optical arm. A pre-dewar, cooled to below ambient temperature, houses the final NIR collimator optic, the grating/Fabry-Perot etalon, the polarizing beam splitter, and the first three camera optics. The last three camera elements, blocking filters, and detector are housed in a cryogenically cooled dewar. The semi-warm design concept has long been proposed as an economical way to extend optical instruments into the NIR, however, success has been very limited. A major portion of our design effort entails a detailed thermal analysis using non-sequential ray tracing to interactively guide the mechanical design and determine a truly realizable long wavelength cutoff over which astronomical observations will be sky-limited. In this paper we describe our thermal analysis, design concepts for the staged cooling scheme, and results to be incorporated into the overall mechanical design and baffling.

  2. KAOS: kilo-aperture optical spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barden, Samuel C.; Dey, Arjun; Boyle, Brian; Glazebrook, Karl

    2004-09-01

    A design is described for a potential new facility capable of taking detailed spectroscopy of millions of objects in the Universe to explore the complexity of the Universe and to answer fundamental questions relating to the equation of state of dark energy and to how the Milky Way galaxy formed. The specific design described is envisioned for implementation on the Gemini 8-meter telescopes. It utilizes a 1.5° field of view and samples that field with up to ~5000 apertures. This Kilo-Aperture Optical Spectrograph (KAOS) is mounted at prime focus with a 4-element corrector, atmospheric dispersion compensator (ADC), and an Echidna-style fiber optic positioner. The ADC doubles as a wobble plate, allowing fast guiding that cancels out the wind buffeting of the telescope. The fibers, which can be reconfigured in less than 10 minutes, feed to an array of 12 spectrographs located in the pier of the telescope. The spectrographs are capable of provided spectral resolving powers of a few thousand up to about 40,000.

  3. The Ultraviolet Spectrograph on NASA's Juno Mission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gladstone, G. Randall; Persyn, Steven C.; Eterno, John S.; Walther, Brandon C.; Slater, David C.; Davis, Michael W.; Versteeg, Maarten H.; Persson, Kristian B.; Young, Michael K.; Dirks, Gregory J.; Sawka, Anthony O.; Tumlinson, Jessica; Sykes, Henry; Beshears, John; Rhoad, Cherie L.; Cravens, James P.; Winters, Gregory S.; Klar, Robert A.; Lockhart, Walter; Piepgrass, Benjamin M.; Greathouse, Thomas K.; Trantham, Bradley J.; Wilcox, Philip M.; Jackson, Matthew W.; Siegmund, Oswald H. W.; Vallerga, John V.; Raffanti, Rick; Martin, Adrian; Gérard, J.-C.; Grodent, Denis C.; Bonfond, Bertrand; Marquet, Benoit; Denis, François

    2014-03-01

    The ultraviolet spectrograph instrument on the Juno mission (Juno-UVS) is a long-slit imaging spectrograph designed to observe and characterize Jupiter's far-ultraviolet (FUV) auroral emissions. These observations will be coordinated and correlated with those from Juno's other remote sensing instruments and used to place in situ measurements made by Juno's particles and fields instruments into a global context, relating the local data with events occurring in more distant regions of Jupiter's magnetosphere. Juno-UVS is based on a series of imaging FUV spectrographs currently in flight—the two Alice instruments on the Rosetta and New Horizons missions, and the Lyman Alpha Mapping Project on the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter mission. However, Juno-UVS has several important modifications, including (1) a scan mirror (for targeting specific auroral features), (2) extensive shielding (for mitigation of electronics and data quality degradation by energetic particles), and (3) a cross delay line microchannel plate detector (for both faster photon counting and improved spatial resolution). This paper describes the science objectives, design, and initial performance of the Juno-UVS.

  4. GYES, A Multifibre Spectrograph for the CFHT

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bonifacio, P.; Mignot, S.; Dournaux, J.-L.; François, P.; Caffau, E.; Royer, F.; Babusiaux, C.; Arenou, F.; Balkowski, C.; Bienaymé, O.; Briot, D.; Carlberg, R.; Cohen, M.; Dalton, G. B.; Famaey, B.; Fasola, G.; Frémat, Y.; Gómez, A.; Guinouard, I.; Haywood, M.; Hill, V.; Huet, J.-M.; Katz, D.; Horville, D.; Kudritzky, R.; Lallement, R.; Laporte, Ph.; de Laverny, P.; Lemasle, B.; Lewis, I. J.; Martayan, C.; Monier, R.; Mourard, D.; Nardetto, N.; Recio Blanco, A.; Robichon, N.; Robin, A. C.; Rodrigues, M.; Soubiran, C.; Turon, C.; Venn, K.; Viala, Y.

    2011-02-01

    We have chosen the name of GYES, one of the mythological giants with one hundred arms, offspring of Gaia and Uranus, for our instrument study of a multifibre spectrograph for the prime focus of the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope. Such an instrument could provide an excellent ground-based complement for the Gaia mission and a northern complement to the HERMES project on the AAT. The CFHT is well known for providing a stable prime focus environment, with a large field of view, which has hosted several imaging instruments, but has never hosted a multifibre spectrograph. Building upon the experience gained at GÉPI with FLAMES-Giraffe and X-Shooter, we are investigating the feasibility of a high multiplex spectrograph (about 500 fibres) over a field of view one degree in diameter. We are investigating an instrument with resolution in the range 15 000 to 30 000, which should provide accurate chemical abundances for stars down to 16th magnitude and radial velocities, accurate to 1 km s-1 for fainter stars. The study is led by GÉPI-Observatoire de Paris with a contribution from Oxford for the study of the positioner. The financing for the study comes from INSU CSAA and Observatoire de Paris. The conceptual study will be delivered to CFHT for review by October 1st 2010.

  5. Sixteenth Century Astronomical Telescopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Usher, P. D.

    2001-12-01

    Ophelia in Shakespeare's Hamlet is named for the ``moist star" which in mythology is the partner of Hamlet's royal Sun. Together the couple seem destined to rule on earth just as their celestial counterparts rule the heavens, but the tragedy is that they are afflicted, just as the Sun and Moon are blemished. In 1.3 Laertes lectures Ophelia on love and chastity, describing first Cytherean phases (crescent to gibbous) and then Lunar craters. Spots mar the Sun (1.1, 3.1). Also reported are Jupiter's Red Spot (3.4) and the resolution of the Milky Way into stars (2.2). These interpretations are well-founded and support the cosmic allegory. Observations must have been made with optical aid, probably the perspective glass of Leonard Digges, father of Thomas Digges. Notably absent from Hamlet is mention of the Galilean moons, owing perhaps to the narrow field-of-view of the telescope. That discovery is later celebrated in Cymbeline, published soon after Galileo's Siderius Nuncius in 1610. In 5.4 of Cymbeline the four ghosts dance ``in imitation of planetary motions" and at Jupiter's behest place a book on the chest of Posthumus Leonatus. His name identifies the Digges father and son as the source of data in Hamlet since Jupiter's moons were discovered after the deaths of Leonard (``leon+hart") and Thomas (the ``lion's whelp"). Lines in 5.4 urge us not to read more into the book than is contained between its covers; this is understandable because Hamlet had already reported the other data in support of heliocentricism and the cosmic model discussed and depicted by Thomas Digges in 1576. I conclude therefore that astronomical telescopy began in England before the last quarter of the sixteenth century.

  6. The calibration unit and detector system tests for MUSE

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kelz, A.; Bauer, S. M.; Biswas, I.; Fechner, T.; Hahn, T.; Olaya, J.-C.; Popow, E.; Roth, M. M.; Streicher, O.; Weilbacher, P.; Bacon, R.; Laurent, F.; Laux, U.; Lizon, J. L.; Loupias, M.; Reiss, R.; Rupprecht, G.

    2010-07-01

    The Multi-Unit Spectroscopic Explorer (MUSE) is an integral-field spectrograph for the ESO Very Large Telescope. After completion of the Final Design Review in 2009, MUSE is now in its manufacture and assembly phase. To achieve a relative large field-of-view with fine spatial sampling, MUSE features 24 identical spectrograph-detector units. The acceptance tests of the detector sub-systems, the design and manufacture of the calibration unit and the development of the Data Reduction Software for MUSE are under the responsibility of the AIP. The optical design of the spectrograph implies strict tolerances on the alignment of the detector systems to minimize aberrations. As part of the acceptance testing, all 24 detector systems, developed by ESO, are mounted to a MUSE reference spectrograph, which is illuminated by a set of precision pinholes. Thus the best focus is determined and the image quality of the spectrograph-detector subsystem across wavelength and field angle is measured.

  7. In-flight Optical Performance of the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bowers, C.; Hartig, G.; Kaiser, M.; Kraemer, S.; Gull, T.; Kimble, R.; Woodgate, B.; Bohlin, R.; Plait, P.; Lindler, D.; Ebbets, D.; Sullivan, J.; Hill, R. S.; Kinney, E.; Sahu, K.; Crenshaw, M.; Collins, N.; Danks, A.; Robinson, R.; Cornett, R.; Gruzyzak, A.

    1997-05-01

    The Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) was installed aboard the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) in February, 1997, replacing the Goddard High Resolution Spectrograph and the Faint Object Spectrograph. STIS also incorporates an internal, two mirror relay system replacing COSTAR to correct the spherical aberration and astigmatism present at the STIS field position. STIS operates over the full HST wavelength range, from the ultraviolet to near infrared (115-1000nm). Spectroscopic modes permit low and medium resolution spectroscopy throughout the spectral range and over 25 arcsecond ultraviolet and 52 arcsecond visible fields. High resolution (30-100,000) echelle spectroscopy capability is also provided in the ultraviolet (115-310nm). Broad band imaging is possible over the complete spectral range and a small selection of bandpass filters are available. A wide selection of slits and apertures permit various resolution and spatial scales to be selected in all modes. Coronagraphic stops are also provided for observations in the visible (310-1000nm). On board calibration lamps provide wavelength calibration and flat fielding capability. The initial optical performance results obtained during orbital verification are presented here. These include absolute throughput and stability, camera mode image quality, spectroscopic resolution, and filter and slit transmission.

  8. Enthusiastic Little Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Novak, Ines

    2016-04-01

    Younger primary school students often show great interest in the vast Universe hiding behind the starry night's sky, but don't have a way of learning about it and exploring it in regular classes. Some of them would search children's books, Internet or encyclopedias for information or facts they are interested in, but there are those whose hunger for knowledge would go unfulfilled. Such students were the real initiators of our extracurricular activity called Little Astronomers. With great enthusiasm they would name everything that interests them about the Universe that we live in and I would provide the information in a fun and interactive yet acceptable way for their level of understanding. In our class we learn about Earth and its place in the Solar System, we learn about the planets and other objects of our Solar System and about the Sun itself. We also explore the night sky using programs such as Stellarium, learning to recognize constellations and name them. Most of our activities are done using a PowerPoint presentation, YouTube videos, and Internet simulations followed by some practical work the students do themselves. Because of the lack of available materials and funds, most of materials are hand made by the teacher leading the class. We also use the school's galileoscope as often as possible. Every year the students are given the opportunity to go to an observatory in a town 90 km away so that they could gaze at the sky through the real telescope for the first time. Our goal is to start stepping into the world of astronomy by exploring the secrets of the Universe and understanding the process of rotation and revolution of our planet and its effects on our everyday lives and also to become more aware of our own role in our part of the Universe. The hunger for knowledge and enthusiasm these students have is contagious. They are becoming more aware of their surroundings and also understanding their place in the Universe that helps them remain humble and helps

  9. The New Amateur Astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mobberley, Martin

    Amateur astronomy has changed beyond recognition in less than two decades. The reason is, of course, technology. Affordable high-quality telescopes, computer-controlled 'go to' mountings, autoguiders, CCD cameras, video, and (as always) computers and the Internet, are just a few of the advances that have revolutionized astronomy for the twenty-first century. Martin Mobberley first looks at the basics before going into an in-depth study of what’s available commercially. He then moves on to the revolutionary possibilities that are open to amateurs, from imaging, through spectroscopy and photometry, to patrolling for near-earth objects - the search for comets and asteroids that may come close to, or even hit, the earth. The New Amateur Astronomer is a road map of the new astronomy, equally suitable for newcomers who want an introduction, or old hands who need to keep abreast of innovations. From the reviews: "This is one of several dozen books in Patrick Moore's "Practical Astronomy" series. Amid this large family, Mobberley finds his niche: the beginning high-tech amateur. The book's first half discusses equipment: computer-driven telescopes, CCD cameras, imaging processing software, etc. This market is changing every bit as rapidly as the computer world, so these details will be current for only a year or two. The rest of the book offers an overview of scientific projects that serious amateurs are carrying out these days. Throughout, basic formulas and technical terms are provided as needed, without formal derivations. An appendix with useful references and Web sites is also included. Readers will need more than this book if they are considering a plunge into high-tech amateur astronomy, but it certainly will whet their appetites. Mobberley's most valuable advice will save the book's owner many times its cover price: buy a quality telescope from a reputable dealer and install it in a simple shelter so it can be used with as little set-up time as

  10. Visualization and Analysis of Spectrograph-mode Data Products from Far Ultraviolet Scanning Imaging Sensors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolven, B. C.; Schaefer, R. K.; Hsieh, S. W.; Paxton, L. J.

    2009-12-01

    Far Ultraviolet Scanning Imaging Sensors such as GUVI (one of four instruments on NASA's TIMED spacecraft) and the SSUSI instruments (on the newer DMSP satellites) typically operate in "imaging mode", wherein they gather data from a large spatial area, using a scanning mirror to image locations from the top of the limb down and across the disk. In this mode, the instruments generate only limited spectral information, which is compressed on board into five spectral "colors" that capture the most aeronomically relevant emissions. Telemetry bandwidth limitations preclude the transmission of complete spectral information at each observed spatial position (>2000 spatial positions per scan, 3-4 scans per minute). These instruments can also operate in a "spectrograph mode", wherein the full spectrum observed by the instrument is preserved, but observations are made at only a single mirror scan position. Spectrograph mode operation essentially trades spatial coverage for spectral coverage within the given bandwidth constraints. Spectrograph mode data is used for calibration purposes (e.g., stellar observations on the limb, analysis of instrument performance on the disk), but also presents some unique new scientific opportunities. The recent demise of the scan motor mechanism in the GUVI instrument (still operating long after the completion of the standard mission) means that GUVI is now operating continuously in spectrograph mode. To use these data effectively, we must generate products that distill vast quantities of data into useful and usable knowledge. We examine the state of data products associated with spectrograph mode observations, their use as a replacement for earlier imaging mode products, and potential new uses for both current and future products with enhanced spectral resolution.

  11. An introduction to the Indian Astronomical Observatory, Hanle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cowsik, R.; Srinivasan, R.; Prabhu, T. P.

    2002-03-01

    Situated in the high-altitude cold desert of Changthang Ladakh bordering Himachal Pradesh and Tibet, Indian Astronomical Observatory, Hanle (32o46m46sN, 78o57'51''E; 4500 m above msl), provides excellent opportunities for developing astronomical facilities at a variety of frequencies. In addition, it provides environment and logistics for a range of scientific experiments which be nefit from its unique location. Indian Institute of Astrophysics has built this observatory around a modest 2-m aperture optical/infrared telescope. A 0.5 m telescope will soon be added. A large facility (6.5-8.5 m class infrared/optical telescope) is under consid eration. A 2-m telescope of new advanced technology design has been installed at the observatory in what probably is a record in the speed of execution. The site development, fabrication and installation of the telescope has been accomplished in just about 3 years. The telescope saw its first light on the night of September 26/27 2000 and has been operating with a CCD imager. A larger CCD imager, a faint object spectrograph camera, and a JHK imager are under fabrication. A 1-5 micron imager spectrograph is planned as the next generation instrument. The telescope will be remotely operable from the Centre for Research and Education in Science & Technology of IIA at Hosakote near Bangalore over the next few months. All the necessary infrastructure including 20 kw/h power through generators, 1 Mbps dedicated satellite communication link (to be upgarded to 2 Mbps and a 128 kbps redundant link to be established), liquid nitrogen plant, etc. have been already developed. The Government of Jammu & Kashmir has transferred over 600 acres of land to the observatory. The infrastructure developed for the observatory is already being used for other scientific experiments by national and international institutions. The experiments include determination of atmospheric opcaity at mm wavelengths, geodynamic and seismological experiments, aerosol

  12. Astronomical spectra as powerful source for airglow studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kausch, W.; Noll, S.; Unterguggenberger, S.; Proxauf, B.; Kimeswenger, S.

    2015-03-01

    Light from astronomical objects has to pass the Earth's atmosphere before it reaches ground-based telescopes. Thus, any observation taken with such facilities contains information on the chemical composition and the physical state of the atmosphere. In particular, optical and near-infrared spectra taken with such telescopes are well suited to study various airglow emissions arising in the upper atmosphere thanks to the small field-of-view of the telescopes, large mirror sizes, and the frequent usage of medium to high resolution spectrographs. We study data taken by two frequently used echelle spectrographs from the Very Large Telescope (VLT) of the European Southern Observatory at Cerro Paranal (Chile): UVES, operative since 1999, is a high-resolution (20000 R 110000) instrument covering the wavelength range from 300 to 1100 nm. Hence, several O2 band systems (Herzberg I+II, Chamberlain, atmospheric), the green and red OI lines ( 557 nm; 630 nm), the recently discovered FeO bands ( 550 to 720 nm), NaID ( 589 nm), and all hydroxyl bands up to OH(3-0) can be investigated. The high temporal coverage allows investigations for more than one solar cycle. The X-Shooter instrument is an echelle spectrograph which is able to take medium-resolution (3000 R 18000) spectra from 300 to 2480 nm within one shot. Therefore, it is well suited for a comprehensive study of OH, as it covers all bands with a vibrational level difference 2 (up to OH(9-7)) simultaneously, apart from the previously mentioned other lines and bands. X-Shooter was put into operation in 2009. In this presentation, we will give a review on the available spectra, their quality and time coverage. Moreover, we will illustrate the potential of the data for airglow studies by showing results

  13. Performance of the HST Cosmic Origins Spectrograph FUV Channel at Lifetime Position 3

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oliveira, Cristina; Becker, George; Debes, John; Ely, Justin; Fox, Andrew; Jedrzejewski, Robert; Lockwood, Sean; Massa, Derck; Monroe, TalaWanda; Peeples, Molly; Penton, Steven Victor; Plesha, Rachel; Proffitt, Charles; Roman-Duval, Julia; Sahnow, David; Sana, Hugues; Sonnentrucker, Paule G.; Taylor, Joanna; Walborn, Nolan

    2015-08-01

    The efficiency with which the Far Ultraviolet (FUV) detector of the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) on the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) detects photons declines with usage, a phenomenon known as "gain sag". To overcome this effect, the location of science spectra is periodically moved to a new pristine location on the detector (i.e., lifetime position), leading to small changes in the performance and calibration of the instrument. Here we provide an update on the results of the calibration program executed after the move to COS/FUV lifetime position 3, which took place on February 9 2015. We focus in particular on the flux, flat field, and wavelength calibration, and discuss the LP3 spectral resolution.

  14. Exact optics - III. Schwarzschild's spectrograph camera revised

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Willstrop, R. V.

    2004-03-01

    Karl Schwarzschild identified a system of two mirrors, each defined by conic sections, free of third-order spherical aberration, coma and astigmatism, and with a flat focal surface. He considered it impractical, because the field was too restricted. This system was rediscovered as a quadratic approximation to one of Lynden-Bell's `exact optics' designs which have wider fields. Thus the `exact optics' version has a moderate but useful field, with excellent definition, suitable for a spectrograph camera. The mirrors are strongly aspheric in both the Schwarzschild design and the exact optics version.

  15. Upgrade of the area II spectrograph

    SciTech Connect

    Rehm, K.E.; Bolduc, C.

    1995-08-01

    Because of the low beam energies required for experiments of astrophysical interest, the first test experiments with radioactive {sup 18}F beams can be performed in Area II. Because of the shorter distances between ion source and detector this also results in higher transmission efficiencies. The Enge split-pole spectrograph, which was not used during the last 8 years, was equipped with a new cryopump system, upgrades to the magnet power supply and the NMR system were performed. A rotating target system was built which should alleviate target deterioration effects that were observed in first test experiments.

  16. Interference in astronomical speckle patterns

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Breckinridge, J. B.

    1976-01-01

    Astronomical speckle patterns are examined in an atmospheric-optics context in order to determine what kind of image quality is to be expected from several different imaging techniques. The model used to describe the instantaneous complex field distribution across the pupil of a large telescope regards the pupil as a deep phase grating with a periodicity given by the size of the cell of uniform phase or the refractive index structure function. This model is used along with an empirical formula derived purely from the physical appearance of the speckle patterns to discuss the orders of interference in astronomical speckle patterns.

  17. European astronomers observe first evaporating planet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2003-03-01

    The scorched planet called HD 209458b orbits ‘only’ 7 million kilometres from its yellow Sun-like star. By comparison, Jupiter, the closest gas giant in our Solar System, orbits 780 million kilometres from our Sun. NASA/ESA Hubble Space telescope observations reveal a hot and puffed-up evaporating hydrogen atmosphere surrounding the planet. This huge envelope of hydrogen resembles a comet with a tail trailing behind the planet. The planet circles the parent star in a tight 3.5-day orbit. Earth also has an extended atmosphere of escaping hydrogen gas, but the loss rate is much lower. A mainly European team led by Alfred Vidal-Madjar (Institut d’Astrophysique de Paris, CNRS, France) reports this discovery in the 13 March edition of Nature. "We were astonished to see that the hydrogen atmosphere of this planet extends over 200 000 kilometres," says Vidal-Madjar. Studying extrasolar planets, especially if they are very close to their parent stars, is not easy because the starlight is usually too blinding. The planet was also too close to the star for Hubble to photograph directly in this case. However, astronomers were able to observe the planet indirectly since it blocks light from a small part of the star during transits across the disc of the star, thereby dimming it slightly. Light passing through the atmosphere around the planet is scattered and acquires a signature from the atmosphere. In a similar way, the Sun’s light is reddened as it passes obliquely through the Earth’s atmosphere at sunset. Astronomers used Hubble’s space telescope imaging spectrograph (STIS) to measure how much of the planet's atmosphere filters light from the star. They saw a startling drop in the star's hydrogen emission. A huge, puffed-up atmosphere can best explain this result. What is causing the atmosphere to escape? The planet’s outer atmosphere is extended and heated so much by the nearby star that it starts to escape the planet's gravity. Hydrogen boils off in the

  18. Field Raman Spectrograph for Environmental Analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Sylvia, J.M.; Haas, J.W.; Spencer, K.M.; Carrabba, M.M.; Rauh, R.D.; Forney, R.W.; Johnston, T.M.

    1998-07-01

    The widespread contamination found across the US Department of Energy (DOE) complex has received considerable attention from the government and public alike. A massive site characterization and cleanup effort has been underway for several years and is expected to continue for several decades more. The scope of the cleanup effort ranges from soil excavation and treatment to complete dismantling and decontamination of whole buildings. To its credit, DOE has supported research and development of new technologies to speed up and reduce the cost of this effort. One area in particular has been the development of portable instrumentation that can be used to perform analytical measurements in the field. This approach provides timely data to decision makers and eliminates the expense, delays, and uncertainties of sample preservation, transport, storage, and laboratory analysis. In this program, we have developed and demonstrated in the field a transportable, high performance Raman spectrograph that can be used to detect and identify contaminants in a variety of scenarios. With no moving parts, the spectrograph is rugged and can perform many Raman measurements in situ with flexible fiber optic sampling probes. The instrument operates under computer control and a software package has been developed to collect and process spectral data. A collection of Raman spectra for 200 contaminants of DOE importance has been compiled in a searchable format to assist in the identification of unknown contaminants in the field.

  19. The Goddard High Resolution Spectrograph Scientific Support Contract

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1997-01-01

    In 1988, Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC) was selected as the Goddard High Resolution Spectrograph (GHRS) Scientific Support Contractor (SSC). This was to have been a few months before the launch of NASA's first Great Observatory, the Hubble Space Telescope (HST). As one of five scientific instruments on HST, the GHRS was designed to obtain spectra in the 1050-3300 A ultraviolet wavelength region with a resolving power, lambda/Delta(lambda) , of up to 100,000 and relative photometric accuracy to 1%. It was built by Ball AeroSpace Systems Group under the guidance of the GHRS Investigation Definition Team (IDT), comprised of 16 scientists from the US and Canada. After launch, the IDT was to perform the initial instrument calibration and execute a broad scientific program during a five-year Guaranteed Time Observation (GTO) period. After a year's delay, the launch of HST occurred in April 1990, and CSC participated in the in-orbit calibration and first four years of GTO observations with the IDT. The HST primary mirror suffered from spherical aberration, which reduced the spatial and spectral resolution of Large Science Aperture (LSA) observations and decreased the throughput of the Small Science Aperture (SSA) by a factor of two. Periodic problems with the Side 1 carrousel electronics and anomalies with the low-voltage power supply finally resulted in a suspension of the use of Side 1 less than two years after launch. At the outset, the GHRS SSC task involved work in four areas: 1) to manage and operate the GHRS Data Analysis Facility (DAF); 2) to support the second Servicing Mission Observatory Verification (SMOV) program, as well as perform system engineering analysis of the GHRS as nesessary; 3) to assist the GHRS IDT with their scientific research programs, particularly the GSFC members of the team, and 4) to provide administrative and logistic support for GHRS public information and educational activities.

  20. LRS2: A New Integral Field Spectrograph for the HET

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tuttle, Sarah E.; Hill, Gary J.; Chonis, Taylor S.; Tonnesen, Stephanie

    2016-01-01

    Here we present LRS2 (Low Resolution Spectrograph) and highlight early science opportunities with the newly upgraded Hobby Eberly telescope (HET). LRS2 is a four-channel optical wavelength (370nm - 1micron) spectrograph based on two VIRUS unit spectrographs. This fiber-fed integral field spectrograph covers a 12" x 6" field of view, switched between the two units (one blue, and one red) at R~2000. We highlight design elements, including the fundamental modification to grisms (from VPH gratings in VIRUS) to access the higher resolution. We discuss early science opportunities, including investigating nearby "blue-bulge" spiral galaxies and their anomalous star formation distribution.

  1. The deterministic optical alignment of the HERMES spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gers, Luke; Staszak, Nicholas

    2014-07-01

    The High Efficiency and Resolution Multi Element Spectrograph (HERMES) is a four channel, VPH-grating spectrograph fed by two 400 fiber slit assemblies whose construction and commissioning has now been completed at the Anglo Australian Telescope (AAT). The size, weight, complexity, and scheduling constraints of the system necessitated that a fully integrated, deterministic, opto-mechanical alignment system be designed into the spectrograph before it was manufactured. This paper presents the principles about which the system was assembled and aligned, including the equipment and the metrology methods employed to complete the spectrograph integration.

  2. The new 2meter RCC Telescope in the Northern CAucasus (3100m) for Modern Astronomical Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tarady, V.; Yatskiv, Ya.

    A new 2 meter Ritchey-Chretien-Coude telescope in the Northern Caucasus is expected to be ready for astronomical research in late 1995. The telescope is located on the Terskol peak (near Elbrus) with the altitude of 3100 meter. The low atmospheric water vapour content and the high air transparency in the ultraviolet region allow us to infer that the Terskol peak is one of the best sites in Europe for astronomical ground observation. The mean seeing is about 1 arcsec at the Terskol peak. The main parameters of the optical system are as follows: * equivalent focal length is 16000 mm for the Ritchey-Chretien system and 72000 mm for the Coude system; * diameter of the field free from vignetting is 108' for the Ritchey-Chretien system and 5' for another one; *spot concentration is 80% inside the 0.5" circle. The new telescope will be used in investigating the fundamental problems of the star brightness variability, physics of stars and galaxies, studying the planet and satellite atmosphere dynamics. The precise astrometrical problems can also be solved with this telescope. The telescope will be equiped with the following detectors: -CCD Echelle spectrograph in the Coude focus; - astronomical infrared Fourie spectrometre; -digital panoramic polarimeter; -panoramic spectrophotometer with Fabry-Perot interferometer. This project is realized by the joint efforts of the Main Astronomical Observatory in Kiev (Ukrainian Academy of Sciences) and the International Centre for Astronomical and Medical-Ecological Investigations. Proposals for Scientific observation at the Terskol Observatory are encouraged.

  3. Astronomical Limiting Magnitude at Langkawi Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zainuddin, Mohd. Zambri; Loon, Chin Wei; Harun, Saedah

    2010-07-01

    Astronomical limiting magnitude is an indicator for astronomer to conduct astronomical measurement at a particular site. It gives an idea to astronomer of that site what magnitude of celestial object can be measured. Langkawi National Observatory (LNO) is situated at Bukit Malut with latitude 6°18' 25'' North and longitude 99°46' 52'' East in Langkawi Island. Sky brightness measurement has been performed at this site using the standard astronomical technique. The value of the limiting magnitude measured is V = 18.6+/-1.0 magnitude. This will indicate that astronomical measurement at Langkawi observatory can only be done for celestial objects having magnitude less than V = 18.6 magnitudes.

  4. COS Pipeline Calibration at STScI

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hodge, Philip E.

    The Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) will be installed in the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) in 2004. As with other HST instruments, COS data will be routinely calibrated at the Space Telescope Science Institute. This paper describes plans for developing the calibration program CALCOS. Previous HST calibration pipeline routines were written in Fortran, SPP, or C, using IRAF image I/O and CFITSIO for tables. CALCOS will be written in Python with C extension modules, and it will use PyFITS for image and table I/O.

  5. Temperature control system for optical elements in astronomical instrumentation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Verducci, Orlando; de Oliveira, Antonio C.; Ribeiro, Flávio F.; Vital de Arruda, Márcio; Gneiding, Clemens D.; Fraga, Luciano

    2014-07-01

    Extremely low temperatures may damage the optical components assembled inside of an astronomical instrument due to the crack in the resin or glue used to attach lenses and mirrors. The environment, very cold and dry, in most of the astronomical observatories contributes to this problem. This paper describes the solution implemented at SOAR for remotely monitoring and controlling temperatures inside of a spectrograph, in order to prevent a possible damage of the optical parts. The system automatically switches on and off some heat dissipation elements, located near the optics, as the measured temperature reaches a trigger value. This value is set to a temperature at which the instrument is not operational to prevent malfunction and only to protect the optics. The software was developed with LabVIEWTM and based on an object-oriented design that offers flexibility and ease of maintenance. As result, the system is able to keep the internal temperature of the instrument above a chosen limit, except perhaps during the response time, due to inertia of the temperature. This inertia can be controlled and even avoided by choosing the correct amount of heat dissipation and location of the thermal elements. A log file records the measured temperature values by the system for operation analysis.

  6. Circumstellar discs in X/γ-ray binaries: first results from the Echelle spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zamanov, R.; Stoyanov, K.; Martí, J.

    2016-01-01

    Here we report our first spectral observations of Be/X-ray and γ-ray binaries obtained with the new Echelle spectrograph of the National Astronomical Observatory Rozhen. For four objects (LSI+61°303, γ Cas, MWC 148, 4U 2206+54), we report the parameters and estimate the sizes of their circumstellar discs using different emission lines (Hα, Hβ, Hγ, HeI and FeII). For MWC 148, we find that the compact object goes deeply through the disc. The flank inflections of H&alpha& can be connected with inner ring formed at the periastron passage or radiation transfer effects. We point out an intriguing similarity between the optical emission lines of the γ-ray binary MWC 148 and the well known Be star γ Cas.

  7. American Astronomical Society Honors NRAO Scientist

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2005-01-01

    built in the late 1970s. Work on the package began in 1978 in Charlottesville. Now including nearly a million lines of program code and almost a half-million lines of documentation, AIPS is used at more than 500 sites around the world. The package is a mainstay and a daily tool for most of the world's radio astronomers, and also has been used by scientists in such other fields as fluid-dynamics simulation and medical imaging. Over the years, Greisen and his colleagues at NRAO have revised the AIPS package numerous times and expanded its capabilities as new astronomical and computing hardware was developed. The software has been kept independent of specific computing hardware and operating systems, and so has been successfully used on a wide variety of computing equipment. "We are extremely proud of Eric's work and congratulate him on receiving this award," said NRAO Director Dr. Fred K.Y. Lo. "He has shown extraordinary dedication to making AIPS a valuable and effective tool for the world astronomical community, and this award is well-deserved recognition." The AAS citation reads, "The 2005 Van Biesbroeck Prize is awarded to Dr. Eric Greisen of NRAO for the initiation, development, and maintenance for twenty-five years of the Astronomical Image Processing System (AIPS). Virtually every VLA and VLBA program relies on AIPS for calibration and image reconstruction, and it has been exported to more than 500 sites worldwide. Greisen, as its principal architect and tireless custodian, has provided an invaluable service to astronomy. Moreover, AIPS represented a new paradigm for the processing of massive astronomical datasets, i.e., a comprehensive software package that was rigorously independent of particular operating systems, which supported portability and adaptability to evolving hardware designs. Beyond the call of duty, Greisen has generously responded to individual queries about the code from users at all levels, sometimes in real time at odd hours to support

  8. Goddard Geophysical and Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Redmond, Jay; Kodak, Charles

    2001-01-01

    This report summarizes the technical parameters and the technical staff of the Very Long Base Interferometry (VLBI) system at the fundamental station Goddard Geophysical and Astronomical Observatory (GGAO). It also gives an overview about the VLBI activities during the previous year. The outlook lists the outstanding tasks to improve the performance of GGAO.

  9. Simple Astronomical Theory of Climate.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Benumof, Reuben

    1979-01-01

    The author derives, applying perturbation theory, from a simple astronomical model the approximate periods of secular variation of some of the parameters of the Earth's orbit and relates these periods to the past climate of the Earth, indicating the difficulties in predicting the climate of the future. (GA)

  10. An Astronomical Data Analyzing Monitor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Teuber, D.

    ThP need for exchange of programmes and data between astronomical facilities is generally recognized, but practicable concepts concerning its realization are rare. Standardization of data formats through FITS is widely accepted; for (interactive) programs, however, identical hardware configurations seem to be the favoured solution. As an alternative, a software approach to the problem is presented.

  11. Astronomical searches for nitrogen heterocycles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Charnley, Steven B.; Kuan, Yi-Jehng; Huang, Hui-Chun; Botta, Oliver; Butner, Harold M.; Cox, Nick; Despois, Didier; Ehrenfreund, Pascale; Kisiel, Zbigniew; Lee, Ying-Ying; Markwick, Andrew J.; Peeters, Zan; Rodgers, Steven D.

    We have conducted extensive astronomical searches for the N-bearing ring molecules pyridine, quinoline and isoquinoline towards the circumstellar envelopes of carbon-rich stars, and for interstellar pyrimidine in hot molecular cores. Here we report the derived upper limits on the column densities of these molecules, and summarize the current status of these observations.

  12. Astronomical Photography for the Classroom.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hulme, Kenneth S.

    1981-01-01

    Describes class projects involving astronomical photography. Includes a description of how to make an astrocamera or convert a pocket camera into one suitable for astrophotography, film choices, and phenomena to photograph, such as star trails, meteors, the sun, and the moon. (DS)

  13. Australian sites of astronomical heritage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stevenson, T.; Lomb, N.

    2015-03-01

    The heritage of astronomy in Australia has proven an effective communication medium. By interpreting science as a social and cultural phenomenon new light is thrown on challenges, such as the dispersal of instruments and problems identifying contemporary astronomy heritage. Astronomers are asked to take note and to consider the communication of astronomy now and in the future through a tangible heritage legacy.

  14. John Couch Adams, the astronomer.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foster, N.

    1989-03-01

    The planet Neptune was discovered more than 140 years ago. The circumstances of the discovery gave rise to great controversy, and very nearly led to an international incident between Britain and France, but this was only one of John Couch Adams' many contributions to astronomical science.

  15. The control unit of the near infrared spectrograph of the EUCLID space mission: preliminary design

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Toledo-Moreo, Rafael; Colodro-Conde, Carlos; Díaz-García, José Javier; Tubío-Araujo, Óscar Manuel; Gómez-Sáenz, Jaime; Peña-Godino, Antonio; Velasco-Fernández, Tirso; Sánchez-Prieto, Sebastián.; Villó-Pérez, Isidro; Rebolo-López, Rafael

    2014-08-01

    The Near Infrared Spectrograph and Photometer (NISP) is one of the instruments on board the ESA EUCLID mission. The Universidad Politecnica de Cartagena and Instituto de Astrofisica de Canarias are responsible of the Instrument Control Unit of the NISP (NI-ICU) in the Euclid Consortium. The NI-ICU main functions are: communication with the S/C and the Data Processing Unit, control of the Filter and Grism Wheels, control of the Calibration Unit and thermal control of the instrument. This paper presents the NI-ICU status of definition and design at the end of the preliminary design phase.

  16. Advanced prism-grating-prism imaging spectrograph in online industrial applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vaarala, Tapio; Aikio, Mauri; Keraenen, Heimo

    1997-08-01

    Imaging spectrographs have traditionally been utilized in aerial and remote sensing applications. A novel, compact and inexpensive imaging spectrograph developed by VTT Electronics is now available. It contains a multichannel fiber optic sensor head, a dispersive prism-grating-prism (PGP) component and digital CCD matrix camera capable of area integration. In rolled steel manufacturing, a protective oil film is applied on steel to resist corrosion while in transport and storage. The main problems in the oiling machine are film thickness control and jet failures. In this application, the spectrum of fluorescence of an oil film was measured simultaneously with parallel fibers. A relatively simple calibration and analysis procedure was used to calculate the oil film thickness. On-line color control for color reproduction is essential in both consumer and industrial products. The instrument was tested and analyzed for measuring differences in color by multivariate analysis of the spectra and by color space coordinate estimation. In general, a continuous spectrum is not absolute requirement. In these two examples, filter-based measurement would probably cost less thana PGP spectrograph solution. On the other hand, by measuring the spectrum and using an advanced signal processing algorithm one production version will cover all installations in both applications. In practice, only the fiber sensor mechanics need to be modified.

  17. Laue transmission x-ray spectrograph for inertial confinement fusion (ICF) diagnostics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burek, A. J.

    1992-01-01

    An absolutely calibrated, focusing Laue transmission crystal spectrograph has been developed for inertial confinement fusion (ICF) diagnostics of high-energy x-ray continuum at NOVA. A single flat EddT 020 crystal, 500-μm thick, provides continuous energy coverage over the 5.5-25 keV energy range. The spectrograph is designed with low dispersion and low resolving power E/ΔE of between 10 and 50 for high sensitivity to continuum. Greater resolving power with lower continuum sensitivity is possible by increasing dispersion. The focusing design achieves very low background and provides a compact flat field for coupling to various position sensitive detectors including streak cameras. In addition to EddT, PET 020 has high efficiency in transmission in this energy range and used in the Cauchois geometry achieves high to moderate resolving power that is independent of ICF source size. Initial experiments with gold targets at NOVA with the EddT spectrograph show high sensitivity for single shot recording of continuum and gold L lines on Kodak DEF film. Factors affecting instrument design, resolving power, and sensitivity will be discussed.

  18. Design and realization of the backup field controllers for LAMOST spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Jianing; Han, Zhongyi; Zeng, Yizhong; Dai, Songxin; Hu, Zhongwen; Zhu, Yongtian; Wang, Lei; Hou, Yonghui

    2012-09-01

    The China-made telescope, LAMOST, consists of 16 Spectrographs to detect stellar spectra via 4000 optical fibers. In each spectroscope, many movable parts work in phase. Those parts are real-time controlled and managed by field controllers based on FPGA. The master control board of controllers currently being used is constructed by Altera's Cyclone II Development Kit. However, now Altera no longer produce such Kits. As the needs for maintenance and improvement, a backup control board is developed, so that once any field controller is broken, another can changed in time to ensure the control system not being interrupted. Using the newer Altera FPGA chip 3C40 as master control chip can minimize the change in the original design frame of the control structure so as to reduce the workload of software and hardware migration. This paper describes the design process of the Spectrographs backup field controller based on Cyclone 3C40 and gives the problems and solutions encountered during migration for controller hardware and software. The improved field controller not only retains the original controller functions, but also can serve for more motors and sensors due to the increase of input and output pins. Besides, no commodity supply limits, which saves expenses. The FPGA-field controller can also be used in other telescopes, astronomical instruments and industrial control systems as well.

  19. Introducing CUBES: the Cassegrain U-band Brazil-ESO spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bristow, Paul; Barbuy, Beatriz; Macanhan, Vanessa B.; Castilho, Bruno; Dekker, Hans; Delabre, Bernard; Diaz, Marcos; Gneiding, Clemens; Kerber, Florian; Kuntschner, Harald; La Mura, Giovanni; Reiss, Roland; Vernet, J.

    2014-07-01

    CUBES is a high-efficiency, medium-resolution (R ≃ 20, 000) spectrograph dedicated to the "ground based UV" (approximately the wavelength range from 300 to 400nm) destined for the Cassegrain focus of one of ESO's VLT unit telescopes in 2018/19. The CUBES project is a joint venture between ESO and Instituto de Astronomia, Geofísica e Ciências Atmosféricas (IAG) at the Universidade de São Paulo and the Brazilian Laboratório Nacional de Astrofísica (LNA). CUBES will provide access to a wealth of new and relevant information for stellar as well as extra-galactic sources. Principle science cases include the study of heavy elements in metal-poor stars, the direct determination of carbon, nitrogen and oxygen abundances by study of molecular bands in the UV range and the determination of the Beryllium abundance as well as the study of active galactic nuclei and the inter-galactic medium. With a streamlined modern instrument design, high efficiency dispersing elements and UV-sensitive detectors, it will enable a significant gain in sensitivity over existing ground based medium-high resolution spectrographs enabling vastly increased sample sizes accessible to the astronomical community. We present here a brief overview of the project, introducing the science cases that drive the design and discussing the design options and technological challenges.

  20. Spectroscopic Survey of Eclipsing Binaries with a Low-cost Echelle Spectrograph: Scientific Commissioning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kozłowski, S. K.; Konacki, M.; Sybilski, P.; Ratajczak, M.; Pawłaszek, R. K.; Hełminiak, K. G.

    2016-07-01

    We present scientific results obtained with a recently commissioned échelle spectrograph on the 0.5 m Solaris-1 telescope in the South African Astronomical Observatory. BACHES is a low-cost slit échelle spectrograph that has a resolution of 21,000 at 5500 Å. The described setup is fully remotely operated and partly automated. Custom hardware components have been designed to allow both spectroscopic and photometric observations. The setup is controlled via dedicated software. The throughput of the system allows us to obtain spectra with an average signal-to-noise ratio of 22 at 6375 Å for a 30 minute exposure of a V = 10 mag target. The stability of the instrument is influenced mainly by the ambient temperature changes. We have obtained radial velocity (RV) rms values for a bright (V = 5.9 mag) spectroscopic binary as good as 0.59 and 1.34 km s‑1 for a V = 10.2 mag eclipsing binary. RV measurements have been combined with available photometric light curves. We present models of six eclipsing binary systems, and for previously known targets, we compare our results with those available in the literature. Masses of binary components have been determined with 3% errors for some targets. We confront our results with benchmark values based on measurements from the HARPS and UCLES spectrographs on 4 m class telescopes and find very good agreement. The described setup is very efficient and well suited for a spectroscopic survey. We can now spectroscopically characterize about 300 eclipsing binary stars per year up to 10.2 mag assuming typical weather conditions at SAAO without a single observing trip.

  1. Engaging Students through Astronomically Inspired Music

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whitehouse, M.

    2011-09-01

    This paper describes a lesson outline in which astronomically inspired musical compositions are used to teach astronomical concepts via an introductory activity, close listening, and critical/creative reflection.

  2. KISS - The Kiepenheuer Institute Solar Spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gerndt, Ruediger; Hoelzle, Edgar

    The experimental requirements and corresponding design features of the Kiepenheuer Institute Solar Spectrograph (KISS) are set forth with references to its role in NASA's Orbiting Solar Laboratory (OSL). The optical subsystem incorporates four CCD cameras and a rotating-mirror sun-scanner unit, and the mechanical structure is composed of hollow CFRP beams. The instrument is designed to collect spatially resolved dynamical data regarding the solar atmosphere's velocity field based on the Doppler-induced spectral-line structures. The optical parameters of the instrument are listed, and the configuration of the OSL requires that the KISS is an autonomous subunit within the coordinated instrument package. KISS is expected to provide the capacity for spectroscopic studies of dynamical elements of the solar atmosphere at time scales of at least 10 s.

  3. CFHT MOS/SIS spectrograph performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Le Fevre, O.; Crampton, D.; Felenbok, P.; Monnet, G.

    1994-02-01

    Initial results of laboratory and on-sky tests of the new Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope (CFHT) multi-object spectrograph, metal oxide semiconductor (MOS)/superconducting / insulating / superconducting (SIS), are described. MOS/SIS contains two ways, one of which is primarily intended for imagery and spectroscopy of many tens of objects within a 10 min field, while the other utilizes tip/tilt image stabilization for high spatial resolution imagery and spectroscopy over a 3 min field. Data on image quality, transmission, flexure and stability are presented, as well as a description of the multi-object observing performance. This highly integrated system incorporates yttrium-aluminum garnet (YAG) laser drilling equipment and allows on-line acquisition, aperture mask design and fabrication for multi-slit observations with minimum overhead. A comprehensive software interface provides observers with a user-friendly environment and ensures that all operations can be quickly and efficiently controlled by novice users.

  4. Near ultraviolet spectrograph for balloon platform

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sreejith, A. G.; Safonova, Margarita; Murthy, Jayant

    2015-06-01

    Small and compact scientific payloads may be easily designed constructed and own on high altitude balloons. Despite the fact that large orbital observatories provide accurate observations and statistical studies of remote and/or faint space sources, small telescopes on board balloons or rockets are still attractive because of their low cost and rapid response time. We describe here a near ultraviolet (NUV) spectrograph designed to be own on a high{altitude balloon platform. Our basic optical design is a modified Czerny-Turner system using off the shelf optics. We compare different methods of aberration corrections in such a system. We intend the system to be portable and scalable to different telescopes. The use of reflecting optics reduces the transmission loss in UV. We plan on using an image intensified CMOS sensor operating in photon counting mode as the detector of choice.

  5. Field Raman spectrograph for environmental analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Haas, J.W. III; Forney, R.W.; Carrabba, M.M.; Rauh, R.D.

    1995-12-01

    The enormous cost for chemical analysis at DOE facilities predicates that cost-saving measures be implemented. Many approaches, ranging from increasing laboratory sample throughput by reducing preparation time to the development of field instrumentation, are being explored to meet this need. Because of the presence of radioactive materials at many DOE sites, there is also a need for methods that are safer for site personnel and analysts. This project entails the development of a compact Raman spectrograph for field screening and monitoring of a wide variety of wastes, pollutants, and corrosion products in storage tanks, soils, and ground and surface waters. Analytical advantages of the Raman technique include its ability to produce a unique, spectral fingerprint for each contaminant and its ability to analyze both solids and liquids directly, without the need for isolation or cleanup.

  6. Aries x ray objective grating spectrograph

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Catura, R. C.

    1991-01-01

    This investigation was initiated in June of 1983. An Aries payload involving a single Wolter 1 telescope was developed and flown under a previous contract and the objective of this work was to add two additional mirrors, nested inside of the then existing mirror and add 12 objective reflection gratings to convert the telescope into a spectrograph. A summary of major milestones in the investigation are given. Results of efforts under this contract prior to 1987 are presented in the form of four reprints of published papers attached to this report. Results of the gamma-ray research are also included in the form of an attached reprint. A summary of other work under the contract since 1987 is given.

  7. A Far Ultraviolet Imaging Spectrograph for Shuttle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Carruthers, G. R.

    1984-01-01

    The development of the Far Ultraviolet Imaging Spectrograph (FUVIS) Shuttle sortie missions, is described. Objectives of the experiment are to obtain spatially-resolved far-ultraviolet spectra of extraterrestrial sources, including emission-line and reflection nebulae, diffuse background radiation, extragalactic objects, and comets. The use of fast focal ratio (f/1) Schmidt optics and an opaque CsI photocathode which affords high quantum efficiency in the far-UV provides the maximum possible diffuse source sensitivity. Measured emission line intensities of 5 Rayleighs (or continua of intensity 1 R/A) in 300 sec exposures are expected. The development includes a dedicated pointing platform and a low light level television camera for payload specialist use in target acquisition and guiding.

  8. Fiber Scrambling for High Precision Spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaplan, Zachary; Spronck, J. F. P.; Fischer, D.

    2011-05-01

    The detection of Earth-like exoplanets with the radial velocity method requires extreme Doppler precision and long-term stability in order to measure tiny reflex velocities in the host star. Recent planet searches have led to the detection of so called "super-Earths” (up to a few Earth masses) that induce radial velocity changes of about 1 m/s. However, the detection of true Earth analogs requires a precision of 10 cm/s. One of the largest factors limiting Doppler precision is variation in the Point Spread Function (PSF) from observation to observation due to changes in the illumination of the slit and spectrograph optics. Thus, this stability has become a focus of current instrumentation work. Fiber optics have been used since the 1980's to couple telescopes to high-precision spectrographs, initially for simpler mechanical design and control. However, fiber optics are also naturally efficient scramblers. Scrambling refers to a fiber's ability to produce an output beam independent of input. Our research is focused on characterizing the scrambling properties of several types of fibers, including circular, square and octagonal fibers. By measuring the intensity distribution after the fiber as a function of input beam position, we can simulate guiding errors that occur at an observatory. Through this, we can determine which fibers produce the most uniform outputs for the severest guiding errors, improving the PSF and allowing sub-m/s precision. However, extensive testing of fibers of supposedly identical core diameter, length and shape from the same manufacturer has revealed the "personality” of individual fibers. Personality describes differing intensity patterns for supposedly duplicate fibers illuminated identically. Here, we present our results on scrambling characterization as a function of fiber type, while studying individual fiber personality.

  9. Astronomical Heritage in the National Culture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harutyunian, H. A.; Mickaelian, A. M.; Parsamian, E. S.

    2014-10-01

    The book contains Proceedings of the Archaeoastronomical Meeting "Astronomical Heritage in the National Culture" Dedicated to Anania Shirakatsi's 1400th Anniversary and XI Annual Meeting of the Armenian Astronomical Society. It consists of 3 main sections: "Astronomical Heritage", "Anania Shirakatsi" and "Modern Astronomy", as well as Literature about Anania Shirakatsi is included. The book may be interesting for astronomers, historians, archaeologists, linguists, students and other readers.

  10. HESP: Instrument control, calibration and pipeline development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anantha, Ch.; Roy, Jayashree; Mahesh, P. K.; Parihar, P. S.; Sangal, A. K.; Sriram, S.; Anand, M. N.; Anupama, G. C.; Giridhar, S.; Prabhu, T. P.; Sivarani, T.; Sundararajan, M. S.

    Hanle Echelle SPectrograph (HESP) is a fibre-fed, high resolution (R = 30,000 and 60,000) spectrograph being developed for the 2m HCT telescope at IAO, Hanle. The major components of the instrument are a) Cassegrain unit b) Spectrometer instrument. An instrument control system interacting with a guiding unit at Cassegrain interface as well as handling spectrograph functions is being developed. An on-axis auto-guiding using the spill-over angular ring around the input pinhole is also being developed. The stellar light from the Cassegrain unit is taken to the spectrograph using an optical fiber which is being characterized for spectral transmission, focal ratio degradation and scrambling properties. The design of the thermal enclosure and thermal control for the spectrograph housing is presented. A data pipeline for the entire Echelle spectral reduction is being developed. We also plan to implement an instrument physical model based calibration into the main data pipeline and in the maintenance and quality control operations.

  11. Time-calibrated Milankovitch cycles for the late Permian

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Huaichun; Zhang, Shihong; Hinnov, Linda A.; Jiang, Ganqing; Feng, Qinglai; Li, Haiyan; Yang, Tianshui

    2013-01-01

    An important innovation in the geosciences is the astronomical time scale. The astronomical time scale is based on the Milankovitch-forced stratigraphy that has been calibrated to astronomical models of paleoclimate forcing; it is defined for much of Cenozoic–Mesozoic. For the Palaeozoic era, however, astronomical forcing has not been widely explored because of lack of high-precision geochronology or astronomical modelling. Here we report Milankovitch cycles from late Permian (Lopingian) strata at Meishan and Shangsi, South China, time calibrated by recent high-precision U–Pb dating. The evidence extends empirical knowledge of Earth’s astronomical parameters before 250 million years ago. Observed obliquity and precession terms support a 22-h length-of-day. The reconstructed astronomical time scale indicates a 7.793-million year duration for the Lopingian epoch, when strong 405-kyr cycles constrain astronomical modelling. This is the first significant advance in defining the Palaeozoic astronomical time scale, anchored to absolute time, bridging the Palaeozoic–Mesozoic transition. PMID:24030138

  12. Time-calibrated Milankovitch cycles for the late Permian.

    PubMed

    Wu, Huaichun; Zhang, Shihong; Hinnov, Linda A; Jiang, Ganqing; Feng, Qinglai; Li, Haiyan; Yang, Tianshui

    2013-01-01

    An important innovation in the geosciences is the astronomical time scale. The astronomical time scale is based on the Milankovitch-forced stratigraphy that has been calibrated to astronomical models of paleoclimate forcing; it is defined for much of Cenozoic-Mesozoic. For the Palaeozoic era, however, astronomical forcing has not been widely explored because of lack of high-precision geochronology or astronomical modelling. Here we report Milankovitch cycles from late Permian (Lopingian) strata at Meishan and Shangsi, South China, time calibrated by recent high-precision U-Pb dating. The evidence extends empirical knowledge of Earth's astronomical parameters before 250 million years ago. Observed obliquity and precession terms support a 22-h length-of-day. The reconstructed astronomical time scale indicates a 7.793-million year duration for the Lopingian epoch, when strong 405-kyr cycles constrain astronomical modelling. This is the first significant advance in defining the Palaeozoic astronomical time scale, anchored to absolute time, bridging the Palaeozoic-Mesozoic transition. PMID:24030138

  13. A multipurpose fiber-fed VPHG spectrograph for LAMOST

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Yongtian; Hu, Zhongwen; Zhang, Qingfeng; Wang, Lei; Wang, Jianing

    2006-06-01

    A multipurpose fiber-fed double-beam Schmidt spectrograph using VPHG (volume phase holographic gratings) is under construction for LAMOST (The Large Sky Area Multi-Object Fiber Spectroscopic Telescope). There are 16 such spectrographs (hereafter referred to as LRSs) for the project. The spectrographs are designed with wavelength coverage from 370 to 900 nm, with spectral resolutions of 1000-10000, and with multi-object capability over a 5 degrees field of view. Each spectrograph will be accommodating 250 fibers of 320 microns diameter (corresponding 3.3 arcsecs). The 200 mm diameter collimated beam is split into two separate channels. The blue channel is optimized for 370nm-590nm, and the red channel for 570nm-900nm. The LRS can work in several varied resolution modes. The optical design and performance is described. The spectrograph is of simple design with moderate image quality and good throughput. Progress on the construction of LRS is reported as well.

  14. Most Efficient Spectrograph to Shoot the Southern Skies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2009-05-01

    -shooter, for a total of 350 observing nights, making it the second most requested instrument at the Very Large Telescope in this period. More information ESO's Very Large Telescope (VLT) is the world's most advanced optical instrument. It is an ensemble of four 8.2-metre telescopes located at the Paranal Observatory on an isolated mountain peak in the Atacama Desert in North Chile. The four 8.2-metre telescopes have a total of 12 focal stations where different instruments for imaging and spectroscopic observations are installed and a special station where the light of the four telescopes is combined for interferometric observations. The first VLT instrument was installed in 1998 and has been followed by 12 more in the last 10 years, distributed at the different focal stations. X-shooter is the first of the second generation of VLT instruments and replaces the workhorse-instrument FORS1, which has been successfully used for more than ten years by hundreds of astronomers. X-shooter operates at the Cassegrain focus of the Kueyen telescope (UT2). In response to an ESO Call for Proposals for second generation VLT instrumentation, ESO received three proposals for an intermediate resolution, high efficiency spectrograph. These were eventually merged into a single proposal around the present concept of X-shooter, which was approved for construction in November 2003. The Final Design Review, at which the instrument design is finalised and declared ready for construction, took place in April 2006. The first observations with the instrument at the telescope in its full configuration were on 14 March 2009. X-shooter is a joint project by Denmark, France, Italy, the Netherlands and ESO. The collaborating institutes in Denmark are the Niels Bohr and the DARK Institutes of the University of Copenhagen and the National Space Institute (Technical University of Denmark); in France GEPI at the Observatoire de Paris and APC at the Université D. Diderot, with contributions from the CEA and the

  15. The Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cline, J. Donald

    2015-01-01

    The path of the total solar eclipse across the United States on August 21, 2017 crosses the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI) located in western North Carolina. The partial eclipse begins at about 17:08 UT, followed by the nearly 2 minute total eclipse which begins at about 18:37 UT. The PARI campus includes radio and optical telescopes, as well as earth science instruments that include a seismometer, geomagnetometer, EarthScope Plate Boundary Observatory, time standards, and several weather stations. The instruments stream data to the PARI website and will be available for the eclipse. In anticipation of the 2017 solar eclipse, we present the instruments and infrastructure of the PARI campus. We invite astronomers to explore the use of the PARI campus as a site for their own instruments and/or the use of instruments already located at PARI.

  16. Observatory Sponsoring Astronomical Image Contest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2005-05-01

    Forget the headphones you saw in the Warner Brothers thriller Contact, as well as the guttural throbs emanating from loudspeakers at the Very Large Array in that 1997 movie. In real life, radio telescopes aren't used for "listening" to anything - just like visible-light telescopes, they are used primarily to make images of astronomical objects. Now, the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) wants to encourage astronomers to use radio-telescope data to make truly compelling images, and is offering cash prizes to winners of a new image contest. Radio Galaxy Fornax A Radio Galaxy Fornax A Radio-optical composite image of giant elliptical galaxy NGC 1316, showing the galaxy (center), a smaller companion galaxy being cannibalized by NGC 1316, and the resulting "lobes" (orange) of radio emission caused by jets of particles spewed from the core of the giant galaxy Click on image for more detail and images CREDIT: Fomalont et al., NRAO/AUI/NSF "Astronomy is a very visual science, and our radio telescopes are capable of producing excellent images. We're sponsoring this contest to encourage astronomers to make the extra effort to turn good images into truly spectacular ones," said NRAO Director Fred K.Y. Lo. The contest, offering a grand prize of $1,000, was announced at the American Astronomical Society's meeting in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The image contest is part of a broader NRAO effort to make radio astronomical data and images easily accessible and widely available to scientists, students, teachers, the general public, news media and science-education professionals. That effort includes an expanded image gallery on the observatory's Web site. "We're not only adding new radio-astronomy images to our online gallery, but we're also improving the organization and accessibility of the images," said Mark Adams, head of education and public outreach (EPO) at NRAO. "Our long-term goal is to make the NRAO Image Gallery an international resource for radio astronomy imagery

  17. Directory of astronomical data files

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1978-01-01

    This Directory of Astronomical Data Files was prepared by the Data Task Force of the Interagency Coordination Committee for Astronomy (ICCA) in cooperation with the National Space Science Data Center (NSSDC). The purpose of the Directory is to provide a listing which will enable a user to locate stellar and extragalactic data sources keyed along with sufficient descriptive information to permit him to assess the value of the files for his use as well as the status and availability of the compilations.

  18. The Planning Process for Multi-Object Spectroscopy with the JWST Near-Infrared Spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beck, Tracy L.; Karakla, D. M.; Shyrokov, A.; Pontoppidan, K.; Soderblom, D. R.; Valenti, J. A.; Kassin, S. A.; Gilbert, K.; Blair, W. P.; Muzerolle, J.; Tumlinson, J.; Keyes, C. D.; Pavlovsky, C. M.; LeBlanc, T.

    2014-01-01

    The Near-Infrared Spectrograph (NIRSpec) for the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) will have a powerful multi-object spectroscopy mode using four configurable Micro-Shutter Arrays (MSAs). The contiguous MSA shutters can be opened to form slits on astronomical targets, for simultaneous spectroscopy of up to 100 sources per exposure. The NIRSpec MSA shutters are in a fixed grid pattern, and careful analysis in the observation planning process will be crucial for optimal definition of science exposures. Our goal is to maximize the number of astronomical science sources observed in the fewest number of MSA slit configurations. We are developing algorithms in the NIRSpec MSA Planning Tool (MPT) to improve the quality of planned observations using several common science observing strategies as test use cases. For example, the needs for planning extremely deep exposures on a small number of JWST discovered z > 10 galaxy candidates will differ significantly from the requirements for planning spectral observations on a representative sample of stars from a galactic star cluster catalog. In this poster, we present a high level overview of our plans to develop and optimize the MPT for the JWST NIRSpec multi-object spectroscopy mode.

  19. Armenian Astronomical Society Annual Activities in 2014

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mickaelian, A. M.

    2015-07-01

    A report is given on the achievements of the Armenian astronomy during the last year and on the present activities of the Armenian Astronomical Society (ArAS). ArAS membership, ArAS electronic newsletters (ArASNews), ArAS webpage, annual meetings, Annual Prize for Young Astronomers (Yervant Terzian Prize) and other awards, international relations, presence in international organizations, summer schools, astronomical Olympiads and other events, matters related to astronomical education, astronomical heritage, astronomy outreach and ArAS further projects are discussed. The present meeting, BAO Science Camp, ArAS School lectures are among 2014 events as well.

  20. Astronomical publications of Melbourne Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andropoulos, Jenny Ioanna

    2014-05-01

    During the second half of the 19th century and the first half of the 20th century, four well-equipped government observatories were maintained in Australia - in Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide and Perth. These institutions conducted astronomical observations, often in the course of providing a local time service, and they also collected and collated meteorological data. As well, some of these observatories were involved at times in geodetic surveying, geomagnetic recording, gravity measurements, seismology, tide recording and physical standards, so the term "observatory" was being used in a rather broad sense! Despite the international renown that once applied to Williamstown and Melbourne Observatories, relatively little has been written by modern-day scholars about astronomical activities at these observatories. This research is intended to rectify this situation to some extent by gathering, cataloguing and analysing the published astronomical output of the two Observatories to see what contributions they made to science and society. It also compares their contributions with those of Sydney, Adelaide and Perth Observatories. Overall, Williamstown and Melbourne Observatories produced a prodigious amount of material on astronomy in scientific and technical journals, in reports and in newspapers. The other observatories more or less did likewise, so no observatory of those studied markedly outperformed the others in the long term, especially when account is taken of their relative resourcing in staff and equipment.

  1. Conceptual approach to astronomical problems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skvortsov, N. A.; Avvakumova, E. A.; Bryukhov, D. O.; Vovchenko, A. E.; Vol'nova, A. A.; Dluzhnevskaya, O. B.; Kaigorodov, P. V.; Kalinichenko, L. A.; Kniazev, A. Yu.; Kovaleva, D. A.; Malkov, O. Yu.; Pozanenko, A. S.; Stupnikov, S. A.

    2016-01-01

    New technical capabilities have brought about the sweeping growth of the amount of data acquired by the astronomers from observations with different instruments in various parts of the electromagnetic spectrum. We consider conceptual approach to be a promising tool to efficiently deal with these data. It uses problem domain knowledge to formulate the tasks and develop problem-solving algorithms and data analysis methods in terms of domain concepts without reference to particular data sources, and thereby allows solving certain problems in general form. We demonstrate the benefits of conceptual approach by using it to solve problems related to search for secondary photometric standard candidates, determination of galaxy redshifts, creation of a binary and multiple star repository based on inhomogeneous databases, and classification of eclipsing binaries.We formulate and solve these problems over specifications of astronomical knowledge units such as photometric systems, astronomical objects, multiple stars, etc., and define them in terms of the corresponding problem domains independently of the existing data resources.

  2. A laser-lock concept to reach cm s-1-precision in Doppler experiments with Fabry-Pérot wavelength calibrators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reiners, A.; Banyal, R. K.; Ulbrich, R. G.

    2014-09-01

    State-of-the-art Doppler experiments require wavelength calibration with precision at the cm s-1 level. A low-finesse Fabry-Pérot interferometer (FPI) can provide a wavelength comb with a very large bandwidth as required for astronomical experiments, but unavoidable spectral drifts are difficult to control. Instead of actively controlling the FPI cavity, we propose to passively stabilize the interferometer and track the time-dependent cavity length drift externally using the 87Rb D2 atomic line. A dual-finesse cavity allows drift tracking during observation. In the low-finesse spectral range, the cavity provides a comb transmission spectrum tailored to the astronomical spectrograph. The drift of the cavity length is monitored in the high-finesse range relative to an external standard: a single narrow transmission peak is locked to an external cavity diode laser and compared to an atomic frequency from a Doppler-free transition. Following standard locking schemes, tracking at sub-mm s-1 precision can be achieved. This is several orders of magnitude better than currently planned high-precision Doppler experiments, and it allows freedom for relaxed designs including the use of a single-finesse interferometer under certain conditions. All components for the proposed setup are readily available, rendering this approach particularly interesting for upcoming Doppler experiments. We also show that the large number of interference modes used in an astronomical FPI allows us to unambiguously identify the interference mode of each FPI transmission peak defining its absolute wavelength solution. The accuracy reached in each resonance with the laser concept is then defined by the cavity length that is determined from the one locked peak and by the group velocity dispersion. The latter can vary by several 100 m s-1 over the relevant frequency range and severely limits the accuracy of individual peak locations, although their interference modes are known. A potential way to

  3. Calibration concepts for the MUSE integral field

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kelz, Andreas; Bauer, Svend M.; Roth, Martin M.

    2006-06-01

    The phase-A design study of the Calibration Unit (CU) for the Multi-Unit Spectroscopic Explorer (MUSE) is presented. MUSE is an integral-field spectrograph for the 2nd generation of VLT instruments and offers a relative wide integral-field, adaptive-optics assisted spatial resolution, and a wavelength coverage between 465 and 930 nm. MUSE is a project of seven European institutes and is led by the Centre de Recherche Atronomique de Lyon (CRAL). Amongst other work-packages, the Astrophysical Institute Potsdam (AIP) is responsible for the Calibration Unit. The paper describes the calibration requirements, including issues related to spectral, image quality, and geometrical calibration. The opto-mechanical layout of the calibration unit is presented and the use of focal plane masks to evaluate image distortions and PSF degradations is explained.

  4. Developments in simulations and software for a near-infrared precision radial velocity spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Terrien, Ryan C.; Bender, Chad F.; Mahadevan, Suvrath; Halverson, Samuel P.; Ramsey, Lawrence W.; Hearty, Frederick R.

    2014-07-01

    We present developments in simulations and software for the Habitable Zone Planet Finder (HPF), an R~50,000 near-infrared cross-dispersed radial velocity spectrograph that will be used to search for planets around M dwarfs. HPF is fiber-fed, operates in the zYJ bands, and uses a 1.7μm cutoff HAWAII-2RG (H2RG) NIR detector. We have constructed an end-to-end simulator that accepts as input a range of stellar models contaminated with telluric features and processes these through a simulated detector. This simulator accounts for the characteristics of the H2RG, including interpixel capacitance, persistence, nonlinearities, read noise, and other detector characteristics, as measured from our engineering-grade H2RG. It also implements realistic order curvature. We describe applications of this simulator including optimization of the fiber configuration at the spectrograph slit and selection of properties for a laser frequency comb calibration source. The simulator has also provided test images for development of the HPF survey extraction and RV analysis pipeline and we describe progress on this pipeline itself, which will implement optimal extraction, laser frequency comb and emission lamp wavelength calibration, and cross-correlation based RV measurement.

  5. The Kyoto Tridimensional Spectrograph II on Subaru and the University of Hawaii 88 in Telescopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sugai, H.; Hattori, T.; Kawai, A.; Ozaki, S.; Hayashi, T.; Ishigaki, T.; Ishii, M.; Ohtani, H.; Shimono, A.; Okita, Y.; Matsubayashi, K.; Kosugi, G.; Sasaki, M.; Takeyama, N.

    2010-01-01

    In order to investigate physical conditions of ionized gas in galaxies, as well as its kinematics, we have developed the Kyoto tridimensional spectrograph II. It is a multimode optical instrument, including integral field spectrograph (IFS) and Fabry-Perot imager modes. We have designed it compact so that we can mount it on 2 m class telescopes as well as on the 8.2 m Subaru telescope. Special care was taken to obtain high-quality calibrations in the IFS mode. In order to remove the chromatic aberration of micropupil images produced by a lenslet array, we have introduced a corrector lens system behind the lenslet array. The internal calibration system simulates the telescope optics so that the system provides micropupil images identical to those produced by the telescope. The rigidness of the instrument provides the positional stability of micropupil images. We have succeeded in test observations of all the modes on Subaru and the University of Hawaii 88 in (UH88) telescopes and have verified the performance of the instrument. This includes the instrument efficiencies as well as the effective sky background subtraction and the minimization of crosstalk effects in the IFS mode. In the IFS mode a spatial resolution of 0.4'' was obtained in good seeing conditions. Each of 37 × 37 lenslets subtends 0.1'' in Subaru's case. This samples the image size well. A wider field of view is emphasized in the case of UH88.

  6. The Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    De Pontieu, B.; Title, A. M.; Lemen, J. R.; Kushner, G. D.; Akin, D. J.; Allard, B.; Berger, T.; Boerner, P.; Cheung, M.; Chou, C.; Drake, J. F.; Duncan, D. W.; Freeland, S.; Heyman, G. F.; Hoffman, C.; Hurlburt, N. E.; Lindgren, R. W.; Mathur, D.; Rehse, R.; Sabolish, D.; Seguin, R.; Schrijver, C. J.; Tarbell, T. D.; Wülser, J.-P.; Wolfson, C. J.; Yanari, C.; Mudge, J.; Nguyen-Phuc, N.; Timmons, R.; van Bezooijen, R.; Weingrod, I.; Brookner, R.; Butcher, G.; Dougherty, B.; Eder, J.; Knagenhjelm, V.; Larsen, S.; Mansir, D.; Phan, L.; Boyle, P.; Cheimets, P. N.; DeLuca, E. E.; Golub, L.; Gates, R.; Hertz, E.; McKillop, S.; Park, S.; Perry, T.; Podgorski, W. A.; Reeves, K.; Saar, S.; Testa, P.; Tian, H.; Weber, M.; Dunn, C.; Eccles, S.; Jaeggli, S. A.; Kankelborg, C. C.; Mashburn, K.; Pust, N.; Springer, L.; Carvalho, R.; Kleint, L.; Marmie, J.; Mazmanian, E.; Pereira, T. M. D.; Sawyer, S.; Strong, J.; Worden, S. P.; Carlsson, M.; Hansteen, V. H.; Leenaarts, J.; Wiesmann, M.; Aloise, J.; Chu, K.-C.; Bush, R. I.; Scherrer, P. H.; Brekke, P.; Martinez-Sykora, J.; Lites, B. W.; McIntosh, S. W.; Uitenbroek, H.; Okamoto, T. J.; Gummin, M. A.; Auker, G.; Jerram, P.; Pool, P.; Waltham, N.

    2014-07-01

    The Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) small explorer spacecraft provides simultaneous spectra and images of the photosphere, chromosphere, transition region, and corona with 0.33 - 0.4 arcsec spatial resolution, two-second temporal resolution, and 1 km s-1 velocity resolution over a field-of-view of up to 175 arcsec × 175 arcsec. IRIS was launched into a Sun-synchronous orbit on 27 June 2013 using a Pegasus-XL rocket and consists of a 19-cm UV telescope that feeds a slit-based dual-bandpass imaging spectrograph. IRIS obtains spectra in passbands from 1332 - 1358 Å, 1389 - 1407 Å, and 2783 - 2834 Å, including bright spectral lines formed in the chromosphere (Mg ii h 2803 Å and Mg ii k 2796 Å) and transition region (C ii 1334/1335 Å and Si iv 1394/1403 Å). Slit-jaw images in four different passbands (C ii 1330, Si iv 1400, Mg ii k 2796, and Mg ii wing 2830 Å) can be taken simultaneously with spectral rasters that sample regions up to 130 arcsec × 175 arcsec at a variety of spatial samplings (from 0.33 arcsec and up). IRIS is sensitive to emission from plasma at temperatures between 5000 K and 10 MK and will advance our understanding of the flow of mass and energy through an interface region, formed by the chromosphere and transition region, between the photosphere and corona. This highly structured and dynamic region not only acts as the conduit of all mass and energy feeding into the corona and solar wind, it also requires an order of magnitude more energy to heat than the corona and solar wind combined. The IRIS investigation includes a strong numerical modeling component based on advanced radiative-MHD codes to facilitate interpretation of observations of this complex region. Approximately eight Gbytes of data (after compression) are acquired by IRIS each day and made available for unrestricted use within a few days of the observation.

  7. First Visiting Astronomers at VLT KUEYEN

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2000-04-01

    A Deep Look into the Universal Hall of Mirrors Starting in the evening of April 1, 2000, Ghislain Golse and Francisco Castander from the Observatoire Midi-Pyrénées (Toulouse, France) [1] were the first "visiting astronomers" at Paranal to carry out science observations with the second 8.2-m VLT Unit Telescope, KUEYEN . Using the FORS2 multi-mode instrument as a spectrograph, they measured the distances to a number of very remote galaxies, located far out in space behind two clusters of galaxies. Such observations may help to determine the values of cosmological parameters that define the geometry and fate of the Universe. After two nights of observations, the astronomers came away from Paranal with a rich harvest of data and a good feeling. "We are delighted that the telescope performed so well. It is really impressive how far out one can reach with the VLT, compared to the `smaller' 4-meter telescopes with which we previously observed. It opens a new window towards the distant, early Universe. Now we are eager to start reducing and analysing these data!" , Francisco Castander said. Measuring the Geometry of the Universe with Multiple Images in Cluster Lenses The present programme is typical of the fundamental cosmological studies that are now being undertaken with the ESO Very Large Telescope (VLT). Clusters of galaxies are very massive objects. Their gravitational fields intensify ("magnify") and distort the images of galaxies behind them. The magnification factor for the faint background galaxy population seen within a few arcminutes of the centre of a massive cluster at intermediate distance (redshift z ~ 0.2 - 0.4, i.e., corresponding to a look-back time of approx. 2 - 4 billion years) is typically larger than 2, and occasionally much larger. The clusters thus function as gravitational lenses . They may be regarded as "natural telescopes" that help us to see fainter objects further out into space than would otherwise be possible with our own telescopes. In a

  8. Atmospheric calibration for submillimeter and terahertz observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guan, Xin; Stutzki, Jürgen; Okada, Yoko

    2013-01-01

    Submillimeter observations through the atmosphere can be affected by the complex spectroscopic features of the air. Calibration of astronomical observations in these frequencies requires proper modelling of the atmosphere. We analyzed sky observations from altitudes around 500 and 200 hPa respectively and found deficiencies in atmospheric models. Further research to improve the models are expected to help in future submillimeter observations.

  9. WiFeS: the wide field spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dopita, Michael A.; Waldron, Liam E.; McGregor, Peter; Conroy, Peter; Doolan, Matthew C.; Zhelem, Ross; Bloxham, Gabe; Saunders, Will; Jones, Damien; Pfitzner, Lee

    2004-09-01

    WiFeS is a powerful integral field, double-beam, concentric, image-slicing spectrograph designed to deliver excellent thoughput, precision spectrophotometric performance and superb image quality along with wide spectral coverage throughout the 320-1000 nm wavelength region. It is currently under construction at the Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics of the Australian National University (ANU), and will be mounted on the ANU 2.3m telescope at Siding Spring Observatory. It will provide a 25x31 arc sec field with 0.5 arc sec sampling along each of twenty five 31x1.0 arc sec slitlets. The output format is arranged to match the 4096x4096 pixel CCD detectors in each of two cameras individually optimized for the blue and the red ends of the spectrum, respectively. A process of "interleaved nod-and-shuffle" will be applied to permit quantum noise-limited sky subtraction. Using VPH gratings, spectral resolutions modes of 3000 and 7000 will be provided. The full spectral range is covered in a single exposure in the R=3000 mode, and in two exposures in the R=7000 mode. The use of transmissive coated optics, VPH gratings and optimized mirror coatings ensures a throughput (including telescope and atmosphere) that peaks above 30%. The concentric image-slicer design ensures an excellent and uniform image quality across the full field. To maximize the scientific return, the whole instrument is configured for remote observing, pipeline data reduction, and the accumulation of calibration image libraries.

  10. An expert system approach to astronomical data analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnston, Mark D.

    1987-01-01

    Expert systems technology has much to offer to the problem of astronomical data analysis, where large data volumes and sophisticated analysis goals have caused a variety of interesting problems to arise. The construction of a prototype expert system whose target domain is CCD image calibration, is reported. The prototype is designed to be extensible to different and more complex problems in a straighforward way, and to be largely independent of the details of the specific data analysis system which executes the plan it generates.

  11. Astronomical imaging Fourier spectroscopy at far-infrared wavelengths

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Naylor, David A.; Gom, Brad G.; van der Wiel, Matthijs H. D.; Makiwa, Gibion

    2013-11-01

    The principles and practice of astronomical imaging Fourier transform spectroscopy (FTS) at far-infrared wavelengths are described. The Mach–Zehnder (MZ) interferometer design has been widely adopted for current and future imaging FTS instruments; we compare this design with two other common interferometer formats. Examples of three instruments based on the MZ design are presented. The techniques for retrieving astrophysical parameters from the measured spectra are discussed using calibration data obtained with the Herschel–SPIRE instrument. The paper concludes with an example of imaging spectroscopy obtained with the SPIRE FTS instrument.

  12. High resolution spectrograph for the Space Telescope

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brandt, J. C.; Boggess, A.; Heap, S. R.; Maran, S. P.; Smith, A. M.; Beaver, E. A.; Bottema, M.; Hutchings, J. B.; Jura, M. A.; Linsky, J. L.

    1979-01-01

    The high resolution spectrograph (HRS) for ultraviolet astronomy with the Space Telescope will provide a spectral resolution of approximately 120,000 over a nominal wavelength range of 110-320 nm, together with a spatial resolution of about 0.25 arc seconds. The two detectors will consist of 512-element Digicons with cesium telluride and cesium iodide photocathodes, respectively. Photoelectrons in transit between the photocathodes and the diodes within the Digicons can be deflected in two axes with 12-bit resolution. This feature facilitates a design that emphasizes reliability since (once a hermetic seal is opened in orbit), only two moving parts, a grating carrousel and a shutter, are required for regular operation of the HRS. The instrument will be controlled by a computer in the spacecraft. The scientific objectives of the HRS investigation relate to interstellar matter in our own and nearby galaxies, physical processes of stellar mass loss and mass transfer, chemical abundances, bright quasars and Seyfert galaxy nuclei, and solar system phenomena.

  13. SDOSS: A spatially discriminating, optical streaked spectrograph

    SciTech Connect

    Cobble, J.; Evans, S.; Fernandez, J.; Oertel, J.; Watt, R.; Wilde, B.

    1995-05-01

    SDOSS is employed to study broadband laser scattering encompassing SBS, SRS, and the 3/2-{omega} signature of two plasmon decay for ns-scale laser-plasma experiments with 351 or 527-nm drive. It uses a Cassegrain telescope to image scattered light from a laser plasma onto a field stop. The telescope magnification and the stop aperture provide spatial discrimination of target plane scatter. A UV lens relays the image to a 0.25-m spectrograph which is lens coupled to a streak camera with an S-1 photocathode. The streak output is imaged onto a CCD camera. In its 512 x 480 pixel array, the CCD covers a spectral range from 200 to 800 nm with 4-nm resolution and can be adjusted to look from 350 to 1,060 nm. The sweep speed is variable with full window values of 30, 12, 6 ns, and faster. An optical fiducial provides a spectral and temporal marker. On the Livermore Nova laser, SDOSS has been used to determine spatial density in gas-filled hohlraums from SRS signals. At Trident in Los Alamos, it has been employed for similar measurements with long scale length plasmas in SBS and SRS seeding experiments. It has proven to be a versatile tool for studying the physics of laser-generated plasmas.

  14. Interstellar Medium Absorption Profile Spectrograph (IMAPS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jenkins, E. B.

    1985-01-01

    The design and fabrication of an objective-grating echelle spectrograph to fly on sounding rockets and record spectra of stars from approximately 920 to 1120A with a resolving power lambda/delta lambda = 200,000 is discussed. The scientific purpose of the program is to observe, with ten times better velocity resolution than before, the plentiful absorption lines in this spectral region produced by atoms, ions and molecules in the interstellar medium. In addition, an important technical goal is to develop and flight-quality a new ultraviolet, photon-counting image sensor which has a windowless, opaque photocathode and a CCD bombarded directly by the accelerated photoelectrons. Except for some initial difficulties with the performance of CCDs, the development of the payload instrument is relatively straightforward and our overall design goals are satisfied. The first flight occurred in late 1984, but no data were obtained because of an inrush of air degraded the instrument's vacuum and caused the detector's high voltage to arc. A second flight in early 1985 was a complete success and obtained a spectrum of pi Sco. Data from this mission are currently being reduced; quick-look versions of the spectra indicate that excellent results will be obtained. Currently, the payload is being reconfigured to fly on a Spartan mission in 1988.

  15. Aberration corrected aspheric grating for far ultraviolet spectrographs - Conventional approach

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Content, David; Trout, Catherine; Davila, Pam; Wilson, Mark

    1991-01-01

    Two approaches to reducing optical aberrations of concave grating spectrographs have been used, holographically controlling the groove curvature and spacing and reshaping the optical substrate while ruling the grooves conventionally. The latter approach, slightly deforming an ellipsoidal grating blank, can lead to diffraction-limited performance at a single FUV wavelength. When such a grating is used in a slitted Rowland circle spectrograph, the result is an extremely efficient spectrograph with spectral resolving power of about 30,000 and low astigmatism. Optical fabrication technology has advanced to the point where these exotic surface gratings are becoming practical.

  16. Prime Focus Spectrograph for the Subaru telescope: massively multiplexed optical and near-infrared fiber spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sugai, Hajime; Tamura, Naoyuki; Karoji, Hiroshi; Shimono, Atsushi; Takato, Naruhisa; Kimura, Masahiko; Ohyama, Youichi; Ueda, Akitoshi; Aghazarian, Hrand; de Arruda, Marcio Vital; Barkhouser, Robert H.; Bennett, Charles L.; Bickerton, Steve; Bozier, Alexandre; Braun, David F.; Bui, Khanh; Capocasale, Christopher M.; Carr, Michael A.; Castilho, Bruno; Chang, Yin-Chang; Chen, Hsin-Yo; Chou, Richard C. Y.; Dawson, Olivia R.; Dekany, Richard G.; Ek, Eric M.; Ellis, Richard S.; English, Robin J.; Ferrand, Didier; Ferreira, Décio; Fisher, Charles D.; Golebiowski, Mirek; Gunn, James E.; Hart, Murdock; Heckman, Timothy M.; Ho, Paul T. P.; Hope, Stephen; Hovland, Larry E.; Hsu, Shu-Fu; Hu, Yen-Shan; Huang, Pin Jie; Jaquet, Marc; Karr, Jennifer E.; Kempenaar, Jason G.; King, Matthew E.; Fèvre, Olivier Le; Mignant, David Le; Ling, Hung-Hsu; Loomis, Craig; Lupton, Robert H.; Madec, Fabrice; Mao, Peter; Marrara, Lucas Souza; Ménard, Brice; Morantz, Chaz; Murayama, Hitoshi; Murray, Graham J.; de Oliveira, Antonio Cesar; de Oliveira, Claudia Mendes; de Oliveira, Ligia Souza; Orndorff, Joe D.; de Paiva Vilaça, Rodrigo; Partos, Eamon J.; Pascal, Sandrine; Pegot-Ogier, Thomas; Reiley, Daniel J.; Riddle, Reed; Santos, Leandro; dos Santos, Jesulino Bispo; Schwochert, Mark A.; Seiffert, Michael D.; Smee, Stephen A.; Smith, Roger M.; Steinkraus, Ronald E.; Sodré, Laerte; Spergel, David N.; Surace, Christian; Tresse, Laurence; Vidal, Clément; Vives, Sebastien; Wang, Shiang-Yu; Wen, Chih-Yi; Wu, Amy C.; Wyse, Rosie; Yan, Chi-Hung

    2015-07-01

    The Prime Focus Spectrograph (PFS) is an optical/near-infrared multifiber spectrograph with 2394 science fibers distributed across a 1.3-deg diameter field of view at the Subaru 8.2-m telescope. The wide wavelength coverage from 0.38 μm to 1.26 μm, with a resolving power of 3000, simultaneously strengthens its ability to target three main survey programs: cosmology, galactic archaeology and galaxy/AGN evolution. A medium resolution mode with a resolving power of 5000 for 0.71 μm to 0.89 μm will also be available by simply exchanging dispersers. We highlight some of the technological aspects of the design. To transform the telescope focal ratio, a broad-band coated microlens is glued to each fiber tip. A higher transmission fiber is selected for the longest part of the cable system, optimizing overall throughput; a fiber with low focal ratio degradation is selected for the fiber-positioner and fiber-slit components, minimizing the effects of fiber movements and fiber bending. Fiber positioning will be performed by a positioner consisting of two stages of piezo-electric rotary motors. The positions of these motors are measured by taking an image of artificially back-illuminated fibers with the metrology camera located in the Cassegrain container; the fibers are placed in the proper location by iteratively measuring and then adjusting the positions of the motors. Target light reaches one of the four identical fast-Schmidt spectrograph modules, each with three arms. The PFS project has passed several project-wide design reviews and is now in the construction phase.

  17. Glacial cycles and astronomical forcing

    SciTech Connect

    Muller, R.A.; MacDonald, G.J.

    1997-07-11

    Narrow spectral features in ocean sediment records offer strong evidence that the cycles of glaciation were driven by astronomical forces. Two million years ago, the cycles match the 41,000-year period of Earth`s obliquity. This supports the Croll/Milankovitch theory, which attributes the cycles to variations in insolation. But for the past million years, the spectrum is dominated by a single 100,000-year feature and is a poor match to the predictions of insolation models. The spectrum can be accounted for by a theory that derives the cycles of glaciation from variations in the inclination of Earth`s orbital plane.

  18. How I Became an Astronomer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Maran, Stephen P.

    2001-01-01

    Life as an astronomer has taken me to view eclipses of the Sun from the Gaspe' Peninsula to the Pacific Ocean and the China and Coral Seas, and to observe the stars at observatories across the USA and as far south as Chile. I've also enjoyed working with NASA's telescopes in space, including the Hubble Space Telescope and the International Ultraviolet Explorer. It seems funny to reflect that it all began in the Sixth Grade by a fluke - the consequence of a hoax letter whose author I never identified.

  19. astroplan: Observation Planning for Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morris, Brett

    2016-03-01

    Astroplan is an observation planning package for astronomers. It is an astropy-affiliated package which began as a Google Summer of Code project. Astroplan facilitates convenient calculation of common observational quantities, like target altitudes and azimuths, airmasses, and rise/set times. Astroplan also computes when targets are observable given various extensible observing constraints, for example: within a range of airmasses or altitudes, or at a given separation from the Moon. Astroplan is taught in the undergraduate programming for astronomy class, and enables observational Pre- MAP projects at the University of Washington. In the near future, we plan to implement scheduling capabilities in astroplan on top of the constraints framework.

  20. Visualizing Astronomical Data with Blender

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kent, Brian R.

    2014-01-01

    We present methods for using the 3D graphics program Blender in the visualization of astronomical data. The software's forte for animating 3D data lends itself well to use in astronomy. The Blender graphical user interface and Python scripting capabilities can be utilized in the generation of models for data cubes, catalogs, simulations, and surface maps. We review methods for data import, 2D and 3D voxel texture applications, animations, camera movement, and composite renders. Rendering times can be improved by using graphic processing units (GPUs). A number of examples are shown using the software features most applicable to various kinds of data paradigms in astronomy.

  1. The Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument (DESI): The Spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Edelstein, Jerry; DESI Collaboration

    2015-01-01

    The Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument (DESI) will conduct a large-area galaxy and quasi-stellar object redshift survey from the Mayall Telescope. It includes of ten spectrographs each recording 500 simultaneous object spectra collected by 5,000 positioned optical fibers in the focal plane of an 8-square degree telescope corrector. The spectrographs use dichroic filters to divide light into three optical channels that together cover the 360 - 980 nm pass band with a spectral resolution of 2,000 to 5,100. Each channel includes a volume phase holographic grating (VPHG) and a 5-element camera that images spectra onto a cryostatic detector. We describe the spectrograph design and predicted performance and the production of the first spectrograph's optical elements.

  2. Radio and Optical Telescopes for School Students and Professional Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hosmer, Laura; Langston, G.; Heatherly, S.; Towner, A. P.; Ford, J.; Simon, R. S.; White, S.; O'Neil, K. L.; Haipslip, J.; Reichart, D.

    2013-01-01

    The NRAO 20m telescope is now on-line as a part of UNC's Skynet worldwide telescope network. The NRAO is completing integration of radio astronomy tools with the Skynet web interface. We present the web interface and astronomy projects that allow students and astronomers from all over the country to become Radio Astronomers. The 20 meter radio telescope at NRAO in Green Bank, WV is dedicated to public education and also is part of an experiment in public funding for astronomy. The telescope has a fantastic new web-based interface, with priority queuing, accommodating priority for paying customers and enabling free use of otherwise unused time. This revival included many software and hardware improvements including automatic calibration and improved time integration resulting in improved data processing, and a new ultra high resolution spectrometer. This new spectrometer is optimized for very narrow spectral lines, which will allow astronomers to study complex molecules and very cold regions of space in remarkable detail. In accordance with focusing on broader impacts, many public outreach and high school education activities have been completed with many confirmed future activities. The 20 meter is now a fully automated, powerful tool capable of professional grade results available to anyone in the world. Drop by our poster and try out real-time telescope control!

  3. Calibration Monitor for Dark Energy Experiments

    SciTech Connect

    Kaiser, M. E.

    2009-11-23

    The goal of this program was to design, build, test, and characterize a flight qualified calibration source and monitor for a Dark Energy related experiment: ACCESS - 'Absolute Color Calibration Experiment for Standard Stars'. This calibration source, the On-board Calibration Monitor (OCM), is a key component of our ACCESS spectrophotometric calibration program. The OCM will be flown as part of the ACCESS sub-orbital rocket payload in addition to monitoring instrument sensitivity on the ground. The objective of the OCM is to minimize systematic errors associated with any potential changes in the ACCESS instrument sensitivity. Importantly, the OCM will be used to monitor instrument sensitivity immediately after astronomical observations while the instrument payload is parachuting to the ground. Through monitoring, we can detect, track, characterize, and thus correct for any changes in instrument senstivity over the proposed 5-year duration of the assembled and calibrated instrument.

  4. Summary of the STIS Cycle 19 Calibration Program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roman-Duval, Julia; Ely, Justin; Aloisi, Alessandra; Oliveira, Cristina; Proffitt, Charles; Hernandez, Svea; Mason, Elena; Sonnetrucker, Paule; Wolfe, Michael; Long, Chris; DiFelice, Audrey; Bostroem, Azalee K.; Holland, Stephen; Lockwood, Sean; Cox, Colin; Wheeler, Thomas

    2014-11-01

    We summarize the Cycle 19 calibration program for the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) on the Hubble Space Telescope, covering the time period November 2011 through October 2012. We give an overview of the whole program, and status summaries for each of the individual proposals comprising the program.

  5. Summary of the STIS Cycle 20 Calibration Program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roman-Duval, Julia; Ely, Justin; Cox, Colin; Hernandez, Svea; Lockwood, Sean; Oliveira, Cristina; Proffitt, Charles; Sana, Hugues; Sonnentrucker, Paule; Wheeler, Thomas

    2015-09-01

    We summarize the Cycle 20 calibration program for the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) on the Hubble Space Telescope covering the time period November 2012 through October 2013. We give an overview of the whole program, and status summaries for each of the individual proposals comprising the program.

  6. Wavefront Sensing Using a Multi-Object Spectrograph (NIRSpec)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dean, Bruce H.; Boucarut, Rene; Hadjimichael, Theo; Smith, Scott

    2004-01-01

    An analysis is presented that illustrates how the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) fine-phasing process can be carried out using the Near-Infrared Spectrograph (NIRSpec) data collected at the science focal plane. The analysis considers a multi-plane diffraction model which properly accounts for the microshutter diffractive element placed at the first relay position of the spectrograph. Wavefront sensing results are presented based on data collected from the NASA Goddard Microshutter Testbed.

  7. X-ray spectrographic determination of cesium and rubidium

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Axelrod, J.M.; Adler, I.

    1957-01-01

    An x-ray spectrographic method for the determination of rubidium and cesium was developed, using the internal-standard method and a four-channel flat-crystal spectrograph. The sensitivity is within 0.1% for cesia and 0.02% for rubidia; the precision is within 10% of the amount present. Results agree well with those obtained by flame photometry and by radio-activation.

  8. AAOmega: a multipurpose fiber-fed spectrograph for the AAT

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, Greg A.; Saunders, Will; Bridges, Terry; Churilov, Vladimir; Lankshear, Allan; Dawson, John; Correll, David; Waller, Lew; Haynes, Roger; Frost, Gabriella

    2004-09-01

    The AAOmega project replaces the two 2dF spectrographs, which are mounted on the top end of the Anglo Australian Telescope, with a bench mounted double beam spectrograph covering 370 to 950nm. The 2dF positioner, field plate tumbler mechanism, and fiber retractors will be retained. The new spectrograph will be fed by 392 fibers from either of the two 2dF field plates, or by the 512 fiber Spiral integral field unit, located at the Cassegrain focus. New instrument control electronics has also been designed to drive the spectrograph. Stability will be improved by locating the spectrograph off the telescope, but the 2df fibers must be extended to thirty-eight metres length. Despite this, using fibers with improved characteristics, increased pupil diameter, volume phase holographic (VPH) gratings with articulated cameras, and more efficient coatings on optics we achieve a minimum twofold increase in throughput. We will also fit larger (4k x 2k pixel) detectors. The spectrograph comprises: a F/3.15 Schmidt collimator, incorporating a dichroic beamsplitter; interchangeable VPH gratings; and articulating red and blue F/1.3 Schmidt cameras. The beamsplitter may be exchanged with others which cut off at different wavelengths. A full suite of VPH gratings are provided to cover resolution to 8000.

  9. Citizen Astronomers... Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DiIulio, Ron

    2015-05-01

    While our understanding of the Universe seems to be expanding much like the Big Bang, there seem to be fewer and fewer new people dedicated to gathering, interpreting, and disseminating scientific astronomical data. In this paper I present a plan to create "Certified Citizen Astronomers", i.e., the development of a curriculum where people of all ages and backgrounds can develop robust photometric, astrometric, and spectroscopic techniques so that they can participate more fully in the astronomical adventure.

  10. Topics in Machine Learning for Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cisewski, Jessi

    2016-01-01

    As astronomical datasets continue to increase in size and complexity, innovative statistical and machine learning tools are required to address the scientific questions of interest in a computationally efficient manner. I will introduce some tools that astronomers can employ for such problems with a focus on clustering and classification techniques. I will introduce standard methods, but also get into more recent developments that may be of use to the astronomical community.

  11. LGBT Workplace Issues for Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kay, Laura E.; Danner, R.; Sellgren, K.; Dixon, V.; GLBTQastro

    2011-01-01

    Federal Equal Employment Opportunity laws and regulations do not provide protection from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity or gender expression. Sexual minority astronomers (including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people; LGBT) can face additional challenges at school and work. Studies show that LGBT students on many campuses report experiences of harassment. Cities, counties, and states may or may not have statutes to protect against such discrimination. There is wide variation in how states and insurance plans handle legal and medical issues for transgender people. Federal law does not acknowledge same-sex partners, including those legally married in the U.S. or in other countries. Immigration rules in the U.S. (and many other, but not all) countries do not recognize same-sex partners for visas, employment, etc. State `defense of marriage act' laws have been used to remove existing domestic partner benefits at some institutions, or benefits can disappear with a change in governor. LGBT astronomers who change schools, institutions, or countries during their career may experience significant differences in their legal, medical, and marital status.

  12. The League of Astronomers: Outreach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paat, Anthony; Brandel, A.; Schmitz, D.; Sharma, R.; Thomas, N. H.; Trujillo, J.; Laws, C. S.; Astronomers, League of

    2014-01-01

    The University of Washington League of Astronomers (LOA) is an organization comprised of University of Washington (UW) undergraduate students. Our main goal is to share our interest in astronomy with the UW community and with the general public. The LOA hosts star parties on the UW campus and collaborates with the Seattle Astronomical Society (SAS) on larger Seattle-area star parties. At the star parties, we strive to teach our local community about what they can view in our night sky. LOA members share knowledge of how to locate constellations and use a star wheel. The relationship the LOA has with members of SAS increases both the number of events and people we are able to reach. Since the cloudy skies of the Northwest prevent winter star parties, we therefore focus our outreach on the UW Mobile Planetarium, an inflatable dome system utilizing Microsoft’s WorldWide Telescope (WWT) software. The mobile planetarium brings astronomy into the classrooms of schools unable to travel to the UW on-campus planetarium. Members of the LOA volunteer their time towards this project and we make up the majority of the Mobile Planetarium volunteers. Our outreach efforts allow us to connect with the community and enhance our own knowledge of astronomy.

  13. Astronomers in the Chemist's War

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trimble, Virginia L.

    2012-01-01

    World War II, with radar, rockets, and "atomic" bombs was the physicists' war. And many of us know, or think we know, what our more senior colleagues did during it, with Hubble and Hoffleit at Aberdeen; M. Schwarzschild on active duty in Italy; Bondi, Gold, and Hoyle hunkered down in Dunsfeld, Surrey, talking about radar, and perhaps steady state; Greenstein and Henyey designing all-sky cameras; and many astronomers teaching navigation. World War I was The Chemists' War, featuring poison gases, the need to produce liquid fuels from coal on one side of the English Channel and to replace previously-imported dyesstuffs on the other. The talke will focus on what astronomers did and had done to them between 1914 and 1919, from Freundlich (taken prisoner on an eclipse expedition days after the outbreak of hostilities) to Edwin Hubble, returning from France without ever having quite reached the front lines. Other events bore richer fruit (Hale and the National Research Council), but very few of the stories are happy ones. Most of us have neither first nor second hand memories of The Chemists' War, but I had the pleasure of dining with a former Freundlich student a couple of weeks ago.

  14. Astronomical Methods in Aerial Navigation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Beij, K Hilding

    1925-01-01

    The astronomical method of determining position is universally used in marine navigation and may also be of service in aerial navigation. The practical application of the method, however, must be modified and adapted to conform to the requirements of aviation. Much of this work of adaptation has already been accomplished, but being scattered through various technical journals in a number of languages, is not readily available. This report is for the purpose of collecting under one cover such previous work as appears to be of value to the aerial navigator, comparing instruments and methods, indicating the best practice, and suggesting future developments. The various methods of determining position and their application and value are outlined, and a brief resume of the theory of the astronomical method is given. Observation instruments are described in detail. A complete discussion of the reduction of observations follows, including a rapid method of finding position from the altitudes of two stars. Maps and map cases are briefly considered. A bibliography of the subject is appended.

  15. The Low Energy Effective Area of the Chandra Low Energy Transmission Grating Spectrograph

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pease, D.; Drake, J. J.; Johnson, C. O.; Kashya, V.; Ratzlaff, P. W.; Wargelin, B. J.; Brinkman, A. C.; Kaastra, J. S.; vanderMeer, R.; Paerels, F. B.

    2000-01-01

    The Chandra X-ray Observatory was successfully launched on July 23, 1999, and subsequently began an intensive calibration phase. We present the preliminary results from the in-flight calibration of the low energy response of the High Resolution Camera spectroscopic readout (HRC-S) combined with the Low Energy Transmission Grating (LETG) aboard Chandra. These instruments comprise the Low Energy Transmission Grating Spectrograph (LETGS). For this calibration study, we employ a pure hydrogen non-LTE white dwarf emission model (T = 25000 K and log g = 9.0) for comparison with the Chandra observations of Sirius B. The pre-flight calibration of the LETGS effective area only covered wavelengths shortward of 44 A (E less than 277 eV). Our Sirius B analysis shows that the HRC-S quantum efficiency (QE) model assumed for longer wavelengths leads to an overestimate of the effective area by an average factor of about 1.6. We derive a correction to the low energy HRC-S QE model to match the predicted and observed Sirius B spectra over the wavelength range of 44-185 A. We make an independent test of our results by the comparison of a Chandra LETGS observation of HZ 43 with pure hydrogen model atmosphere predictions and find good agreement.

  16. Combined ultraviolet studies of astronomical sources

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dupree, A. K.; Baliunas, S. L.; Blair, W. P.; Hartmann, L. W.; Huchra, J. P.; Raymond, J. C.; Smith, G. H.; Sonderblom, D. R.

    1985-01-01

    Ultraviolet studies of various astronomical entities are reported. Among the specific phenomena examined were supernova remnants, dwarf novae, red giant stars, stellar winds, binary stars, and galaxies.

  17. San Marcos Astronomical Project and Doctoral Prospectus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aguilar, M. L.

    2009-05-01

    The Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos, UNMSM, in Lima, Perú, is the only Peruvian institution working for the peruvian astronomical development as a career since 1970. We are conforming a network with international friend astronomers to invite them as Visiting Lectures to assure the academic level for the future doctoral studies in the UNMSM. The Chancellor of UNMSM has decided that the Astronomical Project is a UNMSM Project, to encourage and advance in this scientific and strategical area, to impulse the modernity of Peru, the major effort will be the building of the San Marcos Astronomical Observatory, with a telescope of 1 meter aperture.

  18. Amateur Astronomers: Secret Agents of EPO

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berendsen, M.; White, V.; Devore, E.; Reynolds, M.

    2008-06-01

    Amateur astronomers prime the public to be more interested, receptive, and excited about space science, missions, and programs. Through recent research and targeted programs, amateur astronomy outreach is being increasingly recognized by professional astronomers, educators, and other amateurs as a valued and important service. The Night Sky Network program, administered by the ASP, is the first nationwide research-based program specifically targeted to support outreach by amateur astronomers. This Network of trained and informed amateur astronomers can provide a stimulating introduction to your EPO programs as Network members share the night sky with families, students, and youth groups.

  19. Astronomical Symbolism in Australian Aboriginal Rock Art

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Norris, Ray P.; Hamacher, Duane W.

    2011-05-01

    Traditional Aboriginal Australian cultures include a significant astronomical component, perpetuated through oral tradition and ceremony. This knowledge has practical navigational and calendrical functions, and sometimes extends to a deep understanding of the motion of objects in the sky. Here we explore whether this astronomical tradition is reflected in the rock art of Aboriginal Australians. We find several plausible examples of depictions of astronomical figures and symbols, and also evidence that astronomical observations were used to set out stone arrangements. However, we recognise that the case is not yet strong enough to make an unequivocal statement, and describe our plans for further research.

  20. First light with ALES: A 2-5 micron adaptive optics Integral Field Spectrograph for the LBT

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skemer, Andrew J.; Hinz, Philip; Montoya, Manny; Skrutskie, Michael F.; Leisenring, Jarron; Durney, Oli; Woodward, Charles E.; Wilson, John; Nelson, Matt; Bailey, Vanessa; Defrere, Denis; Stone, Jordan

    2015-09-01

    Integral field spectrographs are an important technology for exoplanet imaging, due to their ability to take spectra in a high-contrast environment, and improve planet detection sensitivity through spectral differential imaging. ALES is the first integral field spectrograph capable of imaging exoplanets from 3-5 μm, and will extend our ability to characterize self-luminous exoplanets into a wavelength range where they peak in brightness. ALES is installed inside LBTI/LMIRcam on the Large Binocular Telescope, taking advantage of existing AO systems, camera optics, and a HAWAII-2RG detector. The new optics that comprise ALES are a Keplerian magnifier, a silicon lenslet array with diffraction suppressing pinholes, a direct vision prism, and calibration optics. All of these components are installed in filter wheels making ALES a completely modular design. ALES saw first light at the LBT in June 2015.

  1. The GMT-CFA-CARNEGIE-CATOLICA LARGE EARTH FINDER (G-CLEF): A Fiber-fed, Optical Echelle Spectrograph For The Giant Magellan Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szentgyorgyi, Andrew; Furesz, G.; Frebel, A.; Geary, J.; Evans, I.; Norton, T.; Hertz, E.; DePonte Evans, J.; Jordan, A.; Guzman, D.; Epps, H.; Barnes, S.; Crane, J.

    2011-01-01

    The GMT-CfA-Carnegie-Catolica Large Earth Finder (G-CLEF) is a fiber-fed optical echelle spectrograph in concept design study phase for first light at the Giant Magellan Telescope. G-CLEF is designed to be a multipurpose echelle spectrograph that operates in a number of modes so as to enable precision radial velocity (RV) measurements, detailed abundance studies, isotopic abundance measurements and probe the IGM and ISM at high Z. Four resolution modes are implemented with image and pupil slicing. Extremely precise RV will be achieved by vacuum enclosing the spectrograph, with advanced fiber scrambling and state-of-the-art calibrators, especially ultra stabilized etalons and possibly laser frequency combs. The optical design is a asymmetric white pupil design with two camera arms splitting the 350 nm - 950 nm passband into red and blue channels. G-CLEF will have an extremely large, mosaiced echelle grating and volume phase holograph cross dispersers.

  2. BOOK REVIEW: The Wandering Astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Swinbank, Elizabeth

    2000-09-01

    Fans of Patrick Moore will like this book. I enjoyed it more than I expected, having anticipated a collection of personal anecdotes of the type favoured by certain tedious after-dinner speakers. Some of the 41 short items it contains do tend towards that category, but there are also some nuggets which might enliven your physics teaching. For example, did you know that, in a murder trial in 1787, the defendant's belief that the Sun was inhabited was cited as evidence of his insanity? This was despite his views being shared by many astronomers of the day including William Herschel. Or that Clyde Tombaugh had a cat called Pluto after the planet he discovered, which was itself named by an eleven-year-old girl? Another gem concerns a brief flurry, in the early 1990s, over a suspected planet orbiting a pulsar; variations in the arrival time of its radio pulses indicated the presence of an orbiting body. These shifts were later found to arise from an error in a computer program that corrected for the Earth's motion. The programmer had assumed a circular orbit for the Earth whereas it is actually elliptical. The book is clearly intended for amateur astronomers and followers of Patrick Moore's TV programmes. There is plenty of astronomy, with an emphasis on the solar system, but very little astrophysics. The author's metricophobia means that quantities are given in imperial units throughout, with metric equivalents added in brackets (by an editor, I suspect) which can get irritating, particularly as powers-of-ten notation is avoided. It is quite a novelty to see the temperature for hydrogen fusion quoted as 18 000 000 °F (10 000 000 °C). By way of contrast, astronomical terms are used freely - ecliptic, first-magnitude star, and so on. Such terms are defined in a glossary at the end, but attention is not drawn to this and I only stumbled across it by chance. Patrick Moore obviously knows his public, and this book will serve them well. For physics teachers and students

  3. Performance results from in-flight commissioning of the Juno Ultraviolet Spectrograph (Juno-UVS)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Greathouse, T. K.; Gladstone, G. R.; Davis, M. W.; Slater, D. C.; Versteeg, M. H.; Persson, K. B.; Walther, B. C.; Winters, G. S.; Persyn, S. C.; Eterno, J. S.

    2013-09-01

    We present a description of the Juno ultraviolet spectrograph (Juno-UVS) and results from its in-flight commissioning performed between December 5th and 13th 2011 and its first periodic maintenance between October 10th and 12th 2012. Juno-UVS is a modest power (9.0 W) ultraviolet spectrograph based on the Alice instruments now in flight aboard the European Space Agency's Rosetta spacecraft, NASA's New Horizons spacecraft, and the LAMP instrument aboard NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter. However, unlike the other Alice spectrographs, Juno-UVS sits aboard a spin stabilized spacecraft. The Juno-UVS scan mirror allows for pointing of the slit approximately +/-30° from the spacecraft spin plane. This ability gives Juno-UVS access to half the sky at any given spacecraft orientation. The planned 2 rpm spin rate for the primary mission results in integration times per 0.2° spatial resolution element per spin of only ~17 ms. Thus, for calibration purposes, data were retrieved from many spins and then remapped and co-added to build up exposure times on bright stars to measure the effective area, spatial resolution, scan mirror pointing positions, etc. The primary job of Juno-UVS will be to characterize Jupiter's UV auroral emissions and relate them to in-situ particle measurements. The ability to point the slit will make operations more flexible, allowing Juno-UVS to observe the atmospheric footprints of magnetic field lines through which Juno flies, giving a direct connection between energetic particle measurements on the spacecraft and the far-ultraviolet emissions produced by Jupiter's atmosphere in response to those particles.

  4. Comet 67P observations with LOTUS: a new near-UV spectrograph for the Liverpool Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marchant, Jon; Jermak, Helen; Steele, Iain; Snodgrass, Colin; Fitzsimmons, Alan; Jones, Geraint

    2015-11-01

    The European Space Agency’s Rosetta spacecraft has been orbiting comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko (hereinafter “67P”) since August 2014, providing in-situ measurements of the dust, gas and plasma content of the coma within ~100km of the nucleus. Supporting the mission is a world-wide coordinated campaign of simultaneous ground-based observations of 67P (www.rosetta-campaign.net), providing wider context of the outer coma and tail invisible to Rosetta. We can now compare these observations, augmented by "ground truth" from Rosetta, with those of other comets past and future that are only observed from Earth.The robotic Liverpool Telescope (LT) is part of this campaign due to its unique ability to flexibly and autonomously schedule regular observations over entire semesters. Its optical imagery has recently been supplemented by near-UV spectroscopy to observe the UV molecular bands below 4000Å that are of considerable interest to cometary science. The LT's existing spectrographs FRODOSpec and SPRAT cut off at 4000Å, so the Liverpool Telescope Optical-to-UV Spectrograph - LOTUS - was fast-track designed, built and deployed on-sky in just five months. LOTUS contains no moving parts; acquisition is made with the LT's IO:O imaging camera, and different width slits for calibration and science are selected by fine-tuning the telescope's pointing on an innovative "step" design in its single slit.We present here details of the LOTUS spectrograph, and some preliminary results of our ongoing observations of comet 67P.

  5. Ancient Astronomical Monuments of Athens

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Theodossiou, E.; Manimanis, V. N.

    2010-07-01

    In this work, four ancient monuments of astronomical significance found in Athens and still kept in the same city in good condition are presented. The first one is the conical sundial on the southern slope of the Acropolis. The second one is the Tower of the Winds and its vertical sundials in the Roman Forum of Athens, a small octagonal marble tower with sundials on all 8 of its sides, plus a water-clock inside the tower. The third monument-instrument is the ancient clepsydra of Athens, one of the findings from the Ancient Agora of Athens, a unique water-clock dated from 400 B.C. Finally, the fourth one is the carved ancient Athenian calendar over the main entrance of the small Byzantine temple of the 8th Century, St. Eleftherios, located to the south of the temple of the Annunciation of Virgin Mary, the modern Cathedral of the city of Athens.

  6. Detecting bimodality in astronomical datasets

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ashman, Keith A.; Bird, Christina M.; Zepf, Stephen E.

    1994-01-01

    We discuss statistical techniques for detecting and quantifying bimodality in astronomical datasets. We concentrate on the KMM algorithm, which estimates the statistical significance of bimodality in such datasets and objectively partitions data into subpopulations. By simulating bimodal distributions with a range of properties we investigate the sensitivity of KMM to datasets with varying characteristics. Our results facilitate the planning of optimal observing strategies for systems where bimodality is suspected. Mixture-modeling algorithms similar to the KMM algorithm have been used in previous studies to partition the stellar population of the Milky Way into subsystems. We illustrate the broad applicability of KMM by analyzing published data on globular cluster metallicity distributions, velocity distributions of galaxies in clusters, and burst durations of gamma-ray sources. FORTRAN code for the KMM algorithm and directions for its use are available from the authors upon request.

  7. IAU Public Astronomical Organisations Network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Canas, Lina; Cheung, Sze Leung

    2015-08-01

    The Office for Astronomy Outreach has devoted intensive means to create and support a global network of public astronomical organisations around the world. Focused on bringing established and newly formed amateur astronomy organizations together, providing communications channels and platforms for disseminating news to the global community and the sharing of best practices and resources among these associations around the world. In establishing the importance that these organizations have for the dissemination of activities globally and acting as key participants in IAU various campaigns social media has played a key role in keeping this network engaged and connected. Here we discuss the implementation process of maintaining this extensive network, the processing and gathering of information and the interactions between local active members at a national and international level.

  8. Astronomical Software---A Review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shortridge, K.

    It is now impossible to imagine `doing astronomy' without using software. Sometimes it is hard to remember that it has not always been like this. Over a timescale now measured in decades, the art (or science) of astronomical programming has evolved. Once it involved the squeezing of hand-crafted assembler routines into insufficient memory. Now it includes the design of ambitiously large frameworks for data acquisition and reduction. The organisation required for the production of such software has had to grow to match these new ambitions. This review looks back on the path taken by this fascinating evolutionary process, in the hope that it can provide a background that may let us imagine where the next years will lead.

  9. Goddard Geophysical and Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Figueroa, Ricardo

    2013-01-01

    This report summarizes the technical parameters and the technical staff of the VLBI system at the fundamental station GGAO. It also gives an overview about the VLBI activities during the report year. The Goddard Geophysical and Astronomical Observatory (GGAO) consists of a 5-meter radio telescope for VLBI, a new 12-meter radio telescope for VLBI2010 development, a 1-meter reference antenna for microwave holography development, an SLR site that includes MOBLAS-7, the NGSLR development system, and a 48" telescope for developmental two-color Satellite Laser Ranging, a GPS timing and development lab, a DORIS system, meteorological sensors, and a hydrogen maser. In addition, we are a fiducial IGS site with several IGS/IGSX receivers. GGAO is located on the east coast of the United States in Maryland. It is approximately 15 miles NNE of Washington, D.C. in Greenbelt, Maryland.

  10. Aristotle University Astronomical Station at Mt. Holomon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Avdellidou, C.; Ioannidis, P.; Kouroubatzakis, K.; Nitsos, A.; Vakoulis, J.; Seiradakis, J. H.

    2012-01-01

    The Aristotle University Astronomical Station was established seven years ago in order to fulfill the educational needs of its students. Astronomical observations are undertaken using three fully equipped small telescopes. Some interesting results are presented below, including the study of asteroids and flare stars, the detection of optical emission from supernovae remnants and follow up observations in extra solar planets.

  11. Conceptual Astronomy Knowledge among Amateur Astronomers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berendsen, Margaret L.

    2005-01-01

    Amateur astronomers regularly serve as informal astronomy educators for their communities. This research inquires into the level of knowledge of basic astronomy concepts among amateur astronomers and examines factors related to amateur astronomy that affect that knowledge. Using the concept questions from the Astronomy Diagnostic Test Version 2,…

  12. COMMISSION 5: Documentation and Astronomical Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Genova, Françoise; Norris, Raymond P.; Bessel, M. S.; Dluzhnevskaia, O.; Jenkner, H.; Malkov, O.; Murtagh, F.; Nakajima, K.; Ochsenbein, F.; Pence, W.; Schmitz, M.; Wielen, R.; Zhao, Y. H.

    2007-03-01

    The triennial report of Commission V Documentation and Astronomical Data/Documentation et Données Astronomiques covers 2002-2005 activities, and in particular the activities of the five Working Groups: Working Group Astronomical Data; Working Group Designations; Working Group Libraries; Working Group FITS; Working Group Virtual Observatories; and of Task Force for the Preservation and Digitization of Photographic Plates.

  13. Astronomical observatory for shuttle. Phase A study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Guthals, D. L.

    1973-01-01

    The design, development, and configuration of the astronomical observatory for shuttle are discussed. The characteristics of the one meter telescope in the spaceborne observatory are described. A variety of basic spectroscopic and image recording instruments and detectors which will permit a large variety of astronomical observations are reported. The stDC 37485elines which defined the components of the observatory are outlined.

  14. The PRL Stabilized High-Resolution Echelle Fiber-fed Spectrograph: Instrument Description and First Radial Velocity Results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chakraborty, Abhijit; Mahadevan, Suvrath; Roy, Arpita; Dixit, Vaibhav; Richardson, Eric Harvey; Dongre, Varun; Pathan, F. M.; Chaturvedi, Priyanka; Shah, Vishal; Ubale, Girish P.; Anandarao, B. G.

    2014-02-01

    We present spectrograph design details and initial radial velocity results from the PRL optical fiber-fed high-resolution cross-dispersed echelle spectrograph (PARAS), which has recently been commissioned at the Mount Abu 1.2 m telescope in India. Data obtained as part of the postcommissioning tests with PARAS show velocity precision better than 2 m s-1 over a period of several months on bright RV standard stars. For observations of σ Dra, we report 1.7 m s-1 precision for a period of 7 months, and for HD 9407, we report 2.1 m s-1 over a period of 2 months. PARAS is capable of single-shot spectral coverage of 3800-9500 Å at a resolution of ~67,000. The RV results were obtained between 3800 and 6900 Å using simultaneous wavelength calibration with a thorium-argon (ThAr) hollow cathode lamp. The spectrograph is maintained under stable conditions of temperature with a precision of 0.01-0.02° C (rms) at 25.55° C and is enclosed in a vacuum vessel at pressure of 0.1 ± 0.03 mbar. The blaze peak efficiency of the spectrograph between 5000 and 6500 Å, including the detector, is ~30%; it is ~25% with the fiber transmission. The total efficiency, including spectrograph, fiber transmission, focal ratio degradation (FRD), and telescope (with 81% reflectivity) is ~7% in the same wavelength region on a clear night with good seeing conditions. The stable point-spread function (PSF), environmental control, existence of a simultaneous calibration fiber, and availability of observing time make PARAS attractive for a variety of exoplanetary and stellar astrophysics projects. Future plans include testing of octagonal fibers for further scrambling of light and extensive calibration over the entire wavelength range up to 9500 Å using thorium-neon (ThNe) or uranium-neon (UNe) spectral lamps. Thus, we demonstrate how such highly stabilized instruments, even on small aperture telescopes, can contribute significantly to the ongoing radial velocity searches for low-mass planets

  15. Astronomical catalog desk reference, 1994 edition

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1994-01-01

    The Astronomical Catalog Desk Reference is designed to aid astronomers in locating machine readable catalogs in the Astronomical Data Center (ADC) archives. The key reference components of this document are as follows: A listing of shortened titles for all catalogs available from the ADC (includes the name of the lead author and year of publication), brief descriptions of over 300 astronomical catalogs, an index of ADC catalog numbers by subject keyword, and an index of ADC catalog numbers by author. The heart of this document is the set of brief descriptions generated by the ADC staff. The 1994 edition of the Astronomical Catalog Desk Reference contains descriptions for over one third of the catalogs in the ADC archives. Readers are encouraged to refer to this section for concise summaries of those catalogs and their contents.

  16. Astronomical pipeline processing using fuzzy logic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shamir, Lior; Nemiroff, Robert J. Nemiroff

    2008-01-01

    Fundamental astronomical questions on the composition of the universe, the abundance of Earth-like planets, and the cause of the brightest explosions in the universe are being attacked by robotic telescopes costing billions of dollars and returning vast pipelines of data. The success of these programs depends on the accuracy of automated real time processing of images never seen by a human, and all predicated on fast and accurate automatic identifications of known astronomical objects and new astronomical transients. In this paper the needs of modern astronomical pipelines are discussed in the light of fuzzy-logic based decision-making. Several specific fuzzy-logic algorithms have been develop for the first time for astronomical purposes, and tested with excellent results on a test pipeline of data from the existing Night Sky Live sky survey.

  17. Developing an astronomical observatory in Paraguay

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Troche-Boggino, Alexis E.

    Background: Paraguay has some heritage from the astronomy of the Guarani Indians. Buenaventura Suarez S.J. was a pioneer astronomer in the country in the XVIII century. He built various astronomical instruments and imported others from England. He observed eclipses of Jupiter's satellites and of the Sun and Moon. He published his data in a book and through letters. The Japanese O.D.A. has collaborated in obtaining equipment and advised their government to assist Paraguay in building an astronomical observatory, constructing a moving-roof observatory and training astronomers as observatory operators. Future: An astronomical center is on the horizon and some possible fields of research are being considered. Goal: To improve education at all possible levels by not only observing sky wonders, but also showing how instruments work and teaching about data and image processing, saving data and building a data base. Students must learn how a modern scientist works.

  18. Spectrographic temperature measurement of a high power breakdown arc in a high pressure gas switch.

    PubMed

    Yeckel, Christopher; Curry, Randy

    2011-09-01

    A procedure for obtaining an approximate temperature value of conducting plasma generated during self-break closure of a RIMFIRE gas switch is described. The plasma is in the form of a breakdown arc which conducts approximately 12 kJ of energy in 1 μs. A spectrographic analysis of the trigger-section of the 6-MV RIMFIRE laser triggered gas switch used in Sandia National Laboratory's "Z-Machine" has been made. It is assumed that the breakdown plasma has sufficiently approached local thermodynamic equilibrium allowing a black-body temperature model to be applied. This model allows the plasma temperature and radiated power to be approximated. The gas dielectric used in these tests was pressurized SF(6). The electrode gap is set at 4.59 cm for each test. The electrode material is stainless steel and insulator material is poly(methyl methacrylate). A spectrum range from 220 to 550 nanometers has been observed and calibrated using two spectral irradiance lamps and three spectrograph gratings. The approximate plasma temperature is reported. PMID:21974578

  19. Spectrographic temperature measurement of a high power breakdown arc in a high pressure gas switch

    SciTech Connect

    Yeckel, Christopher; Curry, Randy

    2011-09-15

    A procedure for obtaining an approximate temperature value of conducting plasma generated during self-break closure of a RIMFIRE gas switch is described. The plasma is in the form of a breakdown arc which conducts approximately 12 kJ of energy in 1 {mu}s. A spectrographic analysis of the trigger-section of the 6-MV RIMFIRE laser triggered gas switch used in Sandia National Laboratory's ''Z-Machine'' has been made. It is assumed that the breakdown plasma has sufficiently approached local thermodynamic equilibrium allowing a black-body temperature model to be applied. This model allows the plasma temperature and radiated power to be approximated. The gas dielectric used in these tests was pressurized SF{sub 6}. The electrode gap is set at 4.59 cm for each test. The electrode material is stainless steel and insulator material is poly(methyl methacrylate). A spectrum range from 220 to 550 nanometers has been observed and calibrated using two spectral irradiance lamps and three spectrograph gratings. The approximate plasma temperature is reported.

  20. A compact soft X-ray spectrograph combining high efficiency and resolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fäustlin, R. R.; Zastrau, U.; Toleikis, S.; Uschmann, I.; Förster, E.; Tschentscher, Th

    2010-02-01

    A compact and light weight soft X-ray spectrograph covering 5-35 nm and employing a toroidal mirror and a variable line space reflection grating has been newly developed. Particular emphasis has been placed on achieving a large collection solid angle (1.9 × 10-3 sr) and a high efficiency of the components in order to enable Thomson Scattering plasma diagnostics which has a small total cross section (6.65 × 10-25 cm2). The instrument achieves a signal-to-noise ratio of 5 with a 13.5 nm source which isotropically emits 2.5 × 105 photons. A resolution λ/Δλ = 330 was measured at 21 nm and the dispersion was calibrated. The instrument is housed inside a DN 100 CF ultra high vacuum manipulator (43 × 46 × 47 cm3) which allows positioning relative to the source within ±5 mm and ±50 mm in X,Y and Z direction, respectively. It can be used with or without entrance pinhole and is equipped with a motorized grating, a filter wheel with five filters, and a shutter. Altogether, these features make the spectrograph a versatile instrument which can be employed in a variety of physics applications such as line and bremsstrahlung spectroscopy or Thomson scattering.

  1. The Fiber Multi-object Spectrograph (FMOS) Project: the Anglo-Australian Observatory role

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gillingham, Peter R.; Moore, Anna M.; Akiyama, Masayuki; Brzeski, Jurek; Correll, David; Dawson, John; Farrell, Tony J.; Frost, Gabriella; Griesbach, Jason S.; Haynes, Roger; Jones, Damien; Miziarski, Stan; Muller, Rolf; Smedley, Scott; Smith, Greg; Waller, Lew G.; Noakes, Katie; Arridge, Chris

    2003-03-01

    The Fiber Multi-Object Spectrograph (FMOS) project is an Australia-Japan-UK collaboration to design and build a novel 400 fiber positioner feeding two near infrared spectrographs from the prime focus of the Subaru telescope. The project comprises several parts. Those under design and construction at the Anglo-Australian Observatory (AAO) are the piezoelectric actuator driven fiber positioner (Echidna), a wide field (30 arcmin) corrector and a focal plane imager (FPI) used for controlling the positioner and for field acquisition. This paper presents an overview of the AAO share of the FMOS project. It describes the technical infrastructure required to extend the single Echidna "spine" design to a fully functioning multi-fiber instrument, capable of complete field reconfiguration in less than ten minutes. The modular Echidna system is introduced, wherein the field of view is populated by 12 identical rectangular modules, each positioning 40 science fibers and 2 guide fiber bundles. This arrangement allows maintenance by exchanging modules and minimizes the difficulties of construction. The associated electronics hardware, in itself a significant challenge, includes a 23 layer PCB board, able to supply current to each piezoelectric element in the module. The FPI is a dual purpose imaging system translating in two coordinates and is located beneath the assembled modules. The FPI measures the spine positions as well as acquiring sky images for instrument calibration and for field acquisition. An overview of the software is included.

  2. VIRUS: a massively replicated integral-field spectrograph for HET

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hill, Gary J.; MacQueen, Phillip J.; Tufts, Joseph R.; Kelz, Andreas; Roth, Martin M.; Altmann, Werner; Segura, Pedro; Gebhardt, Karl; Palunas, Povilas

    2006-06-01

    We present the design of, and the science drivers for, the Visible Integral-field Replicable Unit Spectrograph (VIRUS). This instrument is made up of 145 individually small and simple spectrographs, each fed by a fiber integral field unit. The total VIRUS-145 instrument covers ~30 sq. arcminutes per observation, providing integral field spectroscopy from 340 to 570 nm, simultaneously, of 35,670 spatial elements, each 1 sq. arcsecond on the sky. This corresponds to 15 million resolution elements per exposure. VIRUS-145 will be mounted on the Hobby-Eberly Telescope and fed by a new wide-field corrector with 22 arcminutes diameter field of view. VIRUS represents a new approach to spectrograph design, offering the science multiplex advantage of huge sky coverage for an integral field spectrograph, coupled with the engineering multiplex advantage of >100 spectrographs making up a whole. VIRUS is designed for the Hobby-Eberly Telescope Dark Energy Experiment (HETDEX) which will use baryonic acoustic oscillations imprinted on the large-scale distribution of Lyman-α emitting galaxies to provide unique constraints on the expansion history of the universe that can constrain the properties of dark energy.

  3. Construction of pre-slit system of Chinese SONG spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Pengfei; Hu, Zhongwen; Dai, Songxin

    2015-10-01

    The pre-slit system of Chinese SONG spectrograph is a multi-function unit. The main function is to direct the incoming light from the coudé path to the entrance slit of the spectrograph. The specific functions includes maintaining exit pupil stable, fast guiding and telescope focus corrections. The original optics of this pre-slit system were designed by Aarhus University in Denmark. We built the system and designed the software for it. This system holds a guide/slit-viewing camera, a pupil-viewing camera, two tip-tilt mirrors and its tip-tilt controllers. So it includes two sets of the fast-steering mirror systems applied to image tracking and correction. When this image tracking and correction systems is running, the real-time software algorithm will be presented and simulated simultaneously. From the images taken with camera, a closed loop signals are generated for the tip-tilt mirror to correct image motion. When the camera exposure time is 25ms,the correcting frequency of slit imge tip-tilt motion is about 30Hz. The correcting frequency of pupil imge tip-tilt motion is about 1Hz. In addition, a temperature control system surrounding the spectrograph is necessary to keep spectrograph at a constant temperature. The test results shows that the error is about +/-0.005°C in 69.4 hours. The results prove that the pre-slit system of Chinese SONG spectrograph is effective and feasible.

  4. A SURVEY OF ASTRONOMICAL RESEARCH: A BASELINE FOR ASTRONOMICAL DEVELOPMENT

    SciTech Connect

    Ribeiro, V. A. R. M.; Russo, P.; Cárdenas-Avendaño, A. E-mail: russo@strw.leidenuniv.nl

    2013-12-01

    Measuring scientific development is a difficult task. Different metrics have been put forward to evaluate scientific development; in this paper we explore a metric that uses the number of peer-reviewed, and when available non-peer-reviewed, research articles as an indicator of development in the field of astronomy. We analyzed the available publication record, using the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory/NASA Astrophysics Database System, by country affiliation in the time span between 1950 and 2011 for countries with a gross national income of less than 14,365 USD in 2010. This represents 149 countries. We propose that this metric identifies countries in ''astronomical development'' with a culture of research publishing. We also propose that for a country to develop in astronomy, it should invest in outside expert visits, send its staff abroad to study, and establish a culture of scientific publishing. Furthermore, we propose that this paper may be used as a baseline to measure the success of major international projects, such as the International Year of Astronomy 2009.

  5. A Survey of Astronomical Research: A Baseline for Astronomical Development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ribeiro, V. A. R. M.; Russo, P.; Cárdenas-Avendaño, A.

    2013-12-01

    Measuring scientific development is a difficult task. Different metrics have been put forward to evaluate scientific development; in this paper we explore a metric that uses the number of peer-reviewed, and when available non-peer-reviewed, research articles as an indicator of development in the field of astronomy. We analyzed the available publication record, using the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory/NASA Astrophysics Database System, by country affiliation in the time span between 1950 and 2011 for countries with a gross national income of less than 14,365 USD in 2010. This represents 149 countries. We propose that this metric identifies countries in "astronomical development" with a culture of research publishing. We also propose that for a country to develop in astronomy, it should invest in outside expert visits, send its staff abroad to study, and establish a culture of scientific publishing. Furthermore, we propose that this paper may be used as a baseline to measure the success of major international projects, such as the International Year of Astronomy 2009.

  6. Volume phase holographic gratings for the Subaru Prime Focus Spectrograph: performance measurements of the prototype grating set

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barkhouser, Robert H.; Arns, James; Gunn, James E.

    2014-08-01

    The Prime Focus Spectrograph (PFS) is a major instrument under development for the 8.2 m Subaru telescope on Mauna Kea. Four identical, fixed spectrograph modules are located in a room above one Nasmyth focus. A 55 m fiber optic cable feeds light into the spectrographs from a robotic fiber positioner mounted at the telescope prime focus, behind the wide field corrector developed for Hyper Suprime-Cam. The positioner contains 2400 fibers and covers a 1.3 degree hexagonal field of view. Each spectrograph module will be capable of simultaneously acquiring 600 spectra. The spectrograph optical design consists of a Schmidt collimator, two dichroic beamsplitters to separate the light into three channels, and for each channel a volume phase holographic (VPH) grating and a dual- corrector, modified Schmidt reimaging camera. This design provides a 275 mm collimated beam diameter, wide simultaneous wavelength coverage from 380 nm to 1.26 µm, and good imaging performance at the fast f/1.1 focal ratio required from the cameras to avoid oversampling the fibers. The three channels are designated as the blue, red, and near-infrared (NIR), and cover the bandpasses 380-650 nm (blue), 630-970 nm (red), and 0.94-1.26 µm (NIR). A mosaic of two Hamamatsu 2k×4k, 15 µm pixel CCDs records the spectra in the blue and red channels, while the NIR channel employs a 4k×4k, substrate-removed HAWAII-4RG array from Teledyne, with 15 µm pixels and a 1.7 µm wavelength cutoff. VPH gratings have become the dispersing element of choice for moderate-resolution astronomical spectro- graphs due their potential for very high diffraction efficiency, low scattered light, and the more compact instru- ment designs offered by transmissive dispersers. High quality VPH gratings are now routinely being produced in the sizes required for instruments on large telescopes. These factors made VPH gratings an obvious choice for PFS. In order to reduce risk to the project, as well as fully exploit the performance

  7. Astronomers Unveiling Life's Cosmic Origins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2009-02-01

    Processes that laid the foundation for life on Earth -- star and planet formation and the production of complex organic molecules in interstellar space -- are yielding their secrets to astronomers armed with powerful new research tools, and even better tools soon will be available. Astronomers described three important developments at a symposium on the "Cosmic Cradle of Life" at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Chicago, IL. Chemistry Cycle The Cosmic Chemistry Cycle CREDIT: Bill Saxton, NRAO/AUI/NSF Full Size Image Files Chemical Cycle Graphic (above image, JPEG, 129K) Graphic With Text Blocks (JPEG, 165K) High-Res TIFF (44.2M) High-Res TIFF With Text Blocks (44.2M) In one development, a team of astrochemists released a major new resource for seeking complex interstellar molecules that are the precursors to life. The chemical data released by Anthony Remijan of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) and his university colleagues is part of the Prebiotic Interstellar Molecule Survey, or PRIMOS, a project studying a star-forming region near the center of our Milky Way Galaxy. PRIMOS is an effort of the National Science Foundation's Center for Chemistry of the Universe, started at the University of Virginia (UVa) in October 2008, and led by UVa Professor Brooks H. Pate. The data, produced by the NSF's Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope (GBT) in West Virginia, came from more than 45 individual observations totalling more than nine GigaBytes of data and over 1.4 million individual frequency channels. Scientists can search the GBT data for specific radio frequencies, called spectral lines -- telltale "fingerprints" -- naturally emitted by molecules in interstellar space. "We've identified more than 720 spectral lines in this collection, and about 240 of those are from unknown molecules," Remijan said. He added, "We're making available to all scientists the best collection of data below 50 GHz ever produced for

  8. Young Galaxy's Magnetism Surprises Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2008-10-01

    Astronomers have made the first direct measurement of the magnetic field in a young, distant galaxy, and the result is a big surprise. Looking at a faraway protogalaxy seen as it was 6.5 billion years ago, the scientists measured a magnetic field at least 10 times stronger than that of our own Milky Way. They had expected just the opposite. The GBT Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope CREDIT: NRAO/AUI/NSF The scientists made the discovery using the National Science Foundation's ultra-sensitive Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope (GBT) in West Virginia. "This new measurement indicates that magnetic fields may play a more important role in the formation and evolution of galaxies than we have realized," said Arthur Wolfe, of the University of California-San Diego (UCSD). At its great distance, the protogalaxy is seen as it was when the Universe was about half its current age. According to the leading theory, cosmic magnetic fields are generated by the dynamos of rotating galaxies -- a process that would produce stronger fields with the passage of time. In this scenario, the magnetic fields should be weaker in the earlier Universe, not stronger. The new, direct magnetic-field measurement comes on the heels of a July report by Swiss and American astronomers who made indirect measurements that also implied strong magnetic fields in the early Universe. "Our results present a challenge to the dynamo model, but they do not rule it out," Wolfe said. There are other possible explanations for the strong magnetic field seen in the one protogalaxy Wolfe's team studied. "We may be seeing the field close to the central region of a massive galaxy, and we know such fields are stronger toward the centers of nearby galaxies. Also, the field we see may have been amplified by a shock wave caused by the collision of two galaxies," he said. The protogalaxy studied with the GBT, called DLA-3C286, consists of gas with little or no star formation occurring in it. The astronomers suspect that

  9. Radiometric performance results of the New Horizons' ALICE UV imaging spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Slater, David C.; Davis, Michael W.; Olkin, Catherine B.; Scherrer, John; Stern, S. Alan

    2005-09-01

    We describe the radiometric performance and calibration results of the New Horizons' ALICE flight model. This ALICE is a lightweight (4.4 kg), low-power (4.4 W), ultraviolet spectrograph based on the ALICE instrument now in flight aboard the European Space Agency's Rosetta spacecraft. Its primary job will be to detect a variety of important atomic and molecular species in Pluto's atmosphere, and to determine their relative abundances so that a complete picture of Pluto's atmospheric composition can be determined for the first time. ALICE will also be used to search for an atmosphere around Pluto's moon, Charon, as well as the Kuiper Belt Objects (KBOs) New Horizons hopes to fly by after Pluto-Charon. Detailed radiometric performance results of the ALICE flight model are presented and discussed.

  10. Update on the Status of the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph onboard the Hubble Space Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hernandez, Svea; Aloisi, A.; Bostroem, K. A.; Cox, C.; Debes, J. H.; DiFelice, A.; Roman-Duval, J.; Hodge, P.; Holland, S.; Lindsay, K.; Lockwood, S. A.; Mason, E.; Oliveira, C. M.; Penton, S. V.; Proffitt, C. R.; Sonnentrucker, P.; Taylor, J. M.; Wheeler, T.

    2013-06-01

    The Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) has been on orbit for approximately 16 years as one of the 2nd generation instruments on the Hubble Space Telescope (HST). Its operations were interrupted by an electronics failure in 2004, but STIS was successfully repaired in May 2009 during Service Mission 4 (SM4) allowing it to resume science observations. The Instrument team continues to monitor its performance and work towards improving the quality of its products. Here we present updated information on the status of the FUV and NUV MAMA and the CCD detectors onboard STIS and describe recent changes to the STIS calibration pipeline. We also discuss the status of efforts to apply a pixel-based correction for charge transfer inefficiency (CTI) effects to STIS CCD data. These techniques show promise for ameliorating the effects of ongoing radiation damage on the quality of STIS CCD data.

  11. Sky background subtraction with fiber-fed spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Puech, M.; Rodrigues, M.; Yang, Y.; Flores, H.; Royer, F.; Disseau, K.; Gonçalves, T.; Hammer, F.; Cirasuolo, M.; Evans, C. J.; Li Causi, G.; Maiolino, R.; Melo, C.

    2014-08-01

    Fiber-fed spectrographs can now have throughputs equivalent to slit spectrographs. However, the sky subtraction accuracy that can be reached on such instruments has often been pinpointed as one of their major issues, in relation to difficulties in scattered light and flat-field corrections or throughput losses associated with fibers. Using technical time observations with FLAMES-GIRAFFE, two observing techniques, namely dual staring and cross beam switching modes, were tested and the resulting sky subtraction accuracy reached in both cases was quantified. Results indicate that an accuracy of 0.6% on the sky subtraction can be reached, provided that the cross beam switching mode is used. This is very encouraging regarding the detection of very faint sources with future fiber-fed spectrographs such as VLT/MOONS or E-ELT/MOSAIC.

  12. The construction, alignment, and installation of the VIRUS spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tuttle, Sarah E.; Hill, Gary J.; Lee, Hanshin; Vattiat, Brian; Noyola, Eva; Drory, Niv; Cornell, Mark; Peterson, Trent; Chonis, Taylor; Allen, Richard; Dalton, Gavin; DePoy, Darren; Edmonston, Doug; Fabricius, Maximillian; Haynes, Dionne; Kelz, Andreas; Landriau, Martin; Lesser, Michael; Leach, Bob; Marshall, Jennifer; Murphy, Jeremy; Perry, David; Prochaska, Travis; Ramsey, Jason; Savage, Richard

    2014-07-01

    VIRUS is the massively replicated fiber-fed spectrograph being built for the Hobby-Eberly Telescope to support HETDEX (the Hobby-Eberly Telescope Dark Energy Experiment). The instrument consists of 156 identical channels, fed by 34,944 fibers contained in 78 integral field units, deployed in the 22 arcminute field of the upgraded HET. VIRUS covers 350-550nm at R ≍ 700 and is built to target Lyman α emitters at 1.9 < z < 3.5 to measure the evolution of dark energy. Here we present the assembly line construction of the VIRUS spectrographs, including their alignment and plans for characterization. We briefly discuss plans for installation on the telescope. The spectrographs are being installed on the HET in several stages, and the instrument is due for completion by the end of 2014.

  13. Analysis of Infrared Astronomical Sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ivezic, Zeljko

    Many Galactic objects are surrounded by dust which processes their radiation, shifting the spectral energy distribution to infrared wavelengths. Here we present systematic modeling of this phenomenon and analyze the resulting infrared emission for various Galactic objects. A major new result is the recognition that the radiative transfer problem possesses scaling properties. For a given dust chemical composition, the solution depends only on overall optical depth and the functional form of the radial dust distribution. We show that distribution of Galactic sources in the Infrared Astronomical Satellite (IRAS) color -color diagrams indeed can be understood in terms of these parameters. These methods are employed in a detailed analysis of late-type stars which are a subset of Galactic infrared objects. Dynamical structure and infrared emission of winds around these stars are studied in a self-consistent model that couples the equations of motion and radiative transfer. Thanks to its scaling properties, both the dynamics and IR spectrum of the solution are fully characterized by tauF, the flux averaged optical depth of the wind. Five types of dust grains are considered: astronomical silicate, crystalline olivine, graphite, amorphous carbon and SiC, as well as mixtures. Both dynamics and properties of infrared emission are in good agreement with observations, and show that virtually all IRAS point sources located in the relevant regions of the color-color diagrams can be explained as late-type stars. Because of general scaling properties, the angular profiles of surface brightness are essentially determined by overall optical depth and self-similarly scaled by the size of the dust condensation zone. We find that mid-IR is the best wavelength range to directly measure the size of this zone and identify the 15 best candidates for such future observations. We also show that the infrared emission should display time variability because of cyclical changes in overall

  14. Anemometer calibrator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bate, T.; Calkins, D. E.; Price, P.; Veikins, O.

    1971-01-01

    Calibrator generates accurate flow velocities over wide range of gas pressure, temperature, and composition. Both pressure and flow velocity can be maintained within 0.25 percent. Instrument is essentially closed loop hydraulic system containing positive displacement drive.

  15. The AVES adaptive optics spectrograph for the VLT: status report

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pallavicini, Roberto; Delabre, Bernard; Pasquini, Luca; Zerbi, Filippo M.; Bonanno, Giovanni; Comari, Maurizio; Conconi, Paolo; Mazzoleni, Ruben; Santin, Paolo; Damiani, Francesco; Di Marcantonio, Paolo; Franchini, Mariagrazia; Spano, Paolo; Bonifacio, P.; Catalano, Santo; Molaro, Paolo P.; Randich, S.; Rodono, Marcello

    2003-03-01

    We report on the status of AVES, the Adaptive-optics Visual Echelle Spectrograph proposed for the secondary port of the Nasmyth Adaptive Optics System (NAOS) recently installed at the VLT. AVES is an intermediate resolution (R ≍ 16,000) high-efficiency fixed- format echelle spectrograph which operates in the spectral band 500 - 1,000 nm. In addition to a high intrinsic efficiency, comparable to that of ESI at Keck II, it takes advantage of the adaptive optics correction provided by NAOS to reduce the sky and detector contribution in background-limited observations of weak sources, thus allowing a further magnitude gain with respect to comparable non-adaptive optics spectrographs. Simulations show that the instrument will be capable of reaching a magnitude V = 22.5 at S/N > 10 in two hours, two magnitudes weaker than GIRAFFE at the same resolution and 3 magnitudes weaker than the higher resolution UVES spectrograph. Imaging and coronographic functions have also been implemented in the design. We present the results of the final design study and we dicuss the technical and operational issues related to its implementation at the VLT as a visitor instrument. We also discuss the possibility of using a scaled-up non-adaptive optics version of the same design as an element of a double- or triple-arm intermediate-resolution spectrograph for the VLT. Such an option looks attractive in the context of a high-efficiency large-bandwidth (320 - 1,500 nm) spectrograph ("fast-shooter") being considered by ESO as a 2nd-generation VLT instrument.

  16. Optical design of the SuMIRe/PFS spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pascal, Sandrine; Vives, Sébastien; Barkhouser, Robert; Gunn, James E.

    2014-07-01

    The SuMIRe Prime Focus Spectrograph (PFS), developed for the 8-m class SUBARU telescope, will consist of four identical spectrographs, each receiving 600 fibers from a 2394 fiber robotic positioner at the telescope prime focus. Each spectrograph includes three spectral channels to cover the wavelength range [0.38-1.26] um with a resolving power ranging between 2000 and 4000. A medium resolution mode is also implemented to reach a resolving power of 5000 at 0.8 um. Each spectrograph is made of 4 optical units: the entrance unit which produces three corrected collimated beams and three camera units (one per spectral channel: "blue, "red", and "NIR"). The beam is split by using two large dichroics; and in each arm, the light is dispersed by large VPH gratings (about 280x280mm). The proposed optical design was optimized to achieve the requested image quality while simplifying the manufacturing of the whole optical system. The camera design consists in an innovative Schmidt camera observing a large field-of-view (10 degrees) with a very fast beam (F/1.09). To achieve such a performance, the classical spherical mirror is replaced by a catadioptric mirror (i.e meniscus lens with a reflective surface on the rear side of the glass, like a Mangin mirror). This article focuses on the optical architecture of the PFS spectrograph and the perfornance achieved. We will first described the global optical design of the spectrograph. Then, we will focus on the Mangin-Schmidt camera design. The analysis of the optical performance and the results obtained are presented in the last section.

  17. Extreme Precision Environmental Control for Next Generation Radial Velocity Spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stefansson, Gudmundur K.; Hearty, Fred; Levi, Eric; Robertson, Paul; Mahadevan, Suvrath; Bender, Chad; Nelson, Matt; Halverson, Samuel

    2015-12-01

    Extreme radial velocity precisions of order 10cm/s will enable the discoveries of Earth-like planets around solar-type stars. Temperature and pressure variations inside a spectrograph can lead to thermomechanical instabilities in the optics and mounts, and refractive index variations in both the optical elements as well as the surrounding air. Together, these variations can easily induce instrumental drifts of several tens to hundreds of meters per second. Enclosing the full optical train in thermally stabilized high-vacuum environments minimizes such errors. In this talk, I will discuss the Environmental Control System (ECS) for the Habitable Zone Planet Finder (HPF) spectrograph: a near infrared (NIR) facility class instrument we will commission at the Hobby Eberly Telescope in 2016. The ECS will maintain the HPF optical bench stable at 180K at the sub milli-Kelvin level on the timescale of days, and at the few milli-Kelvin level over months to years. The entire spectrograph is kept under high-quality vacuum (<10-6 Torr), and environmental temperature fluctuations are compensated for with an actively controlled radiation shield outfitted with custom feedback electronics. High efficiency Multi-Layer Insulation (MLI) blankets, and a passive external thermal enclosure further isolate the optics from ambient perturbations. This environmental control scheme is versatile, suitable to stabilize both next generation NIR, and optical spectrographs. I will show how we are currently testing this control system for use with our design concept of the Extreme Precision Doppler Spectrograph (EPDS), the next generation optical spectrograph for the WIYN 3.5m telescope. Our most recent results from full-scale stability tests will be presented.

  18. National Student Solar Spectrograph Competition Overview and Results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Des Jardins, Angela C.; Larimer, R.; Shaw, J. A.; Kankelborg, C.; Palmer, C.; Key, J. S.; Nakagawa, W.; Springer, L.; Knighton, W.; Repasky, K. S.; Pust, N. J.; Babbitt, W.; Jaeggli, S. A.; Hobish, M. K.; Wilson, E. W.; Anderson, M.; Boger, J.; McCrady, N.; Naylor, J.; Turcotte, S.; Lines, T.; Strobel, N.; Cooper, W.; Darke, R.; Head, R.; Kimball, D.; Kissel, G.; Buck, K.; Lawrence, L.; Wragg, J.; Runyon, C. J.; Spacher, P.; Dumitriu, I.; Nollenberg, J. G.; Estaban, R.

    2013-07-01

    The yearly National Student Solar Spectrograph Competition (NSSSC) is Montana Space Grant Consortium's Education and Public Outreach (EP/O) Program for NASA's Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) mission. The NSSSC is designed to give institutions with less aerospace activity such as Minority Serving Institutions and Community Colleges an opportunity for hands on real world research experience. The NSSSC provides students from across the country the opportunity to work as part of an undergraduate interdisciplinary team to design, build and test a ground based solar spectrograph. Over the course of nine months, teams come up with their own science goals and then build an instrument to collect data in support of their goals. Teams then travel to Bozeman, MT to demonstrate their instruments and present their results in a competitive science fair environment. This poster will present the 2012-2013 competition results.Abstract (2,250 Maximum Characters): The yearly National Student Solar Spectrograph Competition (NSSSC) is Montana Space Grant Consortium's Education and Public Outreach (EP/O) Program for NASA's Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) mission. The NSSSC is designed to give institutions with less aerospace activity such as Minority Serving Institutions and Community Colleges an opportunity for hands on real world research experience. The NSSSC provides students from across the country the opportunity to work as part of an undergraduate interdisciplinary team to design, build and test a ground based solar spectrograph. Over the course of nine months, teams come up with their own science goals and then build an instrument to collect data in support of their goals. Teams then travel to Bozeman, MT to demonstrate their instruments and present their results in a competitive science fair environment. This poster will present the 2012-2013 competition results.

  19. Improved Radial Velocity Precision with a Tunable Laser Calibrator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cramer, Claire; Brown, S.; Dupree, A. K.; Lykke, K. R.; Smith, A.; Szentgyorgyi, A.

    2010-01-01

    We present radial velocities obtained using a novel laser-based wavelength calibration technique. We have built a prototype laser calibrator for the Hectochelle spectrograph at the MMT 6.5 m telescope. The Hectochelle is a high-dispersion, fiber-fed, multi-object spectrograph capable of recording up to 240 spectra simultaneously with a resolving power of 40000. The standard wavelength calibration method makes use of spectra from thorium-argon hollow cathode lamps shining directly onto the fibers. The difference in light path between calibration and science light as well as the uneven distribution of spectral lines are believed to introduce errors of up to several hundred m/s in the wavelength scale. Our tunable laser wavelength calibrator solves these problems. The laser is bright enough for use with a dome screen, allowing the calibration light path to better match the science light path. Further, the laser is tuned in regular steps across a spectral order to generate a calibration spectrum, creating a comb of evenly-spaced lines on the detector. Using the solar spectrum reflected from the atmosphere to record the same spectrum in every fiber, we show that laser wavelength calibration brings radial velocity uncertainties down below 100 m/s. We present these results as well as an application of tunable laser calibration to stellar radial velocities determined with the infrared Ca triplet in globular clusters M15 and NGC 7492. We also suggest how the tunable laser could be useful for other instruments, including single-object, cross-dispersed echelle spectrographs, and adapted for infrared spectroscopy.

  20. The current status of the UK-FMOS spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tosh, Ian A.; Woodhouse, Guy F.; Froud, Tim; Dowell, Allan; Patel, Mukesh; Wallner, Mattias; Lewis, Ian J.; Dalton, Gavin B.; Holmes, Alan; Brooks, Barney; Band, Cyril; Bonfield, David G.; Murray, Graham J.; Robertson, David J.; Dipper, Nigel A.

    2004-09-01

    FMOS is a near-IR OH-suppressed multi-fibre fed spectrograph for the Subaru telescope. The spectrograph will accept 200 optical fibres from the ECHIDNA positioner system at the 30arcmin Prime focus of the telescope. We will describe the recent activities here in the UK in progressing the instrument from its conceptual phase through detailed design and into manufacture. A variety of technical areas will be described including: the opto-mechanical system design and construction, development of the HAWAII-II detector control system, the thermal system design & control and OH suppression techniques.

  1. An integral field spectrograph for SNAP supernova studies

    SciTech Connect

    Ealet, Anne; Prieto, E.; Bonissent, A.; Malina, R.; Basa, S.; LeFevre, O.; Mazure, A.; Tarle, G.; Akerlof, C.W.; Aldering, G.; Amidei, D.E.; Astier, P.; Baden, A.R.; Bebek, C.; Bergstrom, L.; Bernstein, G.M.; Bower, C.R.; Campbell, M.; Carithers Jr., W.C.; Commins, E.D.; Curtis, D.W.; Deustua, S.E.; Edwards, W.R.; Ellis, R.S.; Fruchter, A.; Frye, B.L.; Genat, J.; Goldhaber, G.; Goobar, A.; Goodman, J.A.; Graham, J.R.; Hardin, D.; Harris, S.E.; Harvey, P.R.; Heetderks, H.D.; Honeycutt, R.; Holland, S.E.; Hook, I.; Huterer, D.; Kasen, D.N.; Kim, A.G.; Knop, R.A.; Lafever, R.; Lampton, M.L.; Levi, M.E.; Levin, D.S.; Levy, J.M.; Lidman, C.; Lin, R.P.; Linder, E.V.; Loken, S.C.; McKay, T.; McKee, S.P.; Metzger, M.R.; Miquel, R.; Mourao, A.; Mufson, S.; Musser, J.A.; Nugent, P.E.; Pain, R.; Pankow, D.H.; Pennypacker, C.R.; Perlmutter, S.; Refregier, A.; Rich, J.; Robinson, K.E.; Schahmaneche, K.; Schubnell, M.S.; Spadafora, A.; Smoot, G.F.; Sullivan, G.W.; Tomasch, A.D.; SNAP Collaboration

    2002-07-29

    A well-adapted spectrograph concept has been developed for the SNAP (SuperNova/Acceleration Probe) experiment. The goal is to ensure proper identification of Type Ia supernovae and to standardize the magnitude of each candidate by determining explosion parameters. An instrument based on an integral field method with the powerful concept of imager slicing has been designed and is presented in this paper. The spectrograph concept is optimized to have very high efficiency and low spectral resolution (R {approx} 100), constant through the wavelength range (0.35-1.7{micro}m), adapted to the scientific goals of the mission.

  2. Image Slicer for the Subaru Telescope High Dispersion Spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tajitsu, Akito; Aoki, Wako; Yamamuro, Tomoyasu

    2012-08-01

    We report on the design, manufacturing, and performance of the image slicer for the High Dispersion Spectrograph on Subaru Telescope. This instrument is a Bowen-Walraven type image slicer, providing five images of 0."3 × 1."5 with a resolving power of R = λ/δλ = 110000. The resulting resolving power and line profiles have been investigated in detail, including estimates of the defocusing effect on the resolving power. The throughput in a wavelength range of from 400 to 700 nm is higher than 80%, thereby improving the efficiency of the spectrograph under a seeing condition of 0."7 by a factor of 1.8.

  3. A soft x-ray octadecyl hydrogen maleate crystal spectrograph

    SciTech Connect

    Fan, P.Z.; Fill, E.E.; Tietang, G.

    1996-03-01

    A crystal spectrograph is described which can be used to investigate laser-produced plasmas in the region of soft x rays at wavelengths of up to 60 A. The spectrograph uses an octadecyl hydrogen maleate crystal with a 2{ital d} of 63.5 A, combined with a very thin carbon filter (3000 A thick). As examples of its application, soft x-ray spectra in the range of 43{endash}51 A from laser plasmas of Si and Cu are presented. A spectral resolution of {lambda}/{Delta}{lambda}=1100 is deduced from the spectra. {copyright} {ital 1996 American Institute of Physics.}

  4. Next VLT Instrument Ready for the Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2000-02-01

    FORS2 Commissioning Period Successfully Terminated The commissioning of the FORS2 multi-mode astronomical instrument at KUEYEN , the second FOcal Reducer/low dispersion Spectrograph at the ESO Very Large Telescope, was successfully finished today. This important work - that may be likened with the test driving of a new car model - took place during two periods, from October 22 to November 21, 1999, and January 22 to February 8, 2000. The overall goal was to thoroughly test the functioning of the new instrument, its conformity to specifications and to optimize its operation at the telescope. FORS2 is now ready to be handed over to the astronomers on April 1, 2000. Observing time for a six-month period until October 1 has already been allocated to a large number of research programmes. Two of the images that were obtained with FORS2 during the commissioning period are shown here. An early report about this instrument is available as ESO PR 17/99. The many modes of FORS2 The FORS Commissioning Team carried out a comprehensive test programme for all observing modes. These tests were done with "observation blocks (OBs)" that describe the set-up of the instrument and telescope for each exposure in all details, e.g., position in the sky of the object to be observed, filters, exposure time, etc.. Whenever an OB is "activated" from the control console, the corresponding observation is automatically performed. Additional information about the VLT Data Flow System is available in ESO PR 10/99. The FORS2 observing modes include direct imaging, long-slit and multi-object spectroscopy, exactly as in its twin, FORS1 at ANTU . In addition, FORS2 contains the "Mask Exchange Unit" , a motorized magazine that holds 10 masks made of thin metal plates into which the slits are cut by means of a laser. The advantage of this particular observing method is that more spectra (of more objects) can be taken with a single exposure (up to approximately 80) and that the shape of the slits can be

  5. Reporting Astronomical Discoveries: Past, Now, and Future

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamaoka, Hitoshi; Green, Daniel W. E.; Samus, Nikolai N.; West, Richard

    2015-08-01

    Many new astronomical objects have been discovered over the years by amateur astronomers, and this continues to be the case. They have traditionally reported them (as have professional astronomers) to the Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams (CBAT), which was established in the 19th century. This procedure has worked very well throughout the 20th century, moving under the umbrella of the newly established IAU in 1920. The discoverers have been honored by the formal announcement of their discoveries in the publications of the CBAT.In recent years, some professional research groups have established other ways of announcing their discoveries of explosive objects such as novae and supernovae; some do not now report their discoveries or spectroscopic confirmations of the transients to the CBAT, including often spectroscopic reports of objects posted to the CBAT "Transient Objects Confirmation Page" -- the highly successful TOCP webpage, which assigns official positional designations to new transients posted there by approved, registered users. This leads to a delay in formal announcements of discoveries by amateur astronomers in many cases, as well as inconsistent designations being put into use by individual groups. Amateur astronomers are feeling frustrated about this situation, and they hope that the IAU will help to settle the situation.We have proposed the new IAU commission NC-52, which will treat these phenomena in a continuation of Commission 6, through the CBAT. We hope to continuously support the reporting of the discoveries by amateur astronomers, as well as professional astronomers, who all deserve and desire proper recognition. Our strategy will maintain the firm trust between the amateur and professional astronomers, which is necessary for true collaboration. The plan is for the CBAT to work with collaborators to assure that discoveries posted on the TOCP are promptly designated and announced by the CBAT, even when confirmations are made elsewhere

  6. Ultraviolet observations of astronomical sources

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Eaton, Joel A.

    1994-01-01

    The final report on 'Ultraviolet Observations of Astronomical Sources,' which ran for a total of three years, roughly between 1 July 1988 and 14 Feb. 1993 is presented. During the first year, I worked at Indiana University; since October, 1989, I have been at Tennessee State University. This grant has supported my studies of archival International Ultraviolet Explorer (IUE) observations of zeta Aur binaries, cool stars that are paired with hot stars in binary systems. Such systems are important as a source of detailed knowledge about the structures of chromospheres and winds in cool giant and supergiant stars, since the hot star serves as a probe of many lines of sight through the cool supergiant star's outer atmosphere. By determining the physical conditions along many such lines of sight, a detailed two-dimensional map of the chromosphere and wind may be constructed. The grant grew out of my analysis of archival IUE observations of 31 Cyg in which I analyzed five epochs of an atmospheric eclipse that occurred in 1982. I fit the attenuation spectra of atmospheric eclipse throughout the ultraviolet (lambda(lambda)1175-1950 and lambda(lambda)2500-3100) with theoretically calculated spectra, thereby determining the physical properties of gas (mass column density of absorbers, temperature, and velocity spread) along each observed line of sight. A similar analysis for other such zeta Aur binaries was accomplished and theoretical models for the chromospheres of these stars based on my observations were constructed.

  7. Astronomical surveys and big data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mickaelian, Areg M.

    Recent all-sky and large-area astronomical surveys and their catalogued data over the whole range of electromagnetic spectrum, from γ -rays to radio waves, are reviewed, including such as Fermi-GLAST and INTEGRAL in γ -ray, ROSAT, XMM and Chandra in X-ray, GALEX in UV, SDSS and several POSS I and POSS II-based catalogues (APM, MAPS, USNO, GSC) in the optical range, 2MASS in NIR, WISE and AKARI IRC in MIR, IRAS and AKARI FIS in FIR, NVSS and FIRST in radio range, and many others, as well as the most important surveys giving optical images (DSS I and II, SDSS, etc.), proper motions (Tycho, USNO, Gaia), variability (GCVS, NSVS, ASAS, Catalina, Pan-STARRS), and spectroscopic data (FBS, SBS, Case, HQS, HES, SDSS, CALIFA, GAMA). An overall understanding of the coverage along the whole wavelength range and comparisons between various surveys are given: galaxy redshift surveys, QSO/AGN, radio, Galactic structure, and Dark Energy surveys. Astronomy has entered the Big Data era, with Astrophysical Virtual Observatories and Computational Astrophysics playing an important role in using and analyzing big data for new discoveries.

  8. Real Explorations in Astronomical Learning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilhelm, Jennifer; Wilhelm, R.

    2007-12-01

    Real Explorations in Astronomical Learning (REAL) is an innovative and new approach to student learning that thoughtfully integrates the excitement of space science discovery with science and mathematics. Students explore NASA images of planetary surfaces using the contexts of crater density, cratering rates, and surface age while developing critical thinking skills in science and mathematics that can be applied to any number of real life situations. Project REAL participants develop, implement, and evaluate an integrated astronomy curriculum designed for middle level students that focuses on the tools necessary for astronomy research concerning the origins and evolution of surface features on planetary bodies within our Solar System. Through the REAL curriculum, students experience the excitement of exploration by becoming authentic space science researchers. Students are provided with opportunities to: • Engage in hands-on space science research • Both quantitatively and qualitatively understand the phases of the Moon, and the origins and evolution of specific features on the surfaces of planetary bodies within our Solar System • Communicate their own scientific thinking and to understand others’ scientific thinking We present year one's findings concerning the state and effectiveness of this REAL curriculum funded by a NASA-IDEAS grant.

  9. Generating Mosaics of Astronomical Images

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bergou, Attila; Berriman, Bruce; Good, John; Jacob, Joseph; Katz, Daniel; Laity, Anastasia; Prince, Thomas; Williams, Roy

    2005-01-01

    "Montage" is the name of a service of the National Virtual Observatory (NVO), and of software being developed to implement the service via the World Wide Web. Montage generates science-grade custom mosaics of astronomical images on demand from input files that comply with the Flexible Image Transport System (FITS) standard and contain image data registered on projections that comply with the World Coordinate System (WCS) standards. "Science-grade" in this context signifies that terrestrial and instrumental features are removed from images in a way that can be described quantitatively. "Custom" refers to user-specified parameters of projection, coordinates, size, rotation, and spatial sampling. The greatest value of Montage is expected to lie in its ability to analyze images at multiple wavelengths, delivering them on a common projection, coordinate system, and spatial sampling, and thereby enabling further analysis as though they were part of a single, multi-wavelength image. Montage will be deployed as a computation-intensive service through existing astronomy portals and other Web sites. It will be integrated into the emerging NVO architecture and will be executed on the TeraGrid. The Montage software will also be portable and publicly available.

  10. Astronomical Knowledge in Holy Books

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farmanyan, Sona V.; Mickaelian, Areg M.

    2015-08-01

    We investigate religious myths related to astronomy from different cultures in an attempt to identify common subjects and characteristics. The paper focuses on astronomy in religion. The initial review covers records from Holy books about sky related superstitious beliefs and cosmological understanding. The purpose of this study is to introduce sky related religious and national traditions (particularly based on different calendars; Solar or Lunar). We carried out a comparative study of astronomical issues contained in a number of Holy books: Ancient Egyptian Religion (Pyramid Texts), Zoroastrianism (Avesta), Hinduism (Vedas), Buddhism (Tipitaka), Confucianism (Five Classics), Sikhism (Guru Granth Sahib), Christianity (Bible), Islam (Quran), Druidism (Mabinogion) and Maya Religion (Popol Vuh). These books include various information on the creation of the Universe, Sun and Moon, the age of the Universe, Cosmic sizes, understanding about the planets, stars, Milky Way and description of the Heavens in different religions. We come to the conclusion that the perception of celestial objects varies from culture to culture, and from religion to religion and preastronomical views had a significant impact on humankind, particularly on religious diversities. We prove that Astronomy is the basis of cultures, and that national identity and mythology and religion were formed due to the special understanding of celestial objects.

  11. VEGAS: VErsatile GBT Astronomical Spectrometer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bussa, Srikanth; VEGAS Development Team

    2012-01-01

    The National Science Foundation Advanced Technologies and Instrumentation (NSF-ATI) program is funding a new spectrometer backend for the Green Bank Telescope (GBT). This spectrometer is being built by the CICADA collaboration - collaboration between the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) and the Center for Astronomy Signal Processing and Electronics Research (CASPER) at the University of California Berkeley.The backend is named as VErsatile GBT Astronomical Spectrometer (VEGAS) and will replace the capabilities of the existing spectrometers. This backend supports data processing from focal plane array systems. The spectrometer will be capable of processing up to 1.25 GHz bandwidth from 8 dual polarized beams or a bandwidth up to 10 GHz from a dual polarized beam.The spectrometer will be using 8-bit analog to digital converters (ADC), which gives a better dynamic range than existing GBT spectrometers. There will be 8 tunable digital sub-bands within the 1.25 GHz bandwidth, which will enhance the capability of simultaneous observation of multiple spectral transitions. The maximum spectral dump rate to disk will be about 0.5 msec. The vastly enhanced backend capabilities will support several science projects with the GBT. The projects include mapping temperature and density structure of molecular clouds; searches for organic molecules in the interstellar medium; determination of the fundamental constants of our evolving Universe; red-shifted spectral features from galaxies across cosmic time and survey for pulsars in the extreme gravitational environment of the Galactic Center.

  12. Chrysanthos Notaras as an Astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rovithis, P.

    The aim of the present work is to emphasize the contribution of Chrysanthos Notaras (16??-1731) in the dispersion of Astronomy in the begining of the eighteenth century. Chysanthos Notaras, Partiarch of Jerusalem (1707-1731), is included among the most educated Greeks of his epoch. Although his first studies were suitable for ecclesiastic offices and religion, (since he studied ecclesiastic low, at Patavio, Italy), he continued at Paris for additional studies in Astronomy and Geography (1700). He became student of G.D. Cassini, who was the Director of Paris Observatory at that time, and he served as observer and astronomical instruments constructor, under Cassini's supervision. Chrysanthos Notaras included the teaching of "Astronomy" as a lesson in the schools of the Holy Sepulchre, in order to disperse the new ideas and knowledge about the earth and the universe among the young students. He published the first International Map (of the known world) in the Greek language in 1700 and in 1716 his book "Intoduction in Geography and Sphericals" was published in Paris. This book, written before 1707, was mainly an introduction to Astronomy and was used by the afterwards authors as an essential and basic manual and offered a lot to the enlightenment of the enslavement Greeks.

  13. A Future Astronomical Software Environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grosböl, P.; Tody, D.; Paioro, L.; Granet, Y.; Garilli, B.; Surace, C.; Opticon Fase Network

    2012-09-01

    Analyzing data sets in astronomy has become more and more complex and has driven the development of specific tools, functions and tasks. In order to integrate these tools in a global environment and thereby preserving them, the OPTICON Network 9.2 in coordination with US-VAO has outlined requirements, defined an architectural concept and developed a prototype of a Future Astronomical Software Environment (FASE). Important features are support for user scripting (e.g. Python), access to legacy applications (e.g. IRAF, MIDAS), integration with the Virtual Observatory (VO) for access to remote data and computation, and scalability supporting desktops to distributed cluster systems. A first prototype has been implemented and demonstrates the feasibility by offering access to numerous applications (e.g. ds9, ESO CPL pipelines, MIDAS, topcat) from a Python or Unix shell using VO-SAMP as a software bus. A simple packaging system is also provided to allow easy definition and sharing of applications at a Web portal.

  14. Lunar astronomical observatories - Design studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, Stewart W.; Burns, Jack O.; Chua, Koon Meng; Duric, Nebojsa; Gerstle, Walter H.

    1990-01-01

    The best location in the inner solar system for the grand observatories of the 21st century may be the moon. A multidisciplinary team including university students and faculty in engineering, astronomy, physics, and geology, and engineers from industry is investigating the moon as a site for astronomical observatories and is doing conceptual and preliminary designs for these future observatories. Studies encompass lunar facilities for radio astronomy and astronomy at optical, ultraviolet, and infrared wavelengths of the electromagnetic spectrum. Although there are significant engineering challenges in design and construction on the moon, the rewards for astronomy can be great, such as detection and study of earth-like planets orbiting nearby stars, and the task for engineers promises to stimulate advances in analysis and design, materials and structures, automation and robotics, foundations, and controls. Fabricating structures in the reduced-gravity environment of the moon will be easier than in the zero-gravity environment of earth orbit, as Apollo and space-shuttle missions have revealed. Construction of observatories on the moon can be adapted from techniques developed on the earth, with the advantage that the moon's weaker gravitational pull makes it possible to build larger devices than are practical on earth.

  15. Hubble repair and more wins astronomers' acclaim.

    PubMed

    Travis, J

    1994-01-28

    The repaired Hubble Space Telescope overshadowed everything else at the American Astronomical Society (AAS) Meeting earlier this month in Alexandria, Virginia. The nearly 2000 astronomers who turned out for the society's largest meeting yet provided plenty of "oohs" and "aahs" for every new image. But, in between, some astronomers caught word of a new proposal about how to tell whether the universe is open or closed, more data about mysterious gamma ray bursts, and the crowning of the "Galaxy of the Year." PMID:17754874

  16. America's foremost early astronomer. [David Rittenhouse

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rubincam, David Parry; Rubincam, Milton, II

    1995-01-01

    The life of 18th century astronomer, craftsman, and partriot David Rittenhouse is detailed. As a craftsman, he distinguished himself as one of the foremost builders of clocks. He also built magnetic compasses and surveying instruments. The finest examples of his craftsmanship are considered two orreries, mechanical solar systems. In terms of astronomical observations, his best-known contribution was his observation of the transit of Venus in 1769. Rittenhouse constructed the first diffraction grating. Working as Treasurer of Pennsylvania throughout the Revolution, he became the first director of the Mint in 1792. Astronomical observations in later life included charting the position of Uranus after its discovery.

  17. Astronomical Site Characterization at the Canarian Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muñoz-Tuñón, C.; Varela, A. M.; Castro-Almazán, J. A.

    2015-04-01

    Roque de los Muchachos Observatory (La Palma) and Teide Observatory (Tenerife) are prime astronomical sites, as confirmed by more than 30 years of intensive site-testing campaigns. The IAC has long been aware of the importance of promoting initiatives for the characterization and protection of the Canarian Observatories. For this purpose, in the late ’80s a Sky Team was created to measure the atmospheric parameters relating to astronomical observations, to design and develop new instruments and techniques for astronomical site testing, and to improve and maintain a high level of instrumentation in site characterization. New instruments and techniques are welcomed by the Observatories.

  18. Franklin Edward Kameny (1925-2011, Astronomer)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wright, Jason

    2012-01-01

    Dr. Frank Kameny is best known today as one of the most important members of the gay rights movement in the United States, but he was also a PhD astronomer. In fact, it was his firing from his civil service position as astronomer for the US Army Map Service on the grounds of homosexuality that sparked his lifelong career of activism. Here, I explore some aspects of his short but interesting astronomical career and the role of the AAS in his life.

  19. Commissioning MOS and Fabry-Perot modes for the Robert Stobie Spectrograph on the Southern African Large Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koeslag, A. R.; Williams, T. B.; Nordsieck, K. H.; Romero-Colmenero, E.; Vaisanen, P. H.; Maartens, D. S.

    2014-07-01

    The Southern African Large Telescope (SALT) currently has three instruments: the imaging SALTICAM, the new High Resolution Spectrograph (HRS) which is in the process of being commissioned and the Robert Stobie Spectrograph (RSS). RSS has multiple science modes, of which long slit spectroscopy was originally commissioned; We have commissioned two new science modes: Multi Object Spectroscopy (MOS) and Fabry-Perot (FP). Due to the short track times available on SALT it is vital that acquisition is as efficient as possible. This paper will discuss how we implemented these modes in software and some of the challenges we had to overcome. MOS requires a slit-mask to be aligned with a number of stars. This is done in two phases: in MOS calibration the positions of the slits are detected using a through-slit image and RA/DEC database information, and in MOS acquisition the detector sends commands to the telescope control system (TCS) in an iterative and interactive fashion for fine mask/detector alignment to get the desired targets on the slits. There were several challenges involved with this system, and the user interface evolved to make the process as efficient as possible. We also had to overcome problems with the manufacturing process of the slit-masks. FP requires the precise alignment each of the two etalons installed on RSS. The software makes use of calibration tables to get the etalons into roughly aligned starting positions. An exposure is then done using a calibration arc lamp, producing a ring pattern. Measurement of the rings allows the determination of the adjustments needed to properly align the etalons. The software has been developed to optimize this process, along with software tools that allow us to fine tune the calibration tables. The software architecture allows the complexity of automating the FP calibration and procedures to be easily managed.

  20. On-sky calibration performance of a monolithic Michelson interferometer filtered source

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ge, Jian; Ma, Bo; Powell, Scott; Varosi, Frank; Schofield, Sidney; Grieves, Nolan; Liu, Jian

    2014-07-01

    In the new era of searching for Earth-like planets, new generation radial velocity (RV) high resolution spectrographs requires ~0.1 m/s Doppler calibration accuracy in the visible band and a similar calibration precision in the near infrared. The patented stable monolithic Michelson interferometer filtered source called the Sine source emerges as a very promising calibration device. This Sine source has the potential of covering the practical working wavelengths (~0.38- 2.5 μm) for Doppler measurements with high resolution optical and near infrared high resolution spectrographs at the ground-based telescopes. The single frame calibration precision can reach < 0.1 m/s for the state of the art spectrographs, and it can be easily designed to match the intrinsic sensitivities of future Doppler instruments. The Sine source also has the great practical advantages in compact (portable) size and low cost. Here we report early results from on-sky calibration of a Sine source measured with two state-of-the-art TOU optical high resolution spectrograph (R=100,000, 0.38-0.9 microns) and FIRST near infrared spectrograph (R=50,000, 0.8-1.8 microns) at a 2 meter robotic telescope at Fairborn Observatory in Arizona. The results with the TOU spectrograph monitoring over seven days show that the Sine source has produced ~3 times better calibration precision than the ThAr calibration (RMS = 2.7m/s vs. 7.4m/s) at 0.49-0.62 microns where calibration data have been processed by our preliminary data pipeline and ~1.4 times better than the iodine absorption spectra (RMS=3.6 m/s) at the same wavelength region. As both ThAr and Iodine have reached sub m/s calibration accuracy with existing Doppler instruments (such as HARPS and HIRES), it is likely that the sine source would provide similar improvement once a better data pipeline and an upgraded version of a Sine source are developed. It is totally possible to reach ~0.1 m/s in the optical wavelength region. In addition, this Sine source

  1. Hubble Space Telescope: Goddard high resolution spectrograph instrument handbook. Version 2.1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Duncan, Douglas K.; Ebbets, Dennis

    1990-01-01

    The Goddard High Resolution Spectrograph (GHRS) is an ultraviolet spectrometer which has been designed to exploit the imaging and pointing capabilities of the Hubble Space Telescope. It will obtain observations of astronomical sources with greater spectral, spatial and temporal resolution than has been possible with previous space-based instruments. Data from the GHRS will be applicable to many types of scientific investigations, including studies of the interstellar medium, stellar winds, chromospheres and coronae, the byproducts and endproducts of stellar evolution, planetary atmospheres, comets, and many kinds of extragalactic sources. This handbook is intended to introduce the GHRS to potential users. The main purpose is to provide enough information to explore the feasibility of possible research projects and to plan, propose and execute a set of observations. An overview of the instrument performance, which should allow one to evaluate the suitability of the GHRS to specific projects, and a somewhat more detailed description of the GHRS hardware are given. How observing programs will be carried out, the various operating modes of the instrument, and the specific information about the performance of the instrument needed to plan an observation are discussed.

  2. Fiber Scrambling for High-Resolution Spectrographs. II. A Double Fiber Scrambler for Keck Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spronck, Julien F. P.; Fischer, Debra A.; Kaplan, Zachary; Jurgenson, Colby A.; Valenti, Jeff; Moriarty, John; Szymkowiak, Andrew E.

    2015-10-01

    We have designed a fiber scrambler as a prototype for the Keck HIRES spectrograph, using double scrambling to stabilize illumination of the spectrometer and a slicer to increase spectral resolution to R ~ 70,000 with minimal slit losses. We find that the spectral line-spread function (SLSF) for the double scrambler observations is 18 times more stable than the SLSF for comparable slit observations and 9 times more stable than the SLSF for a single fiber scrambler that we tested in 2010. For the double scrambler test data, we further reduced the radial velocity scatter from an average of ~2.1 m s-1 to ~1.5 m s-1 after adopting a median description of the stabilized SLSF in our Doppler model. This demonstrates that inaccuracies in modeling the SLSF contribute to the velocity rms. Imperfect knowledge of the SLSF, rather than stellar jitter, sets the precision floor for chromospherically quiet stars analyzed with the iodine technique using Keck HIRES and other slit-fed spectrometers. It is increasingly common practice for astronomers to scale stellar noise in quadrature with formal errors such that their Keplerian model yields a χ2 fit of 1.0. When this is done, errors from inaccurate modeling of the SLSF (and perhaps from other sources) are attributed to the star, and the floor of the stellar noise is overestimated.

  3. Optimal Extraction of High-Resolution Spectra From the Infrared Spectrograph on Spitzer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sloan, Gregory

    We propose to develop optimal extraction for the high-resolution modules on the Infrared Spectrograph (IRS) aboard the Spitzer Space Telescope, apply it to the full archive of IRS data, and post the results on a publicly available website. The currently used extraction algorithm sums everything in the slit, both source and backgrond emission. The new scheme will separate the source from its background, making it possible to analyze spectra taken in complex fields and generally improving the signal/noise quality of the data by a factor of nearly two. Most of the currently available high-resolution spectra require further reduction before they can be analyzed. Our improvements to the data will open the science contained in the thousands of high-resolution IRS observations to the full astronomy community. We will test our algorithm on high-resolution IRS spectra of young stellar objects in the Large Magellanic Cloud, which will ensure both an immediate science return, a polished extraction algorithm, and a reliable archive of optimally extracted spectra from all of the high-resolution IRS observations available to the astronomical community. The result will build on the momentum of CASSIS, the Cornell Atlas of of Spitzer/IRS Sources, which curently contains over 12,000 optimally extracted low-resolution spectra from the IRS. It will be a valuable addition to the legacy of the IRS and Spitzer.

  4. Supporting MMT and Magellan Infrared Spectrograph: From Operations to a Science Ready Data Archive

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chilingarian, I.; Moran, S.; Brown, W.; Conroy, M.; Fabricant, D.; Kurtz, M.; Matthews, A.; McLeod, B.; Roll, J.; Tokarz, S.

    2014-05-01

    The Telescope Data Center at Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory supports observations and data flow from the optical telescopes of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. With a limited amount of manpower, we handle the entire process from instrument operations to the data archiving and scientific reduction, which allows us to avoid many of the difficulties other data centers encounter arising from the incompatibility of on the instrument and data processing sides. We use telescope control software and data reduction pipelines developed inside our unit which also helps us to ensure the consistency of data products at different stages of processing. Presently we are working on a data archive solution using PostgreSQL and GAVO DaCHS which will allow us to: (1) distribute the raw data to PIs on a timescale of days from observations; (2) feed the data reduction pipelines automatically; (3) distribute reduced science ready data to the PIs; (4) provide access to raw and processed data products using Virtual Observatory interfaces such as ObsTAP, SIAP, SSAP after the proprietary period of the data has expired; (5) maintain a searchable record of all astronomical sources observed by the instruments, along with a catalog of basic observing conditions and telescope/instrument status associated with each exposure. I will present the data archive prototypes for the MMIRS multi-object spectrograph. Our operations model can be scaled up and adopted by large optical observatories.

  5. How accurately can we measure the water vapour content with astronomical spectra?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kausch, Wolfgang; Noll, Stefan; Smette, Alain; Kimeswenger, Stefan; Kerber, Florian; Jones, Amy M.; Szyszka, Cezary; Unterguggenberger, Stefanie

    2014-05-01

    Light from astronomical objects unavoidably has to pass through the Earth's atmosphere when being observed by ground-based telescopes. Thus, the fingerprint of the atmospheric state at the time of the observation is present in any spectrum taken by astronomical spectrographs due to absorption and emission arising in the atmosphere. The Very Large Telescope (VLT), operated by the European Southern Observatory, is one of the world's largest telescope facilities located at Cerro Paranal in the Chilean Atacama Desert offering a wide selection of various instruments. One of the most versatile instruments is X-Shooter. This medium resolution Echelle spectrograph covers the entire wavelength regime from 0.3 to 2.5 μm and is mounted on one of the 8m-class telescopes of the VLT. Due to its versatility, it is widely used, which leads to a good temporal coverage. We have recently developed the software package molecfit, a tool used to model and correct for atmospheric absorption lines visible in astronomical spectra. It is based on the radiative transfer code LBLRTM, the HITRAN line parameter database, the GDAS atmospheric profiles, and local meteorological data. A by-product is the determination of the amount of precipitable water vapour (PWV) above the observatory, as well as several other molecules, including CO2. In this poster, we investigate the accuracy of this method. We have used a set of X-Shooter spectra of so-called telluric standard stars, which are hot and bright stars showing nearly no intrinsic spectral features in the near infrared regime. Thus, most absorption features present in these spectra are related to the absorption arising in the Earth's atmosphere. For each spectrum, we have determined the PWV with our molecfit code and compared it with direct measurements achieved by the LHATPRO radiometer recently installed at Cerro Paranal. Therefore we have extended the results obtained by Kerber et al. (2012, Proc. SPIE, 8446) on a long time scale. Due to the

  6. Accelerating the Rate of Astronomical Discovery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    This meeting marks the the International Year of Astronomy by reviewing the extent to which astronomers are achieving the optimal rate of astronomical discovery. Can we identify and overcome the limits to progress? What steps can be taken to accelerate the rate of expansion of astronomical knowledge? What lessons can be learnt both from the recent and distant past? As the public announcements regarding the 2009 IYA have emphasized, new astronomical discoveries are currently being made at an extraordinary rate, while the invention of the telescope ushered in an equally momentous "golden age of discovery" 400 years ago. The meeting addresses a range of potential limits to progress-paradigmatic, technological, organizational, and political-examining each issue both from modern and historical perspectives, and drawing lessons to guide future progress. The program focusses on how astronomy actually progresses, using careful historical studies and real data, rather than anecdotes and folklore.

  7. Astronomical education in Tajikistan. Project TAJASTRO

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ibadinov, Khursandkul I.; Rahmonov, A. A.

    2011-06-01

    The centre of astronomy in Tajikistan is the Institute of Astrophysics of the Academy of Sciences of Tajikistan. This institute carries out scientific research and contributes to the preparation of the astronomical staff and to astronomical education. The reform of education in Tajikistan continues and now astronomy is studied in schools (together with physics) and at universities. The Tajik State Pedagogical University resumed in 2007 the training of teachers in physics and astronomy. Since 1999 the Tajik National University (TNU) offers a a specialty in astronomy. In 2006 is restored the Small Academy of Sciences (SAS) of Tajikistan. There is a planetarium in Khujand and in 2006 the Institute of Astrophysics, TNU and the Astronomical Society of Tajikistan, along with the support IBSP/UNESCO, organised the Training Methodical Center (TMC) ``TAJASTRO'' at the Hisar astronomical observatory for students, graduate students, young scientists, and teachers at secondary schools.

  8. Astronomical data bases and retrieval systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mead, J. M.; Nagy, T. A.; Warren, W. H., Jr.

    1981-01-01

    The status of the development of machine-readable stellar and extragalactic data bases is summarized, including several examples of astronomical applications using these data sets. The creation of a computerized bibliographical data base for cometary research is described.

  9. Galactic Archaeology with the Subaru Prime Focus Spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chiba, Masashi; Cohen, Judith; Wyse, Rosemary F. G.

    2016-08-01

    We present an overview of our Galactic Archaeology (GA) survey program with the Prime Focus Spectrograph (PFS) for Subaru. Following successful design reviews, the instrument is now under construction with first light anticipated in 2018. Main characteristics of PFS and the science goals in our PFS/GA program are described.

  10. X-shooter near-IR spectrograph arm realisation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Navarro, Ramon; Elswijk, Eddy; Tromp, Niels; ter Horst, Rik; Horrobin, Matthew; Vernet, Joel; Finger, Gert; Groot, Paul; Kaper, Lex

    2008-07-01

    X-shooter is a new high-efficiency spectrograph observing the complete spectral range of 300-2500 nm in a single exposure, with a spectral resolving power R>5000. The instrument will be located at the Cassegrain focus of one of the VLT UTs and consists of three spectrographs: UV, VIS and Near-IR. This paper addresses the design, hardware realization and performance of the Near-IR spectrograph of the X-Shooter instrument and its components. Various optical, mechanical and cryogenic manufacturing and verification techniques are discussed. The cryogenic performance of replicated light weight gratings is presented. Bare aluminium mirrors are produced and polished to optical quality to preserve high shape accuracy at cryogenic conditions. Their manufacturing techniques and performance are both discussed. The cryogenic collimator and dispersion boxes, on which the optical components are mounted, feature integrated baffles for improved stiffness and integrated leaf springs to reduce tension on optical components, thereby challenging 5 axis simultaneous CNC milling capabilities. ASTRON Extreme Light Weighting is used for a key component to reduce the flexure of the cryogenic system; some key numbers and unique manufacturing experience for this component are presented. The method of integrated system design at cryogenic working temperatures and the resulting alignment-free integration are evaluated. Finally some key lab test results for the complete NIR spectrograph are presented.

  11. AVES: an adaptive optics visual echelle spectrograph for the VLT

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pasquini, Luca; Delabre, Bernard; Avila, Gerardo; Bonaccini, Domenico

    1998-07-01

    We present the preliminary study of a low cost, high performance spectrograph for the VLT, for observations in the V, R and I bands. This spectrograph is meant for intermediate (R equals 16,000) resolution spectroscopy of faint (sky and/or detector limited) sources, with particular emphasis on the study of solar-type (F-G) stars belonging to the nearest galaxies and to distant (or highly reddened) galactic clusters. The spectrograph is designed to use the adaptive optics (AO) systems at the VLT Telescope. Even if these AO systems will not provide diffraction limited images in the V, R and I bands, the photon concentration will still be above approximately 60% of the flux in an 0.3 arcsecond aperture for typical Paranal conditions. This makes the construction of a compact, cheap and efficient echelle spectrograph possible. AVES will outperform comparable non adaptive optic instruments by more than one magnitude for sky- and/or detector-limited observations, and it will be very suitable for observations in crowded fields.

  12. Detector Arrays for the James Webb Near Infrared Spectrograph

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rauscher, Bernard J.

    2009-01-01

    NASA Goddard Space Flight Center is delivering the detector subsystem for the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) Near Infrared Spectrograph (NIRSpec). Of all JWST instruments, NIRSpec has the most stringent detector requirements. In this poster, we describe recent performance testing results and relate them to NIRSpec's science requirements.

  13. Miniaturized high-resolution mass/charge spectrograph /design study/

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Taylor, L. H.

    1969-01-01

    Use of a double-focusing mass/charge spectrograph weighing less than 25 pounds is feasible for solar wind experiments. Instrument has a parallel-plate energy filter between the ion source and the double focusing units which alleviates the problem of designing an ion source of small energy spread.

  14. Astronomers and the Media: What Reporters Expect

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Siedgfried, Tom; Witze, Alexandra

    2006-01-01

    Journalists writing about astronomy bring varying levels of knowledge to the task. Most rely on astronomers for help. To be most helpful, astronomers should familiarize themselves with the practices and needs of journalists and learn effective methods for presenting astronomy via news releases, interviews and news conferences. In all aspects of communicating with the media, the ability to express technical findings in plain language is essential.

  15. Image Calibration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Peay, Christopher S.; Palacios, David M.

    2011-01-01

    Calibrate_Image calibrates images obtained from focal plane arrays so that the output image more accurately represents the observed scene. The function takes as input a degraded image along with a flat field image and a dark frame image produced by the focal plane array and outputs a corrected image. The three most prominent sources of image degradation are corrected for: dark current accumulation, gain non-uniformity across the focal plane array, and hot and/or dead pixels in the array. In the corrected output image the dark current is subtracted, the gain variation is equalized, and values for hot and dead pixels are estimated, using bicubic interpolation techniques.

  16. The Chandra X-ray Observatory: An Astronomical Facility Available to the World

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, Randall K.

    2006-01-01

    The Chandra X-ray observatory, one of NASA's "Great Observatories," provides high angular and spectral resolution X-ray data which is freely available to all. In this review I describe the instruments on chandra along with their current calibration, as well as the chandra proposal system, the freely-available Chandra analysis software package CIAO, and the Chandra archive. As Chandra is in its 6th year of operation, the archive already contains calibrated observations of a large range of X-ray sources. The Chandra X-ray Center is committed to assisting astronomers from any country who wish to use data from the archive or propose for observations

  17. Calibration and characterization of spectral imaging systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Polder, Gerrit; van der Heijden, Gerie W.

    2001-09-01

    Spectral image sensors provide images with a large umber of contiguous spectral channels per pixel. This paper describes the calibration of spectrograph based spectral imaging systems. The relation between pixel position and measured wavelength was determined using three different wavelength calibration sources. Results indicate that for spectral calibration a source with very small peaks,such as a HgAr source, is preferred to arrow band filters. A second order polynomial model gives a better fit than a linear model for the pixel to wavelength mapping. The signal to noise ratio (SNR)is determined per wavelength. In the blue part of the spectrum,the SNR was lower than in the green and red part.This is due to a decreased quantum efficiency of the CCD,a smaller transmission coefficient of the spectrograph,as well as poor performance of the illuminant. Increasing the amount of blue light,using additional Fluorescent tube with special coating increased the SNR considerably. Furthermore, the spatial and spectral resolution of the system are determined.These can be used to choose appropriate binning factors to decrease the image size without losing information.

  18. Astronomical Data Center Bulletin, volume 1, no. 1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Warren, W. H., Jr. (Editor); Nagy, T. A. (Editor); Mead, J. M. (Editor)

    1980-01-01

    Information about work in progress on astronomical catalogs is presented. In addition to progress reports, an upadated status list for astronomical catalogs available at the Astronomical Data Center is included. Papers from observatories and individuals involved with astronomical data are also presented.

  19. Astronomers Find First Earth-like Planet in Habitable Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2007-04-01

    host star, Gliese 581, is among the 100 closest stars to us, located only 20.5 light-years away in the constellation Libra ("the Scales"). It has a mass of only one third the mass of the Sun. Such red dwarfs are intrinsically at least 50 times fainter than the Sun and are the most common stars in our Galaxy: among the 100 closest stars to the Sun, 80 belong to this class. "Red dwarfs are ideal targets for the search for low-mass planets where water could be liquid. Because such dwarfs emit less light, the habitable zone is much closer to them than it is around the Sun," emphasizes Xavier Bonfils, a co-worker from Lisbon University. Planets lying in this zone are then more easily detected with the radial-velocity method [3], the most successful in detecting exoplanets. ESO PR Photo 22d/07 ESO PR Photo 22d/07 Velocity Variations of Gl 581 Two years ago, the same team of astronomers already found a planet around Gliese 581 (see ESO 30/05). With a mass of 15 Earth-masses, i.e. similar to that of Neptune, it orbits its host star in 5.4 days. At the time, the astronomers had already seen hints of another planet. They therefore obtained a new set of measurements and found the new super-Earth, but also clear indications for another one, an 8 Earth-mass planet completing an orbit in 84 days. The planetary system surrounding Gliese 581 contains thus no fewer than 3 planets of 15 Earth masses or less, and as such is a quite remarkable system. The discovery was made thanks to HARPS (High Accuracy Radial Velocity for Planetary Searcher), perhaps the most precise spectrograph in the world. Located on the ESO 3.6-m telescope at La Silla, Chile, HARPS is able to measure velocities with a precision better than one metre per second (or 3.6 km/h)! HARPS is one of the most successful instruments for detecting exoplanets and holds already several recent records, including the discovery of another 'Trio of Neptunes' (ESO 18/06, see also ESO 22/04). ESO PR Video 22/07 ESO PR Video 22

  20. Karl Friedrich Zollner and the historical dimension of astronomical photometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sterken, C.; Staubermann, K. B.

    This book results from presentations and discussions of a group of astronomers and historians during a one-day workshop held at Archenhold Observatory, Berlin-Treptow, on April 4, 1997. This meeting was the first forum in a series dedicated to historical aspects of observational astrophysics in the nineteenth and early twentieth century. The basic principle of these meetings is to reflect during one or more days on the work and personality of a single individual or of a group of persons, at the same time avoiding the really dominant figures that typify the age. By focusing on key people who epitomize a way of thinking and working that has formed many of the ideas by which we do astrophysical research today, we also attempt to evoke the scientific spirit of the era under consideration. In 1858, the German physicist Karl Friedrich Zoellner introduced a new type of astronomical photometer which became a bestseller in the second half of the nineteenth century and which led him to the first German professorship in astrophysics. His type of photometer allowed most accurate photometric measurements and was used at several observatories for almost half a century. This book outlines four major themes. The first part describes the observing instruments that were used by Zoellner and his contemporaries: photometers and spectrographs that complemented his original design, but also competed with his most versatile prototype photometer. The description also includes an account of technical aspects associated with the replication of such a photometer today. The second part analyses the astrophysical data that were obtained with Zoellner's tools, and extracts information hidden in the published data --- scientific information as well as diverse aspects related to the observer himself. These nineteenth-century data are now published for the first time on a modern magnitude scale and are directly accessible in tabular form, and are thus fully applicable to archeophotometric studies

  1. Astronomers debate diamonds in space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1999-04-01

    This is not the first time the intriguing carbonaceous compound has been detected in space. A peculiar elite of twelve stars are known to produce it. The star now added by ISO to this elite is one of the best representatives of this exclusive family, since it emits a very strong signal of the compound. Additionally ISO found a second new member of the group with weaker emission, and also observed with a spectral resolution never achieved before other already known stars in this class. Astronomers think these ISO results will help solve the mystery of the true nature of the compound. Their publication by two different groups, from Spain and Canada, has triggered a debate on the topic, both in astronomy institutes and in chemistry laboratories. At present, mixed teams of astrophysicists and chemists are investigating in the lab compounds whose chemical signature or "fingerprint" matches that detected by ISO. Neither diamonds nor fullerenes have ever been detected in space, but their presence has been predicted. Tiny diamonds of pre-solar origin --older than the Solar System-- have been found in meteorites, which supports the as yet unconfirmed theory of their presence in interstellar space. The fullerene molecule, made of 60 carbon atoms linked to form a sphere (hence the name "buckyball"), has also been extensively searched for in space but never found. If the carbonaceous compound detected by ISO is a fullerene or a diamond, there will be new data on the production of these industrially interesting materials. Fullerenes are being investigated as "capsules" to deliver new pharmaceuticals to the body. Diamonds are commonly used in the electronics industry and for the development of new materials; if they are formed in the dust surrounding some stars, at relatively low temperatures and conditions of low pressure, companies could learn more about the ideal physical conditions to produce them. A textbook case The latest star in which the compound has been found is

  2. Scalable Machine Learning for Massive Astronomical Datasets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ball, Nicholas M.; Gray, A.

    2014-04-01

    We present the ability to perform data mining and machine learning operations on a catalog of half a billion astronomical objects. This is the result of the combination of robust, highly accurate machine learning algorithms with linear scalability that renders the applications of these algorithms to massive astronomical data tractable. We demonstrate the core algorithms kernel density estimation, K-means clustering, linear regression, nearest neighbors, random forest and gradient-boosted decision tree, singular value decomposition, support vector machine, and two-point correlation function. Each of these is relevant for astronomical applications such as finding novel astrophysical objects, characterizing artifacts in data, object classification (including for rare objects), object distances, finding the important features describing objects, density estimation of distributions, probabilistic quantities, and exploring the unknown structure of new data. The software, Skytree Server, runs on any UNIX-based machine, a virtual machine, or cloud-based and distributed systems including Hadoop. We have integrated it on the cloud computing system of the Canadian Astronomical Data Centre, the Canadian Advanced Network for Astronomical Research (CANFAR), creating the world's first cloud computing data mining system for astronomy. We demonstrate results showing the scaling of each of our major algorithms on large astronomical datasets, including the full 470,992,970 objects of the 2 Micron All-Sky Survey (2MASS) Point Source Catalog. We demonstrate the ability to find outliers in the full 2MASS dataset utilizing multiple methods, e.g., nearest neighbors. This is likely of particular interest to the radio astronomy community given, for example, that survey projects contain groups dedicated to this topic. 2MASS is used as a proof-of-concept dataset due to its convenience and availability. These results are of interest to any astronomical project with large and/or complex

  3. Scalable Machine Learning for Massive Astronomical Datasets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ball, Nicholas M.; Astronomy Data Centre, Canadian

    2014-01-01

    We present the ability to perform data mining and machine learning operations on a catalog of half a billion astronomical objects. This is the result of the combination of robust, highly accurate machine learning algorithms with linear scalability that renders the applications of these algorithms to massive astronomical data tractable. We demonstrate the core algorithms kernel density estimation, K-means clustering, linear regression, nearest neighbors, random forest and gradient-boosted decision tree, singular value decomposition, support vector machine, and two-point correlation function. Each of these is relevant for astronomical applications such as finding novel astrophysical objects, characterizing artifacts in data, object classification (including for rare objects), object distances, finding the important features describing objects, density estimation of distributions, probabilistic quantities, and exploring the unknown structure of new data. The software, Skytree Server, runs on any UNIX-based machine, a virtual machine, or cloud-based and distributed systems including Hadoop. We have integrated it on the cloud computing system of the Canadian Astronomical Data Centre, the Canadian Advanced Network for Astronomical Research (CANFAR), creating the world's first cloud computing data mining system for astronomy. We demonstrate results showing the scaling of each of our major algorithms on large astronomical datasets, including the full 470,992,970 objects of the 2 Micron All-Sky Survey (2MASS) Point Source Catalog. We demonstrate the ability to find outliers in the full 2MASS dataset utilizing multiple methods, e.g., nearest neighbors, and the local outlier factor. 2MASS is used as a proof-of-concept dataset due to its convenience and availability. These results are of interest to any astronomical project with large and/or complex datasets that wishes to extract the full scientific value from its data.

  4. More flexibility in representing geometric distortion in astronomical images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shupe, David L.; Laher, Russ R.; Storrie-Lombardi, Lisa; Surace, Jason; Grillmair, Carl; Levitan, David; Sesar, Branimir

    2012-09-01

    A number of popular software tools in the public domain are used by astronomers, professional and amateur alike, but some of the tools that have similar purposes cannot be easily interchanged, owing to the lack of a common standard. For the case of image distortion, SCAMP and SExtractor, available from Astromatic.net, perform astrometric calibration and source-object extraction on image data, and image-data geometric distortion is computed in celestial coordinates with polynomial coefficients stored in the FITS header with the PV i_j keywords. Another widely-used astrometric-calibration service, Astrometry.net, solves for distortion in pixel coordinates using the SIP convention that was introduced by the Spitzer Science Center. Up until now, due to the complexity of these distortion representations, it was very difficult to use the output of one of these packages as input to the other. New Python software, along with faster-computing C-language translations, have been developed at the Infrared Processing and Analysis Center (IPAC) to convert FITS-image headers from PV to SIP and vice versa. It is now possible to straightforwardly use Astrometry.net for astrometric calibration and then SExtractor for source-object extraction. The new software also enables astrometric calibration by SCAMP followed by image visualization with tools that support SIP distortion, but not PV . The software has been incorporated into the image-processing pipelines of the Palomar Transient Factory (PTF), which generate FITS images with headers containing both distortion representations. The software permits the conversion of archived images, such as from the Spitzer Heritage Archive and NASA/IPAC Infrared Science Archive, from SIP to PV or vice versa. This new capability renders unnecessary any new representation, such as the proposed TPV distortion convention.

  5. Visible Imaging Fourier Transform Spectrometer: Design and Calibration

    SciTech Connect

    Wishnow, E H; Wurtz, R; Blais-Ouellette, S; Cook, K H; Carr, D; Lewis, I; Grandmont, F; Stubbs, C W

    2002-09-19

    We present details of the design, operation and calibration of an astronomical visible-band imaging Fourier transform spectrometer (IFTS). This type of instrument produces a spectrum for every pixel in the field of view where the spectral resolution is flexible. The instrument is a dual-input/dual-output Michelson interferometer coupled to the 3.5 meter telescope at the Apache Point Observatory. Imaging performance and interferograms and spectra from calibration sources and standard stars are discussed.

  6. MOEMS devices designed and tested for astronomical instrumentation in space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zamkotsian, Frederic; Noell, Wilfried

    2012-03-01

    Next-generation astronomical instrumentation for ground-based and space telescopes could use MOEMS devices. Among them, Multi-Object Spectrographs (MOS) are the major instruments for studying primary galaxies and remote and faint objects. A promising solution for the object selection system is the use of MOEMS devices such as micromirror arrays (MMA) which allow the remote control of the multi-slit configuration in real time. We are engaged in a European development of MMA for generating reflective slit masks. Prototypes of MMA with 2048 individually addressable micromirrors made of single-crystal silicon were successfully designed, fabricated and tested. 100×200μm2 micromirrors can be tilted by electrostatic actuation yielding 24° mechanical tilt-angle. The micromirrors were successfully actuated before, during and after cryogenic cooling at 162K. Line-column addressing for individual mirrors has also been demonstrated. We were also engaged in a technical assessment of using a 2048 × 1080 DMD from Texas Instruments for space applications. For a MOS in space, the device should work in vacuum and at low temperature. Our tests reveal that the DMD remains fully operational at -40°C and in vacuum. A 1038 hours life test in space survey conditions, Total Ionizing Dose radiation, thermal cycling and vibrations/shocks have also been successfully completed. These results do not reveal any show-stopper concerning the ability of the DMD to meet environmental space requirements. These developments and tests demonstrate the full ability of this type of components for space instrumentation, especially in multi-object spectroscopy applications.

  7. Large astronomical catalog management for telescope operations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baruffolo, Andrea; Benacchio, Leopoldo

    1998-07-01

    Large astronomical catalogues containing from a million up to hundreds of millions records are currently available, even larger catalogues will be released in the near future. They will have an important operational role since they will be used throughout the observing cycle of next generation large telescopes, for proposal and observation preparation, telescope scheduling, selection of guide stars, etc. These large databases pose new problems for fast and general access. Solutions based on custom software or on customized versions of specific catalogues have been proposed, but the problem will benefit from a more general database approach. While traditional database technologies have proven to be inadequate for this task, new technologies are emerging, in particular that of Object Relational DBMSs, that seem to be suitable to solve the problem. In this paper we describe our experiences in experimenting with ORDBMSs for the management of large astronomical catalogues. We worked especially on the database query language and access methods. In the first field to extend the database query language capabilities with astronomical functionalities and to support typical astronomical queries.In the second, to speed up the execution of queries containing astronomical predicates.

  8. VIRUS: A hugely replicated integral field spectrograph for HETDEX

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hill, Gary J.; MacQueen, Phillip J.; Palunas, Povilas; Kelz, Andreas; Roth, Martin M.; Gebhardt, Karl; Grupp, Frank

    2006-06-01

    We present the visible integral-field replicable unit spectrograph (VIRUS), the basis of the Hobby-Eberly telescope dark energy experiment (HETDEX); a survey of a 5 Gpc 3 volume at 1.8 < z < 3.7 that will constrain the evolution of dark energy. VIRUS consists of 145 copies of a simple unit spectrograph, deployed on the HET. Industrial replication will allow VIRUS to be built quickly, at considerable cost-savings, with substantial risk-mitigation, compared to conventional instruments. VIRUS will cover 30 sq. arcmin per observation and detect 14 million resolution elements per exposure, an order of magnitude larger than existing instruments. VIRUS can complete HETDEX in about 100 nights observing.

  9. WUVS spectrographs of World Space Observatory - Ultraviolet project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Savanov, Igor; Sachkov, Mikhail; Shustov, Boris M.; Shugarov, Andrey

    2016-07-01

    WSO-UV (World Space Observatory - Ultraviolet) project is an international space observatory designed for observations in the UV (115 - 320 nm). It includes a 170 cm aperture telescope capable of high-resolution spectroscopy, long slit low-resolution spectroscopy and deep UV and optical imaging. WUVS - the set of three ultraviolet spectrographs are regarded as the main instrument of «Spektr -UF» space mission. The spectrographs unit includes three channels and is intended for acquisition of spectrums of high (R=50000) and low (R=1000) resolution of the observed objects in the electromagnetic radiation's ultraviolet range (115-310 nm). We present the design philosophy of WUVS and summarize its key characteristics. We shall present the main properties of WUVS new structure and current status of its mockups and prototypes manufacturing.

  10. The infrared spectrograph during the SIRTF pre-definition phase

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Houck, James R.

    1988-01-01

    A test facility was set up to evaluate back-illuminated impurity band detectors constructed for an infrared spectrograph to be used on the Space Infrared Telescope Facility (SIRTF). Equipment built to perform the tests on these arrays is described. Initial tests have been geared toward determining dark current and read noise for the array. Four prior progress reports are incorporated into this report. They describe the first efforts in the detector development and testing effort; testing details and a new spectrograph concept; a discussion of resolution issues raised by the new design; management activities; a review of computer software and testing facility hardware; and a review of the preamplifier constructed as well as a revised schematic of the detector evaluation facility.

  11. The Imaging Ultraviolet Spectrograph (IUVS) for the MAVEN Mission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McClintock, William E.; Schneider, Nicholas M.; Holsclaw, Gregory M.; Clarke, John T.; Hoskins, Alan C.; Stewart, Ian; Montmessin, Franck; Yelle, Roger V.; Deighan, Justin

    2015-12-01

    The Imaging Ultraviolet Spectrograph (IUVS) is one of nine science instruments aboard the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile and EvolutioN (MAVEN) spacecraft. MAVEN, launched in November 18, 2013 and arriving at Mars in September 2014, is designed to explore the planet's upper atmosphere and ionosphere and examine their interaction with the solar wind and solar ultraviolet radiation. IUVS is one of the most powerful spectrographs sent to another planet, with several key capabilities: (1) separate Far-UV & Mid-UV channels for stray light control, (2) a high resolution echelle mode to resolve deuterium and hydrogen emission, (3) internal instrument pointing and scanning capabilities to allow complete mapping and nearly-continuous operation, and (4) optimization for airglow studies.

  12. Metrology camera system of prime focus spectrograph for Subaru telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Shiang-Yu; Chou, Chueh-Yi; Chang, Yin-Chang; Huang, Pin-Jie; Hu, Yen-Sang; Chen, Hsin-Yo; Tamura, Naoyuki; Takato, Naruhisa; Ling, Hung-Hsu; Gunn, James E.; Karr, Jennifer; Yan, Chi-Hung; Mao, Peter; Ohyama, Youichi; Karoji, Hiroshi; Sugai, Hajime; Shimono, Atsushi

    2014-07-01

    The Prime Focus Spectrograph (PFS) is a new optical/near-infrared multi-fiber spectrograph designed for the prime focus of the 8.2m Subaru telescope. The metrology camera system of PFS serves as the optical encoder of the COBRA fiber motors for the configuring of fibers. The 380mm diameter aperture metrology camera will locate at the Cassegrain focus of Subaru telescope to cover the whole focal plane with one 50M pixel Canon CMOS sensor. The metrology camera is designed to provide the fiber position information within 5μm error over the 45cm focal plane. The positions of all fibers can be obtained within 1s after the exposure is finished. This enables the overall fiber configuration to be less than 2 minutes.

  13. Prime focus instrument of prime focus spectrograph for Subaru telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Shiang-Yu; Braun, David F.; Schwochert, Mark A.; Huang, Pin-Jie; Kimura, Masahiko; Chen, Hsin-Yo; Reiley, Daniel J.; Mao, Peter; Fisher, Charles D.; Tamura, Naoyuki; Chang, Yin-Chang; Hu, Yen-Sang; Ling, Hung-Hsu; Wen, Chih-Yi; Chou, Richard C.-Y.; Takato, Naruhisa; Sugai, Hajime; Ohyama, Youichi; Karoji, Hiroshi; Shimono, Atsushi; Ueda, Akitoshi

    2014-07-01

    The Prime Focus Spectrograph (PFS) is a new optical/near-infrared multi-fiber spectrograph design for the prime focus of the 8.2m Subaru telescope. PFS will cover 1.3 degree diameter field with 2394 fibers to complement the imaging capability of Hyper SuprimeCam (HSC). The prime focus unit of PFS called Prime Focus Instrument (PFI) provides the interface with the top structure of Subaru telescope and also accommodates the optical bench in which Cobra fiber positioners are located. In addition, the acquisition and guiding (AG) cameras, the optical fiber positioner system, the cable wrapper, the fiducial fibers, illuminator, and viewer, the field element, and the telemetry system are located inside the PFI. The mechanical structure of the PFI was designed with special care such that its deflections sufficiently match those of the HSC's Wide Field Corrector (WFC) so the fibers will stay on targets over the course of the observations within the required accuracy.

  14. Design inputs for a high-performance high-resolution near-infrared spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hinkle, Kenneth H.; Joyce, Richard R.; Najita, Joan R.

    2010-07-01

    The combination of immersion grating and infrared array detector technologies allows the construction of highresolution spectrographs in the near-infrared that have capabilities similar to those of optical spectrographs. It is possible, for instance, to design multi-object spectrographs with very large wavelength coverage and high throughput. We explored the science and functional drivers for these spectrograph designs. Several key inputs into the design are reviewed including risk, mechanical-optical trades, and operations. We discuss a design for a fixed configuration spectrograph with either 1.1 - 2.5 or 3 - 5 μm simultaneous wavelength coverage.

  15. Final Design of the CHARIS Integral Field Spectrograph for the Subaru Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Groff, Tyler D.; Peters, M.; Kasdin, N. J.; Galvin, M.; Brandt, T.; Carr, M.; Knapp, G. R.; McElwain, M. W.; Janson, M.; Loomis, C.; Guyon, O.; Martinache, F.; Jovanovic, N.; Mede, K.; Takato, N.; Hayashi, M.

    2014-01-01

    Princeton University is building the Coronagraphic High Angular Resolution Imaging Spectrograph (CHARIS), an integral field spectrograph (IFS) funded by the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan. It will be integrated with the Subaru Coronagraphic Extreme Adaptive Optics (SCExAO) and the AO188 adaptive optics system on the Subaru telescope. CHARIS is designed to image disks and take high contrast spectra of brown dwarfs and hot Jovian planets in a coronagraphic image across J, H, and K bands. SCExAO's coronagraphs and wavefront control system will suppress quasi-static speckles to detect objects five orders of magnitude dimmer than their parent star down to an 80 milliarcsecond inner working angle. Such quasi-static speckles not only make it difficult to achieve detection, but the close packing of spectra in an IFS means neighboring speckles can contaminate the signal from the planet. The result is uncertainty in the planetary spectrum due to diffractive cross-contamination, commonly referred to as crosstalk. Post-processing techniques can subtract these speckles, but can potentially skew spectral measurements, become less effective at small angular separation (a key problem at 80 milliarcseconds), and at best can only reduce the crosstalk down to the photon noise limit of the contaminating signal. CHARIS will address crosstalk effects of a high contrast image through hardware design, which drives the optical performance and mechanical design of the instrument. In addition to providing better spectral certainty in the science data, mitigating crosstalk in hardware decreases the computational overhead required to use CHARIS images as feedback in the focal plane wavefront control loop being operated by SCExAO. Here we present the science case, and design of CHARIS from its critical design review. This highlights the choices that must be considered to design an IFS for high signal-to-noise spectra in a coronagraphic image. The design considerations and lessons

  16. The Goddard High Resolution Spectrograph: Instrument, goals, and science results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brandt, J. C.; Heap, S. R.; Beaver, E. A.; Boggess, A.; Carpenter, K. G.; Ebbets, D. C.; Hutchings, J. B.; Jura, M.; Leckrone, D. S.; Linsky, J. L.; Maran, S. P.; Savage, B. D.; Smith, A. M.; Trafton, L. M.; Walter, F. M.; Weymann, R. J.; Ake, T. B.; Bruhweiler, F.; Cardelli, J. A.; Lindler, D. J.; Malumuth, E.; Randall, C. E.; Robinson, R.; Shore, S. N.; Wahlgren, G.

    1994-08-01

    The Goddard High Resolution Spectrograph (GHRS), currently in Earth orbit on the Hubble Space Telescope (HST), operates in the wavelength range 1150-3200 A with spectral resolutions (lambda/delta lambda) of approximately 2 x 103, 2 x 104, and 1 x 103. The instrument and its development from inception, its current status, the approach to operations, representative results in the major areas of the scientific goals, and prospects for the future are described.

  17. Commissioning of the PMAS 3D-spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kelz, Andreas; Roth, Martin M.; Becker, Thomas

    2003-03-01

    PMAS, the Potsdam Multi-Aperture Spectrophotometer, was successfully commissioned at the Calar Alto 3.5m telescope during 2001. PMAS is a medium-resolution, lensarray/fiber based integral field spectrograph, covering the whole optical wavelength range from 350 to 900 nm with optimized high efficiency in the blue. We review the commissioning activities and present the current status of this new instrument.

  18. The Goddard High Resolution Spectrograph: Instrument, goals, and science results

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brandt, J. C.; Heap, S. R.; Beaver, E. A.; Boggess, A.; Carpenter, K. G.; Ebbets, D. C.; Hutchings, J. B.; Jura, M.; Leckrone, D. S.; Linsky, J. L.

    1994-01-01

    The Goddard High Resolution Spectrograph (GHRS), currently in Earth orbit on the Hubble Space Telescope (HST), operates in the wavelength range 1150-3200 A with spectral resolutions (lambda/delta lambda) of approximately 2 x 10(exp 3), 2 x 10(exp 4), and 1 x 10(exp 3). The instrument and its development from inception, its current status, the approach to operations, representative results in the major areas of the scientific goals, and prospects for the future are described.

  19. First light results from the Hermes spectrograph at the AAT

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sheinis, Andrew; Barden, Sam; Birchall, Michael; Carollo, Daniela; Bland-Hawthorn, Joss; Brzeski, Jurek; Case, Scott; Cannon, Russell; Churilov, Vladimir; Couch, Warrick; Dean, Robert; De Silva, Gayandhi; D'Orazi, Valentina; Farrell, Tony; Fiegert, Kristin; Freeman, Kenneth; Frost, Gabriella; Gers, Luke; Goodwin, Michael; Gray, Doug; Heald, Ron; Heijmans, Jeroen; Jones, Damien; Keller, Stephan; Klauser, Urs; Kondrat, Yuriy; Lawrence, Jon; Lee, Steve; Mali, Slavko; Martell, Sarah; Mathews, Darren; Mayfield, Don; Miziarski, Stan; Muller, Rolf; Pai, Naveen; Patterson, Robert; Penny, Ed; Orr, David; Shortridge, Keith; Simpson, Jeffrey; Smedley, Scott; Smith, Greg; Stafford, Darren; Staszak, Nicholas; Vuong, Minh; Waller, Lewis; Wylie de Boer, Elizabeth; Xavier, Pascal; Zheng, Jessica; Zhelem, Ross; Zucker, Daniel

    2014-07-01

    The High Efficiency and Resolution Multi Element Spectrograph, HERMES is an facility-class optical spectrograph for the AAT. It is designed primarily for Galactic Archeology [21], the first major attempt to create a detailed understanding of galaxy formation and evolution by studying the history of our own galaxy, the Milky Way. The goal of the GALAH survey is to reconstruct the mass assembly history of the of the Milky Way, through a detailed spatially tagged abundance study of one million stars. The spectrograph is based at the Anglo Australian Telescope (AAT) and is fed by the existing 2dF robotic fiber positioning system. The spectrograph uses VPH-gratings to achieve a spectral resolving power of 28,000 in standard mode and also provides a high-resolution mode ranging between 40,000 to 50,000 using a slit mask. The GALAH survey requires a SNR greater than 100 for a star brightness of V=14. The total spectral coverage of the four channels is about 100nm between 370 and 1000nm for up to 392 simultaneous targets within the 2 degree field of view. Hermes has been commissioned over 3 runs, during bright time in October, November and December 2013, in parallel with the beginning of the GALAH Pilot survey starting in November 2013. In this paper we present the first-light results from the commissioning run and the beginning of the GALAH Survey, including performance results such as throughput and resolution, as well as instrument reliability. We compare the abundance calculations from the pilot survey to those in the literature.

  20. The Software System for the AAO's HERMES Spectrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shortridge, K.; Farrell, T.; Vuong, M.; Birchall, M.; Heald, R.

    2013-10-01

    The AAO's HERMES spectrograph will start operation in 2013. Its primary project will be a Galactic Archaeology survey that aims to reconstruct the early history of our Galaxy through precise measurements of the chemical abundances of one million stars. This paper describes some of the software aspects of the HERMES project: how it has evolved from the earlier AAO 2dF system, the extensive use of simulation for testing, the overall observing system, and the data reduction pipeline.

  1. Supercontinuum light sources for use in astronomical instrumentation: a test with PMAS, the Potsdam multi-aperture spectrophotometer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roth, Martin M.; Löhmannsröben, Hans-Gerd; Dosche, Carsten; Sandin, Christer; Reich, Oliver; Haynes, Roger; Leick, Lasse; Chávez Boggio, José M.; Kelz, Andreas

    2010-07-01

    Supercontinuum white light sources (SCLS) are intense, spatially coherent laser sources with a very broad and flat spectral energy distribution which have very quickly found ubiquitous use in optical laboratories. As photonics is now providing more and more applications for astronomical instrumentation, the possible use of SCLS as a calibration light source for spectroscopy has been tested. A standard industrial SCLS was coupled to the calibration unit of the PMAS integral field spectrophotometer and compared directly to the PMAS standard tungsten filament lamp that is normally used for calibration exposures. We report on comparative measurements concerning flux, spectral energy distribution, and temporal stability.

  2. A Journal for the Astronomical Computing Community?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gray, N.; Mann, R. G.

    2011-07-01

    One of the Birds of a Feather (BoF) discussion sessions at ADASS XX considered whether a new journal is needed to serve the astronomical computing community. In this paper we discuss the nature and requirements of that community, outline the analysis that led us to propose this as a topic for a BoF, and review the discussion from the BoF session itself. We also present the results from a survey designed to assess the suitability of astronomical computing papers of different kinds for publication in a range of existing astronomical and scientific computing journals. The discussion in the BoF session was somewhat inconclusive, and it seems likely that this topic will be debated again at a future ADASS or in a similar forum.

  3. The Automated Astronomic Positioning System (AAPS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Williams, O. N.

    1973-01-01

    Two prototype systems of The Automated Astronomic Positioning System (AAPS) have been delivered to Defense Mapping Agency (DMA). The AAPS was developed to automate and expedite the determination of astronomic positions (latitude and longitude). This equipment is capable of defining astronomic positions to an accuracy sigma = 0.3 in each component within a two hour span of stellar observations which are acquired automatically. The basic concept acquires observations by timing stellar images as they cross a series of slits, comparing these observations to a stored star catalogue, and automatically deducing position and accuracy by least squares using pre-set convergence criteria. An exhaustive DMA operational test program has been initiated to evaluate the capabilities of the AAPS in a variety of environments (both climatic and positional). Status of the operational test is discussed.

  4. Aligning Astronomical Telescopes via Identification of Stars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Whorton, Mark

    2010-01-01

    A proposed method of automated, precise alignment of a ground-based astronomical telescope would eliminate the need for initial manual alignment. The method, based on automated identification of known stars and other celestial objects in the telescope field of view, would also eliminate the need for an initial estimate of the aiming direction. The method does not require any equipment other than a digital imaging device such as a charge-coupled-device digital imaging camera and control computers of the telescope and camera, all of which are standard components in professional astronomical telescope systems and in high-end amateur astronomical telescope systems. The method could be implemented in software running in the telescope or camera control computer or in an external computer communicating with the telescope pointing mount and camera control computers.

  5. The associate principal astronomer telescope operations model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Drummond, Mark; Bresina, John; Swanson, Keith; Edgington, Will; Henry, Greg

    1994-01-01

    This paper outlines a new telescope operations model that is intended to achieve low operating costs with high operating efficiency and high scientific productivity. The model is based on the existing Principal Astronomer approach used in conjunction with ATIS, a language for commanding remotely located automatic telescopes. This paper introduces the notion of an Associate Principal Astronomer, or APA. At the heart of the APA is automatic observation loading and scheduling software, and it is this software that is expected to help achieve efficient and productive telescope operations. The purpose of the APA system is to make it possible for astronomers to submit observation requests to and obtain resulting data from remote automatic telescopes, via the Internet, in a highly-automated way that minimizes human interaction with the system and maximizes the scientific return from observing time.

  6. DVD Database Astronomical Manuscripts in Georgia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simonia, I.; Simonia, Ts.; Abuladze, T.; Chkhikvadze, N.; Samkurashvili, L.; Pataridze, K.

    2016-06-01

    Little known and unknown Georgian, Persian, and Arabic astronomical manuscripts of IX-XIX centuries are kept in the centers, archives, and libraries of Georgia. These manuscripts has a form of treaties, handbooks, texts, tables, fragments, and comprises various theories, cosmological models, star catalogs, calendars, methods of observations. We investigated this large material and published DVD database Astronomical Manuscripts in Georgia. This unique database contains information about astronomical manuscripts as original works. It contains also descriptions of Georgian translations of Byzantine, Arabic and other sources. The present paper is dedicated to description of obtained results and DVD database. Copies of published DVD database are kept in collections of the libraries of: Ilia State University, Georgia; Royal Observatory, Edinburgh, UK; Congress of the USA, and in other centers.

  7. Hartung's Astronomical Objects for Southern Telescopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malin, David; Frew, David J.

    1995-10-01

    Many of the most spectacular astronomical objects are found in the southern skies. With this up-to-date, superbly illustrated handbook, both the amateur with binoculars and the expert with a telescope can make discoveries about new and interesting objects. Professor E. J. Hartung first produced his comprehensive and highly respected guide in 1968. Now the book has been greatly expanded and thoroughly revised, enhancing its character as an indispensable information source. With over 150 illustrations, new material is included on constellations and celestial coordinate systems as well as more modern descriptions of stars, nebulae and galaxies. The authors have included a new "southern Messier" list of objects. The authors' passion for their subject make this a unique and inspirational book. Many of the beautiful photographs were taken by David Malin, the world's leading astronomical photographer. The result will fascinate active and armchair astronomers alike.

  8. Astronomers Without Borders: A Global Astronomy Community

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simmons, M.

    2011-10-01

    Astronomers Without Borders (AWB) brings together astronomy enthusiasts of all types - amateur astronomers, educators, professionals and "armchair" astronomers for a variety of online and physicalworld programs. The AWB web site provides social networking and a base for online programs that engage people worldwide in astronomy activities that transcend geopolitical and cultural borders. There is universal interest in astronomy, which has been present in all cultures throughout recorded history. Astronomy is also among the most accessible of sciences with the natural laboratory of the sky being available to people worldwide. There are few other interests for which people widely separated geographically can engage in activities involving the same objects. AWB builds on those advantages to bring people together. AWB also provides a platform where projects can reach a global audience. AWB also provides unique opportunities for multidisciplinary collaboration in EPO programs. Several programs including The World at Night, Global Astronomy Month and others will be described along with lessons learned.

  9. ORCID Uptake in the Astronomical Community

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holmquist, Jane

    2015-08-01

    The IAU General Assembly provides librarians with a unique opportunity to interact with astronomers from all over the world. From the perspective of an ORCID Ambassador, the Focus Group Meeting on "Scholarly Publication in Astronomy" also provides an opportunity to demonstrate the cooperation and collaboration needed by individual astronomers, societies, librarians, publishers and bibliographic database providers to achieve universal adoption of ORCID, a standard unique identifier for authors, just as the DOI (digital object identifier) has been adopted for each journal article published.I propose to 1) present at the Focus Group Meeting an update on the uptake of ORCID by members of the astronomical community and 2) set up a small station (TBA) near the IAU registration area where librarians can show researchers how to register for an ORCID in 30 seconds.

  10. Design of a multifunction astronomical CCD camera

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yao, Dalei; Wen, Desheng; Xue, Jianru; Chen, Zhi; Wen, Yan; Jiang, Baotan; Xi, Jiangbo

    2015-07-01

    To satisfy the requirement of the astronomical observation, a novel timing sequence of frame transfer CCD is proposed. The multiple functions such as the adjustments of work pattern, exposure time and frame frequency are achieved. There are four work patterns: normal, standby, zero exposure and test. The adjustment of exposure time can set multiple exposure time according to the astronomical observation. The fame frequency can be adjusted when dark target is imaged and the maximum exposure time cannot satisfy the requirement. On the design of the video processing, offset correction and adjustment of multiple gains are proposed. Offset correction is used for eliminating the fixed pattern noise of CCD. Three gains pattern can improve the signal to noise ratio of astronomical observation. Finally, the images in different situations are collected and the system readout noise is calculated. The calculation results show that the designs in this paper are practicable.

  11. On Astronomical Records of Dangun Chosun Period

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    La, Daile; Park, Changbom

    1993-10-01

    Events of eclipses as well as other major astronomical events observable in the eastern sector of Asian continent are computed and checked with astronomical records of antiquity. Particular attention was given to two types of the events recorded in remaining records of Dangun Chosun Period (DCP): (1) concentration of major planets near the constellation of Nu-Sung (Beta Aries) and (2) a large ebb-tide. We find them most likely to have occurred in real time. i.e., when the positions of the sun, moon, and planets happen to be aligned in the most appropriate position. For solar eclipses data, however, we find among 10 solar eclipse events recorded, only 6 of them are correct up to months, implying its statistical significance is no less insignificant. We therefore conclude that the remaining history books of DCP indeed contains important astronomical records, thereby the real antiquity of the records of DCP cannot be disproved.

  12. Solar glint suppression in compact planetary ultraviolet spectrographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davis, Michael W.; Cook, Jason C.; Grava, Cesare; Greathouse, Thomas K.; Gladstone, G. Randall; Retherford, Kurt D.

    2015-08-01

    Solar glint suppression is an important consideration in the design of compact photon-counting ultraviolet spectrographs. Southwest Research Institute developed the Lyman Alpha Mapping Project for the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (launch in 2009), and the Ultraviolet Spectrograph on Juno (Juno-UVS, launch in 2011). Both of these compact spectrographs revealed minor solar glints in flight that did not appear in pre-launch analyses. These glints only appeared when their respective spacecraft were operating outside primary science mission parameters. Post-facto scattered light analysis verifies the geometries at which these glints occurred and why they were not caught during ground testing or nominal mission operations. The limitations of standard baffle design at near-grazing angles are discussed, as well as the importance of including surface scatter properties in standard stray light analyses when determining solar keep-out efficiency. In particular, the scattered light analysis of these two instruments shows that standard "one bounce" assumptions in baffle design are not always enough to prevent scattered sunlight from reaching the instrument focal plane. Future builds, such as JUICE-UVS, will implement improved scattered and stray light modeling early in the design phase to enhance capabilities in extended mission science phases, as well as optimize solar keep out volume.

  13. The Hercules Échelle Spectrograph at Mt. John

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hearnshaw, J. B.; Barnes, S. I.; Kershaw, G. M.; Frost, N.; Graham, G.; Ritchie, R.; Nankivell, G. R.

    2002-03-01

    The High Efficiency and Resolution Canterbury University Large Échelle Spectrograph (HERCULES) a fibre-fed échelle spectrograph that was designed and built at the University of Canterbury and has been in operation at Mt. John University Observatory since April 2001.HERCULES receives light from the f/13.5 Cassegrain focus of the 1 m McLellan telescope. Resolving powers of R = 41 000, 70 000 and 82 000 are available. An R2 200 × 400 mm échelle grating provides dispersion and cross-dispersion uses a large BK7 prism in double pass. The wavelength coverage is designed to be 380-880 nm in a single exposure. The maximum detective quantum efficiency of the fibre, spectrograph and detector system is about 18% in 2 arc second seeing. High wavelength stability (to better than 10 ms-1 in radial velocity) is achieved by installing the whole instrument in a large vacuum tank at 2-4 torr and by there being no moving parts. The tank is in a thermally isolated and insulated environment. The paper describes the design philosophy of HERCULES and its performance during the first year of operation.

  14. Fibre Multi-Object Spectrograph (FMOS) for the Subaru Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kimura, Masahiko; Maihara, Toshinori; Iwamuro, Fumihide; Akiyama, Masayuki; Tamura, Naoyuki; Dalton, Gavin B.; Takato, Naruhisa; Tait, Philip; Ohta, Kouji; Eto, Shigeru; Mochida, Daisaku; Elms, Brian; Kawate, Kaori; Kurakami, Tomio; Moritani, Yuuki; Noumaru, Junichi; Ohshima, Norio; Sumiyoshi, Masanao; Yabe, Kiyoto; Brzeski, Jurek; Farrell, Tony; Frost, Gabriella; Gillingham, Peter R.; Haynes, Roger; Moore, Anna M.; Muller, Rolf; Smedley, Scott; Smith, Greg; Bonfield, David G.; Brooks, Charles B.; Holmes, Alan R.; Curtis Lake, Emma; Lee, Hanshin; Lewis, Ian J.; Froud, Tim R.; Tosh, Ian A.; Woodhouse, Guy F.; Blackburn, Colin; Content, Robert; Dipper, Nigel; Murray, Graham; Sharples, Ray; Robertson, David J.

    2010-10-01

    Fibre Multi-Object Spectrograph (FMOS) is the first near-infrared instrument with a wide field of view capable of acquiring spectra simultaneously from up to 400 objects. It has been developed as a common-use instrument for the F/2 prime-focus of the Subaru Telescope. The field coverage of 30' diameter is achieved using a new 3-element corrector optimized in the near-infrared (0.9-1.8μm) wavelength range. Due to limited space at the prime-focus, we have had to develop a novel fibre positioner, called ``Echidna'', together with two OH-airglow suppressed spectrographs. FMOS consists of three subsystems: the prime focus unit for IR, the fibre positioning system/connector units, and the two spectrographs. After full systems integration, FMOS was installed on the telescope in late 2007. Many aspects of the performance were checked through various test and engineering observations. In this paper, we present the optical and mechanical components of FMOS, and show the results of our on-sky engineering observations to date.

  15. SPRAT: Spectrograph for the Rapid Acquisition of Transients

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Piascik, A. S.; Steele, Iain A.; Bates, Stuart D.; Mottram, Christopher J.; Smith, R. J.; Barnsley, R. M.; Bolton, B.

    2014-07-01

    We describe the development of a low cost, low resolution (R ~ 350), high throughput, long slit spectrograph covering visible (4000-8000) wavelengths. The spectrograph has been developed for fully robotic operation with the Liverpool Telescope (La Palma). The primary aim is to provide rapid spectral classification of faint (V ˜ 20) transient objects detected by projects such as Gaia, iPTF (intermediate Palomar Transient Factory), LOFAR, and a variety of high energy satellites. The design employs a volume phase holographic (VPH) transmission grating as the dispersive element combined with a prism pair (grism) in a linear optical path. One of two peak spectral sensitivities are selectable by rotating the grism. The VPH and prism combination and entrance slit are deployable, and when removed from the beam allow the collimator/camera pair to re-image the target field onto the detector. This mode of operation provides automatic acquisition of the target onto the slit prior to spectrographic observation through World Coordinate System fitting. The selection and characterisation of optical components to maximise photon throughput is described together with performance predictions.

  16. Wide band focusing x-ray spectrograph with spatial resolution

    SciTech Connect

    Pikuz, S. A.; Douglass, J. D.; Shelkovenko, T. A.; Sinars, D. B.; Hammer, D. A.

    2008-01-15

    A new, wide spectral bandwidth x-ray spectrograph, the wide-bandwidth focusing spectrograph with spatial resolution (WB-FSSR), based on spherically bent mica crystals, is described. The wide bandwidth is achieved by combining three crystals to form a large aperture dispersive element. Since the WB-FSSR covers a wide spectral band, it is very convenient for application as a routine diagnostic tool in experiments in which the desired spectral coverage is different from one test to the next. The WB-FSSR has been tested in imploding wire-array experiments on a 1 MA pulsed power machine, and x-ray spectra were recorded in the 1-20 A spectral band using different orders of mica crystal reflection. Using a two mirror-symmetrically placed WB-FSSR configuration, it was also possible to distinguish between a real spectral shift and a shift of recorded spectral lines caused by the spatial distribution of the radiating plasma. A spectral resolution of about 2000 was demonstrated and a spatial resolution of {approx}100 {mu}m was achieved in the spectral band of 5-10 A in second order of mica reflection. A simple method of numerical analysis of spectrograph capability is proposed.

  17. High-resolution UV echelle spectrograph for environmental sensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clauson, Susan L.; Christesen, Steven D.; Spencer, Kevin M.

    2004-03-01

    Resonance Raman spectroscopy is an enhanced Raman technique that can be used to selectively identify a particular analyte in complex matrices. Resonance Raman requires the excitation laser to overlap with an absorption band of the analyte of interest. Since analytes have diverse absorption spectra, dilute concentrations may be detected when resonantly enhanced. A significant portion of interesting molecules absorb only in the UV; unfortunately current UV Raman instrumentation for scientifically desirable spectral resolution is large and costly. In the area of Homeland Defense, explosives, nerve agents, amino acid residues (for toxin analysis) and nucleic acids (for DNA detection and identification of bacteria) are all enhanced using UV laser sources. EIC Laboratories has developed a more user-friendly UVRRS spectrograph that is based upon the use of an echelle grating. The spectrograph has a footprint of 7" x 11" and is capable of providing 4 cm-1 resolution over a fairly wide spectral range. The spectrograph design and spectra from analytes of particular relevance will be presented.

  18. Hectochelle: A Multiobject Optical Echelle Spectrograph for the MMT

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szentgyorgyi, Andrew; Furesz, Gabor; Cheimets, Peter; Conroy, Maureen; Eng, Roger; Fabricant, Daniel; Fata, Robert; Gauron, Thomas; Geary, John; McLeod, Brian; Zajac, Joseph; Amato, Stephen; Bergner, Henry; Caldwell, Nelson; Dupree, Andrea; Goddard, Richard; Johnston, Everett; Meibom, Soeren; Mink, Douglas; Pieri, Mario; Roll, John; Tokarz, Susan; Wyatt, William; Epps, Harland; Hartmann, Lee; Meszaros, Szabolcz

    2011-10-01

    The Hectochelle is an optical band, fiber-fed, multiobject echelle spectrograph deployed at the MMT Observatory on Mount Hopkins, Arizona. The optical fibers that feed the Hectochelle are positioned by the Hectospec robot positioner on the MMT f/5 focal surface, and the Hectochelle shares an optical fiber feed system with the Hectospec, a moderate-dispersion spectrograph that is collocated with the Hectochelle. Hectochelle can record up to 240 spectra simultaneously at a resolution of 38,000. Spectra cover a single diffractive order that is approximately 150 Å wide. The total potential operating passband of the Hectochelle extends from 3800 Å to 9000 Å. Operated in conjunction with the MMT f/5 secondary, the MMT wide-field corrector, and the atmospheric dispersion compensator, the patrol field is 1° in diameter and the individual fiber slits are 1.5'' in diameter. The throughput of the combined telescope, fiber feed, and spectrograph is measured to be 6.1% at 5275 Å, exclusive of atmospheric extinction. A 20 minute observation of a V = 15 F-type star yields a signal-to-noise ratio of 35 per resolution element. Hectochelle had first light 2003 December 4 and continues to be operated at the MMT today.

  19. Education Efforts of the International Astronomical Union

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pasachoff, J. M.

    2006-08-01

    I describe the education activities of the International Astronomical Union, particularly the work of Commission 46 on Education and Development. We are most interested in education in schools and for general university education rather than for pre-professional training or graduate schools. We have over 75 National Liaisons, mostly from member countries of the I.A.U. but some from nonmembers or regional groupings. We operate through 10 program groups, which are described at our Website at http://www.astronomyeducation.org. We also organize Special Sessions at General Assemblies of the International Astronomical Union, such as this Special Session 2 on Innovation in Teaching/ Learning Astronomy Methods, organized by Rosa Ros and me, and Special Session 5 on Astronomy for the Developing World, organized by John Hearnshaw. A modified version of our Special Session from the 2003 Sydney General Assembly was published as Teaching and Learning Astronomy: Effective Strategies for Educators Worldwide (Jay M. Pasachoff and John R. Percy, eds., Cambridge University Press, 2005). Michele Gerbaldi and Ed Guinan run the International Schools for Young Astronomers. Jay White heads the Teaching Astronomy for Development Program Group. John Hearnshaw runs the Program Group for the Worldwide Development of Astronomy. Charles Tolbert and John Percy run an Exchange of Astronomers program with a limited number of grants for stays of over three months between astronomers in developing countries and established astronomical institutions. Barrie Jones, as vice-president, aided by Tracey Moore, runs the Newsletter and keeps track of the National Liaisons list. I run the Program group of Public Education at the Times of Solar Eclipses.

  20. Visualization of Data and Cross-Analysis of the Astronomic Catalogues

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kitaeva, M. A.; Samodurov, V. A.; Dumskiy, D. V.; Isaev, E. A.

    On PRAO's web-site we have for several years been developing a database of the major and most important astronomical catalogs most frequently used by radio astronomers. These are survey catalogs of radio sources observed on various radio frequencies (and also frequencies of other spectrums), catalogs of major heavenly objects studied in radio astronomy, etc. The astronomical catalogs data is operating in on-line mode on the site called "Radio-astronomer's working environment", http://astro.prao.ru/db/. It already contains some tens of the major astronomical catalogs. Starting in 2011 the database has been actively equipped with means of graphical visualisation of the data and cross-analysis of the catalogs among themselves. These means will serve as the base for statistical processing and cross-analysis of various astronomical catalogs. For example, catalogs of radio-sources on various frequencies can be widely used in further theoretical and experimental research of properties of both extragalactic radiation sources and objects in our own Galaxy. Statistical cross-analysis of the data from various catalogs can be used both for research of properties of separate objects and for the statistical analysis of properties of various classes of objects. It can also be used for research of properties of the catalog data like completeness, reliability, calibration of catalogs etc. For the tasks at hand we are developing tools for graphic representation of the data from several catalogs within a chosen sector on the sky; representation of the data and the statistical analysis of the main parameters of each catalog; and statistics of cross-identifications of the catalogs selected by the user.