9 January 1984 CCD Use At Lick Observatory
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Abstract
The CCD detector and data handling system now in regular use at Lick Observatory is described. At the Shane 3 meter telescope, a transmission grating ("grism") system has been installed on the automated cassegrain spectrograph. A valuable feature of this setup is the ability to go from spectroscopic to direct imaging mode by merely sliding the grism out of the light beam and opening the spectrograph slit jaws. Using a commercial gas expansion refrigerator, a very compact CCD (charge coupled device) cooling system has been developed. The dewar is a cylinder 15 cm in diameter, 6 cm high. The CCD temperature is held at -130°C. This cooler has been used at the telescope since December 1982. The data acquisition computer, an LSI 11/23 with 256 Kbyte RAM, 160 Mbyte Winchester disk, and color video display provides for FITS format magnetic tape storage as well as preliminary analysis of images and spectra. UNIX-based interrupt-driven software used on this computer allows data taking and data analysis tasks to be carried out concurrently. The 3 meter telescope spectrographic system uses a 500 x 500 pixel thinned Texas Instruments (TI) CCD. An English Electric (GEC) P8600 385 x 576 pixel CCD has been used for direct imaging observations at the Anna Nickel 1 meter telescope. An interactive, easy-to-use and well documented software system "VISTA" has been developed for image processing of CCD data with the VAX 11/780 computer. The language used is FORTRAN 77, running under the VAX VMS monitor. VISTA is also used on the LSI 11/23. Design information and operational experience for these detector systems is presented, together with some results to illustrate the quality of the data being obtained, and the present limitations of our CCD detectors and data system.
© (1984) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
T R Lauer, T R Lauer, J S Miller, J S Miller, C S Osborne, C S Osborne, L B Robinson, L B Robinson, R J Stover, R J Stover, "CCD Use At Lick Observatory", Proc. SPIE 0445, Instrumentation in Astronomy V, (9 January 1984); doi: 10.1117/12.966138; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.966138
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