ELMER is an optical instrument for the GTC designed to observe between 370 and 1000 nm. The observing modes for the instrument at Day One shall be: imaging, long slit spectroscopy, slit-less multi-object spectroscopy, fast photometry, fast short-slit spectroscopy and mask multi-object spectroscopy. It will be installed at the Nasmyth-B focal station at Day One, but it has also been designed to operate at the Folded Cassegrain focal station. The physical configuration of the instrument consists of a front section where the focal plane components are mounted (cover masks and slits) and a rear section with the rest of the components (field lens, folder mirrors, collimator, shutter, filters, prisms, grisms, camera and cryostat). Both sections are connected through a hexapod type structure.
An accurate behavior model of the instrument has been developed to optimize the design of the structural parts. The geometry of the hexapod configuration has been adjusted to reduce the ratio between the lateral deflection of the rear section and its rotation in order to minimize the image motion due to the deflections of the instrument. Special effort has been devoted to the design of the drives of the four wheels, each one driven by a preloaded worm gear.