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11 July 2008 X-shooter near infra-red spectrograph cryogenic design
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X-shooter is a high-efficiency spectrograph capable of simultaneously observing the complete spectral range of 300- 2500 nm. The instrument will be located at the Cassegrain focus of one of the VLT UTs. To allow sky back ground limited observations the 120 kg Optical Bench of the NIR Spectrograph and the HAWAII-2RG detector are cooled to 105 K and 82 K respectively. To ensure vibrationless operation the cooling is performed by a LN2 bath-cryostat. The thermal stability requirements for the Optical Box are very tight (order of 100 mK) considering that the NIR-cryostat is subject to telescope movement and LN2 level variations. Large glass optics are limiting the cooldown. To speed up the cooldown the cooling concept of the Optical Box includes the utilization of LN2 heat exchangers. To avoid asymptotic stabilizing times the Optical Box is cooled below the operating temperature. When the optics reach a temperature slightly above the operating temperature the temperature of the Optical Box is quickly brought back to stabilize the optics. Dedicated controllers, strapping and heaters are used for temperature stabilization during steady state. A cryostat hold time of 24 hours with the minimum amount of LN2 in view of the tight mass budget requires strict control of the power budget and careful control of the design margins. This is ensured by precise modeling of the temperature behavior. The thermal model is compared with the actual measured thermal behavior.
© (2008) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Ronald Roelfsema, Peter Albers, Jean-Louis Lizon, Pieter van Dael, Eddy Elswijk, Paul Groot, Hiddo Hanenburg, Jan Kragt, Ramon Navarro, Niels Tromp, and Gerben Wulterkens "X-shooter near infra-red spectrograph cryogenic design", Proc. SPIE 7017, Modeling, Systems Engineering, and Project Management for Astronomy III, 701717 (11 July 2008);


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