8 July 2014 Operation and performance of the mid-infrared camera, NOMIC, on the Large Binocular Telescope
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Abstract
The mid-infrared (8-13 μm) camera, NOMIC, is a critical component of the Large Binocular Telescope Interferometer search for exozodiacal light around near-by stars. It is optimized for nulling interferometry but has general capability for direct imaging, low resolution spectrometry, and Fizeau interferometry. The camera uses a Raytheon 1024x1024 Si:As IBC Aquarius array with a 30 μm pitch which yields 0.018 arc-second pixels on the sky. This provides spatial resolution (λ/D) at a 10 μm wavelength of 0.27 arc-seconds for a single 8.4 meter LBT aperture and of 0.10 arcseconds for Fizeau interferometry with the dual apertures. The array is operated with a differential preamplifier and a version of the 16 channel array controller developed at Cornell University for the FORCAST instrument on the Sofia Observatory. With a 2.4 MHz pixel rate the camera can achieve integration times as short as 27 milliseconds full array and 3 milliseconds partial array. The large range of integration times and two array integration well sizes allow for a wide range of background flux on the array. We describe the design and operation of the camera and present the performance of this system in terms of linearity, noise, quantum efficiency, image quality, and photometric sensitivity.
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William F. Hoffmann, William F. Hoffmann, Philip M. Hinz, Philip M. Hinz, Denis Defrère, Denis Defrère, Jarron M. Leisenring, Jarron M. Leisenring, Andrew J. Skemer, Andrew J. Skemer, Paul A. Arbo, Paul A. Arbo, Manny Montoya, Manny Montoya, Bertrand Mennesson, Bertrand Mennesson, } "Operation and performance of the mid-infrared camera, NOMIC, on the Large Binocular Telescope", Proc. SPIE 9147, Ground-based and Airborne Instrumentation for Astronomy V, 91471O (8 July 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2057252; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2057252
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