Initially proposed as an instrument covering also the K-band, the current design foresees a camera working from Y to H bands, exploiting in this way the synergy with other LBT instruments such as LBTI, which is actually covering wavelengths greater than L' band, and it will be soon upgraded to work also in K band. SHARK-NIR has been undergoing the conceptual design review at the end of 2015 and it has been approved to proceed to the final design phase, receiving the green light for successive construction and installation at LBT.
The current design is significantly more flexible than the previous one, having an additional intermediate pupil plane that will allow the usage of coronagraphic techniques very efficient in term of contrast and vicinity to the star, increasing the instrument coronagraphic performance. The latter is necessary to properly exploit the search of giant exo-planets, which is the main science case and the driver for the technical choices of SHARK-NIR. We also emphasize that the LBT AO SOUL upgrade will further improve the AO performance, making possible to extend the exo-planet search to target fainter than normally achieved by other 8-m class telescopes, and opening in this way to other very interesting scientific scenarios, such as the characterization of AGN and Quasars (normally too faint to be observed) and increasing considerably the sample of disks and jets to be studied.
Finally, we emphasize that SHARK-NIR will offer XAO direct imaging capability on a FoV of about 15"x15", and a simple coronagraphic spectroscopic mode offering spectral resolution ranging from few hundreds to few thousands. This article presents the current instrument design, together with the milestones for its installation at LBT.