26 July 2016 The 4MOST facility control software
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Abstract
The 4-m Multi-Object Spectrographic Telescope (4MOST) is one high-resolution (R ~ 18000) and two lowresolution (R fi 5000) spectrographs covering the wavelength range between 390 and 950 nm. The spectrographs will be installed on ESO VISTA telescope and will be fed by approximately 2400 fibres. The instrument is capable to simultaneously obtain spectra of about 2400 objects distributed over an hexagonal field-of-view of four square degrees. This paper aims at giving an overview of the control software design, which is based on the standard ESO VLT software architecture and customised to fit the needs of the 4MOST instrument. In particular, the facility control software is intended to arrange the precise positioning of the fibres, to schedule and observe many surveys in parallel, and to combine the output from the three spectrographs. Moreover, 4MOST's software will include user-friendly graphical user interfaces that enable users to interact with the facility control system and to monitor all data-taking and calibration tasks of the instrument. A secondary guiding system will be implemented to correct for any fibre exure and thus to improve 4MOST's guiding performance. The large amount of fibres requires the custom design of data exchange to avoid performance issues. The observation sequences are designed to use spectrographs in parallel with synchronous points for data exchange between subsystems. In order to control hardware devices, Programmable Logic Controller (PLC) components will be used, the new standard for future instruments at ESO.
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Alexander Pramskiy, Holger Mandel, Florian Rothmaier, Ingo Stilz, Roland Winkler, Thomas Hahn, "The 4MOST facility control software", Proc. SPIE 9913, Software and Cyberinfrastructure for Astronomy IV, 991336 (26 July 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2232606; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2232606
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