The design and construction of CARMENES has been presented at previous SPIE conferences. It is a next-generation radial-velocity instrument at the 3.5m telescope of the Calar Alto Observatory, which was built by a consortium of eleven Spanish and German institutions. CARMENES consists of two separate échelle spectrographs covering the wavelength range from 0.52 to 1.71μm at a spec-tral resolution of R < 80,000, fed by fibers from the Cassegrain focus of the telescope. CARMENES saw “First Light” on Nov 9, 2015.
During the commissioning and initial operation phases, we established basic performance data such as throughput and spectral resolution. We found that our hollow-cathode lamps are suitable for precise wavelength calibration, but their spectra contain a number of lines of neon or argon that are so bright that the lamps cannot be used in simultaneous exposures with stars. We have therefore adopted a calibration procedure that uses simultaneous star / Fabry Pérot etalon exposures in combination with a cross-calibration between the etalons and hollow-cathode lamps during daytime. With this strategy it has been possible to achieve 1-2 m/s precision in the visible and 5-10 m/s precision in the near-IR; further improvements are expected from ongoing work on temperature control, calibration procedures and data reduction. Comparing the RV precision achieved in different wavelength bands, we find a “sweet spot” between 0.7 and 0.8μm, where deep TiO bands provide rich RV information in mid-M dwarfs. This is in contrast to our pre-survey models, which predicted comparatively better performance in the near-IR around 1μm, and explains in part why our near-IR RVs do not reach the same precision level as those taken with the visible spectrograph.
We are now conducting a large survey of 340 nearby M dwarfs (with an average distance of only 12pc), with the goal of finding terrestrial planets in their habitable zones. We have detected the signatures of several previously known or suspected planets and also discovered several new planets. We find that the radial velocity periodograms of many M dwarfs show several significant peaks. The development of robust methods to distinguish planet signatures from activity-induced radial velocity jitter is therefore among our priorities.
Due to its large wavelength coverage, the CARMENES survey is generating a unique data set for studies of M star atmospheres, rotation, and activity. The spectra cover important diagnostic lines for activity (H alpha, Na I D1 and D2, and the Ca II infrared triplet), as well as FeH lines, from which the magnetic field can be inferred. Correlating the time series of these features with each other, and with wavelength-dependent radial velocities, provides excellent handles for the discrimination between planetary companions and stellar radial velocity jitter. These data are also generating new insight into the physical properties of M dwarf atmospheres, and the impact of activity and flares on the habitability of M star planets.
4MOST is a fibre-fed, multi-object spectroscopic survey facility to be installed on the VISTA telescope at ESO's Paranal observatory. This paper presents the final mechanical design of the optical fibre route from the fibre positioner at the focal plane of VISTA to the fibre-slits within the high- and low-resolution spectrographs below the azimuth platform. The technical challenges are to provide a safe, durable and efficient fibre route for over 2400 fibres. To accommodate the movements of the telescope, a Cassegrain Cable Wrap and a novel elevation chain concept has been prototyped and extensively tested to validate the design solutions.
4MOST (4-meter Multi-Object Spectroscopic Telescope) is a wide-field, fiber-feed, high-multiplex spectroscopic survey facility to be installed on the 4-meter ESO telescope VISTA in Chile. Its backend consists of one high resolution spectrograph and two identical low resolution spectrographs. The instrument is presently in the final design phase (review in May 2018) and is expected to enter full operations at the beginning of 2023 ( and ). The high resolution spectrograph (HRS) will afford simultaneous observations of up to 812 targets – over a hexagonal field of view of ~ 4.1 square degrees on sky – with a spectral resolution R>18,000 covering wavelength ranges between 393 and 679 nm in three channels. The optical design of the instrument is described in detail in . In February 2017 the final design review for the optics was held and passed successfully. The final design review for the mechanics and all other parts of the instrument was held in May 2018. A summary and update of the optical and mechanical design of the HRS are presented in this paper. The detailed status of the manufacturing of the optics is given. The procedures and tools used during the AIT phase for the optical alignment of the HRS system, as well as the performance tests and characterizations are described.
The CARMENES instrument is a pair of high-resolution (R⪆80,000) spectrographs covering the wavelength range from 0.52 to 1.71 μm, optimized for precise radial velocity measurements. It was installed and commissioned at the 3.5m telescope of the Calar Alto observatory in Southern Spain in 2015. The first large science program of CARMENES is a survey of ~ 300 M dwarfs, which started on Jan 1, 2016. We present an overview of all subsystems of CARMENES (front end, fiber system, visible-light spectrograph, near-infrared spectrograph, calibration units, etalons, facility control, interlock system, instrument control system, data reduction pipeline, data flow, and archive), and give an overview of the assembly, integration, verification, and commissioning phases of the project. We show initial results and discuss further plans for the scientific use of CARMENES.
4MOST (4-meter Multi-Object Spectroscopic Telescope) is a wide-field, fiber-feed, high-multiplex spectroscopic survey facility to be installed on the 4-meter ESO telescope VISTA in Chile. It consists of two identical low resolution spectrographs and one high resolution spectrograph. The instrument is presently in the preliminary design phase and expected to get operational end of 2022. The high resolution spectrograph will afford simultaneous observations of up to 812 targets - over a hexagonal field of view of ~ 4.1 sq.degrees on sky - with a spectral resolution R>18,000 covering a wavelength range from 393 to 679nm in three channels. In this paper we present the optical and mechanical design of the high resolution spectrograph (HRS) as prepared for the review at ESO, Garching. The expected performance including the highly multiplexed fiber slit concept is simulated and its impact on the optical performance given. We show the thermal and finite element analyses and the resulting stability of the spectrograph under operational conditions.
This paper gives an overview of the CARMENES instrument and of the survey that will be carried out with it
during the first years of operation. CARMENES (Calar Alto high-Resolution search for M dwarfs with Exoearths
with Near-infrared and optical Echelle Spectrographs) is a next-generation radial-velocity instrument
under construction for the 3.5m telescope at the Calar Alto Observatory by a consortium of eleven Spanish
and German institutions. The scientific goal of the project is conducting a 600-night exoplanet survey targeting
~ 300 M dwarfs with the completed instrument.
The CARMENES instrument consists of two separate echelle spectrographs covering the wavelength range
from 0.55 to 1.7 μm at a spectral resolution of R = 82,000, fed by fibers from the Cassegrain focus of the telescope.
The spectrographs are housed in vacuum tanks providing the temperature-stabilized environments necessary to
enable a 1 m/s radial velocity precision employing a simultaneous calibration with an emission-line lamp or with
a Fabry-Perot etalon. For mid-M to late-M spectral types, the wavelength range around 1.0 μm (Y band) is the
most important wavelength region for radial velocity work. Therefore, the efficiency of CARMENES has been
optimized in this range.
The CARMENES instrument consists of two spectrographs, one equipped with a 4k x 4k pixel CCD for
the range 0.55 - 1.05 μm, and one with two 2k x 2k pixel HgCdTe detectors for the range from 0.95 - 1.7μm.
Each spectrograph will be coupled to the 3.5m telescope with two optical fibers, one for the target, and one
for calibration light. The front end contains a dichroic beam splitter and an atmospheric dispersion corrector,
to feed the light into the fibers leading to the spectrographs. Guiding is performed with a separate camera;
on-axis as well as off-axis guiding modes are implemented. Fibers with octagonal cross-section are employed to
ensure good stability of the output in the presence of residual guiding errors. The fibers are continually actuated
to reduce modal noise. The spectrographs are mounted on benches inside vacuum tanks located in the coud´e
laboratory of the 3.5m dome. Each vacuum tank is equipped with a temperature stabilization system capable
of keeping the temperature constant to within ±0.01°C over 24 hours. The visible-light spectrograph will be
operated near room temperature, while the near-IR spectrograph will be cooled to ~ 140 K.
The CARMENES instrument passed its final design review in February 2013. The MAIV phase is currently
ongoing. First tests at the telescope are scheduled for early 2015. Completion of the full instrument is planned
for the fall of 2015. At least 600 useable nights have been allocated at the Calar Alto 3.5m Telescope for the
CARMENES survey in the time frame until 2018.
A data base of M stars (dubbed CARMENCITA) has been compiled from which the CARMENES sample can
be selected. CARMENCITA contains information on all relevant properties of the potential targets. Dedicated imaging, photometric, and spectroscopic observations are underway to provide crucial data on these stars that
are not available in the literature.
CARMENES (Calar Alto high-Resolution search for M dwarfs with Exo-earths with Near-infrared and optical Echelle Spectrographs) is a next-generation instrument for the 3.5m telescope at the Calar Alto Observatory, built by a consortium of eleven Spanish and German institutions. The CARMENES instrument consists of two separate échelle spectrographs covering the wavelength range from 0.55 μm to 1.7 μm at a spectral resolution of R = 82, 000, fed by fibers from the Cassegrain focus of the telescope. Both spectrographs are housed in temperature-stabilized vacuum tanks, to enable a long-term 1 m/s radial velocity precision employing a simultaneous calibration with Th-Ne and U-Ne emission line lamps. CARMENES has been optimized for a search for terrestrial planets in the habitable zones (HZs) of low-mass stars, which may well provide our first chance to study environments capable of supporting the development of life outside the Solar System. With its unique combination of optical and near-infrared ´echelle spectrographs, CARMENES will provide better sensitivity for the detection of low-mass planets than any comparable instrument, and a powerful tool for discriminating between genuine planet detections and false positives caused by stellar activity. The CARMENES survey will target 300 M dwarfs in the 2014 to 2018 time frame.
CARMENES is a fiber-fed high-resolution échelle spectrograph for the Calar Alto 3.5m telescope. The instrument is
built by a German-Spanish consortium under the lead of the Landessternwarte Heidelberg. The search for planets around
M dwarfs with a radial velocity accuracy of 1 m/s is the main focus of the planned science. Two channels, one for the
visible, another for the near-infrared, will allow observations in the complete wavelength range from 550 to 1700 nm. To
ensure the stability, the instrument is working in vacuum in a thermally controlled environment. The optical design of
both channels of the instrument and the front-end, as well as the opto-mechanical design, are described.
LUCIFER 1 is the rst of two identical camera-spectrograph units installed at the LBT (Large Binocular Telescope)
on Mount Graham in Arizona. Its commissioning took place between September 2008 and November
2009 and has immediately been followed by science operations since December 2009.
LUCIFER has a 4x4 arcminute eld of view. It is equipped with a 2048x2048 pixel HAWAII-2 array, suitable
lters (broad-band z, J, H, K & Ks plus 12 medium and narrow band near-infrared lters) and three gratings for
spectroscopy for a resolution of up to 15000. LUCIFER has 3 cameras: two specic for seeing limited imaging
(the N3.75 camera, with 0.12"/pixel) and spectroscopy (the N1.8 camera, with 0.25"/pixel) and one for diraction
limited observations (the N30 camera). We report here about the completed seeing-limited commissioning, thus
using only two of the cameras.
LUCIFER is a NIR spectrograph and imager (wavelength range 0.9 to 2.5 micron) for the Large Binocular
Telescope (LBT) on Mt. Graham, Arizona, working at cryogenic temperatures of less than 70K. Two instruments
are built by a consortium of five German institutes and will be mounted at the bent Gregorian foci of the two
individual telescope mirrors. Three exchangable cameras are available for imaging and spectroscopy: two of
them are optimized for seeing-limited conditions, a third camera for the diffraction limited case will be used with
the LBT adaptive secondary mirror working. Up to 33 exchangeable masks are available for longslit or multi-object
spectroscopy (MOS) over the full field of view (FOV). Both MOS-units (LUCIFER 1 and LUCIFER
2) and the auxiliary cryostats together with the control electronics have been completed. The observational
software-package is in its final stage of preparation.
After the total integration of LUCIFER 1 extensive tests were done for all electro-mechanical functions and
the verification of the instrument started. The results of the tests are presented in detail and are compared with
LUCIFER (LBT NIR Spectrograph Utility with Camera and Integral-Field
Unit for Extragalactic Research) is a NIR spectrograph and imager for
the LBT (Large Binocular Telescope) working in the wavelength range from 0.9 to 2.5 microns. Two instruments are built by a consortium of
five German institutes (Landessternwarte Heidelberg (LSW), Max Planck
Institut for Astronomy (MPIA), Max Planck Institut for Extraterrestric Physics (MPE), Astronomical Institut of the Ruhr-University Bochum (AIRUB) and Fachhochschule for Technics and Design Mannheim (FHTG).
All major components for the first instrument have been manufactured or are in the final stage of procurement. While integration and testing of LUCIFER 1 started in spring 2006 at the MPIA in Heidelberg, the cryostat for LUCIFER 2 has been sent to the MPE in Garching for system integration tests of the MOS-unit and testing of the mask cabinet exchange. The control electronics for the basic instrument has been manufactured, the MOS control electronics has been integrated and is being debugged. The MOS control software is under development by AIRUB. Fabrication and integration of components for LUCIFER 2 have started.