The GMTIFS instrument requires multiple rotary mechanisms that will operate in a cryogenic environment. Angular precision up to one arc-second is required without the use of IR sources as part of an encoder. A general design that uses an annular conical rim bearing supported by three pairs of tapered pinch rollers has been proposed. One pair of pinch rollers is mounted on a flexure hinge to provide preload and accommodate thermal expansion. A pair of off set cylindrical cams carried by the rotor, and four capacitive distance sensors fixed to the stator are utilized to implement a resolver. This provides a measure of the rotor orientation that is insensitive to runout of the rotor. A prototype of this design was constructed and tested in the lab to investigate the effect of runout in the tapered rollers and assess the performance of the rim bearing and various resolver designs. We present the results of this testing.
We report the design evolution for the GMT Integral Field Spectrograph, (GMTIFS). To support the range of operating modes – a spectroscopic channel providing integral field spectroscopy with variable spaxel scales, and a parallel imaging channel Nyquist sampling the LTAO corrected field of view - the design process has focused on risk mitigation for the demanding operational tolerances. We summarise results from prototype components, confirming concepts are meeting the necessary specifications. Ongoing review and simulation of the scientific requirements also leads to new demonstrations of the science that will be made possible with this new generation of high performance AO assisted instrumentation.
Veloce is an ultra-stable fibre-fed R4 echelle spectrograph for the 3.9 m Anglo-Australian Telescope. The first channel to be commissioned, Veloce ‘Rosso’, utilises multiple low-cost design innovations to obtain Doppler velocities for sun-like and M-dwarf stars at <1 ms -1 precision. The spectrograph has an asymmetric white-pupil format with a 100-mm beam diameter, delivering R>75,000 spectra over a 580-930 nm range for the Rosso channel. Simultaneous calibration is provided by a single-mode pulsed laser frequency comb in tandem with a traditional arc lamp. A bundle of 19 object fibres ensures full sampling of stellar targets from the AAT site. Veloce is housed in dual environmental enclosures that maintain positive air pressure at a stability of ±0.3 mbar, with a thermal stability of ±0.01 K on the optical bench. We present a technical overview and early performance data from Australia's next major spectroscopic machine.
Veloce is an ultra-stabilized Echelle spectrograph for precision radial velocity measurements of stars. In order to maximize the grating performance, the air temperature as well as the air pressure surrounding it must be maintained within tight tolerances. The control goal was set at +/-10 mK and +/-1 mbar for air temperature and pressure respectively. The strategy developed by the design team resulted in separate approaches for each of the two requirements. A constrained budget early in the concept phase quickly ruled out building a large vacuum vessel to achieve stable air pressure. Instead, a simplified approach making use of a slightly over pressurized enclosure containing the whole spectrograph was selected in conjunction with a commercially available pressure controller. The temperature stability of Veloce is maintained through a custom array of PID controlled heaters placed on the outer skin of the internal spectrograph enclosure. This enclosure is also fully lined with 19 mm thick insulating panels to minimize the thermal fluctuations. A second insulated enclosure, built around the internal one, adds a layer of conditioned air to further shield Veloce from the ambient thermal changes. Early success of the environment control system has already been demonstrated in the integration laboratory, achieving results that amply exceed the goals set forth. Results presented show the long term stability of operation under varying barometric conditions. This paper details the various challenges encountered during the implementation of the stated designs, with an emphasis on the control strategy and the mechanical constraints to implement the solutions.