SCORPIO is the next facility instrument for the Gemini South telescope at Cerro Pachon, Chile. SCORPIO’s main science driver is the detection and monitoring of faint time-domain events, in particular the follow-up of discoveries by the Vera C. Rubin Observatory, but it can also carry out with unique efficiency a large variety of astrophysical programs. The instrument has recently passed Critical Design Review and is now in its Assembly, Integration and Verification phase. In this paper we provide an updated overview of the final instrument design and the main performance parameters in light of the science drivers.
SCORPIO (Spectrograph and Camera for Observation of Rapid Phenomena in the Infrared and Optical) is the new workhorse instrument for the Gemini South Telescope in Chile. Originally proposed in response to the Gen4#3 solicitation, SCORPIO is a unique fast-multicolor imager and ultra-wide band spectrograph capable of rapid exposures for high time-resolution images and spectra. SCORPIO consists of 8 separate channels (corresponding to the standard wavebands g, r, i, z, Y, H, J, K) that can operate with different exposure times. Each channel can be used in imaging or long-slit mode, with independent readout timing. In this report we illustrate the detectors, the control systems, and the observing modes that will be available with SCORPIO.
We present the current status of the SCORPIO project, the facility instrument for Gemini South designed to perform follow up studies of transients in the LSST era while carrying out with unique efficiency a great variety of astrophysical programs. SCORPIO operates in the wavelength range 385-2350 nanometers, observing simultaneously in the grizYJHK bands. It can be used both in imaging (seeing limited) and spectroscopic (long-slit) mode, and thanks to the use of frame-transfer CCDs it can monitor variable sources with milli-second time-resolution. The project has recently passed PDR and is on schedule to be commissioned at the time of the LSST first light.
The Swift MIDEX mission is the first-of-its-kind observatory for multi-wavelength transient astronomy. The goal of the mission is to ascertain the origin of gamma-ray bursts and to utilize these bursts to probe the early universe. The Ultra- Violet/Optical Telescope (UVOT) is one of three telescopes flying aboard Swift. The UVOT is a working 'copy' of the Optical Monitor on the X-ray Multi-mirror Mission (XMM- Newton). It is a Ritchey-Chretien telescope with microchannel plate intensified charged-coupled devices (MICs) that provide sub-arcsecond imaging. These MICs are photon counting devices, capable of detecting very low signal levels. When flown above the atmosphere, the UVOT will have the equivalent sensitivity of a 4 m telescope on the ground, reaching a limiting magnitude of 24 for a 1000 second observation in the white light filter. A rotating filter wheel contains sensitive photometric broadband UV and visual filters for determining photometric redshifts. The filter wheel also contains UV and visual grisms for performing low-resolution spectroscopy.