We have developed Wide Field Cryogenic Telescope II (WFCT II) which contains a whole telescope-optics together with a detector in a vacuum case for cooling to suppress thermal emission from a telescope. The telescope inside is a Ritchey-Chretien system with an aperture of 220 mm and a focal length of 1540 mm. Light from celestial objects enters the telescope through a window, hits primary and secondary mirrors, passes through a filter, and reaches a detector. Spiders, baffles, and radiation shields are cooled down to ~80 K or lower by a refrigerator. All the optics reach a low temperature by exchanging heat with the radiation shields. A 1024×1024 InSb infrared array detector covers a field of view of 1 square degree with resolution of 3".5/pixel. The detector is also cooled by the refrigerator and is regulated at 29 ± 0.1 K. WFCT II is mounted on a small equatorial mounting whose size is 1 m in height, 1 m in width, and 1.2 m in length along the N-S direction. The main targets are diffuse emissions radiated from hydrogen atoms, molecules, and carbonaceous materials in star formation regions and the Galactic Center. We have started to obtain scientific data at Sutherland, South African Astronomical Observatory since December 2007.
We have developed a control system for infrared array detectors with 16, 32 or more outputs. Our system consists of five boards (clock pattern generator, clock driver, A/D converter, parallel-in, and isolation), and is operated with a Linux (kernel 2.4 or 2.6) PC. It is capable of supplying 24 DC bias voltages and 16 clock voltages,
adjustable between -7.5V and +7.5V and the shortest clock width of 156 ns. One A/D board converts 16 analog array outputs to digital data simultaneously using 16 A/D converters. The rms of A/D conversions for fixed voltages is 2-3 ADU (or 150-200 μV) at a sampling rate of 250 kSPS. The parallel-in board has 32 optically
isolated input channels, and can receive data from 2 A/D boards simultaneously. The maximum data rate to
main memory of PC is 40 MB/sec, corresponding to 20 frames/sec of a 1024×1024 array. Our system is now
utilized for Aladdin 2 (InSb, 1024×1024, 32 outputs) of Wide Field Cryogenic Telescope 2 and SB-774 (Si:As, 320×240, 16 outputs) of 17μm Fabry-Perot spectrometer. The A/D boards have daisy-chain capability for next generation arrays with more than 32 outputs. In the daisy-chain mode, all A/D converters are triggered simultaneously, but the A/D boards make time-delayed data transfer. The parallel-in board receives data sequentially by every 32 A/D converters. When we apply our system for 2048×2048 detectors with 64 outputs, the frame rate will be 5 frames/sec.
We present our high spectral resolution tandem Fabry-Perot (FP) spectrometer for detecting the pure rotational
transition line of molecular Hydrogen S (1) at 17.035 μm. It is designed to be attached to a new dedicated 1
m telescope planned to be put at a dry and high-altitude site. The spectrometer has two sequentially placed
FP units (order 1000 and 99 with finesse >50) consisting of ZnSe etalons and one narrow band filter. We will
be able to obtain high spectral resolution of R=50,000 at 17.035 μm. The ZnSe etalons of 110mm diameter
with >94% reflectance are to be provided from Barr Associates. The interval and tilt of etalons are sensed and
regulated by piezo actuators and newly-developed capacitance sensors, which resolve 100nm in vacuum and 30K
environment. By changing the interval, we change the wavelength of transmission up to 17.2 μm, corresponding
toν = 3000 km/s. We adopt an on-axis catadioptric system, in which the two FP units are placed. The focal
plane detector is a Raytheon SB-774, 320×240 pixel array of Si:As, yielding 9.1 × 6.8 arcmin2 field of view with
1.7 arcsec pixel scale. To suppress the thermal background radiation and dark current of the Si:As detector, the
system is cooled down to 6K at the detector and 35K for the whole optical system by two refrigerators. The
development of spectrometer will be completed in 2007.