HARMONI is the adaptive optics assisted, near-infrared and visible light integral field spectrograph for the Extremely Large Telescope (ELT). A first light instrument, it provides the work-horse spectroscopic capability for the ELT. As the project approaches its Final Design Review milestone, the design of the instrument is being finalized, and the plans for assembly, integration and testing are being detailed. We present an overview of the instrument’s capabilities from a user perspective, provide a summary of the instrument’s design, including plans for operations and calibrations, and provide a brief glimpse of the predicted performance for a specific observing scenario. The paper also provides some details of the consortium composition and its evolution since the project commenced in 2015.
MOSAIC is a mixed-mode multiple object spectrograph planned for the ELT that uses a tiled focal plane to support a variety of observing modes. The MOSAIC AO system uses 4 LGS WFS and up to 4 NGS WFS positioned anywhere within the full 10 arcminute ELT field of view to control either the ELT M4/5 alone for GLAO operation feeding up to 200 targets in the focal plane, or M4/5 in conjunction with 10 open-loop DMs for MOAO correction. In this paper we present the overall design and performance of the MOSAIC GLAO and MOAO systems.
We present the consolidated scientific case for multi-object spectroscopy with the MOSAIC concept on the European ELT. The cases span the full range of ELT science and require either ‘high multiplex’ or ‘high definition’ observations to best exploit the excellent sensitivity and wide field-of-view of the telescope. Following scientific prioritisation by the Science Team during the recent Phase A study of the MOSAIC concept, we highlight four key surveys designed for the instrument using detailed simulations of its scientific performance. We discuss future ways to optimise the conceptual design of MOSAIC in Phase B, and illustrate its competitiveness and unique capabilities by comparison with other facilities that will be available in the 2020s.
Following a successful Phase A study, we introduce the delivered conceptual design of the MOSAIC1 multi-object spectrograph for the ESO Extremely Large Telescope (ELT). MOSAIC will provide R~5000 spectroscopy over the full 460-1800 nm range, with three additional high-resolution bands (R~15000) targeting features of particular interest. MOSAIC will combine three operational modes, enabling integrated-light observations of up to 200 sources on the sky (high-multiplex mode) or spectroscopy of 10 spatially-extended fields via deployable integral-field units: MOAO6 assisted high-definition (HDM) and Visible IFUs (VIFU). We will summarise key features of the sub-systems of the design, e.g. the smart tiled focal-plane for target selection and the multi-object adaptive optics used to correct for atmospheric turbulence, and present the next steps toward the construction phase.
When combined with the huge collecting area of the ELT, MOSAIC will be the most effective and flexible Multi-Object Spectrograph (MOS) facility in the world, having both a high multiplex and a multi-Integral Field Unit (Multi-IFU) capability. It will be the fastest way to spectroscopically follow-up the faintest sources, probing the reionisation epoch, as well as evaluating the evolution of the dwarf mass function over most of the age of the Universe. MOSAIC will be world-leading in generating an inventory of both the dark matter (from realistic rotation curves with MOAO fed NIR IFUs) and the cool to warm-hot gas phases in z=3.5 galactic haloes (with visible wavelenth IFUs). Galactic archaeology and the first massive black holes are additional targets for which MOSAIC will also be revolutionary. MOAO and accurate sky subtraction with fibres have now been demonstrated on sky, removing all low Technical Readiness Level (TRL) items from the instrument. A prompt implementation of MOSAIC is feasible, and indeed could increase the robustness and reduce risk on the ELT, since it does not require diffraction limited adaptive optics performance. Science programmes and survey strategies are currently being investigated by the Consortium, which is also hoping to welcome a few new partners in the next two years.
There are 8000 galaxies, including 1600 at z ≥ 1.6, which could be simultaneously observed in an E-ELT field of view of 40 arcmin2. A considerable fraction of astrophysical discoveries require large statistical samples, which can only be obtained with multi-object spectrographs (MOS). MOSAIC will provide a vast discovery space, enabled by a multiplex of 200 and spectral resolving powers of R=5000 and 20000. MOSAIC will also offer the unique capability of more than 10 `high-definition' (multi-object adaptive optics, MOAO) integral-field units, optimised to investigate the physics of the sources of reionization. The combination of these modes will make MOSAIC the world-leading MOS facility, contributing to all fields of contemporary astronomy, from extra-solar planets, to the study of the halo of the Milky Way and its satellites, and from resolved stellar populations in nearby galaxies out to observations of the earliest ‘first-light’ structures in the Universe. It will also study the distribution of the dark and ordinary matter at all scales and epochs of the Universe. Recent studies of critical technical issues such as sky-background subtraction and MOAO have demonstrated that such a MOS is feasible with state-of-the-art technology and techniques. Current studies of the MOSAIC team include further trade-offs on the wavelength coverage, a solution for compensating for the non-telecentric new design of the telescope, and tests of the saturation of skylines especially in the near-IR bands. In the 2020s the E-ELT will become the world's largest optical/IR telescope, and we argue that it has to be equipped as soon as possible with a MOS to provide the most efficient, and likely the best way to follow-up on James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) observations.
The first generation of E-ELT instruments will include an optic-infrared High Resolution Spectrograph, conventionally indicated as EELT-HIRES, which will be capable of providing unique breakthroughs in the fields of exoplanets, star and planet formation, physics and evolution of stars and galaxies, cosmology and fundamental physics. A 2-year long phase A study for EELT-HIRES has just started and will be performed by a consortium composed of institutes and organisations from Brazil, Chile, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and United Kingdom. In this paper we describe the science goals and the preliminary technical concept for EELT-HIRES which will be developed during the phase A, as well as its planned development and consortium organisation during the study.
Building on the comprehensive White Paper on the scientific case for multi-object spectroscopy on the European ELT, we present the top-level instrument requirements that are being used in the Phase A design study of the MOSAIC concept. The assembled cases span the full range of E-ELT science and generally require either ‘high multiplex' or 'high definition' observations to best exploit the excellent sensitivity and spatial performance of the telescope. We highlight some of the science studies that are now being used in trade-off studies to inform the capabilities of MOSAIC and its technical design.
CANARY is an on-sky Laser Guide Star (LGS) tomographic AO demonstrator in operation at the 4.2m William Herschel Telescope (WHT) in La Palma. From the early demonstration of open-loop tomography on a single deformable mirror using natural guide stars in 2010, CANARY has been progressively upgraded each year to reach its final goal in July 2015. It is now a two-stage system that mimics the future E-ELT: a GLAO-driven woofer based on 4 laser guide stars delivers a ground-layer compensated field to a figure sensor locked tweeter DM, that achieves the final on-axis tomographic compensation. We present the overall system, the control strategy and an overview of its on-sky performance.
Extensive simulations of AO performance for several E-ELT instruments (including EAGLE, MOSAIC, HIRES and MAORY) have been ongoing using the Monte-Carlo Durham AO Simulation Package. We present the latest simulation results, including studies into DM requirements, dependencies of performance on asterism, detailed point spread function generation, accurate telescope modelling, and studies of laser guide star effects. Details of simulations will be given, including the use of optical models of the E-ELT to generate wave- front sensor pupil illumination functions, laser guide star modelling, and investigations of different many-layer atmospheric profiles. We discuss issues related to ELT-scale simulation, how we have overcome these, and how we will be approaching forthcoming issues such as modelling of advanced wavefront control, multi-rate wavefront sensing, and advanced treatment of extended laser guide star spots. We also present progress made on integrating simulation with AO real-time control systems. The impact of simulation outcomes on instrument design studies will be discussed, and the ongoing work plan presented.
The Universe is comprised of hundreds of billions of galaxies, each populated by hundreds of billions of stars. Astrophysics aims to understand the complexity of this almost incommensurable number of stars, stellar clusters and galaxies, including their spatial distribution, formation, and current interactions with the interstellar and intergalactic media. A considerable fraction of astrophysical discoveries require large statistical samples, which can only be addressed with multi-object spectrographs (MOS). Here we introduce the MOSAIC study of an optical/near-infrared MOS for the European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT), which has capabilities specified by science cases ranging from stellar physics and exoplanet studies to galaxy evolution and cosmology. Recent studies of critical technical issues such as sky-background subtraction and multi-object adaptive optics (MOAO) have demonstrated that such a MOS is feasible with current technology and techniques. In the 2020s the E-ELT will become the world’s largest optical/IR telescope, and we argue that it has to be equipped as soon as possible with a MOS. MOSAIC will provide a vast discovery space, enabled by a multiplex of ∼ 200 and spectral resolving powers of R = 5 000 and 20 000. MOSAIC will also offer the unique capability of 10-to-20 ‘high-definition’ (MOAO) integral-field units, optimised to investigate the physics of the sources of reionisation, providing the most efficient follow-up of observations with the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST). The combination of these modes will enable the study of the mass-assembly history of galaxies over cosmic time, including high-redshift dwarf galaxies and studies of the distribution of the intergalactic medium. It will also provide spectroscopy of resolved stars in external galaxies at unprecedented distances, from the outskirts of the Local Group for main-sequence stars, to a significant volume of the local Universe, including nearby galaxy clusters, for luminous red supergiants.
Over the past 18 months we have revisited the science requirements for a multi-object spectrograph (MOS) for the
European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT). These efforts span the full range of E-ELT science and include input
from a broad cross-section of astronomers across the ESO partner countries. In this contribution we summarise the key
cases relating to studies of high-redshift galaxies, galaxy evolution, and stellar populations, with a more expansive
presentation of a new case relating to detection of exoplanets in stellar clusters. A general requirement is the need for
two observational modes to best exploit the large (≥40 arcmin2) patrol field of the E-ELT. The first mode (‘high
multiplex’) requires integrated-light (or coarsely resolved) optical/near-IR spectroscopy of >100 objects simultaneously.
The second (‘high definition’), enabled by wide-field adaptive optics, requires spatially-resolved, near-IR of >10
objects/sub-fields. Within the context of the conceptual study for an ELT-MOS called MOSAIC, we summarise the toplevel
requirements from each case and introduce the next steps in the design process.
CANARY is an on-sky Laser Guide Star (LGS) tomographic AO demonstrator that has been in operation at the 4.2m William Herschel Telescope (WHT) in La Palma since 2010. In 2013, CANARY was upgraded from its initial configuration that used three off-axis Natural Guide Stars (NGS) through the inclusion of four off-axis Rayleigh LGS and associated wavefront sensing system. Here we present the system and analysis of the on-sky results obtained at the WHT between May and September 2014. Finally we present results from the final ‘Phase C’ CANARY system that aims to recreate the tomographic configuration to emulate the expected tomographic AO configuration of both the AOF at the VLT and E-ELT.
The EAGLE and EVE Phase A studies for instruments for the European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT) originated
from related top-level scientific questions, but employed different (yet complementary) methods to deliver the required
observations. We re-examine the motivations for a multi-object spectrograph (MOS) on the E-ELT and present a unified
set of requirements for a versatile instrument. Such a MOS would exploit the excellent spatial resolution in the near-infrared envisaged for EAGLE, combined with aspects of the spectral coverage and large multiplex of EVE. We briefly
discuss the top-level systems which could satisfy these requirements in a single instrument at one of the Nasmyth foci of
The EAGLE instrument is a Multi-Object Adaptive Optics (MOAO) fed, multiple Integral Field Spectrograph (IFS),
working in the Near Infra-Red (NIR), on the European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT). A Phase A design study
was delivered to the European Southern Observatory (ESO) leading to a successful review in October 2009. Since that
time there have been a number of developments, which we summarize here. Some of these developments are also
described in more detail in other submissions at this meeting.
The science case for the instrument, while broad, highlighted in particular: understanding the stellar populations of
galaxies in the nearby universe, the observation of the evolution of galaxies during the period of rapid stellar build-up
between redshifts of 2-5, and the search for 'first light' in the universe at redshifts beyond 7. In the last 2 years substantial
progress has been made in these areas, and we have updated our science case to show that EAGLE is still an essential
facility for the E-ELT. This in turn allowed us to revisit the science requirements for the instrument, confirming most of
the original decisions, but with one modification.
The original location considered for the instrument (a gravity invariant focal station) is no longer in the E-ELT
Construction Proposal, and so we have performed some preliminary analyses to show that the instrument can be simply
adapted to work at the E-ELT Nasmyth platform.
Since the delivery of the Phase A documentation, MOAO has been demonstrated on-sky by the CANARY experiment at
the William Herschel Telescope.
EAGLE is the multi-object spatially-resolved near-IR spectrograph instrument concept for the E-ELT, relying
on a distributed Adaptive Optics, so-called Multi Object Adaptive Optics. This paper presents the results of
a phase A study. Using 84×84 actuator deformable mirrors, the performed analysis demonstrates that 6 laser
guide stars (on an outer ring of 7.2' diameter) and up to 5 natural guide stars of magnitude R < 17, picked-up in
a 7.3' diameter patrol field of view, allow us to obtain an overall performance in terms of Ensquared Energy of
35% in a 75×75mas2 resolution element at H band whatever the target direction in the centred 5' science field
for median seeing conditions. In terms of sky coverage, the probability to find the 5 natural guide stars is close
to 90% at galactic latitudes |b| ~ 60 deg. Several MOAO demonstration activities are also on-going.
EAGLE is a Phase A study of a multi-IFU, near-IR spectrometer for the European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT).
The design employs wide-field adaptive optics to deliver excellent image quality across a large (38.5 arcmin2) field.
When combined with the light grasp of the E-ELT, EAGLE will be a unique and efficient facility for spatially-resolved,
spectroscopic surveys of high-redshift galaxies and resolved stellar populations. Following a brief overview of the
science case, here we summarise the functional and performance requirements that flow-down from it, provide
illustrative performances from simulated observations, and highlight the strong synergies with the James Webb Space
Telescope (JWST) and the Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA).
EAGLE is an instrument under consideration for the European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT). EAGLE will be
installed at the Gravity Invariant Focal Station of the E-ELT. The baseline design consists of 20 IFUs deployable over a
patrol field of ~40 arcmin2. Each IFU has an individual field of view of ~ 1.65" x 1.65". While EAGLE can operate with
the Adaptive Optics correction delivered by the telescope, its full and unrivaled scientific power will be reached with the
added value of its embedded Multi-Object Adaptive Optics System (MOAO). EAGLE will be a unique and efficient
facility for spatially-resolved, spectroscopic surveys of high-redshift galaxies and resolved stellar populations. We detail
the three main science drivers that have been used to specify the top level science requirements. We then present the
baseline design of the instrument at the end of Phase A, and in particular its Adaptive Optics System. We show that the
instrument has a readiness level that allows us to proceed directly into phase B, and we indicate how the instrument
development is planned.
EAGLE is an instrument for the European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT). EAGLE will be installed at the Gravity
Invariant Focal Station of the E-ELT, covering a field of view of 50 square arcminutes. Its main scientific drivers are the
physics and evolution of high-redshift galaxies, the detection and characterization of first-light objects and the physics of
galaxy evolution from stellar archaeology. These key science programs, generic to all ELT projects and highly
complementary to JWST, require 3D spectroscopy on a limited (~20) number of targets, full near IR coverage up to 2.4
micron and an image quality significantly sharper than the atmospheric seeing. The EAGLE design achieves these
requirements with innovative, yet simple, solutions and technologies already available or under the final stages of
development. EAGLE relies on Multi-Object Adaptive Optics (MOAO) which is being demonstrated in the laboratory
and on sky. This paper provides a summary of the phase A study instrument design.
We present an overview of the EAGLE science case, which spans spatially resolved spectroscopy of targets from five
key science areas - ranging from studies of heavily obscured Galactic star clusters, right out to the first galaxies at the
highest redshifts. Here we summarise the requirements adopted for the study and also evaluate the availability of natural
guide stars in example fields, which will impact on the adaptive optics performance and architecture.
EAGLE is an instrument under conceptual study for the European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT). EAGLE will be
installed at the Gravity Invariant Focal Station of the E-ELT, covering a field of view between 5 and 10 arcminutes. Its
main scientific drivers are the physics and evolution of high-redshift galaxies, the detection and characterization of first-light
objects and the physics of galaxy evolution from stellar archaeology. The top level requirements of the instrument
call for 20 spectroscopic channels in the near infrared, assisted by Adaptive Optics. Several concepts of the Target
Acquisition sub-system have been studied and are briefly presented. Multi-Conjugate Adaptive Optics (MCAO) over a
segmented 5' field has been evaluated and compared to Multi-Object Adaptive Optics (MOAO). The latter has higher
performance and is easier to implement, and is therefore chosen as the baseline for EAGLE. The paper provides a status
report of the conceptual study, and indicates how the future steps will address the instrument development plan due to be
completed within a year.
One of the highlights of the European ELT Science Case book is the study of resolved stellar populations, potentially out to the Virgo Cluster of galaxies. A European ELT would enable such studies in a wide range of unexplored, distant environments, in terms of both galaxy morphology and metallicity. As part of a small study, a revised science case has been used to shape the conceptual design of a multi-object, multi-field spectrometer and imager (MOMSI). Here we present an overview of some key science drivers, and how to achieve these with elements such as multiplex, AO-correction, pick-off technology and spectral resolution.
We report on the development of instrument concepts for a European ELT, expanding on studies carried out as part of the ESO OWL concept. A range of instruments were chosen to demonstrate how an ELT could meet or approach the goals generated by the OPTICON science team, and used to push the specifications and requirements of telescope and adaptive optics systems. Preliminary conclusions are presented, along with a plan for further more detailed instrument design and technology developments. This activity is supported by the European Community (Framework Programme 6, ELT Design Study, contract number 011863).
We describe a simple and cost-effective concept for implementing a Ground Layer Adaptive Optics (GLAO) system on
Gemini that will feed all instruments mounted at the Cassegrain focus. The design concept can provide a GLAO
correction to any of the current or future seeing-limited optical or near-infrared Gemini instruments. The GLAO design
uses an adaptive secondary mirror and provides a significant upgrade to the current telescope acquisition-and-guide
system while reusing and building upon the existing telescope facilities and infrastructure.
This paper discusses the overall design of the GLAO system including optics, opto-mechanics, laser guide star facilities,
natural and laser guide stars wavefront sensors. Such a GLAO system will improve the efficiency of essentially all
observations with Gemini and also will help with scheduling since it virtually eliminates poor seeing.
Ground layer adaptive optics (GLAO) can significantly decrease the size of the point spread function (PSF) and
increase the energy concentration of PSFs over a large field of view at visible and near-infrared wavelengths. This
improvement can be realized using a single, relatively low-order deformable mirror (DM) to correct the wavefront
errors from low altitude turbulence. Here we present GLAO modeling results from a feasibility study performed
for the Gemini Observatory. Using five separate analytic and Monte Carlo models to provide simulations over the
large available parameter space, we have completed a number of trade studies exploring the impact of changing
field of view, number and geometry of laser guide stars, DM conjugate altitude and DM actuator density on the
GLAO performance measured over a range of scientific wavelengths and turbulence profiles.
Optical designs of fore-optics and Advanced Image Slicer (AIS) systems made for the second generation VLT instruments KMOS1 and MUSE2,3 conceptual design studies are presented. KMOS is an infrared multi-integral-field spectrograph with 24 fields, each 2.8" x 2.8" with a 0.2" resolution, patrolling a 7' field. The described optics of KMOS are the fore-optics, from the images given by the pickoff system to the slicers, and the slicer systems themselves. The study also includes a derotator design in case the instrument would have been too heavy to be attached to the telescope. MUSE is an integral field spectrograph for the 0.465 µm to 1 µm bandwidth with a 1' x 1' field and a resolution of 0.2". Two optical designs were proposed, one mostly transmissive which is now the baseline, the other mostly using reflective optics. The later is described in this paper. It includes a derotator, an atmospheric dispersion corrector, a transmissive removable magnifier, a transmissive field splitter that cut the field in 24 subfields, the relay optics of each subfield to each slicer and the slicer systems. While MUSE is for the visible and would then in principle need transmissive optics, the use of reflective optics is justified because its minimum wavelength is 0.465 µm; modern reflective coatings give transmission larger than 98% for these wavelengths. We discuss the development of the manufacturing of AIS to extend its application to the visible from its actual use in the IR.
The Multi Unit spectroscopic Explorer (MUSE) is a second generation VLT panoramic integral-field spectrograph operating in the visible wavelength range. MUSE has a field of 1 x 1 arcmin2 sampled at 0.2x0.2 arcsec2 and is assisted by a ground layer adaptive optics system using four laser guide stars. The simultaneous spectral range is 0.465-0.93 μm, at a resolution of R~3000. MUSE couples the discovery potential of a large imaging device to the measuring capabilities of a high-quality spectrograph, while taking advantage of the increased spatial resolution provided by adaptive optics. This makes MUSE a unique and tremendously powerful instrument for discovering and characterizing objects that lie beyond the reach of even the deepest imaging surveys. MUSE has also a high spatial resolution mode with 7.5 x 7.5 arcse2 field of view sampled at 25 milli-arcsec. In this mode MUSE should be able to get diffraction limited data-cube in the 0.6-1 μm wavelength range. Although MUSE design has been optimized for the study of galaxy formation and evolution, it has a wide range of possible applications; e.g. monitoring of outer planets atmosphere, young stellar objects environment, supermassive black holes and active nuclei in nearby galaxies or massive spectroscopic survey of stellar fields.
The introduction of Image Slicers in Astronomy has been growing rapidly in the recent years. These optical devices allow the simultaneous observation on the same detector matrix of two-dimensional sky maps and the spectral decomposition of light on all of their angular samples, therefore dramatically reducing the observation times and getting rid of the spectro-photometric variations of the atmosphere. Today the implementation of Image Slicers is planned on various ground and space telescopes, covering a spectral domain ranging from blue to mid-IR wavelengths. Among such different projects, we describe the Image Slicer of MUSE (Multi Unit Spectroscopic Explorer), a second-generation Integral-Field Spectrograph for the VLT combining a 1’ x 1’ Field of View with a spatial resolution of 0.2” and a spectral resolution of 3000. The most efficient principle of an Image Slicer consists in a combination of several different optical channels, each made of three mini-mirrors having different tilts and curvatures. After a brief presentation of the MUSE Image Slicer requirements, we will explain the followed logic in order to optimize the opto-mechanical design and cost of the Slicer: indeed one of MUSE peculiarity is the total number of its individual modules, that is 24. The realization of such series at an affordable cost actually is a design driver of the study. The communication also deals with the used optical design models, the expected performance, the candidate technologies for the manufacturing of all the components, and the future development of a prototype of this critical optical subsystem.
We describe MUSE (Multi Unit Spectroscopic Explorer), a second-generation integral-field spectrograph for the VLT, operating in the visible and near IR wavelength range. It combines a 1' x 1' Field of View with the improved spatial resolution (0.2") provided by adaptive optics and covers a large simultaneous spectral range (0.48 - 1 μm). With this unique combination of capabilities, MUSE has a wide domain of application, and a large discovery potential. It will provide ultra deep fields with a limiting magnitude for spectroscopy of R = 28. After a brief presentation of the scientific case and the derived instrument requirements, we will focus on the MUSE optical design, including the overall architecture, the major trade-off that were conducted in order to optimize the cost and performance, and a provisional implementation scheme of the instrument on the VLT Nasmyth platform. Then the most important optical subsystems (as the 3 x 8 Field-splitter, the Image Slicers and the Spectrometers) are described. One of MUSE special feature is the impressive number of Image Slicer and Spectrometer modules which must be manufactured, that is 24. The realization of such series has been studied in collaboration with an industrial company. Finally a preliminary estimation of the expected performance and a technological development program in order to secure the realization of the critical optical subsystems will be presented.
A rationale is presented for the use of a relatively low-altitude (15km) Rayleigh Laser Guide Star to provide partial adaptive optics correction across a large fraction of the sky on the 4.2m William Herschel Telescope. The scientific motivation in relation to the available instrumentation suite is discussed and supported by model performance calculations, based on observed atmospheric turbulence distributions at the site. The proposed implementation takes the form of a laser system, beam diagnostics, tip-tilt mirror and beacon launch telescope, together with a range-gated wavefront sensor and processing system. It is designed to operate in conjunction with the telescope’s existing facility-class natural guide star AO system, NAOMI. Aspects of the proposed implementation are described as well as the technical features related to the system model and the error budget. In a separate paper the NAOMI AO system itself is presented. Other papers describe a demonstrator system and preliminary Rayleigh beacon wavefront sensing measurements at the site.
We describe a new concept for an integral field unit that allows the collection of a very large number of spectra. We also describe a complementary low cost spectrograph. Both are necessary for the design of integral field spectrographs with huge numbers of spatial elements. These concepts were developed for the Million Element Integral Field Unit and Spectrograph (MEIFUS) that we are proposing for an 8-m and a larger version for an Extremely Large Telescope (ELT, a 30-m telescope). The 8-m version of this spectrograph would give 2.2 million spectra, each 200 pixels long, covering a field of view of 5.2' x 5.2'. The ELT version would give 1.5 million spectra, each 600 pixels long, with a field of 2.7’ x 3’. The new concept of microslices for integral field units allows us to pack a large number of short spectra tightly on the detector without oversizing the spectrograph. It uses a series of independent cylindrical microlens arrays, as opposed to spherical or "simulated spherical using cylindrical" microlenses. We used the specific characteristics of our instrument, especially the short spectra, to develop a concept of a low cost spectrograph. We show that MEIFUS fills a technological gap between other integral field systems and Fabry-Perot instruments. We believe that integral field spectrographs with such a large number of spatial elements would be too expensive if they were to use fibers, typical slicer systems or typical spectrograph designs.
The Gemini Adaptive Optics System, (Altair), under construction at the National Research Council of Canada's Herzberg Institute of Astrophysics is unique among AO systems. Altair is designed with its deformable mirror (DM) conjugate to high altitude. We summarize construction progress. We then describe Altair in more detail. Both the Wavefront sensor foreoptics and control system are unconventional, because the guide star footprint on an altitude-conjugated DM moves as the guide star position varies. During a typical nodding sequence, where the telescope moves 10 arcseconds between exposures, this footprint moves by half an actuator and/or WFS lenslet. The advantages of altitude conjugation include increased isoplanatic patch size, which improves sky coverage, and improved uniformity of the corrected field. Altitude conjugation also reduces focal anisoplanatism with laser beacons. Although the initial installation of Altair will use natural guide stars, it will be fully ready to use a laser guide star (LGS). The infrastructure of Gemini observatory provides a variety of wavefront sensors and nested control loops that together permit some unique design concepts for Altair.
The Gemini Adaptive Optics System, under construction at the Dominium Astrophysical Observatory of the National Research Council of Canada's Herzberg Institute of Astrophysics is unique among AO systems. Altair is designed with its deformable mirror (DM) conjugate to high altitude. This concept is only practical at an observatory where extraordinary measures have been taken to reduce local seeing degradation. We summarize these measures. We then describe Altair. Both the wavefront sensor foreoptics and control system are unconventional, because the guide star footprint on an altitude-conjugated DM moves as the guide star position varies. During a typical nodding sequence, where the telescope moves 10 arcseconds between exposures, this footprint moves by half an actuator and/or WFS lenslet. The advantages of altitude conjugation include increased isoplanatic patch size, which improves sky coverage, and improved uniformity of the corrected field. Although the initial installation of Altair will use natural guide stars, it will include features to use a laser guide star with minimal rework. Altitude conjugation also reduces focal anisoplanatism with laser beacons. The infrastructure of Gemini observatory provides a variety of wavefront sensor and nested control loops that together permit some unique design concepts of Altair.
This ia a progress report; we define the requirements and details of the latest design of the Gemini Adaptive Optics System (GAOS). The specifications flow from those astronomy programs needing AO for which Gemini will be best remembered. Based on a critical list of astronomical projects and ignoring those likely to be completed earlier by other ground or space telescopes, the astronomers set requirements for image quality, corrected field of view and sky coverage probability. In median seeing (ro equals 25 cm) we require the signal to noise ratio with GAOS be double that achieved without it, using only tip/tilt/fast-focus of the secondary mirror. Our design is unique because the specifications are for end-to-end image quality delivered to the detector of an instrument while maximizing sky coverage. The error budget includes both telescope errors and instrument effects, with only about one third of the total for the residual uncorrected atmospheric errors, traditionally the only ones considered in papers on adaptive optics