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Proceedings Paper

Automated fiber optic instrumentation for the William Herschel Telescope
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Paper Abstract

The design and operation of the automated optical-fiber positioning system used for spectroscopic observations at the Cassegrain focus of the 4.2-m William Herschel Telescope (WHT) at Observatorio del Roque de los Muchachos are described. The system is a modified version of the Autofib positioner for the AAT and employs 64 spectroscopic fibers and 8 guide fiber bundles arranged to form a 17-arcmin-diameter field. The fibers are 1-m-long polyimide-coated high-OH silica, with core diameter 260 microns and outer diameter 315 microns, and a 1.2-mm side-length microprism is cemented to the end of each fiber or (7-fiber) guide bundle. The fibers are positioned one at a time by a pick-and-place robot assembly, and a viewing head permitting simultaneous observation of the back-illuminated fiber and the object it is trying to acquire is provided. This prototype Cassegrain-focus system is being studied to aid in the development of a more accurate fiber positioner for use at the prime focus of the WHT.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 July 1990
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 1235, Instrumentation in Astronomy VII, (1 July 1990); doi: 10.1117/12.19131
Show Author Affiliations
Ian Robert Parry, Univ. of Durham (United Kingdom)
Ian J. Lewis, Univ. of Durham (United Kingdom)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1235:
Instrumentation in Astronomy VII
David L. Crawford, Editor(s)

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