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Proceedings Paper

VIRUS: production and deployment of a massively replicated fiber integral field spectrograph for the upgraded Hobby-Eberly Telescope
Author(s): Gary J. Hill; Sarah E. Tuttle; Niv Drory; Hanshin Lee; Brian L. Vattiat; D. L. DePoy; J. L. Marshall; Andreas Kelz; Dionne Haynes; Maximilian H. Fabricius; Karl Gebhardt; Richard D. Allen; Heiko Anwad; Ralf Bender; Guillermo Blanc; Taylor Chonis; Mark E. Cornell; Gavin Dalton; John Good; Thomas Jahn; Hermanus Kriel; Martin Landriau; Phillip J. MacQueen; J. D. Murphy; Trent W. Peterson; Travis Prochaska; Harald Nicklas; Jason Ramsey; M. M. Roth; Richard D. Savage; Jan Snigula
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Paper Abstract

The Visible Integral-field Replicable Unit Spectrograph (VIRUS) consists of a baseline build of 150 identical spectrographs (arrayed as 75 unit pairs) fed by 33,600 fibers, each 1.5 arcsec diameter, at the focus of the upgraded 10 m Hobby-Eberly Telescope (HET). VIRUS has a fixed bandpass of 350-550 nm and resolving power R~700. VIRUS is the first example of industrial-scale replication applied to optical astronomy and is capable of surveying large areas of sky, spectrally. The VIRUS concept offers significant savings of engineering effort, cost, and schedule when compared to traditional instruments. The main motivator for VIRUS is to map the evolution of dark energy for the Hobby-Eberly Telescope Dark Energy Experiment (HETDEX), using 0.8M Lyman-α emitting galaxies as tracers. The full VIRUS array is due to be deployed starting at the end of 2014 and will provide a powerful new facility instrument for the HET, well suited to the survey niche of the telescope, and will open up large area surveys of the emission line universe for the first time. VIRUS is in full production, and we are about half way through. We review the production design, lessons learned in reaching volume production, and preparation for deployment of this massive instrument. We also discuss the application of the replicated spectrograph concept to next generation instrumentation on ELTs.

Paper Details

Date Published: 10 July 2014
PDF: 27 pages
Proc. SPIE 9147, Ground-based and Airborne Instrumentation for Astronomy V, 91470Q (10 July 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2056911
Show Author Affiliations
Gary J. Hill, McDonald Observatory, The Univ. of Texas at Austin (United States)
The Univ. of Texas at Austin (United States)
Sarah E. Tuttle, McDonald Observatory, The Univ. of Texas at Austin (United States)
Niv Drory, McDonald Observatory, The Univ. of Texas at Austin (United States)
Hanshin Lee, McDonald Observatory, The Univ. of Texas at Austin (United States)
Brian L. Vattiat, McDonald Observatory, The Univ. of Texas at Austin (United States)
D. L. DePoy, Texas A&M Univ. (United States)
J. L. Marshall, Texas A&M Univ. (United States)
Andreas Kelz, Leibniz-Institut für Astrophysik Potsdam (Germany)
innoFSPEC Potsdam (Germany)
Dionne Haynes, Leibniz-Institut für Astrophysik Potsdam (Germany)
innoFSPEC Potsdam (Germany)
Maximilian H. Fabricius, Max-Planck-Institut für extraterrestrische Physik (Germany)
Karl Gebhardt, The Univ. of Texas at Austin (United States)
Richard D. Allen, Texas A&M Univ. (United States)
Heiko Anwad, Institut für Astrophysik Göttingen (Germany)
Ralf Bender, Max-Planck-Institut für extraterrestrische Physik (Germany)
Univ.-Sternwarte München (Germany)
Guillermo Blanc, Carnegie Observatories (United States)
Taylor Chonis, The Univ. of Texas at Austin (United States)
Mark E. Cornell, MIT Lincoln Lab. (United States)
Gavin Dalton, Univ. of Oxford (United Kingdom)
John Good, McDonald Observatory, The Univ. of Texas at Austin (United States)
Thomas Jahn, Leibniz-Institut für Astrophysik Potsdam (Germany)
innoFSPEC Potsdam (Germany)
Hermanus Kriel, McDonald Observatory, The Univ. of Texas at Austin (United States)
Martin Landriau, McDonald Observatory, The Univ. of Texas at Austin (United States)
Phillip J. MacQueen, McDonald Observatory, The Univ. of Texas at Austin (United States)
J. D. Murphy, Princeton Univ. (United States)
Trent W. Peterson, McDonald Observatory, The Univ. of Texas at Austin (United States)
Travis Prochaska, Texas A&M Univ. (United States)
Harald Nicklas, Institut für Astrophysik Göttingen (Germany)
Jason Ramsey, McDonald Observatory, The Univ. of Texas at Austin (United States)
M. M. Roth, Leibniz-Institut für Astrophysik Potsdam (Germany)
innoFSPEC Potsdam (Germany)
Richard D. Savage, McDonald Observatory, The Univ. of Texas at Austin (United States)
Jan Snigula, Max-Planck-Institut für extraterrestrische Physik (Germany)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9147:
Ground-based and Airborne Instrumentation for Astronomy V
Suzanne K. Ramsay; Ian S. McLean; Hideki Takami, Editor(s)

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