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Proceedings Paper

A concept for a thirty-meter telescope
Author(s): Denis Burgarella; Frederic Zamkotsian; Kjetil Dohlen; Marc Ferrari; Francois Hammer; Frederic Sayede; Francois Rigaud
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Paper Abstract

In May 2000, the Canada-France-Hawaii (CFHT) Telescope Science Advisory Committee solicited the Canadian, Hawaiian and French communities to propose concepts to replace the present CFH telescope by a larger telescope. Three groups were selected: Carlberg et al. (2001) in Canada, Khun et al. (2001) in Hawaii and Burgarella et al. (2001a) in France. The reports were delivered to CFHT in May 2001 and are now available throughout the CFHT website. One of the main constraints was due to the fact that the new and larger telescope should use as much as possible the existing site and be compliant with the Mauna Kea Science reserve Master Plan (2000). This plan analyses all aspects of the Mauna Kea summit but most of them are related to the facts that the mountain must be considered as a sacred area for indigenous Hawaiian people and that the ecosystem is fragile. But in addition, the plan also tries to account for the fact that the summit of Mauna Kea is a world famous site for astronomy. The points that we can highlight in the context of our project are of two types. Since then, the project evolved and Hawaii is not considered as the one and only site to build an Extremely Large Telescope (ELT). Moreover, the size of the primary mirror, which was strongly dependent on the above constraints, is no more limited to the 16 - 20 m which was our conclusion at this time. Nevertheless, the three points of the resolution are still valid and since then, we have kept on working on the concept by launching differnt follow-up studies that are necessary to start such a project. Of course, the main point is the Science Objectives which drive the main specifications for an ELT. But related technical studies are also mandatory e.g. Adaptive Optics, Building of a primary mirror larger than 30 m in diameter, Image Quality as a function of the segment size and shape.

Paper Details

Date Published: 7 July 2004
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 5382, Second Backaskog Workshop on Extremely Large Telescopes, (7 July 2004); doi: 10.1117/12.566119
Show Author Affiliations
Denis Burgarella, Observatoire Astronomique de Marseille (France)
Frederic Zamkotsian, Observatoire Astronomique de Marseille (France)
Kjetil Dohlen, Observatoire Astronomique de Marseille (France)
Marc Ferrari, Observatoire Astronomique de Marseille (France)
Francois Hammer, Observatoire Paris-Meudon (France)
Frederic Sayede, Observatoire Paris-Meudon (France)
Francois Rigaud, Observatoire Paris-Meudon (France)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5382:
Second Backaskog Workshop on Extremely Large Telescopes

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