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Proceedings Paper

The assembly, calibration, and preliminary results from the Colorado high-resolution Echelle stellar spectrograph (CHESS)
Author(s): Keri Hoadley; Kevin France; Nicholas Nell; Robert Kane; Ted Schultz; Matthew Beasley; James Green; Jen Kulow; Eliot Kersgaard; Brian Fleming
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Paper Abstract

The Colorado High-resolution Echelle Stellar Spectrograph (CHESS) is a far ultraviolet (FUV) rocket-borne experiment designed to study the atomic-to-molecular transitions within translucent interstellar clouds. CHESS is an objective echelle spectrograph operating at f/12.4 and resolving power of 120,000 over a band pass of 100 – 160 nm. The echelle flight grating is the product of a research and development project with LightSmyth Inc. and was coated at Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) with Al+LiF. It has an empirically-determined groove density of 71.67 grooves/mm. At the Center for Astrophysics and Space Astronomy (CASA) at the University of Colorado (CU), we measured the efficiencies of the peak and adjacent dispersion orders throughout the 90 – 165 nm band pass to characterize the behavior of the grating for pre-flight calibrations and to assess the scattered-light behavior. The crossdispersing grating, developed and ruled by Horiba Jobin-Yvon, is a holographically-ruled, low line density (351 grooves/mm), powered optic with a toroidal surface curvature. The CHESS cross-disperser was also coated at GSFC; Cr+Al+LiF was deposited to enhance far-UV efficiency. Results from final efficiency and reflectivity measurements of both optics are presented. We utilize a cross-strip anode microchannel plate (MCP) detector built by Sensor Sciences to achieve high resolution (25 μm spatial resolution) and data collection rates (~ 106 photons/second) over a large format (40mm round, digitized to 8k x 8k) for the first time in an astronomical sounding rocket flight. The CHESS instrument was successfully launched from White Sands Missile Range on 24 May 2014. We present pre-flight sensitivity, effective area calculations, lab spectra and calibration results, and touch on first results and post-flight calibration plans.

Paper Details

Date Published: 24 July 2014
PDF: 17 pages
Proc. SPIE 9144, Space Telescopes and Instrumentation 2014: Ultraviolet to Gamma Ray, 914406 (24 July 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2055661
Show Author Affiliations
Keri Hoadley, Univ. of Colorado at Boulder (United States)
Kevin France, Univ. of Colorado at Boulder (United States)
Nicholas Nell, Univ. of Colorado at Boulder (United States)
Robert Kane, Univ. of Colorado at Boulder (United States)
Ted Schultz, The Univ. of Iowa (United States)
Matthew Beasley, Planetary Resources, Inc. (United States)
James Green, Univ. of Colorado at Boulder (United States)
Jen Kulow, Univ. of Colorado at Boulder (United States)
Eliot Kersgaard, Univ. of Colorado at Boulder (United States)
Brian Fleming, Univ. of Colorado at Boulder (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9144:
Space Telescopes and Instrumentation 2014: Ultraviolet to Gamma Ray
Tadayuki Takahashi; Jan-Willem A. den Herder; Mark Bautz, Editor(s)

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