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Steering Starbugs: routing autonomous fibre positioners for TAIPAN
Author(s): Nuwanthika Fernando; Carlos Bacigalupo; Tony Farrell; Nuria Lorente
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Paper Abstract

The TAIAPAN instrument, being developed by the Australian Astronomical Optics (AAO) - Macquarie University, deploys 159 Starbug robots to position optical fibers on a 32 cm glass field plate on the focal plane of the 1.2 m UK-Schmidt telescope. The Starbug Routing algorithm created for the instrument allows the autonomous robots to reach accuracies of 0.5 arcsec of the assigned target. It employs a 3 stage tiered approach to find a collision-free path for Starbugs of increasing complexity and computational cost. For each Starbug a path is attempted using a direct simultaneous movement. If unsuccessful, subsequently more complex (and expensive) methods are tried until a valid path is found or the target is discarded. The system uses a MongoDB database to record and retrieve starbug locations and properties which allow in-situ re-routing to take place as well.

Paper Details

Date Published: 3 January 2020
PDF: 5 pages
Proc. SPIE 11203, Advances in Optical Astronomical Instrumentation 2019, 1120316 (3 January 2020); doi: 10.1117/12.2541296
Show Author Affiliations
Nuwanthika Fernando, Macquarie Univ. (Australia)
Carlos Bacigalupo, Macquarie Univ. (Australia)
Tony Farrell, Macquarie Univ. (Australia)
Nuria Lorente, Macquarie Univ. (Australia)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 11203:
Advances in Optical Astronomical Instrumentation 2019
Simon C. Ellis; Céline d'Orgeville, Editor(s)

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