Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Technical Papers from 2010

With an SPIE Astronomical Instrumentation Conference in 2010, there was a large number of technical papers published about the developments at SALT. These offer insights into control systems, the primary mirror, software development, and some science highlights. Most of the papers can be found under our technical publications. I'll just mention the first author for each of the papers, but please check out the full author lists to see all of the contributors to these projects.

John Menzies and David Buckley present results for the teams working on developing and improving the sensors on the primary mirror. These include a paper on testing FOGALE's edge sensors and a paper on new sensor technologies.

Darragh O'Donoghue and Lisa Crause along with the IQ team report their exciting results in fixing the IQ problem and 'Saving SALT.' Beyond keeping us all updated throughout the project in addition to her work on the IQ fix, Lisa was very busy with two contributions including information about cleaning the M5 mirror and optical alignment using a Faro arm.

With the Robert Stobie Spectrograph ready to go back onto the telescope, Ken Nordsieck detailed the testing that was required to understand the UV throughput, Anthony Koeslag describes the control system for the instrument, and Janus Brink presented results from his Masters thesis on 'Spectropolarimetry with the SALT RSS' which details the polarimetric capabilities of RSS.

User software was detailed in papers by Christian Hettlage and Steve Crawford. Christian described the PIPT tool that will be used for preparing SALT proposals. I submitted a paper on the PySALT data reduction and analysis tools. David Buckley presented some highlights from the time-resolved observations being done with SALT.

Finally, highlights of two next generation instruments were also given at the meeting. David Bramall gave a review of the capabilities of the High Resolution Spectrograph and Marcia Wolf described the predicted performance capabilities for the near-infrared arm of RSS.


  1. Hi Steve. Just letting you know that your URLs are a bit mucked up in this post. An example of what I see is this:


  2. Thanks for the catch Roy! All the links are now fixed. Blogger was playing tricks on me--I feel like ranting about how it was soooo much better back in my day using vi and writing your own html before they made all these fancy tools :)