Monday, August 1, 2016

RSS comes down!

The 2016 shut-down action began today with RSS being removed from the telescope.  Before that could happen, *everything* had to be disconnected, the etalons were removed & the HRS fibres were carefully stowed out of harm's way.  Eben & his team then did a superb job of safely relocating the spectrograph from the top of the tracker to the spectrometer room on the ground floor beneath the telescope!

Removing the etalons
HRS fibres stashed in the blue tube
We have lift-off! 
This is why cranes get checked & certified!
RSS approaching the hatch in the first floor
Docking with the frame that RSS will call home for the next month or so
The focus usually tends to be on glamorous scientific results, but it's these sorts of technical efforts that actually make observational astronomy a viable pursuit.  To provide a feel for what all goes into taking care of a facility like this, we'll aim to post at least one captioned pic per day throughout the shut-down!

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