Engineering performance of IRIS2 infrared imaging camera and spectrograph

V. Churilov*, J. Dawson, G. Smith, L. Waller, J. Whittard, R. Haynes, A. Lankshear, S. Ryder, C. Tinney

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contribution

2 Citations (Scopus)


IRIS2, the infrared imager and spectrograph for the Cassegrain focus of the Anglo Australian Telescope, has been in service since October 2001. IRIS2 incorporated many novel features, including multiple cryogenic multislit masks, a dual chambered vacuum vessel (the smaller chamber used to reduce thermal cycle time required to change sets of multislit masks), encoded cryogenic wheel drives with controlled backlash, a deflection compensating structure, and use of teflon impregnated hard anodizing for gear lubrication at low temperatures. Other noteworthy features were: swaged foil thermal link terminations, the pupil imager, the detector focus mechanism, phased getter cycling to prevent detector contamination, and a flow-through LN2 precooling system. The instrument control electronics was designed to allow accurate positioning of the internal mechanisms with minimal generation of heat. The detector controller was based on the AAO2 CCD controller, adapted for use on the HAW AII 1 detector (1024 × 1024 pixels) and is achieving low noise and high performance. We describe features of the instrument design, the problems encountered and the development work required to bring them into operation, and their performance in service.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGround-based Instrumentation for Astronomy
EditorsAlan F. M. Moorwood, Masanori Iye
Place of PublicationBellingham, WA
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 30 Sep 2004
Externally publishedYes
EventGround-based Instrumentation for Astronomy - Glasgow, United Kingdom
Duration: 21 Jun 200425 Jun 2004

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE
ISSN (Print)0277-786X


ConferenceGround-based Instrumentation for Astronomy
CountryUnited Kingdom


  • Balanced structural deflections
  • Dewing
  • Infrared detector
  • Mask
  • Multislit
  • Vacuum cryogenic mechanisms

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    Churilov, V., Dawson, J., Smith, G., Waller, L., Whittard, J., Haynes, R., ... Tinney, C. (2004). Engineering performance of IRIS2 infrared imaging camera and spectrograph. In A. F. M. Moorwood, & M. Iye (Eds.), Ground-based Instrumentation for Astronomy (pp. 1572-1581). (Proceedings of SPIE; Vol. 5492). Bellingham, WA: SPIE.