FLEX-the first light explorer: A pathfinder instrument for fibre Bragg grating OH suppression

Anthony J. Horton, Simon C. Ellis, Joss Bland-Hawthorn, Roger Haynes, Andrew J. McGrath

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contributionpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


We present FLEX, an instrument to demonstrate the power of fibre Bragg grating OH suppression. This ground breaking technology promises great gains in sensitivity for near infrared instrumentation and the time is now right for a pioneer instrument to prove the effectiveness of the technique. Our proposal is for an adaptive optics fed integral field unit for an 8 metre class telescope. We envisage a 61 element IFU with 0.22" sampling and a 2.2" field of view. J and H-band OH suppression units would cleanly suppress the atmospheric emission lines,effectively lowering the sky background by 3 or 4 magnitudes respectively. The capabilities of FLEX will make it ideal for deep Epoch of Reionisation studies, as well as studies of star formation at z ̃1-4. To enable rapid and economical deployment FLEX would use an existing near infrared spectrograph with R ≈ 1000 and employ facility adaptive optics.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGround-based and Airborne Instrumentation for Astronomy II
EditorsIan S. McLean, Mark M. Casali
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9780819472243
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2008
Externally publishedYes
EventGround-based and Airborne Instrumentation for Astronomy II - Marseille, France
Duration: 23 Jun 200828 Jun 2008


ConferenceGround-based and Airborne Instrumentation for Astronomy II


  • Adaptive optics
  • Fibre Bragg grating
  • FLEX
  • Integral field spectroscopy
  • Near infrared
  • OH suppression
  • Photonic lantern


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