GREAT: the SOFIA high-frequency heterodyne instrument

Дата и время публикации : 2012-03-13T16:00:38Z

Авторы публикации и институты :
S. Heyminck
U. U. Graf
R. Güsten
J. Stutzki
H. W. Hübers
P. Hartogh

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Первичная категория: astro-ph.IM

Все категории : astro-ph.IM

Краткий обзор статьи: We describe the design and construction of GREAT, the German REceiver for Astronomy at Terahertz frequencies operated on the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA). GREAT is a modular dual-color heterodyne instrument for highresolution far-infrared (FIR) spectroscopy. Selected for SOFIA’s Early Science demonstration, the instrument has successfully performed three Short and more than a dozen Basic Science flights since first light was recorded on its April 1, 2011 commissioning flight. We report on the in-flight performance and operation of the receiver that – in various flight configurations, with three different detector channels – observed in several science-defined frequency windows between 1.25 and 2.5 THz. The receiver optics was verified to be diffraction-limited as designed, with nominal efficiencies; receiver sensitivities are state-of-the-art, with excellent system stability. The modular design allows for the continuous integration of latest technologies; we briefly discuss additional channels under development and ongoing improvements for Cycle 1 observations. GREAT is a principal investigator instrument, developed by a consortium of four German research institutes, available to the SOFIA users on a collaborative basis.

Category: Physics