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Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Editor: Joseph N. Mait
  • Vol. 51, Iss. 7 — Mar. 1, 2012
  • pp: 812–822

The Diffuse Interstellar Cloud Experiment: a high-resolution far-ultraviolet spectrograph

Eric Schindhelm, Matthew Beasley, Eric B. Burgh, and James C. Green  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 51, Issue 7, pp. 812-822 (2012)

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We have designed, assembled, and launched a sounding rocket payload to perform high-resolution far-ultraviolet spectroscopy. The instrument is functionally a Cassegrain telescope followed by a modified Rowland spectrograph. The spectrograph was designed to achieve a resolving power (R=λ/δλ) of 60,000 in a compact package by adding a magnifying secondary optic. This is enabled by using a holographically ruled grating to minimize aberrations induced by the second optic. We designed the instrument to observe two stars on opposing sides of a nearby hot/cold gas interface. Obtaining spectra of the O VI doublet in absorption toward these stars can provide new insight into the processes governing hot gas in the local interstellar medium. Here we present the optical design and alignment of the telescope and spectrograph, as well as flight results.

© 2012 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(050.1950) Diffraction and gratings : Diffraction gratings
(090.1000) Holography : Aberration compensation
(300.6540) Spectroscopy : Spectroscopy, ultraviolet
(350.1260) Other areas of optics : Astronomical optics

ToC Category:
Diffraction and Gratings

Original Manuscript: August 26, 2011
Revised Manuscript: November 1, 2011
Manuscript Accepted: November 3, 2011
Published: February 23, 2012

Eric Schindhelm, Matthew Beasley, Eric B. Burgh, and James C. Green, "The Diffuse Interstellar Cloud Experiment: a high-resolution far-ultraviolet spectrograph," Appl. Opt. 51, 812-822 (2012)

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