Performance characterization of the near infrared detector system for RSS-NIR on SALT

Type Conference Paper
Names Marsha J. Wolf, Donald J. Thielman, Gregory Mosby, Michael P. Smith, Kurt P. Jaehnig, Briana L. Indahl, Andrew I. Sheinis
Proceedings Title Proceedings of the SPIE
Conference Name High Energy, Optical, and Infrared Detectors for Astronomy
Volume 8453
Pages 27
Date July 1, 2012
DOI 10.1117/12.927053
ISBN 0277-786X
Library Catalog
Abstract We report on the status of the detector system for the Robert Stobie Spectrograph Near Infrared Arm (RSS-NIR) for the Southern African Large Telescope (SALT). The detector is a HAWAII-2RG array with a 1.7 μm cutoff wavelength. The controller incorporates a Teledyne cryogenic SIDECAR ASIC board inside the dewar and an FPGA interface card, developed by the Inter-University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics (IUCAA), outside the dewar. Data acquisition software written by IUCAA runs under a Linux operating system and communicates to the detector system through USB to fiber optic converters for electrical isolation on the telescope. System characterization is performed at the University of Wisconsin RSS-NIR Lab in a liquid nitrogen cooled test dewar. The test dewar contains a thermal control system that emulates operation of the cryocooler used in the instrument dewar and maintains a stable detector operating temperature of 120 K. Light is provided to the detector with near infrared LEDs mounted inside the dewar. We present preliminary data on system noise and plans for further characterization tests.
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