APOGEE takes shape

The last of the sdss3 instruments is making rapid progress and will soon be on the sky. Photographs below from Fred Hearty at the University of Virginia (UVa) show the delivery of the cryostat at UVa during July. The 4,000 pound instrument was manufactured by Basil Blank at PulseRay in Beaver Dams NY and just barely fit in the truck and the UVa labs.

The two images below show the spectrograph components being integrated into the cryostat. The VPH grating in its mount is in the background as it was being positioned, as well as the Fold 1 Mirror and Collimator (left and right foreground respectively). A close-up of the VPH – only large format mosaic VPH in the world – is shown in a closeup. The final two optics (Fold 2 and Camera) are fabricated and will be installed next week (Sept 2010). The detector array, which is in safe keeping at UVa, will be installed after the first thermal cycle of all major optics.

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