Subaru Resumes Observing
November 6, 2006
The Subaru telescope is now tracking celestial objects at its pre-Earthquake performance level. Following the earthquakes that shook Hawaii on October 15, 2006, the telescope had difficulty synchronizing its movements with the sky. The problem was due to a shift in the encoder unit that measures the rotation of the telescope. Realignment of the encoder and the telescope has enabled tracking with pre-Earthquake precision. The overall performance of the telescope will become known once each of Subaru's three secondary mirrors (Note 1) and nine observing instruments (Note 2) are tested by carrying out previously scheduled observing programs.
Public tours of the telescope will resume when tests and repair work are completed and the tour route becomes safe for visitors. We appreciate your patience and understanding.
This image of the globular cluster NGC2419
illustrates the telescope's current capabilities.
It was obtained by Subaru's Faint Object
Camera and Spectrograph (FOCAS) during
post-Earthquake performance tests.
- Note 1:
- Secondary mirrors send light collected by Subaru's 8.2 meter diameter primary mirror to an observing instrument.
- Note 2:
- Observing instruments detect the light collected by the primary mirror in the form of an image or a spectrum. One of the nine instruments is used in conjunction with other instruments for sharpening images (Subaru's adaptive optics system). Two additional instruments are now under development.
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