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20 July 2010 Time resolved astronomy with the SALT
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While time resolved astronomical observations are not new, the extension of such studies to sub-second time resolution is and has resulted in the opening of a new observational frontier, High Time Resolution Astronomy (HTRA). HTRA studies are well suited to objects like compact binary stars (CVs and X-ray binaries) and pulsars, while asteroseismology of pulsating stars, occultations, transits and the study of transients, will all benefit from such HTRA studies. HTRA has been a SALT science driver from the outset and the first-light instruments, namely the UV-VIS imager, SALTICAM, and the multi-purpose Robert Stobie Spectrograph (RSS), both have high time resolution modes. These are described, together with some observational examples. We also discuss the commissioning observations with the photon counting Berkeley Visible Image Tube camera (BVIT) on SALT. Finally we describe the software tools, developed in Python, to reduce SALT time resolved observations.
© (2010) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
D. A. H. Buckley, S. Crawford, A. A. S. Gulbis, J. McPhate, K. H. Nordsieck, S. B. Potter, D. O'Donoghue, O. H. W. Siegmund, P. Schellart, M. Spark, B. Y. Welsh, and E. Zietsman "Time resolved astronomy with the SALT", Proc. SPIE 7735, Ground-based and Airborne Instrumentation for Astronomy III, 773559 (20 July 2010);

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