Following a successful Phase A study, we introduce the delivered conceptual design of the MOSAIC1 multi-object spectrograph for the ESO Extremely Large Telescope (ELT). MOSAIC will provide R~5000 spectroscopy over the full 460-1800 nm range, with three additional high-resolution bands (R~15000) targeting features of particular interest. MOSAIC will combine three operational modes, enabling integrated-light observations of up to 200 sources on the sky (high-multiplex mode) or spectroscopy of 10 spatially-extended fields via deployable integral-field units: MOAO6 assisted high-definition (HDM) and Visible IFUs (VIFU). We will summarise key features of the sub-systems of the design, e.g. the smart tiled focal-plane for target selection and the multi-object adaptive optics used to correct for atmospheric turbulence, and present the next steps toward the construction phase.
Product Assurance is an essential activity to support the design and construction of complex instruments developed for major scientific programs. The international size of current consortia in astrophysics, the ambitious and challenging developments, make the product assurance issues very important. The objective of this paper is to focus in particular on the application of Product Assurance Activities to a project such as MOSAIC, within an international consortium. The paper will also give a general overview on main product assurance tasks to be implemented during the development from the design study to the validation of the manufacturing, assembly, integration and test (MAIT) process and the delivery of the instrument.
When combined with the huge collecting area of the ELT, MOSAIC will be the most effective and flexible Multi-Object Spectrograph (MOS) facility in the world, having both a high multiplex and a multi-Integral Field Unit (Multi-IFU) capability. It will be the fastest way to spectroscopically follow-up the faintest sources, probing the reionisation epoch, as well as evaluating the evolution of the dwarf mass function over most of the age of the Universe. MOSAIC will be world-leading in generating an inventory of both the dark matter (from realistic rotation curves with MOAO fed NIR IFUs) and the cool to warm-hot gas phases in z=3.5 galactic haloes (with visible wavelenth IFUs). Galactic archaeology and the first massive black holes are additional targets for which MOSAIC will also be revolutionary. MOAO and accurate sky subtraction with fibres have now been demonstrated on sky, removing all low Technical Readiness Level (TRL) items from the instrument. A prompt implementation of MOSAIC is feasible, and indeed could increase the robustness and reduce risk on the ELT, since it does not require diffraction limited adaptive optics performance. Science programmes and survey strategies are currently being investigated by the Consortium, which is also hoping to welcome a few new partners in the next two years.
Gemini North Observatory successfully began nighttime remote operations from the Hilo Base Facility control room in November 2015. The implementation of the Gemini North Base Facility Operations (BFO) products was a great learning experience for many of our employees, including the author of this paper, the BFO Systems Engineer.
In this paper we focus on the tailored Systems Engineering processes used for the project, the various software tools used in project support, and finally discuss the lessons learned from the Gemini North implementation. This experience and the lessons learned will be used both to aid our implementation of the Gemini South BFO in 2016, and in future technical projects at Gemini Observatory.
Gemini Observatory is an astronomical observatory operating two premier 8m-class telescopes, one in each hemisphere. As an operational facility, a majority of Gemini’s resources are spent on operations however the observatory undertakes major development projects as well. Current projects include new facility science instruments, an operational paradigm shift to full remote operations, and new operations tools for planning, configuration and change control. Three years ago, Gemini determined that a specialized requirements management tool was needed. Over the next year, the Gemini Systems Engineering Group investigated several tools, selected one for a trial period and configured it for use. Configuration activities including definition of systems engineering processes, development of a requirements framework, and assignment of project roles to tool roles. Test projects were implemented in the tool. At the conclusion of the trial, the group determined that the Gemini could meet its requirements management needs without use of a specialized requirements management tool, and the group identified a number of lessons learned which are described in the last major section of this paper. These lessons learned include how to conduct an organizational needs analysis prior to pursuing a tool; caveats concerning tool criteria and the selection process; the prerequisites and sequence of activities necessary to achieve an optimum configuration of the tool; the need for adequate staff resources and staff training; and a special note regarding organizations in transition and archiving of requirements.