We report on the upgraded One Degree Imager (ODI) at the WIYN 3.5 meter telescope at the Kitt Peak Observatory after the focal plane was expanded by an additional seventeen detectors in spring 2015. The now thirty Orthogonal Transfer Array CCD detectors provide a total field of view of 40’ x 48’ on the sky. The newly added detectors underwent a design revision to mitigate reduced charge transfer efficiency under low light conditions. We discuss the performance of the focal plane and challenges in the photometric calibration of the wide field of view, helped by the addition of telescope baffles. In a parallel project, we upgraded the instrument’s three filter arm mechanisms, where a degrading worm-gear mechanism was replaced by a chain drive that is operating faster and with high reliability. Three more filters, a u’ band and two narrow band filters were added to the instrument’s complement, with two additional narrow band filters currently in procurement (including an Hα filter). We review the lessons learned during nearly three years of operating the instrument in the observatory environment and discuss infrastructure upgrades that were driven by ODI’s needs.
The Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument (DESI) is under construction and will be used to measure the expansion history of the Universe using the Baryon Acoustic Oscillation (BAO) technique and the growth of structure using redshift-space distortions (RSD). The spectra of 30 million galaxies over 14000 sq deg will be measured over the course of the experiment. In order to provide spectroscopic targets for the DESI survey, we are carrying out a three-band (g,r,z ) imaging survey of the sky using the NOAO 4-m telescopes at Kitt Peak National Observatory (KPNO) and the Cerro Tololo Interamerican Observatory (CTIO). At KPNO, we will use an upgraded version of the Mayall 4m telescope prime focus camera, Mosaic3, to carry out a z-band survey of the Northern Galactic Cap at declinations δ≥+30 degrees. By equipping an existing Dewar with four 4kx4k fully depleted CCDs manufactured by the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), we increased the z-band throughput of the system by a factor of 1.6. These devices have the thickest active area fielded at a telescope. The Mosaic3 z-band survey will be complemented by g-band and r-band observations using the Bok telescope and 90 Prime imager on Kitt Peak. We describe the upgrade and performance of the Mosaic3 instrument and the scope of the northern survey.
Motivated by a desire to improve the KPNO Mayall 4m telescope’s pointing and tracking performance prior to the start of the DESI installation and by a need to improve the maintainability of its telescope control system (TCS), we recently completed a major modernization of that system based heavily on recent changes made at the CTIO Blanco 4m, as described by Warner et al (2012). We describe here the things we did differently from the Blanco upgrade. We also present results from the as-built performance of the new servo and pointing systems.