EMIR, the near-infrared camera and multi-object spectrograph for the GTC

Garzón, F.; Balcells, M.; Gallego, J.; Gry, C.; Guzmán, R.; Hammersley, P.; Herrero, A.; Muñoz-Tuñón, C.; Pelló, R.; Prieto, M.; Bourrec, É.; Cabello, C.; Cardiel, N.; González-Fernández, C.; Laporte, N.; Milliard, B.; Pascual, S.; Patrick, L.R.; Patrón, J.; Ramírez-Alegría, S. and Streblyanska, A. (2022). EMIR, the near-infrared camera and multi-object spectrograph for the GTC. Astronomy & Astrophysics, 667, article no. A107.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361/202244729


We present EMIR, a powerful near-infrared (NIR) camera and multi-object spectrograph (MOS) installed at the Nasmyth focus of the 10.4 m GTC. EMIR was commissioned in mid-2016 and is offered as a common-user instrument. It provides spectral coverage of 0.9–2.5 µm over a field of view (FOV) of 6.67′ × 6.67′ in imaging mode, and 6.67′ × 4′ in spectroscopy. EMIR delivers up to 53 spectra of different objects thanks to a robotic configurable cold slit mask system that is located inside the cryogenic chamber, allowing rapid reconfiguration of the observing mask. The imaging mode is attained by moving all bars outside the FOV and then leaving an empty space in the GTC focal surface. The dispersing suite holds three large pseudo-grisms, formed by the combination of high-efficiency FuSi ion-etched ruled transmission grating sandwiched between two identical ZnSe prisms, plus one standard replicated grism. These dispersing units offer the spectral recording of an atmospheric window J, H, K in a single shot with resolving powers of 5000, 4250, 4000, respectively for a nominal slit width of 0.6″, plus the combined bands Y J or HK, also in a single shot, with resolution of ~1000. The original Hawaii2 FPA detector, which is prone to instabilities that add noise to the signal, is being replaced by a new Hawaii2RG detector array, and is currently being tested at the IAC. This paper presents the most salient features of the instrument, with emphasis on its observing capabilities and the functionality of the configurable slit unit. Sample early science data is also shown.

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