The great circle camera: A new drift-scanning instrument

Dennis F Zaritsky, Stephen A. Shectman, Gregory Bredthauer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

36 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We discuss the design, construction, and use of a new class of scanning camera that eliminates a critical limitation of standard CCD drift-scan observations. A standard scan, which involves no correction for the differential drift rates and curved stellar paths across the field of view, suffers from severe image degradation even when one observes at moderate declinations. Not only does this effect limit the area of the sky over which drift scanning is viable but, as detector sizes increase, CCD mosaics become standard, and dome/telescope seeing improves, the area of sky for which scanning is acceptable (image degradation ≲ seeing) will be further reduced unless some action is taken. By modifying the scan path (the path on the sky traced by signal accumulated along a single CCD column) to lie along a great circle on the sky rather than along a path of constant declination, image degradation is minimized. In this paper, we discuss the design and implementation of a stage that rotates and translates the CCD during a drift-scan exposure so that the scan path is along a great circle on the sky. Data obtained during the commissioning run of the Great Circle Camera at the Las Campanas 1-m telescope are presented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)104-109
Number of pages6
JournalPublications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific
Volume108
Issue number719
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1996
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

great circles
sky
cameras
charge coupled devices
scanning
declination
degradation
field of view
dome
telescopes
drift rate
domes
detectors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Astronomy and Astrophysics

Cite this

The great circle camera : A new drift-scanning instrument. / Zaritsky, Dennis F; Shectman, Stephen A.; Bredthauer, Gregory.

In: Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific, Vol. 108, No. 719, 01.1996, p. 104-109.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Zaritsky, Dennis F ; Shectman, Stephen A. ; Bredthauer, Gregory. / The great circle camera : A new drift-scanning instrument. In: Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific. 1996 ; Vol. 108, No. 719. pp. 104-109.
@article{6d55df40f53b4971bd880bf7004796c9,
title = "The great circle camera: A new drift-scanning instrument",
abstract = "We discuss the design, construction, and use of a new class of scanning camera that eliminates a critical limitation of standard CCD drift-scan observations. A standard scan, which involves no correction for the differential drift rates and curved stellar paths across the field of view, suffers from severe image degradation even when one observes at moderate declinations. Not only does this effect limit the area of the sky over which drift scanning is viable but, as detector sizes increase, CCD mosaics become standard, and dome/telescope seeing improves, the area of sky for which scanning is acceptable (image degradation ≲ seeing) will be further reduced unless some action is taken. By modifying the scan path (the path on the sky traced by signal accumulated along a single CCD column) to lie along a great circle on the sky rather than along a path of constant declination, image degradation is minimized. In this paper, we discuss the design and implementation of a stage that rotates and translates the CCD during a drift-scan exposure so that the scan path is along a great circle on the sky. Data obtained during the commissioning run of the Great Circle Camera at the Las Campanas 1-m telescope are presented.",
author = "Zaritsky, {Dennis F} and Shectman, {Stephen A.} and Gregory Bredthauer",
year = "1996",
month = "1",
doi = "10.1086/133698",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "108",
pages = "104--109",
journal = "Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific",
issn = "0004-6280",
publisher = "University of Chicago",
number = "719",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - The great circle camera

T2 - A new drift-scanning instrument

AU - Zaritsky, Dennis F

AU - Shectman, Stephen A.

AU - Bredthauer, Gregory

PY - 1996/1

Y1 - 1996/1

N2 - We discuss the design, construction, and use of a new class of scanning camera that eliminates a critical limitation of standard CCD drift-scan observations. A standard scan, which involves no correction for the differential drift rates and curved stellar paths across the field of view, suffers from severe image degradation even when one observes at moderate declinations. Not only does this effect limit the area of the sky over which drift scanning is viable but, as detector sizes increase, CCD mosaics become standard, and dome/telescope seeing improves, the area of sky for which scanning is acceptable (image degradation ≲ seeing) will be further reduced unless some action is taken. By modifying the scan path (the path on the sky traced by signal accumulated along a single CCD column) to lie along a great circle on the sky rather than along a path of constant declination, image degradation is minimized. In this paper, we discuss the design and implementation of a stage that rotates and translates the CCD during a drift-scan exposure so that the scan path is along a great circle on the sky. Data obtained during the commissioning run of the Great Circle Camera at the Las Campanas 1-m telescope are presented.

AB - We discuss the design, construction, and use of a new class of scanning camera that eliminates a critical limitation of standard CCD drift-scan observations. A standard scan, which involves no correction for the differential drift rates and curved stellar paths across the field of view, suffers from severe image degradation even when one observes at moderate declinations. Not only does this effect limit the area of the sky over which drift scanning is viable but, as detector sizes increase, CCD mosaics become standard, and dome/telescope seeing improves, the area of sky for which scanning is acceptable (image degradation ≲ seeing) will be further reduced unless some action is taken. By modifying the scan path (the path on the sky traced by signal accumulated along a single CCD column) to lie along a great circle on the sky rather than along a path of constant declination, image degradation is minimized. In this paper, we discuss the design and implementation of a stage that rotates and translates the CCD during a drift-scan exposure so that the scan path is along a great circle on the sky. Data obtained during the commissioning run of the Great Circle Camera at the Las Campanas 1-m telescope are presented.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0030553354&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0030553354&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1086/133698

DO - 10.1086/133698

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:0030553354

VL - 108

SP - 104

EP - 109

JO - Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific

JF - Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific

SN - 0004-6280

IS - 719

ER -