MOIRCS: Multi-object infrared camera and spectrograph for SUBARU

Takashi Ichikawa, Ryuji Suzuki, Chihiro Tokoku, Yuka Katsuno Uchimoto, Masahiro Konishi, Tomohiro Yoshikawa, Toru Yamada, Ichi Tanaka, Koji Omata, Tetsuo Nishimura

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

71 Citations (Scopus)


MOIRCS is a new Cassegrain instrument of Subaru telescope, dedicated for wide field imaging and multi-object spectroscopy in near-infrared. MOIRCS has been constructed jointly by Tohoku University and the Subaru Telescope and saw the first light in Sep, 2004. The commissioning observations to study both imaging and spectroscopic performance were conducted for about one year. MOIRCS mounts two 2048 × 2048 HAWAII2 arrays and provides a field of view of 4′ × 7′ with a pixel scale of 0″.117. All-lens optical design is optimized for 0.8 to 2.5 μm with no practical chromatic aberration. Observations confirm the high image quality over the field of view without any perceptible degradation even at the field edge. The best seeing we have obtained so far is FWHM= 0″.18. A novel design of MOIRCS enables us to perform multi-object spectroscopy with aluminum slit masks, which are housed in a carrousel dewar and cooled to ∼ 110 K. When choosing MOS mode, a manipulator pulls out a slit mask from the carrousel into the MOIRCS main dewar and sets it properly at the Cassegrain focus. The carrousel is shuttered by a gate valve, so that it can be warmed and cooled independently to exchange slit-mask sets during daytime. We have tested various configurations of 30 or more multi-slit positions in various sky fields and found that targets are dropped at the centers of slits or guide holes within a dispersion of about 0.3 pixels (0″.03). MOIRCS has been open to common use specifically for imaging observations since Feb. 2006. The MOS function will be available in next August.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGround-based and Airborne Instrumentation for Astronomy
Publication statusPublished - 2006 Oct 9
EventGround-based and Airborne Instrumentation for Astronomy - Orlando, FL, United States
Duration: 2006 May 252006 May 29

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
Volume6269 I
ISSN (Print)0277-786X


OtherGround-based and Airborne Instrumentation for Astronomy
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityOrlando, FL


  • Imaging
  • Multi objects
  • Near-infrared
  • Spectrograph
  • Subaru
  • Wide field

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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