Welcome to the new version of CaltechAUTHORS. Login is currently restricted to library staff. If you notice any issues, please email coda@library.caltech.edu
Published April 11, 2016 | Submitted + Published
Journal Article Open

CHIMERA: a wide-field, multi-colour, high-speed photometer at the prime focus of the Hale telescope


The Caltech HIgh-speed Multi-colour camERA (CHIMERA) is a new instrument that has been developed for use at the prime focus of the Hale 200-inch telescope. Simultaneous optical imaging in two bands is enabled by a dichroic beam splitter centred at 567 nm, with Sloan u′ and g′ bands available on the blue arm and Sloan r′, i′ and z_s bands available on the red arm. Additional narrow-band filters will also become available as required. An electron multiplying CCD (EMCCD) detector is employed for both optical channels, each capable of simultaneously delivering sub-electron effective read noise under multiplication gain and frame rates of up to 26 fps full frame (several 1000 fps windowed), over a fully corrected 5 × 5 arcmin field of view. CHIMERA was primarily developed to enable the characterization of the size distribution of sub-km Kuiper Belt Objects via stellar occultation, a science case that motivates the frame-rate, the simultaneous multi-colour imaging and the wide field of view of the instrument. In addition, it also has unique capability in the detection of faint near-Earth asteroids and will be used for the monitoring of short-duration transient and periodic sources, particularly those discovered by the intermediate Palomar Transient Factory (iPTF), and the upcoming Zwicky Transient Facility (ZTF).

Additional Information

© 2016 The Authors. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society. Accepted 2016 January 11. Received 2016 January 6; in original form 2015 June 9. Published: 23 February 2016. The authors gratefully acknowledge the support of the Caltech Optical Observatories. We would especially like to thank Richard Dekaney and Christoph Baranec, for their extremely helpful advice throughout the CHIMERA project. We would like to highlight the excellent support of the Palomar Observatory staff, particularly John Henning, Steve Kunsman, Mike Doyle, Kevin Rykoski, Bruce Baker, Jamey Eriksen, Carolyn Heffner, Dan McKenna, Jean Mueller, Kajsa Peffer and Greg Van Idsinga. We also acknowledge Steve Macenka and James McGuire for their helpful contribution. The work described here was carried out at the California Institute of Technology and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under a JPL R&TD grant and a contract with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

Attached Files

Published - stw094.pdf

Submitted - 1601.03104v1.pdf


Files (4.4 MB)
Name Size Download all
1.9 MB Preview Download
2.4 MB Preview Download

Additional details

August 20, 2023
October 17, 2023