S. Nicholas Raines

Assistant Scientist

Department of Astronomy

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S.N. Raines
211 Bryant Space Science Center
Dept. of Astronommy
University of Florida
Gainesville, FL 32611-2055, USA
phone: (352) 392-2052, ext. 244
raines at astro.ufl.edu

Richard Elston with Flamingos, circa 2001

The above photo shows Prof. Richard Elston, circa 2000–2001, with FLAMINGOS at the KPNO 2.1-m telescope. He is filling the Camera Dewar with liquid nitrogen.

FLoridA MultI-object Near-Infrared Grism Observational Spectrometer

Designed by Prof. Elston, FLAMINGOS is the world's first fully cryogenic near–infrared (1–2.5 micron) multi–object spectrometer. It is also a wide field imager. The mult-object spectral capability is accomplished using interchangeable laser-cut thin aluminum masks, called mosplates, with a small slitlet for each astronomical target. The mosplate resides in the FLAMINGOS MOS Dewar at the telescope focal plane. The plates are approximately 100 mm × 33 mm in physical size.

It was built at the University of Florida by Richard, me (instrument postdoc), Kevin Hanna (electrical engineering), David Hon (software), Jeff Julian (mechanical engineering), Matthew Horrobin (astronomer postdoc, computer support), Charles F. W. Harmer (optics; NOAO), and Harland W. Epps (optics; UCO/Lick Observatory). For a detailed description see Elston et al. 2003 (in Proceedings). UF Professors Anthony Gonzalez and Elizabeth Lada, and their research teams, have extensively used FLAMINGOS for imaging and multi–object spectroscopy projects; see FLAMEX (Elston & Gonzalez) and GMC Star Formation Survey (Lada).

Since its first-light observations at Kitt Peak in 2000, FLAMINGOS has been used at the KPNO 2.1–m and Mayall 4–m telescopes, the MMT, and the Gemini Observatory 8-m telescope in Chile. Between 2000 and 2002, I probably spent fifty percent of my time in either Arizona or Chile with FLAMINGOS. My bio details the tasks involved in ensuring FLAMINGOS had successful observing runs at each of these locations.

FLAMINGOS is on long-term loan from UF to NOAO, for use at the KPNO 2.1–m and Mayall 4–m telescopes. Astronomers wishing to use it should research the Kitt Peak User Information Pages for FLAMINGOS. Some information, possibly dated, is hosted at UF regarding distortion and detector linearity. The NOAO contact scientists most knowledgable about the present status and availability of the instrument are Dick Joyce and Ron Probst. Please contact them if you need technical information for planning or conducting an observation. I continue to provide remote support to Dick and Ron with low-level instrument details, but do not directly support observations at KPNO.

Acknowledgement for Papers

All papers containing results obtained from data taken with FLAMINGOS should contain the following acknowledgement:

FLAMINGOS was designed and constructed by the IR instrumentation group (PI: R. Elston) at the University of Florida, Department of Astronomy, with support from NSF grant AST97-31180 and Kitt Peak National Observatory.