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The best ground-based astronomical sites in terms of telescope sensitivity at infrared and submillimeter wavelengths are located on the Antarctic Plateau, where high atmospheric transparency and low sky emission are obtained because of the extremely cold and dry air; these benefits are well characterized at the South Pole station. The relative advantages(More)
We present results from the first on-sky demonstration of a prototype astronomical integrated photonic spectrograph (IPS) using the Anglo-Australian Telescope near-infrared imaging spectrometer (IRIS2) at Siding Spring Observatory to observe atmospheric molecular OH emission lines. We have succeeded in detecting upwards of 27 lines, and demonstrated the(More)
The atmospheric conditions above Dome A, a currently unmanned location at the highest point on the Antarctic plateau, are uniquely suited to astronomy. For certain types of astronomy Dome A is likely to be the best location on the planet, and this has motivated the development of the Plateau Observatory (PLATO). PLATO was deployed to Dome A in early 2008.(More)
One of the most important considerations when planning the next generation of ground-based optical astronomical telescopes is to choose a site that has excellent 'seeing'--the jitter in the apparent position of a star that is caused by light bending as it passes through regions of differing refractive index in the Earth's atmosphere. The best mid-latitude(More)
A long-standing and profound problem in astronomy is the difficulty in obtaining deep near-infrared observations due to the extreme brightness and variability of the night sky at these wavelengths. A solution to this problem is crucial if we are to obtain the deepest possible observations of the early Universe, as redshifted starlight from distant galaxies(More)
The AASTINO (Automated Astrophysical Site Testing INternational Observatory) is a remote laboratory that has been operating at Dome C station on the Antarctic plateau since January 2003. It is designed to run throughout the Antarctic winter without intervention, and to collect data on the astronomical qualities of the site. A Stirling engine and a pair of(More)
The PLATeau Observatory (PLATO) is an automated self-powered astrophysical observatory that was deployed to Dome A, the highest point on the Antarctic plateau, in 2008 January. PLATO consists of a suite of site-testing instruments designed to quantify the benefits of the Dome A site for astronomy, and science instruments designed to take advantage of the(More)
We present the first integrated multimode photonic spectrograph, a device we call PIMMS #1. The device comprises a set of multimode fibres that convert to single-mode propagation using a matching set of photonic lanterns. These feed to a stack of cyclic array waveguides (AWGs) that illuminate a common detector. Such a device greatly reduces the size of an(More)