The membres of the ESPRESSO team announced that the first light of ESPRESSO with the four UTs (4UT mode) took place on Saturday February 3rd, 2018.
They got a half night and it started by a cloudy sky that was sent by the bolivian winter to test their nerves. At some point the sky improved and the weather officer allowed to open the telescopes. It assisted at the opening of all four telescopes from the platform, with the rare feeling that they were all for them for the first time.
In presence of the ESO DG Xavier Barcons, the first star observed by ESPRESSO was the so-called Pepe star. Everything worked fine and here attached some images including the reduced spectrum of this first light.
The ESPRESSO team waiting anxiously the first spectrum.
Images of the four UTs of the VLT
For some more details, here is a short summary of the report of this first night:
NIGHT 9, 3 Feb, 2018, first light of the 4UT :
At the beginning the observatory was closed due to bad weather, when it opened we had no time to do the skyflats which are needed for the pipeline. (Danuta & Alex were able to manage anyway and making it working!)
We took the first Flux standard both in the 4×2 and 8×4 modes. The spectrum of the Pepe’s star in the 4×2 mode was quickly reduced by Danuta & Alex First QSO observed with the 4UT QSO 0347-28 (V=17) in the 4×2 mode Exposure of 3600 sec The party can start! QSO 0903 +2628 V=19.36 at airmass 2.2 and with the rising moon at the end. (observed 8×4 mode, Texp=3600s) Mission impossible? succeeded!
HE0515-4414 both in the 4×2 and 8×4, of 15 minutes each to compare with the 1UT. The UT2 was clearly out of focus. Focus done (12mm instead of 14 TBC) Test of same observation made one after the other of a flux standard to compare the results.
The first spectrum of ESPRESSO
The post ESPRESSO worked for the first with the 4 UTs of the VLT appeared first on NCCR PlanetS.