Dear ESPRESSO friends,
This post is ‘just’ to share with you a fantastic moment in the ESPRESSO project, occurred on June 3rd, 2016.
It may sound surprising, but it’s true: We just had first laboratory light with ESPRESSO. The whole spectrograph is complete. Just the cameras and the main collimator are missing. This latter was replaced by a smaller test parabola. You will find below a few pictures of the optics on its bench.
So how did we get a spectrum? Just put a digital camera with a 100-200 mm focal length lens into the collimated beam after the cross disperser, and that’s it. Of course, focus, centering and stability are not perfect (hand held), the beam is vignetted due to the small parabola and camera lens, and there are some daylight reflections. You will nevertheless find a very nice blue and red-arm spectrum of ESPRESSO hereafter.
Congrats to everybody who helped getting this nice achievement.