Third Quarter 1995

The cryostat conceptual design was completed, and detailed drafting begun. [In this design the closed-cycle cooler was mounted at the bottom of the vacuum jacket, at the opposite end to the entrance window. The cold structure was mounted on fiber-glass trusses attached to the bottom plate of the vacuum jacket. The use of cold motors allowed the vacuum jacket to be lifted off the bottom plate for easy access to the cold structure.]

Work on mechanism design is underway, and analysis of instrument flexure has begun. One final iteration of the optical design will be done once it has been established that the cryostat design will not force modifications.

A program to fund a foundry run of 1024x1024 InSb detector arrays was initiated in collaboration with Dr. Mike Mumma (GSFC). The project is known as PAIDAI - Planetary Astronomy InSb Detector Array Infrastructure Project. About $400k in funding was awarded by NASA from Advanced Technology Development funds. SpeX will provide $100k and get first choice of the arrays produced. The products of the run would be distributed as follows: The first choice is allocated to SpeX (Rayner). The second choice is assigned to GSFC, for use in FCAS . The third choice is backup for SpeX or FCAS in case of a failure during testing. The fourth choice is given to NOAO, for use of Aladdin expertise. A bare readout would given to each of the partners. Any remaining arrays would be distributed to the planetary community in response to a Dear Colleague letter.