The TAO project
Prior to the construction of the 6.5-m TAO telescope, we built a 1-m miniTAO telescope at the summit of Mt. Chajnantor to succeed the first light observation using an optical CCD camera for engineering in March 2009. Then, in June of the same year, we mounted the ANIR near-infrared camera on the 1-m telescope and succeeded to obtain the image toward the central region of the Milkey Way galaxy by the near-infrared hydrogen emission line of Paα (1.875µm) from the ground-based telescope for the first time. Furthermore, we mounted the MAX38 mid-infrared camera on the telescope in November of the same year, and we succeeded to carry out the observations in the wavelength of 38μm from the ground for the first time. We will continue to observe a wide variety of targets in the future.
|▲ The 1-m miniTAO telescope and the near-infrared camera ANIR. The black-colored structure is the telescope, and the structure below the red disk is the ANIR.|
Mounted on the miniTAO telescope in June 2009, we succeeded
to obtain the structure in the Galactic center revealed by
the near-infrared hydrogen emission line of Paα (1.875µm) .
This is the first observation of Paα emission line
from the ground-based telescope.
More details for the ANIR are described below
The mid-infrared camera MAX38 (Mid-infrared Astronomical eXplorer 38) is mounted on the 1-m miniTAO telescope at the summit of Mt. Chajnantor, and is capable for observation in thermal infrared wavelengths (20-30µm).
|▲ The 1-m miniTAO telescope and the mid-infrared camera MAX38. The structure below the red disk is the MAX38.|
The atmospheric absorption in thermal mid-infrared is so
strong that the observation from the ground-based telescopes
has been impossible, however in November 2009, we succeeded
the 38μm observation from the ground for the first time.
More details for the MAX38 are described below.