Colloq Abstract -McMullin

by Hubertus Intema last modified Jan 27, 2017 by Lori Appel

Feb 3

11am Mountain

Joe McMullin (NSO)

Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope: Science Goals & Project Status


The 4m Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope (DKIST) currently under construction on Haleakala, Maui will be the world’s largest solar telescope.  Designed to meet the needs of critical high resolution and high sensitivity spectral and polarimetric observations of the sun, this facility will perform key observations of our nearest star whose behavior most directly affects humanity. DKIST’s superb resolution and sensitivity will enable astronomers to unravel many of the mysteries the Sun presents, including the origin of solar magnetism, the mechanisms of coronal heating and drivers of the solar wind, flares, coronal mass ejections and variability in solar output.  The design allows DKIST to operate as a coronagraph. Taking advantage of its large aperture DKIST will be capable to routinely measure the currently elusive coronal magnetic fields. The state-of-the-art adaptive optics system provides diffraction limited imaging and the ability to resolve features approximately 20 km on the Sun. Five first light instruments, representing a broad community effort, will be available at the start of operations: Visible Broadband Imager (VBI; National Solar Observatory), Visible SpectroPolarimeter (ViSP; High Altitude Observatory), Visible Tunable Filter (VTF; Kiepenheuer Institute, Germany), Diffraction Limited NIR Spectropolarimeter (DL-NIRSP; University of Hawaii) and the Cryogenic NIRSpectropolarimeter (Cryo-NIRSP; University of Hawaii).  The data from these instruments will be distributed to the community via the NSO/DKIST data center. Site construction on Haleakala began in December 2012 and is progressing on schedule. Operations are scheduled to begin in 2019. We provide an overview of the facility and discuss the project status.