Research @ KICP
February 16, 2007
First light for the South Pole Telescope
by John E. Carlstrom
Last night the 10-meter South Pole Telescope with its camera operating at millimeter wavelengths and cooled to 1/4 degree above absolute zero achieved first light. Maps of Jupiter at wavelengths at 2 mm and 3 mm were obtained by scanning the telescope across the planet. These maps showed the telescope, camera and optics are working as designed. First light with the SPT is a major milestone for the project and is a fitting conclusion to a remarkably productive summer season for the South Pole Station. We now look forward to fully characterizing the instrument and beginning cosmological observations.
We are extremely thankful for the excellent and professional help of the wonderful people at the NSF Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station.
the SPT team
For more information on the SPT see the SPT website.
University of Chicago
University of California at Berkeley
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Harvard-Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory
Case Western Reserve University
Caltech/Jet Propulsion Laboratory
University of Colorado at Boulder
The SPT is funded by the National Science Foundation grant OPP-0130612. Partial support is also provided by the Kavli Foundation and NSF grant PHY-0551142 through the Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics and its Physics Frontier Center and from the Moore Foundation.