Maunakea Spectroscopic Explorer (MSE) Update

By/par Michael Balogh, on behalf of Pat Hall, chair of the MSE Advisory Group
(Cassiopeia – Summer/été 2016)

Conceptual design work continues for the MSE! The call for bids for the telescope structure conceptual design has been issued, with a closing date of 5 July. Scientists and engineers from five Canadian universities, along with industry partners, are preparing a CFI application for construction of a prototype high-resolution spectrograph and design and development of integrated observational and operational databases and software.

Detailed Science Case on arXiv

The 210-page MSE Detailed Science Case has been finalized and published online here. A ten-page concise overview is also available here. Detailed Science Case white papers and other background science and technical documents are now posted here.
The Detailed Science Case illustrates the breadth of scientific areas in which MSE will have a transformative impact. To name just a few: the in-situ chemical tagging of the distant Galaxy using high-resolution (R~40,000) stellar spectra, measuring the dark matter density profiles of Milky Way dwarf galaxies using repeat spectra of thousands of stars in those galaxies, and reverberation mapping of supermassive black holes in quasars.

Engineering and Science Collaboration Meeting

More than 40 members of the MSE international science, and engineering, teams met for the first integrated Engineering and Science collaboration meeting, in Madrid on 27-29 April. The Univesidad Autonoma de Madrid (UAM) hosted a delightful event; one that provided a venue for a wholesome exchange over the science ambition versus the engineering realities of complex systems such as MSE. Spanish and Australian teams demonstrated unique fiber positioning robotic technology (the third team from NAIOT in China was unable to attend). MSE’s Project Manager comments: “It was a thoroughly successful meeting, fully achieving its objectives, and was very enjoyable as well!”

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