MEGARA is an optical Integral-Field Unit (IFU) and Multi-Object Spectrograph (MOS) designed for the 10.4m GTC.
MEGARA (Multi-Espectrógrafo en GTC de Alta Resolución para Astronomía) is a facility instrument designed for the 10.4m GTC telescope in La Palma (Spain). Once installed at GTC by the end of 2016, will offer two different observing modes to the community, the Large Compact Bundle (LCB) mode, an Integral Field Unit (IFU) covering 12.5” x 11.3” on the sky with a spaxel size of 0.62” and a Multi-Object Spectroscopy (MOS) mode that will allow observing 100 objects in a region of 3.5’ x 3.5’ around the LCB IFU. Eight of these bundles will be devoted to the determination of the sky during the observation with the LCB. Each of the MEGARA MOS positioners can place a mini-bundle of 7 fibers (0.62”/fiber) with an absolute positioning requirement of 25 micron, covering an approximately circular area of 1.6" in diameter on the sky. Both the LCB IFU and MOS capabilities of MEGARA will provide intermediate-to-high spectral resolutions (R~6000, 11000 and 18700).
INGENIA has taken place in the MEGARA project by designing and manufacturing the electronics that control each of the 100 FIBER MOS positioners that will be distributed on the 3.5 arcmin x 3.5 arcmin (on sky) area around the LCB IFU bundle, as shown in the figure. The positioning of the fiber optical bundle is performed combining the interpolation of two rotations. The interpolation between the rotation 1 and rotation 2 allows covering the area assigned to each actuator.
In addition to the study of nearby disk galaxies the MEGARA Science Team will study to an unprecedented level of detail the properties of both starburst galaxies (mainly their gas kinematics) and elliptical galaxies (stellar populations and stellar kinematics).
In the case of the analysis of starburst galaxies the objective is to measure the balance between negative and positive feedback in massive starbursts at different redshifts. The sample to be observed includes massive and compact superstellar clusters in two nearby galaxies (M82 & NGC3079; see figure) and massive intermediate to intermediate-z star forming clumps selected from cosmological surveys. Using MEGARA we will be able to detect, resolve and characterize spectroscopically the targets, analyze their physical state, star-formation history and look for the presence of different velocity components that will enable us to determine their hydrodynamic state. The combination of the high spectral resolution of MEGARA together with the GTC collecting area will make it possible to acquire the observations required to conclusively derive the feedback parameter.
The MEGARA consortium is responsible for the design and construction of the instrument and includes the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM, Spain), the Instituto Nacional de Astrofísica, Óptica y Electrónica (INAOE, México), the Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía (IAA-CSIC, Spain), and theUniversidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM, Spain). Main private contractors are FRACTAL(Spain) and AVS (Spain). Other contractors include SEDI (France), Wasatch Photonics (USA),AMUS (Germany), GMV (Spain) and Hellma Materials GmbH.