After a shutdown in operations at the end of March due to the pandemic, the MOONS Cambridge team working on camera assembling, testing and alignment is now back in action, already making excellent progress (and sharing impressive photos!).

After access to the clean room for the first time (with some restrictions) in mid-July, the team restarted the process of warm alignment, implementing new features in the alignment system. However, two weeks ago marked the start of the critical process of cold alignment with the first cooldown of the camera+test bench. This week the team is proceeding with cold testing and alignment of the system.

With this complex process now well underway and the second camera already fully assembled, the MOONS Cambridge team shares these amazing photos with us. They include a description of the elements being displayed and the activities taking place. Enjoy!

The first two images below show the the first MOONS camera and part of its test bench. The image on the left shows the camera+bench as seen from above. The collimator is also visible on the far left. The system is partly inside the cryogenic test chamber. A close up view of the camera can be seen on the right image, with the positionable CCD test small camera inside the lens hole where another lens is inserted.

The third image below, on the left, shows the MOONS Cambridge co-PI Roberto Maiolino, during the reopening of the clean room after the pandemic shutdown, before closing of the cryogenic chamber with the first MOONS camera and its test bench inside. The right side image shows the Second MOONS camera fully assembled, with David Sun in the back.

The last image shows the cooling of the Cryogenic chamber (just a few days ago!) with the first MOONS camera and its test bench inside! Very exciting times!

Stay tuned for more news…

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