ARIES- Indian Scientists Develop Low-Cost ADFOSC to View Distant Celestial Objects: In a very young universe, Indian scientists have built and constructed a low-cost optical spectrograph that can find sources of faint light from distant quasars and galaxies, regions around super massive black holes around galaxies, and cosmic explosions.
Until now, such spectroscopes had to be manufactured from abroad at a high cost. The Aries-Devasthal Faint Object Spectrograph & Camera (ADFOSC) is a ‘Made in India’ optical spectrograph that was designed and developed by Aryabhatta Research Institute of Observational Sciences (ARIES), Nainital, an autonomous institute of the Department of Science and Technology (DST), Government of India.
The spectroscope, which is the largest of its kind among the country’s current astronomical spectrographs, was successfully commissioned on the 3.6-m Devasthal Optical Telescope (DOT), the country’s and Asia’s largest, near Nainital, Uttarakhand.
Dr. Amitesh Omar, an ARIES scientist, led this project with a technical and scientific team that researched and developed the spectrograph and camera’s various optical, mechanical, and electronic subsystems. Astronomers from India and abroad are currently are using the spectrograph to study distant quasars and galaxies in a very young universe, as well as regions surrounding supermassive black holes.
To review and develop parts of the instrument, experts from various national institutes and organisations, including the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) and some micro-small-medium-enterprises, were involved, serving as an example of successful collaboration. ARIES also plans to commission more advanced instruments, such as spectro-polarimeters and high spectral resolution specular microscopes, utilising this experience.