The MOMFOS fiber positioner

Anna Moore, Andrew McGrath

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


The Anglo-Australian Observatory has undertaken a design study for a ≈1000 fibre positioner for the prime focus of the Giant Segmented Mirror Telescope (GSMT) as part of the MOMFOS (Multi-Object Multi-Fibre Optical Spectrograph) instrument. To our knowledge this is the first design study funded for a prime focus instrument for an ELT. It offers a particularly elegant and efficient solution for wide-field multiobject spectroscopy on extremely large telescopes (>30m) for the acquisition of large scale high-redshift surveys (1<z<10) with sufficient area (25 deg2), density coverage (≈2.5 million galaxies) and limiting magnitude (R≤26.5). Closely based on the innovative Echidna positioner under construction for Subaru's FMOS system, the MOMFOS positioner uses piezoelectric microrobotic actuators able to position accurately all 1000 fibres simultaneously. The FMOS-Echidna design is extended to include a novel position feedback system offering radical benefits in cost and speed. We present positioning results for a design capable of a higher packing density than that developed for FMOSEchidna, providing ≈1000 fibres across the 175 mm diameter field of view (20 arcmin).

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGround-based Instrumentation for Astronomy
EditorsAlan Moorwood, Masanori Iye
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 2004
Externally publishedYes
EventGround-based Instrumentation for Astronomy - Glasgow, United Kingdom
Duration: 21 Jun 200425 Jun 2004

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
ISSN (Print)0277-786X


ConferenceGround-based Instrumentation for Astronomy
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


  • Echidna fibre positioning
  • ELT
  • Giant segmented mirror telescope
  • Multi-fibre spectroscopy
  • Optical fibres


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