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William Herschel Telescope
Observers can apply for time with the following common-user instruments on the 4.2-m William Herschel Telescope:
Visiting instruments are mounted at the Cassegrain or Nasmyth f/11 foci. Recent visiting instruments include AOLI, CANARY, EXPO, FASTCAM, GHaFaS, INTEGRAL, IQuEye, PLANETPOL, PNS, SAURON, SPIFS, TRIFFID and ULTRACAM. The enclosure at the spare Nasmyth focus includes an optical bench, and can be used for experimental work, e.g. for instruments requiring mechanical stability.
Targets with significant proper motion (e.g. comets) can be observed with differential tracking.
The CANARY laser guide star is currently in use at the WHT during a few nights per semester. During these nights, the risk of collisions with the pointing of other telescopes can be queried via the laser traffic control system pages.
2014 February: Azimuth oscillations fixed. These affected many nights during December 2013 - February 2014, but the problem has not been seen since February 24, following replacement of a failing component in the azimuth power amplifier.
2013 August: WHT lower dome shutter is now again operational.
2013 February: Differential tracking with autoguiding is now available, but is not compatible with some dither/nodding scripts (as often used with e.g. LIRIS, INGRID). Observers interested in dithered, autoguided, observations of a moving target should contact ING.
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