2005 a three-day workshop took place on the above subject. The main reason for
organising this workshop was the commissioning of the OASIS integral field spectrograph
on the WHT and the latest project to augment the use of AO on the WHT with a
laser beacon system. Both these developments imply major new possibilities for
the use of the telescope. Moreover, the advent of the laser will allow large
science programmes to be carried out and the workshop served as a forum to discuss
what type of programmes would be most suitable. For these reasons it was timely
to get knowledgeable people around the table to discuss the science opportunities
(and difficulties) of using such complex instruments.
Group photograph of workshop participants. [ JPEG
| TIFF ]
About sixty participants shared their ideas and experience in
this area. Many exciting results and developments were highlighted from other
observatories, including Gemini, ESO-VLT, Keck, CFHT and Calar Alto. Also several
ideas for large science programmes emerged at the workshop, ranging from surveys
of star-forming regions, studies of stellar populations in dense clusters, through
a statistical survey of the kinematics in the cores of galaxies. The ideas that
were generated indicate that there is indeed much science potential to be exploited.
The plan is that once the laser project on the WHT comes to fruition an announcement
of opportunity for large key science programmes for the use of adaptive optics
will be issued.
The proceedings of this workshop are being printed by Elsevier
Publishers as a special issue of New Astronomy Reviews. These proceedings
contain several extensive review articles as well as shorter papers on the subject.
For anyone interested in this field and in understanding recent achievements
as well as future prospects in AO-assisted integral field spectroscopy these
proceedings will be an excellent starting point. ¤