ING Banner
Home > Astronomy > ING Instrumentation Update 2023-2024
Text: Normal textBigger tyextBold text

ING Instrumentation Update 2023-2024


  • The WHT will be entirely devoted to WEAVE in 2024. WEAVE LIFU mode is being offered in open time in semester 2024A. Open-time access to each of the WEAVE modes will be offered after commissioning for that mode is completed.
  • At the INT, semester 2024A provides the last opportunity for users to observe with WFC and IDS. WFC and IDS will be available in Feb - Apr 2024. The INT will be closed for telescope upgrades and HARPS3 deployment thereafter.


This page reports the instrumentation plans for the WHT and INT.

During 2024, the ING plans to complete a series of changes in the availability of instrumentation at the WHT and INT, driven by the deployment of new instruments on both telescopes.

Changes at the WHT

  1. WEAVE. Commissioning of the WEAVE multi-fibre and multi-IFU spectrograph is well advanced. After each WEAVE mode is successfully commissioned, a science verification programme is carried out. This is followed by the start of science surveys and open-time access for that mode. As of this writing, commissioning and science verification observations for the LIFU mode are completed, and commissioning of the MOS and mIFU modes is in progress, with a goal to complete MOS and mIFU science verifications during Oct 2023.

  2. Time distribution and instrumentation in the WEAVE surveys era. We encourage WHT users to read the WHT telescope time document in

    In summary, the start of the WEAVE surveys will mark the transition of the WHT from a classical observing telescope to a mainly survey telescope. We will retain 30% as open time for allocation by the TACs. Given the complexity of mounting and dismounting WEAVE, the availability of other instrumentation in open time is under discussion. Observers can safely assume that WEAVE will be continuously mounted on the WHT for the coming 2 years.

Changes at the INT

  1. HARPS3. The Cambridge-led THE (Terra-Hunting Experiment) Consortium is making steady progress in the construction of HARPS3 for deployment at the INT. HARPS3 is a high-resolution stabilised spectrograph which will conduct a 10-year survey aimed at discovering Earth-mass planets. The THE Consortium is carrying out a full upgrade of the INT to allow for robotic operation. Half of the INT time will be devoted to the THE survey, the remainder being available as open time (most likely for robotic observations with HARPS3) to be allocated by the TACs.

  2. Timeline. The INT upgrade schedule calls for a stand-down starting end of Apr 2024, and the HARPS3 first light to be on Dec 2025. We will provide regular updates on these plans, to allow users proper planning of their observing programmes.

    Users should realise that the WFC and IDS will remain available until Apr 2024 only.

We welcome your questions, comments or requests for clarification. Please email Marc Balcells, ING Director ( or Chris Benn, ING Head of Astronomy (

Updated to 15th August 2023

Top | Back

Contact:  (ING Director)