VIRUS Enclosures



Bottom round corners of the nav box

The Visible Integral-Field Replicable Unit Spectrograph (VIRUS) instrument will be installed at the Hobby-Eberly Telescope in the near future. The instrument will be housed in two enclosures that are mounted adjacent to the telescope, via the VIRUS Support Structure (VSS). The enclosures have been designed to support and protect the instrument, to enable servicing of the instrument, and to cool the instrument appropriately while not adversely affecting the dome environment. The system uses simple HVAC air handling techniques in conjunction with thermoelectric and standard glycol heat exchangers to provide efficient heat removal. The enclosures also provide power and data transfer to and from each VIRUS unit, liquid nitrogen cooling to the detectors, and environmental monitoring of the instrument and dome environments.

Section view of a pair of VIRUS spectrographs. The fiber head is shown on the right. Light from the fibers enters the instrument and is collimated by the oblong spherical collimator mirrors (upper center left). The light is reflected by a folding flat located around the fiber feed (center right), and into the grating (lower center left) which is mounted in front of the vacuum Schmidt cameras (left).

A rendering of the HET with the VSS, enclosures, and IFUs.

The VSS and enclosures without HET for clarity.

The first VIRUS enclosure being stacked at Texas A&M University.

A model of the enclosure with the added annex.

A model of the enclosure mounting rails that will hold the VIRUS units.

The VIRUS unit will sit on the v-groove and angle iron.

Enclosure door design installed on the enclosure prototype to test the amount of pressure it can hold.

Seal selected for the enclosure door.

Illustration of the two HVAC zones. The blue area on the right is for the enclosure which houses the VIRUS units, and the yellow area is for the enclosure annex which holds the VIRUS electronics equipment and enclosure cooling system.

The thermoelectric cooler used in the enclosure HVAC system.

Temperatures of the air inside and out of the closed loop test system. The bump in internal temperature starts when the 220W heat is activated.

Differential temperatures of the air inside and out of the closed loop test system. The bump in internal temperature starts when the 220W heat is activated. This shows that for the test loop, it was able to track the temperatures within 0.1°C.

The VIRUS electronics box airflow adapter sitting on a mock electronics box.

The adapter on a production electronics box in the enclosure, attached to the flexible hosing and duct work.

Astronomy Group
4242 TAMU
College Station, TX 77843-4242
Ph: (979) 845 7717
Texas A&M University - College of Science