Science capabilities of the Maunakea Spectroscopic Explorer

Daniel Devost, Alan McConnachie, Nicolas Flagey, Patrick Cote, Michael Balogh, Simon P. Driver, Kim Venn

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract

Abstract

The Maunakea Spectroscopic Explorer (MSE) project will transform the CFHT 3.6m optical telescope into a 10m class dedicated multiobject spectroscopic facility, with an ability to simultaneously measure thousands of objects with a spectral resolution range spanning 2,000 to 20,000. The project is currently in design phase, with full science operations nominally starting in 2025. MSE will enable transformational science in areas as diverse as exoplanetary host characterization; stellar monitoring campaigns; tomographic mapping of the interstellar and intergalactic media; the in-situ chemical tagging of the distant Galaxy; connecting galaxies to the large scale structure of the Universe; measuring the mass functions of cold dark matter sub-halos in galaxy and cluster-scale hosts; reverberation mapping of supermassive black holes in quasars. MSE is an essential follow-up facility to current and next generations of multi-wavelength imaging surveys, including LSST, Gaia, Euclid, eROSITA, SKA, and WFIRST, and is an ideal feeder facility for E-ELT, TMT and GMT. I will give an update on the status of the project and review some of the most exciting scientific capabilities of the observatory.

Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2017

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