We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. By continuing to browse this repository, you give consent for essential cookies to be used. You can read more about our Privacy and Cookie Policy.

Durham Research Online
You are in:

CUBES, the Cassegrain U-Band Efficient Spectrograph

Cristiani, S. and Alcalá, J. M. and Alencar, S. H. P. and Balashev, S. A. and Bastian, N. and Barbuy, B. and Battino, U. and Calcines, A. and Calderone, G. and Cambianica, P. and Carini, R. and Carter, B. and Cassisi, S. and Castilho, B.V. and Cescutti, G. and Christlieb, N. and Cirami, R. and Coretti, I. and Cooke, R. and Covino, S. and Cremonese, G. and Cunha, K. and Cupani, G. and da Silva, A. R. and De Caprio, V. and De Cia, A. and Dekker, H. and D'Elia, V. and De Silva, G. and Diaz, M. and Di Marcantonio, P. and D'Auria, D. and D'Odorico, V. and Fitzsimmons, A. and Ernandes, H. and Evans, C. and Franchini, M. and Genoni, M. and Gänsicke, B. and Giribaldi, R. E. and Gneiding, C. and Grazian, A. and Hansen, C. J. and La Forgia, F. and Landoni, M. and Lazzarin, M. and Lunney, D. and Maciel, W. and Marcolino, W. and Marconi, M. and Migliorini, A. and Miller, C. and Noterdaeme, P. and Opitom, C. and Pariani, G. and Pilecki, B. and Piranomonte, S. and Quirrenbach, A. and Redaelli, E.M.A. and Pereira, C.B. and Randich, S. and Rossi, S. and Sanchez-Janssen, R. and Seifert, W. and Smiljanic, R. and Snodgrass, C. and Stilz, I. and Stürmer, J. and Vanzella, E. and Ventura, P. and Verducci, O. and Waring, C. and Watson, S. and Wells, M. and Wright, D. and Zafar, T. and Zanutta, A. (2022) 'CUBES, the Cassegrain U-Band Efficient Spectrograph.', in SPIE Astronomical Telescopes + Instrumentation 2022. . SPIE Proceedings.


In the era of Extremely Large Telescopes, the current generation of 8-10m facilities are likely to remain competitive at ground-UV wavelengths for the foreseeable future. The Cassegrain U-Band Efficient Spectrograph (CUBES) has been designed to provide high-efficiency (>40%) observations in the near UV (305-400 nm requirement, 300-420 nm goal) at a spectral resolving power of R>20,000 (with a lower-resolution, sky-limited mode of R ~ 7,000). With the design focusing on maximizing the instrument throughput (ensuring a Signal to Noise Ratio (SNR) ~20 per high-resolution element at 313 nm for U ~18.5 mag objects in 1h of observations), it will offer new possibilities in many fields of astrophysics, providing access to key lines of stellar spectra: a tremendous diversity of iron-peak and heavy elements, lighter elements (in particular Beryllium) and light-element molecules (CO, CN, OH), as well as Balmer lines and the Balmer jump (particularly important for young stellar objects). The UV range is also critical in extragalactic studies: the circumgalactic medium of distant galaxies, the contribution of different types of sources to the cosmic UV background, the measurement of H2 and primordial Deuterium in a regime of relatively transparent intergalactic medium, and follow-up of explosive transients. The CUBES project completed a Phase A conceptual design in June 2021 and has now entered the detailed design and construction phase. First science operations are planned for 2028.

Item Type:Book chapter
Full text:(AM) Accepted Manuscript
Download PDF
Publisher Web site:
Publisher statement:Copyright 2022 Society of Photo Optical Instrumentation Engineers. One print or electronic copy may be made for personal use only. Systematic reproduction and distribution, duplication of any material in this paper for a fee or for commercial purposes, or modification of the content of the paper are prohibited.
Date accepted:No date available
Date deposited:29 September 2022
Date of first online publication:2022
Date first made open access:29 September 2022

Save or Share this output

Look up in GoogleScholar