High-angular resolution and high-contrast VLTI observations from Y to L band with the Asgard instrumental suite


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The Very Large Telescope Interferometer is one of the most proficient observatories in the world for high angular resolution. Since its first observations, it has hosted several interferometric instruments operating in various bandwidths in the infrared. As a result, the VLTI has yielded countless discoveries and technological breakthroughs. Here, we introduce a new concept for the VLTI, Asgard: an instrumental suite comprised of four natively collaborating instruments: BIFROST, a combiner whose main science case is studying the formation processes and properties of stellar and planetary systems; NOTT, a nulling interferometer dedicated to imaging young nearby planetary systems in the L band; HEIMDALLR, an all-in-one instrument performing both fringe tracking and stellar interferometry with the same optics; Baldr, a Strehl optimiser. These instruments share common goals and technologies. The goals are diverse astrophysical cases such as the study of the formation and evolution processes of binary systems, exoplanetary systems and protoplanetary disks, the characterization of orbital parameters and spin-orbit alignment of multiple systems, the characterization of the exoplanets, and the study of exozodiacal disks. Thus, the idea of this suite is to make the instruments interoperable and complementary to deliver unprecedented sensitivity and accuracy from the J to M bands to meet these goals. The interoperability of the Asgard instruments and their integration in the VLTI are major challenges for this project.
asgard,instrumental suite,observations,high-angular,high-contrast
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