StarBugs: a New Technology for Galaxy Survey Instruments

Kyler Kuehn (Australian Astronomical Observatory)

We describe the development of StarBugs, the massively parallel robotic fibre-positioner technology that facilitates much more rapid field configuration compared to currently-implemented fibre positioner technologies (e.g., pick-and-place robots and plug plates). The first-generation instrument to make use of StarBugs will be TAIPAN, to be installed on the UK Schmidt Telescope in 2015. We highlight the galaxy survey that will be undertaken by TAIPAN and the science that can be acquired from it, and we will conclude with a look forward to MANIFEST, an even larger-scale implementation of the StarBugs fibre positioners, to be installed on the Giant Magellan Telescope in the next decade.

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