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LUVIS: a small telescope to provide a UV pathway to discovery

Presentation #127.06 in the session New Mission Concepts.

Published onJun 29, 2022
LUVIS: a small telescope to provide a UV pathway to discovery

Over the past 50 years, UV space telescopes have made major contributions to astrophysics, and UV spectrographs on Hubble are still in high demand. But given Hubble’s age (32 years and counting), continued access to the UV is by no means assured. Worse, there is no UV telescope in development or in NASA’s plans until 2045, when NASA’s large IR/Opt/UV telescope would be launched. Here, we present LUVIS, a 0.5-m Lyman UV/ far-UV telescope that will provide a lifeline to astronomers for spectroscopic studies of a myriad of astronomic sources from transiting exoplanets experiencing photoevaporation to local analogues of high-z dwarf galaxies responsible for re-ionizing the universe. The spectral range of LUVIS is 1020-1420 Angstroms, a spectral region covering both the Hubble COS G140M grating setting and the FUSE LiF spectral regions. Major science programs include QSO absorption-line surveys to determine the processes controlling the CGM-galaxy interaction; 6’ long-slit imaging spectra to examine the means of quenching star-formation by supermassive black holes; and discovery spectra of diffuse sources such as the immediate surroundings of optical galaxies, the intra-cluster medium of galaxy clusters, etc. LUVIS will also help space-qualify technologies for the large IR/Opt/UV telescope.

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