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Chain's link to distant galaxy

04 March 2013

An instrument designed by engineers and scientists at the UK Astronomy Technology Centre has been shipped to the Atacama Desert of northern Chile for use in one of the European Southern Observatories Very Large Telescopes (VLT). When combined, the four telescopes make one of the worlds most advanced optical instruments. The KMOS (Kband multi-object spectrometer) will be used to investigate physical and environmental processes that shape the evolution of galaxies.

An instrument designed by engineers and scientists at the UK Astronomy Technology Centre has been shipped to the Atacama Desert of northern Chile for use in one of the European Southern Observatories' Very Large Telescopes (VLT). When combined, the four telescopes make one of the world's most advanced optical instruments. The KMOS (Kband multi-object spectrometer) will be used to investigate physical and environmental processes that shape the evolution of galaxies.

Critical to its operation are energy chains and flexible cables supplied by igus UK. The energy chain specialist's heavy duty E4 chain safely and reliably carries the instrument's services, including cooling gas pipes and power and signalling cables in the cable rotator (CACOR). Justin Leonard, director at igus, says: "The E4 chain is made from a self-lubricating polymer, and as such, requires minimal maintenance and can be left to operate for a long time without risk of seizing. The TPE chainflex cables allow reliable flexing even at these low temperatures."
 
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