Wellington-based KiwiStar Optics’ 1.1-metre lens is one of six the company built for the William Herschel Telescope project. The original telescope, located on the island of La Palma in Spain’s Canary Islands and built in 1987, is one of the world’s largest, capable of observing stars in the Milky Way and extragalactic sources near the extremes of what we know to be the observable universe. A new facility is under construction, and KiwiStar’s lenses will be a crucial part of that.
KiwiStar is a business unit of Callaghan Innovation. The lenses are the result of several years’ work by a team of scientists, engineers and master opticians based at Callaghan Innovation’s Gracefield research and development campus.
Manager Sandra Ramsay says being able to assist with such important research as what the William Herschel Telescope is doing is a great opportunity. “The delivery of the final lens allows us to conclude what has been a hugely successful project,” she explains. “KiwiStar Optics has a significant reputation globally for its highly-specialised lenses and we are now working our way through a substantial list of large contracts. It’s not widely known outside of astronomy circles that New Zealand has this level of technical expertise and state-of-the-art equipment to create these lenses.”
Continue to the full idealog article || May 04, 2018 |||