Science with NIFS, Australia’s first Gemini instrument

Peter J. McGregor*, Michael Dopita, Peter Wood, Michael G. Burton

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    4 Citations (Scopus)


    The Near-infrared Integral Field Spectrograph (NIFS) will be Australia’s first Gemini instrument. NIFS is a near-infrared, imaging spectrograph that will be used with the ALTAIR facility adaptive optics system on Gemini North to perform near-diffraction-limited imaging spectroscopy over a 3·0″ × 3·0″ field of view with 0·1″ wide slitlets and a spectral resolving power of ∼5300. NIFS will operate in the wavelength range from 0·94-2·50 μm where ALTAIR delivers its greatest gains. Its primary purpose is to study moderate-surface-brightness structures around discrete objects that are revealed at high spatial resolution by ALTAIR. NIFS will address a wide range of science from studies of Galactic star formation and the Galactic centre to the nature of disk galaxies at z ∼ 1. Studies of the demographics of massive black holes in galactic nuclei and studies of the excitation conditions in the inner narrow-line regions of Seyfert galaxies have been identified as two core NIFS programs. These and other science drivers for NIFS are discussed.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)41-57
    Number of pages17
    JournalPublications of the Astronomical Society of Australia
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2001


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