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Istituto italiano di astrofisica - national institute for astrophisics

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You are here: Home INAF News ASTRI: a new pathfinder of the arrays of Cherenkov telescopes

ASTRI: a new pathfinder of the arrays of Cherenkov telescopes

On June 12nd 2019, in La Laguna (Tenerife, Spain) Prof. Nichi D’Amico, President of the Italian National Institute for Astrophysics (INAF), and Prof. Rafael Rebolo Lopez, Director of the Instituto de Astrofisica de Canaries, signed a Record of Understanding to enter a detailed negotiation on a technical and programmatic basis aimed to install and operate the ASTRI Mini-Array at the Observatorio del Teide
ASTRI: a new pathfinder of the arrays of Cherenkov telescopes

Prof. Nichi D’Amico, President of the Italian National Institute for Astrophysics (INAF), and Prof. Rafael Rebolo Lopez, Director of the Instituto de Astrofisica de Canaries

On June 12nd 2019, in La Laguna (Tenerife, Spain) Prof. Nichi D’Amico, President of the Italian National Institute for Astrophysics (INAF), and Prof. Rafael Rebolo Lopez, Director of the Instituto de Astrofisica de Canaries, signed a Record of Understanding to enter a detailed negotiation on a technical and programmatic basis aimed to install and operate the ASTRI Mini-Array at the Observatorio del Teide.

This is an important step forward for the ASTRI Collaboration among INAF, the Universidade de Sao Paulo in Brazil and the North-Western University in South Africa, including now the prestigious Spanish institution.

ASTRI (Astrofisica con Specchi a Tecnologia Replicante Italiana), was born in 2011 as a Flag-ship Project of the Italian Ministry for Education and Research (MIUR) in order to establish a new and innovative end-to-end technology dedicated to the implementation of Cherenkov imaging telescopes  for high energy astrophysics. The project was again funded in 2015 in order to finalize a collection of up to nine telescopes to be operated as an array.  This option, already foreseen in the original Project, and denominated “ASTRI Mini-Array”, is now prone to be implemented on an adequate observing site, and launched towards an authoritative “early science” by using the technique of Cherenkov telescopes arrays.

The first ASTRI prototype was installed at INAF Serra La Nave Observatory in Sicily, and was inaugurated in 2014. Subsequently dedicated to Guido Horn d’Arturo, the Italian astronomer first proposer of the segmented mirror concept, ASTRI-Horn observed in December 2018 gamma ray emission from the Crab Nebulae, becoming the first world-wide double-mirrors Cherenkov telescope producing an astronomical observation.

New improved mechanical structures are already ordered in the Italian industry, while a very recent news announced having assigned to Italian Hamamatsu Photonics the production of more than twenty five thousands pixels of silicon photomultiplier for the cameras.

The Record signed today, enters the technical evaluation for the installation on a short time scale of the ASTRI Mini-Array at Teide Observatory.

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