This page contains an abbreviated description of the observations and data reduction. More details can be found in the Winge et al. 2009 publication indicated before. Users are particularly referred to that paper for examples in the usage of the templates.
The GNIRS sample:
The observations were done using the Integral Field Unit (IFU) in the Gemini Near-Infrared Spectrograph (GNIRS) at Gemini South, with the grating 110.5 l/mm, yielding a resolving power of R~6000 (FWHM=3.4Å at 2.293μm). The list of observations is given below, where for each spectral setting we present the date(s), the total exposure time on source and the hot star used to correct for the telluric lines. All GNIRS data were obtained as part of programme GS-2006B-DD-3.
Note that the IFU mode is no longer available with GNIRS at Gemini North.
|Star||"Blue" setting||"Red" Setting|
|UT date||Exp time (s)||Tell. std||UT date||Exp time (s)||Tell. std|
Each group of observations included a science target, one star (two standards were provided, giving better airmass match if observed before or after the target, or if observed before or after the target transited, but only one observed), a set of calibrations comprising three arcs and a set of 10 GCAL flats. Calibrations (arcs and flats) were usually observed right after the science target, or after a set of targets was observed, but before the grating was moved to another configuration.
Observing sequences were defined as several (2-5) repeats of ABBA sequences, with a 4" offset between the A and B positions. This was set as an offset perpendicular to the long axis of the IFU field-of-view, large enough to move from a centred object completelly off to sky (although in some of the cases where the seeing was really poor it was still possible to detect the wings of the PSF in the B position). On-target efficiency with this setup is reduced by 50%, but it avoids the problem of overlapping PSF wings due to the small size of the IFU if trying to dither on source.
Exposure times were calculated using the GNIRS ITC for two cases: (a) the maximum exposure time that would not saturate a single exposure (1 coadd) under IQ=70%, CC=50% conditions; and (b) the integration time per exposure required to obtain the desired signal to noise under IQ=Any, CC=90% conditions. A large number of coadds (rather than a longer integration time per exposure) was used to go from (a) to (b), thus avoiding the risk of saturation if observations were carried out under variable conditions (for example, clear patches between clouds). The same procedure was used to define the telluric standard observations.
The GNIRS data frames as retrieved from the Gemini Science Archive are in the standard Gemini MEF (Multi-Extension Format), where the primary header unit (PHU, extension ) includes all header information from telescope, environmental monitoring system and instrument; and the data extension  contains the pixel values.
Data reduction was performed using the tasks in the gemini.gnirs IRAF package, release Version 1.9, of July 28, 2006, and comprised the following steps:
Calibrations - Flats and arcs
- nsprepare: reformats the files to add the IFU Mask Definition File and applies the linearity correction to the data. The resulting file contains the PHU, one binary table extension with the MDF and one data extension [SCI,1] with the actual pixel values.
- nsreduce: cuts each of the 21 IFU slices according to the MDF inserted above to a separate SCI extension. No dark correction is applied to either flats or arcs.
- nsflat: combine the ten frames by extension, using ccdclipping for rejection and normalizing by the median of the illuminated area in each slice (as defined by the MDF). In average, the processing resulted in a S/N ~200-300 for each extension, with exception of slices 1 and 21 (which were partly vignetted) and slice 13 (which was damaged).
- used gemcombine to average the three processed arc frames to improve visibility of faint lines.
- nswavelength: obtain wavelength solution from combined arc. Using the Ar lamp, there are four lines in the "red" setting, and six in the "blue" setting. A low order polynomial (legendre order=3) was used, with residuals of the order of 0.15Å or smaller.
Science data and telluric stars
- nsprepare: reformats the files to add the IFU Mask Definition File and applies the linearity correction to the data. The resulting file contains the PHU, one binary table extension with the MDF and one data extension [SCI,1]
- nsreduce: cuts each of the 21 IFU slices according to the MDF inserted above to a separate SCI extension. Subtract adjacent pairs of object-sky frames and divide by the flatfield.
- nsstack: since we had only one position with actual data (the B position was blank sky), and the target objects were bright point sources observed under poor seeing conditions, we simply stacked all A positions without any effort to improve alignment of the individual object frames by shifting according to the offsets registered in the headers. In most cases all frames were within 0.3arcsec tolerance (according to the offsets registered in the headers), but there were a few observations where drifts of up to 0.8arcsec were seen (usually due to clouds or very poor seeing affecting guiding performance).
- nstransform: applied the wavelength transformation to the stacked frame.
- nsextract: interactively extracted the spectrum from each slice, in order to exclude those with very low signal (the targets was not always well centred), the two edge slices and the damaged slice when the spectrum happened to fall within the damaged region. The output from this task is still a MEF file, with each SCI extension containing a 1D spectrum.
- used a simple cl script wrapped around specred.scombine to combine the valid spectra obtained in step 5. With this step, a single 1D standard FITS spectrum is created, but most of the information contained in the PHU of the MEF files is lost (scombine propagates the header of the first extension included in the combining list).
- finally, for the science data, applied the telluric correction using the standard specred.telluric task.
- combined the telluric-corrected spectra for those targets observed more than once.
- added back the header information lost in step 6, corresponding to the content of the PHU of the corresponding MEF frame obtained from step 5. (new on Version 1.5)
One additional step was applied to the data presented here, which was to remove the continnum shape by fitting a low order polynomial to the final telluric corrected spectrum.
The NIFS Sample:
The data were obtained with NIFS on the Gemini North telescope with the K_G5605 grating and HK_G0603 filter, resulting in a FWHM for the arc lamp lines of ~3.2Å. Each observation consisted of five individual exposures, with the star centred on the array then offset to each corner. The table below lists the observations, where for each object we present the date(s), associated programme ID, total exposure time on-source and the hot star used to correct for the telluric lines.
|NIFS Sample 1 (V1.5)|
|NIFS Sample 2 (V2.0)|
The data reduction was accomplished using tasks in the gemini.nifs IRAF package. The reduction procedure included trimming of the images, flat-fielding, sky subtraction, wavelength and s-distortion calibrations. We have also removed the telluric bands and flux calibrated the frames by interpolating a black body function to the spectrum of the telluric standard star. Finally, the continuum shape was removed from the spectruum of each star (using the IRAF task continuum), normalizing all fluxes to unity.
Similar to the GNIRS spectra, the extraction procedure results in loss of the primary header content. This was added back to the spectra presented here in order to propagate the relevant instrument/telescope information.