Pointing System for the Large Size Telescopes Prototype of the Cherenkov Telescope Array
2019 July 22
The pointing system of the prototype of the Large Size Telescope (LST-1) for the Cherenkov Telescope Array observatory, should ensure mapping of the gamma-ray image of a point-like source in the Cherenkov camera to the sky coordinates with a precision better than 14 arcseconds. Detailed studies of the telescope deformations are performed in order to disentangle different deformations and quantify their contributions to the miss-pointing, to learn how to correct for them, and finally how to design the system for offline and online pointing corrections. The LST-1 pointing precision system consist of several devices mounted at the center of the dish: Starguider Camera (SG), Camera Displacement Monitor (CDM), two inclinometers, four distance meters, and an Optical Axis Reference Laser (OARL), working together with the LEDs mounted in a circle around the Cherenkov camera. The online pointing corrections are based on a bending model as currently done by existing IACTs. The offline corrections will be performed combining measurements done by the SG and CDM cameras. SG will provide the position of the Cherenkov camera center with respect to the sky coordinates with a precision of 5 arcseconds, while CDM will provide the deviation of the telescope optical axis defined by the OARL spots with respect to the Cherenkov camera center with a precision better than 5 arcseconds. Laboratory measurements on dedicated test benches showed that the required pointing precision can be achieved for SG, CDM and inclinometer.