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Department of Physics

The Cavendish Laboratory


Artist's Impression

About the Project

  • The MROI will be the most powerful optical-infrared interferometer dedicated to high resolution imaging of all types of astronomical objects.
  • The objects that will be observed include many types of nearby stars, including direct observations of the radial pulsations of Cepheid variable stars and surface features on giant stars, to imaging of the brightest active galactic nuclei.
  • In its initial phase, the MROI will consist of six 1.4m diameter telescopes. The telescopes will be moveable between sets of discrete foundations, allowing baselines (inter-telescope spacings) between 7.5m and 340m in length. The longest baseline will provide an angular resolution of 0.6 milli-arcsecond at 1 micron wavelength, more than a factor 100 better than that possible with the Hubble Space Telescope.

The completed delay line and headquarters facilityCavendish AP Group involvement

  • The optical interferometry team at the Cavendish Laboratory are leading the system design for MROI. The group are contracted to deliver the vacuum delay lines for the interferometer, and expect to be involved in delivering other MROI subsystems.