Telescope Instruments: OSIRIS

Instrument: OH-Suppressing Infrared Imaging Spectrograph
Telescope: Keck I
Wavelength: near-infrared light
Instrument Scientist: Dr. Jim Lyke
Description: Used with the Adaptive Optics system to produce some of the sharpest images for Keck Observatory. As both a spectrograph and an imager, each pixel in the images it captures contains spectral information.
Unique Feature: Suppresses bright wavelengths emitted from OH (hyrdroxl) molecules in the Earth’s atmosphere so fainter objects are more detectable.
Research Specialty: Measuring emissions from faint objects such as distant galaxies, studying the moons of giant planets, and investigating galactic centers and dark matter.
Notable Contributions: Played a key role in proving the existence of a supermassive black hole at the center of the Milky Way, which led to the 2020 Nobel Prize in Physics.

“What I enjoy most about OSIRIS is using it to observe stars undergoing explosions because I can see each element in an image of a novae, which lets me understand the morphology of the novae.” ~ Dr. Jim Lyke

Mahalo: Support for this technology was generously provided by the Heising-Simons Foundation and the National Science Foundation.