The ‘Made in India’ optical spectrograph named as Aries-Devasthal Faint Object Spectrograph & Camera (ADFOSC) is indigenously designed and developed by Aryabhatta Research Institute of observational sciences (ARIES), Nainital, an autonomous institute of Department of Science and Technology (DST), Government of India. It is about 2.5 times less costly compared to the imported ones and can locate sources of light with a photon-rate as low as about 1 photon per second.
This low-cost optical spectrograph can locate sources of faint light from distant quasars and galaxies in a very young universe, regions around supermassive black-holes around the galaxies, and cosmic explosions. The total cost of this instrument is nearly Rs. 4 Crore.
The spectroscope, the largest of its kind among the existing astronomical spectrographs in the country, has been successfully commissioned on the 3.6-m Devasthal Optical Telescope (DOT), the largest in the country and in Asia, near Nainital, Uttarakhand.
Dr. Amitesh Omar, scientist at ARIES, led this project with a technical and scientific team, which together researched and developed various optical, mechanical, and electronics subsystems of the spectrograph and camera.
The spectrograph is presently being used by astronomers from India and abroad to study distant quasars and galaxies in a very young universe, regions around supermassive black-holes around the galaxies, cosmic explosions like supernovae and highly energetic Gamma-ray bursts, young and massive stars, and faint dwarf galaxies.