Current Instruments

Information on the instrumentation available for use on each telescope is provided below. The links will lead you to general information about the instrument, including useful material for proposal preparation (e.g., instrument capabilities and sensitivities), and the relevant User's Manual. The Observing webpages give more information about applying for time on these telescopes and the AAO Observer's Guide provides a (somewhat dated) overview of the AAO and its facilities.

Current AAT Instruments

  • AAOmega fibre-fed optical spectrograph, fed by either:
    • the 2 Degree Field (2dF) robotic fibre positioner covering a 2 degree field at prime focus with 392 fibres; or
    • KOALA is a wide-field, high efficiency, integral-field unit with 1000 hexagonal lenslets in either 15.3 x 28.3 arcsec (0.7"  sampling) or 27.4 x 50.6 arcsec (1.25" sampling) array.
  • HERMES - fibre-fed high-resolution spectrograph, fed by the 2 Degree Field (2dF) robotic fibre positioner covering a 2 degree field at prime focus with 392 fibres. 
  • IRIS2 - 1.0-2.5 micron infrared imager and longslit/multi-slit spectrograph covering a 7.7' x 7.7' field.
  • University College London Echelle Spectrograph (UCLES) - cross-dispersed echelle spectrograph with resolution R = 40,000 - 120,000. Can also be used with the CYCLOPS2 fibre-feed with the 79 l/mm echelle.
  • Visitor Instruments may be used on the AAT with permission from the Director. Please see these pages for more information. 

General Information


A wide selection of broad-band and narrow-band filters is available, and can be shared between AAT instruments.


All AAT detectors are now operated with the AAO-2 controllers. The MITLL3 and EEV2 CCD pages give details on the performance of these detectors with UCLES and UHRF with the old controllers. See the CCD Performance with the AAO-2 Controllers page for latest details on performance of the EEV2 and MITLL3 detectors on UCLES/UHRF.

Current Gemini Instruments

Information about Gemini instruments can be found on the Gemini webpage, following the links below.

Gemini North

  • GMOS (multi-object, long-slit and IFU spectrograph and imager)
  • NIRI (1-5µm imager)
  • NIFS (1.0-2.5µm integral field spectrograph)
  • GNIRS (1-5µm long-slit and 0.9-2.5µm cross-dispersed spectrograph; formerly at Gemini South)
  • ALTAIR (facility natural/laser guide star AO system)
  • DSSI/Speckle (diffraction-limited optical imager) - Visitor
  • TEXES (10-20µm high resolution spectrograph) - Visitor

Gemini South

  • GMOS (multi-object, long-slit and IFU spectrograph and imager)
  • NICI (coronagraphic imager)
  • GSAOI (high-resolution imager for use with Multi-Conjugate Adaptive Optics system "GeMS")
  • GPI (adaptive-optics imaging polarimeter/integral-field spectrometer)
  • FLAMINGOS-2 (multi-object spectrograph)
  • GeMS (Multi-conjugate adaptive optics system)

Current Magellan Instruments


Current UKST Instruments

The UK Schmidt telescope is not currently offered.