Diversity of galaxies as found by the SAMI Galaxy Survey

 Hector is the next major dark-time instrument for the AAT and is a multi integral-field-unit spectrograph aimed at obtaining a low-redshift galaxy survey of up to 100,000 galaxies, with 90% imaged out to 2 effective radii. 

Hector will decipher the diversity of galaxies through understanding the physical basis for their individuality.

The key science questions for this instrument include how do galaxies build up mass and angular momentum, how is star formation and nuclear activity affected by environment, what is the role of feedback, and how does large-scale environment modulate galaxy growth through tidal torques and gas accretion.

Hector will be built in stages and the first stage called Hector-I is funded and under construction.

Hector-I on 2dF:

•Will employ the first new Hector spectrograph (blue and red arm) alongside the existing AAOmega spectrograph, with 13 current SAMI hexabundles plus ~8 new larger hexagonally-packed hexabundles with up to 217 fibre cores each.

•Combination robotic and manual positioning.

•Science operations by late-2018.

•Will deliver significant science gains over SAMI with increases in survey speed, galaxy coverage to 2 effective radii and higher spectral resolution.

Hector-3dF on a new 3-degree-field top end for the AAT:

•>90 hexabundles from 61 to 217 fibre cores each, 15-30 arcsec diameter, matched to 2 effective radii for 90% of galaxies.

•>80,000 galaxy survey by 2027.

•Robotically positioned with Starbugs

•Will deliver the only IFS survey large enough to connect galaxy evolution and kinematics to large-scale-structure to explain the evolutionary history leading to individuality of galaxies.


Science Requirements Definition


After extensive astronomical community consultation on the needs for Hector, the science case for the Hector Survey and the requirements for the instrument were defined.

The Science Requirements document outlining key science and the resulting instrument specifications for Hector can be found here: