• SHARK-NIR: Implementation of the instrument control software SHINS

      De Pascale, M.; Baruffolo, A.; Salasnich, B.; Ricci, D.; Briegel, F.; Farinato, J.; Biondi, F.; Grenz, P.; Vassallo, D.; University of Arizona (SPIE, 2020)
      The System for coronagraphy with High Order adaptive optics in Z and H band (SHARK-NIR), is a high contrast imager with coronagraphic and spectroscopic capabilities, which will be mounted at the Large Binocular Telescope (LBT). It will observe in the near infrared, between 0.96 and 1.7 microns. Its main scientific goal is the direct imaging of exo-planets, their detection and characterization, taking advantage of the extreme adaptive optics offered by LBT. In this paper we describe the implementation of SHINS, the SHARK-NIR instrument control software. We chose to use frameworks and components already developed and tested on other instruments at LBT, such as LINC-NIRVANA and ARGOS; this allowed us to minimize the development while employing software already considered robust. This approach required some effort in order to integrate eterogenous systems, as the motion control and the scientific detector subsystems, in a single control system. Indeed, SHINS is based on the extensive use of TwiceAsNice framework from MPIA in Heidelberg; we explain how we employed it in the implementation of components responsible for controlling the motion functions, as well as how we adapted some TwiceAsNice libraries realized for other instruments at LBT, to implement subsystems not related to motion functions. On the other hand, the scientific camera is controlled using INDI, a protocol developed and used at LBT. We tied TwiceAsNice framework and INDI employing ZeroC-ICE framework, used to implement the central component of the instrument control software. In the paper we also describe the implementation of the sequencer component responsible for receiving from the LBT observation preparation tool information on the observation block to be executed, and translating them into a list of operations to be communicated to the central component of the instrument control software. We describe also the implementation with Qt language of graphical user interfaces, at present employed during integration of the instrument in Padova. © 2020 SPIE.