High-angular resolution and high contrast observations from Y to L band at the Very Large Telescope Interferometer with the Asgard Instrumental suite

Marc Antoine Martinod, Denis Defrère, Michael Ireland, Stefan Kraus, Frantz Martinache, Peter Tuthill, Azzurra Bigioli, Emilie Bouzerand, Julia Bryant, Sorabh Chhabra, Benjamin Courtney-Barrer, Fred Crous, Nick Cvetojevic, Colin Dandumont, Steve Ertel, Tyler Gardner, Germain Garreau, Adrian M. Glauser, Lucas Labadie, Tiphaine LagadecRomain Laugier, Alexandra Mazzoli, Daniel Mortimer, Barnaby Norris, Gert Raskin, Gordon Robertson, Ahmed Sanny, Adam Taras

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


European Southern Observatory (ESO)'s Very Large Telescope Interferometer (VLTI), Paranal, Chile, is one of the most proficient observatories in the world for high angular resolution astronomy. It has hosted several interferometric instruments operating in various bandwidths in the infrared. As a result, the VLTI has yielded countless discoveries and technological breakthroughs. We propose to ESO a new concept for a visitor instrument for the VLTI: Asgard. It is an instrumental suite comprised of four natively collaborating instruments: High-Efficiency Multiaxial Do-it ALL Recombiner (HEIMDALLR), an all-in-one instrument performing both fringe tracking and stellar interferometry with the same optics; Baldr, a Strehl optimizer; Beam-combination Instrument for studying the Formation and fundamental paRameters of Stars and planeTary systems (BIFROST), a combiner whose main science case is studying the formation processes and properties of stellar and planetary systems; and Nulling Observations of dusT and planeTs (NOTT), a nulling interferometer dedicated to imaging young nearby planetary systems in the L band. The overlap between the science cases across different spectral bands yields the idea of making the instruments complementary to deliver sensitivity and accuracy from the J to L bands. Asgard is to be set on the former AMBER optical table. Its control architecture is a hybrid between custom and ESO-compliant developments to benefit from the flexibility offered to a visitor instrument and foresee a deeper long-term integration into VLTI for an opening to the community.

Original languageEnglish
Article number025007
JournalJournal of Astronomical Telescopes, Instruments, and Systems
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • active galactic nuclei
  • exoplanets
  • high angular resolution
  • high contrast imaging
  • infrared
  • integrated-optics
  • long baseline interferometry
  • optical fibers
  • protoplanetary disk
  • spectroscopy
  • wavefront control

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Instrumentation
  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Space and Planetary Science


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