Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument
I am part of the Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument (DESI) collaboration, a group of hundreds of astronomers from all over the globe who are mapping out the nearby universe.
DESI is located on the 4m Mayall Telescope at Kitt Peak, AZ. We are working on measuring the distances to over 30 MILLION galaxies, creating the most complete map of the universe to date.
DESI is built to observe as many galaxies as possible, as quickly as possible. It does this thanks to 5,000 individually-controlled robotic positioners which can each gather the light of an individual galaxy. This light then gets passed down to a spectrograph room, where it is broken up and measured. These measurement can tell us a lot about each galaxy: from its distance to what it's made of and even some of its dynamics.
DESI is creating the most detailed map yet of nearby galaxies. To celebrate the connection between early terrestrial and early cosmic explorers, I’ve made this DESI art in the style of early world maps. To read about the details, see this blog post.