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Paper: The Hobby-Eberly Telescope Dark Energy Experiment (HETDEX): Description and Early Pilot Survey Results
Volume: 399, Panoramic Views of Galaxy Formation and Evolution
Page: 115
Authors: Hill, G.J.; Gebhardt, K.; Komatsu, E.; Drory, N.; MacQueen, P.J.; Adams, J.; Blanc, G.A.; Koehler, R.; Rafal, M.; Roth, M.M.; Kelz, A.; Gronwall, C.; Ciardullo, R.; Schneider, D.P.
Abstract: The Hobby-Eberly Telescope Dark Energy Experiment (HETDEX) will outfit the 10 m HET with a new wide field and an array of 150 integral-field spectrographs to survey a 420 deg2 area in the north Galactic cap. Each fiber-coupled unit spectrograph will cover 350-550 nm, simultaneously. This instrument, called VIRUS, will produce ∼34,000 spectra per exposure, and will open up the emission-line universe to large surveys for the first time. The survey will detect 0.8 million Lyman-alpha emitting (LAE) galaxies with 1.9<z<3.5 and more than a million [OII] emitting galaxies with z<0.5.

The 3-D map of LAE galaxies in 9 cubic Gpc volume will be used to measure the expansion history at this early epoch using baryonic acoustic oscillations and the shape of the power spectrum. The aim of HETDEX is to provide a direct detection of dark energy at z∼3. The measurement will constrain the evolution of dark energy and will also provide 0.1%-level accuracy on the curvature of the Universe, ten times better than current.

The prototype of the VIRUS unit spectrograph (VIRUS-P) is a powerful instrument in its own right. Used on the McDonald 2.7 m, it covers the largest area of any integral field spectrograph, and reaches wavelengths down to 340 nm. VIRUS-P is being used for a pilot survey to better measure the properties of LAE galaxies in support of HETDEX. We report initial results from this survey.

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