• Class Number 5924
  • Term Code 3360
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Prof Francois Rigaut
    • Prof Celine D'Orgeville
    • Dr Sheon Chua
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 24/07/2023
  • Class End Date 27/10/2023
  • Census Date 31/08/2023
  • Last Date to Enrol 31/07/2023
    • Noelia Martinez Rey
SELT Survey Results

This course covers topics related to active areas of optical and infrared instrumentation research. The course spans a variety of subjects to introduce a global understanding of optical scientific instrumentation, covering areas including optics, detectors, signal and noise. It uses examples from astronomical instrumentation but the principles covered can also be applied to other types of optical scientific instrumentation, including those used in medical, environmental, physics, and other applications.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. Apply theoretical and practical foundations of optical and remote sensing knowledge in an advanced topic;
  2. Conduct background research by reading and understanding current technical literature;
  3. Analyse cutting edge optical and remote sensing instrument systems;
  4. Organise the technical ideas behind optical and remote sensing instrument systems;
  5. Understand the link between science requirements, instrument design and data analysis.

Field Trips

A visit to the Advanced Instrumentation and Technology Centre (Mount Stromlo) will be organised over half a day following a Doodle pool to determine the best date. https://rsaa.anu.edu.au/aitc

Additional Course Costs


Examination Material or equipment

Course material is permitted (you will be able to bring your laptop for viewing lecture notes or computation). No internet access, online peer-to-peer chat or AI allowed.

Required Resources

None beside lectures slides.

Recommended student system requirements 

ANU courses commonly use a number of online resources and activities including:

  • video material, similar to YouTube, for lectures and other instruction
  • two-way video conferencing for interactive learning
  • email and other messaging tools for communication
  • interactive web apps for formative and collaborative activities
  • print and photo/scan for handwritten work
  • home-based assessment.

To fully participate in ANU learning, students need:

  • A computer or laptop. Mobile devices may work well but in some situations a computer/laptop may be more appropriate.
  • Webcam
  • Speakers and a microphone (e.g. headset)
  • Reliable, stable internet connection. Broadband recommended. If using a mobile network or wi-fi then check performance is adequate.
  • Suitable location with minimal interruptions and adequate privacy for classes and assessments.
  • Printing, and photo/scanning equipment

For more information please see https://www.anu.edu.au/students/systems/recommended-student-system-requirements

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:

  • written comments

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Introduction to scientific instrumentation
2 Optics for instrumentation Linked with Optics Lab, Assignment, given out ~ August 2
3 LIGO instrumentation
4 LIGO instrumentation Assignment, given out ~ August 16
5 Sampling, signal and noise
6 Optical and NIR detection
7 Life cycle of a scientific instrument Mid semester Student Presentation
8 Math tools for the applied physicist Optics Lab
9 Adaptive Optics Optics Lab
10 Introduction to image processing Optics Lab, Assignment, given out ~ Oct 12
11 Spectroscopy
12 Guest lectures

Tutorial Registration

Not required; just show up at the Wednesday's tutorial session.

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Learning Outcomes
Assignment 1 15 % 1,2,3
Assignment 2 15 % 1,2,3
Assignment 3 15 % 1,2,3
Student Presentation 15 % 1,2,3
Optics Labs 15 % 1,2,3,4,5
Final exam 25 % 1,2,3,4

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the Academic Integrity . In rare cases where online submission using Turnitin software is not technically possible; or where not using Turnitin software has been justified by the Course Convener and approved by the Associate Dean (Education) on the basis of the teaching model being employed; students shall submit assessment online via ‘Wattle’ outside of Turnitin, or failing that in hard copy, or through a combination of submission methods as approved by the Associate Dean (Education). The submission method is detailed below.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.


Participation is, if not mandatory, at least strongly encouraged.


This course includes a formal examination session at the end. The exam typically runs 2.5 to 3 hours. Students have access to course material, but internet access is not allowed, nor are interactions with other students.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 15 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3

Assignment 1

Optics, LIGO and GW Instrumentation 1

Assessment Task 2

Value: 15 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3

Assignment 2

LIGO and GW Instrumentation 2, Signal and Noise

Assessment Task 3

Value: 15 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3

Assignment 3

Math tools for Applied Physicists, Image Processing

Assessment Task 4

Value: 15 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3

Student Presentation

Mid semester topical presentation

Assessment Task 5

Value: 15 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4,5

Optics Labs

3 x 5% Optics Labs

Assessment Task 6

Value: 25 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4

Final exam

Final exam for the overall course

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of the ANU culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically, committing to honest and responsible scholarly practice and upholding these values with respect and fairness.

The ANU commits to assisting all members of our community to understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to be familiar with the academic integrity principle and Academic Misconduct Rule, uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with.

The Academic Misconduct Rule is in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Very minor breaches of the academic integrity principle may result in a reduction of marks of up to 10% of the total marks available for the assessment. The ANU offers a number of online and in person services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. Visit the Academic Skills website for more information about academic integrity, your responsibilities and for assistance with your assignments, writing skills and study.

Online Submission

You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) submission must be through Turnitin.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

Individual assessment tasks may or may not allow for late submission. Policy regarding late submission is detailed below:

  • Late submission permitted. Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

Accepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.

Returning Assignments

Assignment have to be submitted through wattle exclusively. A word processor like microsoft word, latex, Apple pages, open office, etc has to be used.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. Extensions may be granted for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Resubmission of Assignments

Re-submission of assignments before the due date is permitted.

Re-submission of assignments after the due date is NOT permitted.

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information.
In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service – including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy.
If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.

Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

Prof Francois Rigaut

Research Interests

Adaptive optics; Astronomical instrumentation; Telescopes; Signal processing;

Prof Francois Rigaut

By Appointment
Prof Celine D'Orgeville

Research Interests

Adaptive optics; Astronomical instrumentation; Telescopes; Signal processing;

Prof Celine D'Orgeville

Dr Sheon Chua

Research Interests

Dr Sheon Chua

Noelia Martinez Rey

Research Interests

Noelia Martinez Rey


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