Status and motivation of Raman LIDARs development for the CTA Observatory
The Cherenkov Telescope Array (CTA) is the next generation of Imaging Atmospheric Cherenkov Telescopes. It would reach unprecedented sensitivity and energy resolution in very-high-energy gamma-ray astronomy. In order to reach these goals, the systematic uncertainties derived from the varying atmospheric conditions shall be reduced to the minimum. Different instruments may help to account for these uncertainties. Several groups in the CTA consortium are currently building Raman LIDARs to be
... n LIDARs to be installed at the CTA sites. Raman LIDARs are devices composed of a powerful laser that shoots into the atmosphere, a collector that gathers the backscattered light from molecules and aerosols, a photosensor, an optical module that spectrally select wavelengths of interest, and a read-out system. Raman LIDARs can reduce the systematic uncertainties in the reconstruction of the gamma-ray energies down to 5 % level. All Raman LIDARs subject of this work, have design features that make them different than typical Raman LIDARs used in atmospheric science, and are characterized by large collecting mirrors ($\sim2~$m$^2$). They have multiple elastic and Raman read-out channels (at least 4) and custom-made optics design. In this paper, the motivation for Raman LIDARs, the design and the status of advance of these technologies are described.