A science instrument known as the Near-InfraRed Imager and Slitless Spectrograph (NIRISS) is packaged with the guide camera (FGS), but is functionally independent. The NIRISS will be capable of wide-field grism spectroscopy with R~150 between 1.0 – 2.5 microns; single-object grism spectroscopy with R~700 between 0.6 – 3.0 microns; aperture-masking interferometry with a non-redundant mask (NRM) between 3.8 - 4.8 µm; and broad-band imaging across its 2.2' x 2.2' field between 1.0 - 5.0 µm. NIRISS is expected to contribute to all of the JWST Science Themes: 1) The End of the Dark Ages: First Light and Reionization; 2) The Assembly of Galaxies; 3) The Birth of Stars and Protoplanetary Systems; and 4) Planetary Systems and the Origin of Life.
The Canadian Space Agency is providing the NIRISS to the JWST Project. The prime contractor is Com Dev. The Principal Investigator for the NIRISS is René Doyon from the Université de Montréal.
2014 August 7 – 8
Members of the NIRISS Science Team met with representatives from the science teams for the other JWST instruments at STScI to exchange perspectives on the use of their respective "guaranteed" observing time and to explore synergies between different approaches to achieving JWST's scientific goals.
2014 June 22-27
NIRISS was well represented at the SPIE "Astronomical Telescopes and Instrumentation" meeting in Montréal. Five papers describing the instrument and its capabilities were presented by members of the NIRISS Instrument Development Team.
2014 June 16
NIRISS, along with the FGS and the other three science instruments, began the second intensive cryogenic test campaign in the large vacuum chamber at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. The campaign will last for about 3 .5 months, and will exercise the capabilities of all the instruments. Performance verification of the NIRISS observing modes is scheduled for early September.
2014 June 2 – 3
The NIRISS Science Team met at the Université de Montréal to discuss the current status of the instrument, and to explore innovative ways to use the observing time that has been allocated to the team.
2014 March 13
A revised version of NIRISS Pocket Guide is now available on NIRISS Document Archive.