A prototype fiber-fed echelle spectrograph, developed previously by the author, proved the viability of extending the capabilities of modest sized telescope systems through the inclusion of more advanced instrumentation. Here, evolution of the echelle spectrograph is continued with a review of the original design followed by the main topic of this thesis, the development of a suitable CCD camera/detector system for use with the spectrograph.
Topics discussed include a summary of the characteristics and operation of the CCD detector as well as the overall architecture of a CCD based camera system. Some aspects of the camera system are analysed in detail. Two camera designs, the high performance UQCCD design and its successor, the Southwest Cryostatics based camera, are presented along with suggestions for a "standard" architecture/interface for interconnecting computers and CCD devices.