ANASAC Telecon (15/01/15)
Present: Alberto Bolatto, Dick Plambeck, Tony Remijan, Al Wootten, Shep
Doeleman, Carol Lonsdale, Rachel Osten, James Di Francesco
Thanks to James and Alberto for these minutes.
Regrets: Douglas Scott, Phil Jewell
0. ALMA Phasing Project
- going on recently, phasing efficiencies of ~90% of entire array, no VLBI fringes yet. Some tests done between APEX and SPT. A good first step for
commissioning for EHT. Mid-December was the acceptance review of the ALMA phasing project hardware, phase interface cards, optical fibres, etc.
(Wootten, on behalf of Jewell)
- Highly successful Long Baseline Campaign concluded end of November, ES
Observing resumed early December
- Observing efficiency improving with Block 9 just before LBC with improvements in system stability (efficiency >50%). Further improvement in Blocks 10-13 (after LBC) attributed to higher array element availability. By most recent Block 13, now up to ~69% observing efficiency. At this rate, we should be able to get through all A/B Cycle 2 and A-ranked Cycle 1 projects by end of the Cycle (depending on configuration, of course).
- array is in configuration 1-2 hybrid at the moment.
- Shutdown is 3-17 February, ES won't resume until April 2 though some SBs may be run during shutdown as tests
b) Long Baseline Campaign
- Campaign highly successful in all respects tests, verification, and demonstration of ALMA capability
- Plan exists for publication of results, release of data
- Summaries of LBC results will be published in a short series of papers by ALMA team beginning in early February
- At approximately the same time (first 1-2 weeks of Feb), SV data will be released to public
- No announcement has been posted on website but will be done within the week, SV page has been revamped in preparation of the LBC data release.
c) NA ALMA Antenna update
- Parallel path approach: Vertex is developing a work plan to determine and address root cause of rms increase (seen as astigmatism) vs. bulk temperature change, and NRAO / JAO are working on plan to address thermal bias issue. Will require holography and surface resetting at AOS. This step should bring the NA antennas into rms surface spec under most conditions. All work has to be done at the high site.
d) ALMA Board Telecon 14 Jan 2014
- Status of ASAC recommendations from November 2014 ALMA Board meeting as reported by JAO:
i) Proposal duplication check:
- Tool under development; will not be ready for Cycle 3 call, but will be ready for Cycle 4. For now, Cycle 1 transfer projects are listed in the Science Portal and the same list will be done for the Cycle 2 (Grade A) projects.
ii) Release of partial data:
- For Cycle 3, each array configuration will only be available once through the yearly Cycle. At end of an array configuration, data will be delivered (even if the projects are incomplete but cannot use another configuration). The completeness of projects will be tracked. A more detailed plan will be available in June 2015.
iii) Stand-alone ACA proposals for Cy3:
- Not possible for Cy3 (not in software) but will be implemented for Cy4
iv) Implementation of Large Programs:
- as described in the revised PRP document should begin with Cy4, assuming that the execution efficiency of ALMA has improved and stabilized, Planned for Cy4
v) Users Committe (UC) / ANASAC Report received, response due out shortly.
vi) Next meeting will be 20-22 May Green Bank.
e) Positions Open
- The NAASC
has two positions advertised an astronomer (tenure track) and a scientist track (one or more positions available).
- The JAO is seeking an Observatory Scientist.
2. Science (Wootten)
- 185 (161) refereed papers published so far, 137 (119) Cycle 0. Nine (5) from Cycle 1 (7 regular plus two DDT), 1 (0) from Cycle 2. (parentheses denote numbers from last telecon). Eight refereed papers published in December journals. Tokyo conference showed lots of Cycle 1 / 2 data, talks not yet publicly available given sensitivity to early release. The ASP conference series will publish something down the road.
b) ASAC f2f:
- ASAC Charges for 2015 Santiago Meeting are set. Need to improve observing efficiency, finish ALMA 2030 report detailing long-term ways to improve the instrument (any suggestions welcome), suggest improvements to useability of portal, project tracker, and archive (and OT).
c) ANASAC, NAASC
Meetings and Workshops
- Should ASAC and NAASC
NA leaders be the same person? Separate ANASAC Chair? Bolatto recommends a different chair for the ANASAC, especially as it is merging into the NRAO Users Committee
- Will do a Doodle poll to pick a new time/date for future ANASAC meetings (done)
- Next NAASC
Workshop: need topic and time
- ALMA Conference in Tokyo and Postdoc Symposium afterward were very successful. Next one in the US? When? Last one was 1999 (with cover image guess as to what HL Tau would look like)
- AAS Seattle:
i) AAS - Splinter Session "New Capabilities at the NRAO" - Tuesday, Jan. 6, 1:30-3:30pm, (before NRAO Town Hall on Tues evening) talks on NRAO instruments, discussion, hands-on help.
ii) NRAO Town Hall Jan 6 evening
iii) Plenary session on Recent Results from ALMA Jan 8 late morning
d) Upcoming Meetings:
- Ground and Space Observatories observing the Solar System (ESO/NAASC workshop 2-5 March 2015 in Santiago)
- Star and Planet Formation in the Southwest, 23 27 Mar 2015, Oracle, AZ
- "Workshop on mm-VLBI with ALMA," Bologna, 22 - 23 January 2015, Bologna, Italy
- "Ground and space observatories: a joint venture to planetary science," 2 - 5 Mar 2015, Santiago, Chile
- "Dissecting Galaxies Near and Far: High Resolution Views of Star Formation
and the ISM," 23 - 27 Mar 2015, Santiago, Chile
- "Icy Grain Chemistry for Formation of Complex Organic Molecules: From Molecular Clouds to Protoplanetary Disks, Comets and Meteorites," 5 - 7 Mar 2015, at Tokyo Institute of Technology, Japan Abstract Submission Deadline : January 30, 2015
- ALMA/Herschel Archival Workshop ESO Garching, 15-17 April 2015
e) ALMA Development:
- operation of fibre between Calama and OSF now complete needs acceptance
- APP has been through its review
- need to show that NA has successfully completed its developement projects
- Studies have been closed out, some extensions have been requested. Reports will be put in the ALMA Memo series.
- Band 5 receivers will start to be installed in April 2015
- new round of Development studies by end of January, proposals probably due in May, would be nice to have 2030 Vision Report ready by that time.
- need to fix URLs for consistency between Cycles and Regions. Wootten will look into that. (done)
3. Science Operations (Lonsdale)
a) Early Science:
- ES began again December 2 in most compact configuration (C34-1/2). Another ES hiatus Feb/Mar for annual software/hardware upgrades.
b) ALMA Status Report
- was posted to Science Portal on November 12, and broadcast to NA community
- Includes configuration schedule, observing statistics, remaining observing pressure as function of LST, config & Band, EOC summary
c) Cycle 3 planning:
- pre-announcement posted to Science Portal on Dec 8 and broadcast to registered NA users.
- Call/Deadline in Mar/Apr 2015; panel meetings June in Japan; observing starts 01 October. 12 month cycle, so will be close to yearly cadence
- Cycle 3 proto-capabilities (TBC): 36 antennas, longer baselines (frequency dependent), FDM polarization. Go/no-go decision on these will be made on Dec1. SG limitations will persist (5 tunings, 150ptg, 10deg limits per SG)
- need to fix/explain better "unresolved source radio button" in OT to avoid misunderstandings on the observing configuration to use
d) NA Cycle 1&2 Data Reduction update (Jan 12):
- efficiency is going up.
- Cycle 1: 198 HP projects in total. 143 (72%) with some SBs finished, 135 (68%) with some data delivered; 67 (34%) completely delivered.
- Cycle 2: Cycle 2 HP Projects: 354 projects in total. 152 (43%) with some SBs finished, 78 (22%) with some data delivered; 17 (5%) completely delivered.
- Our goal is to get all non-problematic completed OUS to PIs prior to Cycle 3 call.
- Support to JAO: E. Fomalont & A. Remijan (long-term EOC support) J. Di Francesco / K. Sheth / D. Brisben (AoD
/EOCsupport Dec/Jan). C. Brogan / T. Hunter continuing support of LBC (papers & guides)
- Pipeline works but the backlog of unprocessed data is growing. NA is working through its backlog as fast as we can, ramp-up for Cy3 deadline may take some attention away, but 3-4 Data Analysts have been recently hired so they will help. Goal is to eliminate backlog by Cy3 deadline.
- Visitor rates to NAASC
have gone up over the last two quarters, almost 1 team / week. Feedback from those visitors suggest they have been valuable
- Community outreach in advance of Cy3 deadline also ramping up.
4. Astronomer Outreach
a) Next NAASC
- if one needed in 2015 need to get act together soon, maybe international meeting in 2016
- please discuss ideas within ANASAC
- one idea: spectroscopy.
b) ALMA Cycle 2 SOS Awards
- an NA Regional workshop, "Filamentary Structure in Molecular Clouds" occurred 10-11 Oct 2014 in Charlottesville
c) Future Planning:
- ALMA Cycle 3 - Documentation review and update, suggested improvements welcome
- CDEs for ALMA Cycle 3 - Hosts being confirmed
- Radio Astronomy Summer School 2015: dates confirmed for summer school on single-dish and interferometry at the GBT on July 5-14, with interferometry sessions running July 12, 13, 14. 50 participants expected
- 2015 AAAS Annual Meeting(February 2015) with 180 Minute Symposium on Galaxy Assembly
d) Other Astronomer Outreach:
TV; JAO ALMA Webpages; ALMA Newsletters; ALMA Science Meetings; ALMA Training Events; NRAO eNews; NAOJ News.
5. Date of next meeting
a) Doodle poll wanted for times/dates
- Proposed dates for future 2015 telecons: 5 Mar, 7 May, 2 Jul, 3 Sep, 5 Nov. Comments please
- next meeting will be right before Cycle 3 deadline...
6. Other Business
a) ANASAC membership
- need to recruit new members to the ANASAC with Shep Doeleman, Dan Marrone rotating off the committee this year
- need to integrate rest of the Users Committee into the telecons