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  • 2008-7-16 14:30 UT Please check your local time; it may have changed!
  • Note: C. Wilson points out line noise may be muted by pressing *6 which works thru the call center.
  • Duration: 1 hr
  • USA Toll Free Number: 877-874-1919
  • Toll Number: +1-203-320-9891
  • Passcode: 185064
  • Leader: Al Wootten
  • Attendees:


  1. Old Business The enhanced Agenda from last meeting is available. Science IPT notes from last month's telecon are attached to the bottom of the agenda.

VertexRSI2 moved from SEF to antenna station by ALMA Transporter Nine ALMA antennas are now on-site in Chile: four antennas from Mitsubishi Electric Co. (Melco) and five antennas from VertexRSI. These antennas are undergoing acceptance testing, after which they will leave the contractor’s camp for further tests at the OSF TB, including radiometric tests using the first ALMA receiver suite. These receivers are contained within the ALMA Front End, the first of which was successfully tested at the OSF in June. Recent successful tests at the OSF featured a system that included ALMA elements from the Front End to the correlator and the software interconnecting these devices. The massive antennas are moved by one of the two ALMA transporters; these achieved Provisional Acceptance and has moved the second assembled Vertex RSI antenna from the capacious (but with four antennas under construction, full) Site Erection Facility to an outside pad for holographic surface measurements. Later, a Melco antenna will be moved to the 16,400-foot elevation Array Operations Site (AOS) for high-altitude tests. Work is being completed on pad number 93, close to the AOS technical building, so that these tests may be efficiently accommodated.

See other images and animations. See other images and transporters.

  1. New Business--Project news/updates (Hills, Peck)
  • ALMA Status Report R. Hills. There is a great deal going on at the moment so highlights only here:
    • Site: review of roads, fibre, etc., essentially complete; foundations are going in on the plateau; at the OSF slow progress in moving into the new building but furniture is finally on order; other upgrades to the building being planned.
    • Antennas: pointing tests on MELCO #2 completed and being analyzed; thermal deformations of #1 also being analyzed - expect to get more data in August; repairs to Vertex #1 complete - holography underway; pointing tests about to start on #2. AEM #1 trial assembly of mount almost complete, drive tests about to start but the base will need to be replaced before it is shipped; BUS and cabin in advanced state - will be shipped direct to OSF.
    • Front Ends: Delivery - a new plan which would provide a second "engineering model" FE to Chile by ~Oct 2008 being considered. Integration centers - the idea is being pushed of having identified Scientists supporting each of these and keeping in close touch with each other and with the cartridge groups; investigations of beam data from NA FEIC has cleared up some of the discrepancies seen in the data on FE #1. WVR - further partial CDR's completed.
    • Back End: production activities cranking up.
    • Correlator: first quadrant of 64-input system cleared for shipment. Second quadrant running in Cho'ville for software tests.
    • Software: CDR6 in progress. Further review requested towards the end of this year.
    • Systems: Revisit to the Systems Requirements planned - small group meeting to define.
  • ASAC Matters.
    • Face-to-face meeting in Charlottesville after Massive Star Formation Workshop
    • New Charges will require some work
  • Band 10 receivers accepted by ALMA Board as NAOJ contribution.
  • Extended configuration status.
  • ALMA Science IPT wiki page
  • Astronomer Outreach: ESO Newsletter New ESO Messenger with Transporter article, New eNews ALMA News. NAOJ News. NRAO ALMA Calendar

  1. Directories

Science IPT Group Activity Reports

Please include your Group Activity Report here (How to Enter Your Report), or email it to AlWootten

Project Scientists

  1. Science IPT
    • Change Control Board items, other technical concerns (Hills)
    • Time: Here is an interesting one. At present ALMA documentation states that Array Time will be defined as equal to Atomic Time (TAI). It is proposed that this be changed to Universal Time (UTC). There is discussion at Time discussion. If anyone has views please air them!
    • Alternative Laser Systems. We are edging towards a position where we develop the scheme invented by Kiuchi-san and colleagues in parallel to the baseline. For those who want to learn about the details of this see ALS discussion. (Start at the bottom.)
    • ATF: (Peck)
      • Summary. ATF will operate thru 1 Sept, if at all possible. Debate over whether to extend beyond that has now started. This is being driven by Software who see the urgent need to have a test facility using real hardware and are alarmed by the slippages in the availability of systems in Chile. We should discuss how important this is for us too and at what level we could continue to provide at the ATF while ramping up our work in Chile. This discussion is part of a broader issue about how testing should be planned - see the attachment at the bottom on Test Interferometer.
      • Present goals: (1) Get software working (2) Developing procedures needed for AIVC, and (3) Training personnel
      • Spectral-line pointing needs to be available in Q1 2008 for single dish testing in Chile.
      • Presently testing software version 5.1.1 which includes facilities for taking total power data. These modes are basically working and we have (today) obtained fringes but we haven't yet got all aspects of interferometry are back up.
      • Hardware is in a parlous state and some interventions would be essential if operations are to continue.
      • The current schedule is below. Please let Alison and Debra know if anyone has any issues with this. During the current period foci of interest include further understanding of the behavior of the Line Length Corrector, to measure the baseline correctly and to begin interferometric pointing.
Week Event
July 13-19
Hills, Laing
July 20-26
Laing, Andreani, Wilson
July 27-Aug 2
Wilson, Laing

  • OSF
Week Event
Jul 7 - Aug 1
Emerson VxRSI antenna 1 holography testing begins 7 July

  1. Next meeting is on Aug 20th (14:30 UT). Sept 17th for the following month.
  2. Astronomer Outreach: New ESO ALMA Webpages.][NRAO Newsletter]]. NAOJ News. NRAO ALMA Calendar

Richard Hills, Alison Peck, Robert Laing -- Commissioning and Science Verification

  • Commissioning and Science Verification
    • Plan.
    • Rainer Mauersberger and Robert Lucas will be starting work in Chile in the next few weeks.
    • NAOJ has appointed Dr. Tsuyoshi Sawada as ALMA Commissioning Scientist; he will probably arrive in Chile in October of this year.
    • Dr. Stuartt Corder has accepted a Jansky Postdoc; he will spend two years in Chile working with the Commissioning Team before moving to Charlottesville for the science portion of his appointment.

Emerson/Laing/Vila-Vilaro -- Instrument Scientists

Jeff Mangum -- Calibration

  • Response to ASAC comments
  • Pointing Design document now drafted.
  • Calibration Plan: Current version of the calibration plan and associated documents ("examples", "roadmaps", "matrices", etc.) posted. Comments welcome.
  • Calibration Examples: The "meat" of the Calibration Plan. Review of these documents nearly complete, some need updates.
  • Ancillary Calibration Devices: Documents which describe the weather station and temperature profile technical specifications have been developed. Initial purchase documentation for (P,T,RH,Ws,Wdir) measurement devices has been made by Leonardo.

Robert Lucas -- SSR

  • No SSR meeting this month. (2008-07-09).
  • Testing of integrated system at the ATF, using data in ASDM format, version 5.0.3, by AIV and Science IPT.
  • Finalizing ASDM Finalization (version 1...)
  • Work starting n subarrays and on more flexible simulation in Software Test Environments (STE).

Testi, Leurini-- Design Reference Science Plan

  • Polishing-up in process.
  • Some items to be added - more polarization cases, pulsars, is there anything on fine-structure in hot haloes using S-Z?

L.-A. Nyman -- Site Characterization

Remijan, Markwick-Kemper -- ALMA Working Group on Spectral Line Frequencies

  • ALMA White Paper on Lab Astrophysics was sent to Al and Andrew on Dec 1, 2007 - Click for a COPY . It includes a summary of:
  • remains the home for Splatalogue and has been updated with the newest database and user interface. We are in the process of continuing to debug the user interface as well as updating the database. Paul Frieden, a programmer from Illinois, has joined the efforts and is making a substantial contribution to the user interface.
  • Splatalogue at meetings:
    • Splatalogue was presented as a poster at the AAS in Austin.
    • It was presented in a formal presentation at the Ohio State Molecular Spectroscopy Meeting in June. For a copy of the Splatalogue presentation, go to: Splatalogue Presentation. This is a tarred, zip file from the OSU meeting archives which contains the presentation.
  • Getting Funding for Splatalogue:
    • During the St. Louis AAS meeting, Doug Hudgins reported on an amendment (#9, Appendix D.2) to the ROSES 2008 proposal system. It was specifically concerning Astrophysics Data Analysis. The amendment was a direct response to need articulated in the report from the 2006 NASA Laboratory Astrophysics Workshop which stated: "Databases of atomic, molecular, and solid state parameters that are complete [...] and critically evaluated are a necessity." So, on June 20, 2008 we submitted a proposal to get funding in the form of a postdoc, graduate student, a programmer and other and miscellaneous support for the work that needed to be done on Splatalogue.
  • Synergy with other telescopes/facilities:
    • Splatalogue is being used my members of the CSO and SMA to plan and identify features.
    • The CARMA consortium has shown interest in incorporating Splatalogue into their observation planning tool. Remijan need to give a talk at MD about Splatalogue at some point.
    • John Pearson from NASA/JPL and project scientist? of the NHSC, is coming in October to give a talk on Herschel and to continue to expand the cooperation between NRAO and NASA on the problems concerning both facilities and how we can use Splatalogue to address the complex spectroscopy problem that is coming up very quickly.

Science Corner:

Prospects for AGN studies with ALMA R. Maiolino
These lecture notes provide an introduction to mm/submm extragalactic astronomy, focused on AGN studies, with the final goal of preparing students to their future exploitation of the ALMA capabilities. I first provide an overview of the current results obtained through mm/submm observations of galaxies and AGNs, both local and at high redshift. Then I summarize the main mm/submm facilities that are currently available. ALMA is then presented with a general description and by providing some details on its observing capabilities. Finally, I discuss some of the scientific goals that will be achievable with ALMA in extragalactic astronomy, and for AGN studies in particular.


Events of Interest

(see also Al's ALMA Biweekly Calendar)

Day Date Time Event location details
Aug 11-12
EPO face-to-face
Aug 20
Sci IPT telecon
Sep 2
ASAC Telecon
Sep 9-11
ACA 7m antenna PPDR
Sep 12
Sep 28-29
ASAC face-to-face
Dec 9-11
ALMA Annual External Incremental Review

Upcoming Meetings

URSI General Assembly Aug 7-16, Chicago

ALMA Simulation Workshop Sept 8-10 Grenoble

Transformational Science with ALMA: The Birth and Feedback of Massive Stars, Within and Beyond the Galaxy Sep 25-27, Charlottesville.

See ALMA related meetings.

-- AlWootten - 11 Jul 2008 * Schedule files from PMCS
Topic attachments
I Attachment Action Size Date Who Comment
2008June30PMCS.zipzip manage 152 K 2008-07-15 - 16:43 AlWootten Schedule files from PMCS
Case_for_a_Test_Interferometer.pdfpdf Case_for_a_Test_Interferometer.pdf manage 12 K 2008-07-16 - 00:05 RichardHills Test Interferometer
Topic revision: r9 - 2010-08-02, ToddHunter
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