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Contact Information

* 2010-5-19 14:30 UT
Note 'usual' UT time.
* Note: C. Wilson points out line noise may be muted by pressing *6 which works thru the call center.
* Duration: 1 hr
* Toll Number: 1-203-480-8549
* USA Toll Free Number: 866-600-8836
* Passcode: 3283890
* Leader: Hills, Wootten, Testi, Morita
* Attendees:


1 Old Business The enhanced Agenda from last meeting is available. Science IPT notes from last month's telecon are not available.

ALMA moves to the ACA pads Four ALMA antennas are now in the fourth commissioning configuration, though this photograph dates from the first arrival of DV03 on the site at the end of April. See other images and animations.

  1. New Business--Project news/updates.(Hills, Peck)
    1. R. Hills
      1. For a recent summary see
      2. Brief status report. See Science_Milestones_2010Apr30 for 'the big picture'. Weather has been a major problem this month.
        • As seen above, four antennas were briefly at the AOS though just passing. DV02 returned 17 May. DV03 was placed on N606 at the end of April, then to N605 on 17 May. DV02 made it back to the high site on 17 May and work is now going on to get it into operation on J504. This was achieved in spite of continuing extreme conditions - the temperature wasn't above -8C and the wind was 15 - 17 m/s (that is 55-60 km/hr!). So we should say a very big thank-you to the transporter crew and the AIV guys who have worked to pull this off. DV03 was moved to N605 also.
        • Good progress has been made in use of the ALMA Calibration Devices (ACDs). A number of system temperature tests have been made in various bands.
        • LLC difficulties were traced to a fiber break; the system seems to be performing reasonably with a shunt in place.
        • We now have baselines of 20 to 30 meters, the "Initial Commissioning Array" configuration. Another antenna will join the array in late May. This allows good tests of e.g. antenna performance at different elevations. The astroholography campaign is ongoing. A recent report on out of focus holography results concludes that, given the resolution of the astro-holography aperture maps, we can only do a qualitative comparison using the OOF aperture maps.
        • Instrumental phase stability can also be tested well on these shorter baselines. Preliminary indications are that the present performance is a little outside the specifications but not by much.
        • Total power instabilities were identified as fluttering in the membrane covering the cassegrain hole in the primary. This was addressed by putting a shim in to tilt the membrane, but only a limited tilt is possible given the geometry. An alternate material may be deployed in the future. See Membrane Reflections.
    2. Employment
      • JAO Commissioning Scientist positions: Offer made.
      • ESO:
      • NRAO: NAASC positions are still in process.
      • NAOJ
    3. Project personnel changes
      • NA: Chris Langley has assumed the EVLA Project Manager position previously held by Mark McKinnon. Ephraim Ford has taken Langley's position as leader of the Back End IPT.
    4. Astronomer Outreach: ALMA News. JAO ALMA Webpages. JAONewsletter No 5. NRAO eNews ESO Newsletter No 16 NAOJ News. NRAO ALMA Calendar
    5. Current SYSE- ALMA System Diagram Rev Q
    6. Current IPS attached
  2. Directories

Project Scientists

  1. CSV has begun. A number of groups have been formed to tackle the initial myriad tasks involved in commissioning.
    • Antenna, including Astronomical Holography, Out-off-focus beam maps, Moon and Sun Scans, Pointing issues, Pointing verification, and Antenna tracking
    • Calibration, including WVR testing and Amplitude calibration:
    • Front End Tunability
    • Observing Modes, including Standard Interferometry using OT (obsmodes) and Initial Polarization trials
    • Correlator mode verification
    • Photonics and BE including LLC initial testing and Phase stability
    • Antenna Stations including Baseline Measurements and Stability
    • Software Testing including Science Archive and SLT commissioning and Error and Alarm reporting
  2. ASAC Report, Board Meeting
    • The ASAC Report was reported to the Board by the Chair. A Response is pending. Jose Afonso has left the Committee; his work was much appreciated. Jesus Martin-Pintado will take his place.
  3. Change Requests. CREs 230-235, discussed previously, have been approved by the CCB.
    • 244 Change to Cross Polarization Isolation Specification for Band 6 Cartridges.
  4. Development. Regions are developing plans for the ALMA Development process.
  5. Operations Plan Version E. Status presented to Board. Will be sent to Board for November meeting.

Jeff Mangum -- Calibration

  • Roads on site have been built in a different plan from that reviewed and this has necessitated a revision of the planned location of the central weather station. See New Location of Meteorological Station.
A new ICD for Science and Site has been drafted.

Bojan Nikolic/John Richer -- WVRs

  • Nikolic has worked on an algorithm for cloud detection at the AOS.

Lars-Ake Nyman -- eSSR

  • NSF NAASC/ALMA Ops proposal review, occurring mid July in Chile.
  • Potential proposal reviewers solicited for the first call by May 30.
  • Integrated tests from proposal submission through SB submission, including Helpdesk and mock panel review, are occurring May/June. Second set of end-to-end testing in Aug/Sept: CfP? to archive
  • There is a possibility for NA astronomers outside the NAASC to participate in CSV in Chile.

Wootten, Mauersberger, Sawada -- Site Characterization

  • Specifications and requirements for an allsky IR cloud monitor are attached, from Rainer.

Remijan, Kent, Markwick -- Splatalogue

Science Corner (Todd Hunter):

arXiv:1005.1071: Herschel and SCUBA-2 imaging and spectroscopy of a bright, lensed submillimetre galaxy at z = 2.3 Authors: R. J. Ivison (UK ATC and IfA, Edinburgh), A. M. Swinbank, B. Swinyard, Ian Smail, C. P. Pearson, D. Rigopoulou, E. Polehampton, J.-P. Baluteau, M. J. Barlow, A. W. Blain, J. Bock, D. L. Clements, K. Coppin, A. Cooray, A. Danielson, E. Dwek, A. C. Edge, A. Franceschini, T. Fulton, J. Glenn, M. Griffin, K. Isaak, S. Leeks, T. Lim, D. Naylor, S. J. Oliver, M. J. Page, I. Perez-Fournon, M. Rowan-Robinson, G. Savini, D. Scott, L. Spencer, I. Valtchanov, L. Vigroux, G. S. Wright

"Our results show that SPIRE’s FTS has the ability to measure the redshifts of suitably bright and distant, obscured galaxies via detection of atomic cooling lines such as [C ii]. However, we estimate that >10-hr integrations will be required and this is not competitive with blind, ground-based CO-line searches..."


  1. Next meeting is on June 16th (14:30 UT). July 21st 2010 for the following month.

Events of Interest

(see also Al's ALMA Monthly/Biweekly Calendar)

May 17-19
Cometary Radio Astronomy
Green Bank, WV
May 19
May 20-21
NRAO Users Committee
May 24
Preparing for ALMA Session
Jun 8 - 15
12th Synthesis Imaging Workshop
Socorro, NM
Jun 16
Jul 13-18
NAASC Operations Review
uly 21
ALMA System Review III
Oct 7-8
CSV Status Update
Oct 11-12
SciOps Readiness Review
Oct 25-28
Annual ALMA External Review
Nov 10
Observatory Readiness Review
Nov 16-18
ALMA Board Meeting

Upcoming Meetings

Nix and Hydra Five Years after Discovery 11-12 May 2010, STScI. ALMA will secure their radii...

Cometary Radio Astronomy May 17 – 19, 2010 NRAO, Green Bank, West Virginia.

ALMA Special Session, AAS 216, Miami, Florida 24 May 2010

WORKSHOP: SCIENCE WITH ALMA BAND 5 (163 - 211 GHz), Osservatorio Astronomico di Roma, May 24 - 25, 2010

Scientific Opportunities for New Insstrumentation SOFIA Asilomar 2010 Workshop, June 6-8 Asilomar

Synthesis Imaging School, June 8-15, Socorro.

The Evolving Interstellar Medium: Recent Progress from Space IR/Submm 1 - 4 November 2010 Pasadena, CA Hosted by the NASA Herschel Science Center, Spitzer Science Center

ALMA-Herschel meeting November 17-19, ESO

15-17 Jan 2011 Workshop ALMA: Extending the Limits of Astrophysical Spectroscopy in Victoria

Recent Meetings (presentations online)

-- AlWootten - 2010-05-14

Topic attachments
I Attachment Action Size Date Who Comment
IPFschematic_2010April30.pdfpdf IPFschematic_2010April30.pdf manage 86 K 2010-05-17 - 20:13 AlWootten Integrated Project Schedule 2010 April 30
Membrane_Reflections.pdfpdf Membrane_Reflections.pdf manage 643 K 2010-05-18 - 22:55 RichardHills  
New_Location_of_Meteorological_Station.pdfpdf New_Location_of_Meteorological_Station.pdf manage 343 K 2010-05-18 - 21:18 RichardHills  
SYSE- SYSE- manage 2 MB 2010-05-17 - 20:09 AlWootten ALMA System Diagram Rev Q
Science_-_April_2010.pdfpdf Science_-_April_2010.pdf manage 13 K 2010-05-18 - 17:02 AlWootten April Science Report
Science_-_March_2010.pdfpdf Science_-_March_2010.pdf manage 12 K 2010-05-18 - 11:31 AlWootten March Report
Topic revision: r9 - 2010-08-02, ToddHunter
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