ASAC Telecon Notes: July 13 2005 C. Wilson, Scribe

Present: C. Wilson, Mundy, Turner, Carilli, Blain, Testi, van Dishoeck, Richer, Mardones, Yamamoto, Wootten, T. Wilson

Old Business

Minutes accepted for previous meeting.

Agenda accepted for present meeting.

New Business

1. Project news/updates AW

* Antenna procurement status

AW: Contract for North American share of ALMA antennas has been signed. The contract is for up to 32 antennas and the first antenna is expected to arrive in early 2007. More details are in General Dynamics Press release (link sent by AW by email). Press release says $169M and 25 antennas.

JR: So is cost per AN $169M/25?

AW: a large part of costs are the tooling costs. If another partner chose same vendor, tooling costs per partner would be cut in half. Thinks this would save significant amounts of money ($10M's). It may also be attractive to retrofit prototype ANs, but won't be discussed in detail until kickoff meeting in Dallas in late July.

TW: Discussed antenna situation at monthly management meeting at ESO yesterday. ESO Committee of Council meets Sept 16, ESO Council Sept 29; both meetings will discuss ALMA rebaselining and procurement. So the earliest ESO could go ahead with an antenna contract would be Sept 29.

* Rebaselining

AW: there are daily telecons to go over the IPT sheets to scrub them and improve the cost estimate. After this is finished they will have an excellent idea of the cost to complete ALMA; there will almost certainly be an over-run of 20-25%. The process in the U.S. is that M. Turner would present this to the National Science Board, then the external committee comes in and does the invasive review (held in Europe in the last two weeks of October). In the end, the NSB will be asked to come up with additional money to fund the cost to completion for ALMA.

JR: ESO will be asked to both sign the antenna contract and approve the cost to completion for ALMA in Sept. With the external review in Oct, might it not be attractive to ESO council to defer decision on the antenna contract again?

AW: that wouldn't be a good strategy for buying the largest number of antennas.

EvD: it's important that the cost estimates be presented to ESO Council in a way that looks very solid and with no surprises from the scientific point of view either. It would be dangerous to have a proposal in September that the scientists did not agree with. It's important that Beasley join the ASAC telecon in August to consult on how to present this.

JR: it would be useful to European members of the ASAC to have the material from the rebaselining before the ESO Council meeting, as it would help in lobbying individual council members. Also important that ALMA not go to ESO with a project that has been descoped scientifically.

EvD: ESO strategy working group (a group of Council members) will look at the issue of funding for ALMA versus funding for other projects in early Sept i.e. ESO strategy next 5-10 yrs. They will try to find a balance between the various projects; that's why we need to know at early stage what the overrun in ALMA is.

ACTION: LT to email and phone Tony Beasley about this issue and the general need for care and clarity in what is presented to ESO council.

Other items: Hans Rykaczewski has taken over as project manager in Europe. Jeff zivick has taken over as antenna lead for North America. Pierre Cox has rotated off the ASAC (replaced by Pepe Cernicharo).

ACTION: LT to send an email to Pierre Cox to thank him for all his work on the ASAC.

2. Board Communications

* New Charges

LT: We have not yet received revised charges from the Board. There are still four charges, #1 is the most important. Progress in the two subcommittees:

Charge 2: (Time Allocation etc) AB: has emailed a set of notes, but hasn't had comments back yet; focus should be on general principles/ideas rather than specific details

LT: last time we were a bit stuck on role,responsibility of ITAC; should have some discussion of that in the subcommittee first, and then discuss at next ASAC telecon

ACTION: AB and subcommittee to discuss ITAC responsibility in preparation for next ASAC telecon

Charge 3 (Demonstration Science) CW: no work done yet

LT: add EvD to subcommittee; she can provide comments, especially in light of the APEX work

Charge 4 (Science Specifications and Requirements) CW: this is also important; we should try to read it and discuss

ACTION: ASAC members to read Science Specifications and Requirements document (linked to July agenda) in next month; will discuss in one of next telecons if there are major issues.

* Organization of Meeting-- Date: 1-2 October 2005, Venue: Santiago, Chile

LT: Who do we invite? Beasley most important; maybe Laing for demonstration science; EvD - could also give an update on science verification; also maybe Dave Silva?

ACTION: LT to email Robert Laing and Dave Silva inviting them to ASAC F2F meeting DONE: both can attend

LT: logistics: email from Massimo's secretary asking about when we arrive, booking hotels, etc.

ACTION: LT to circulate email to ASAC on logistics DONE

ACTION: ASAC members to respond to Massimo's secretary directly with their schedules for attending the ASAC meeting in Santiago

3. Science IPT Report (Wilson, Wootten, Kawabe)

AW: have finished science specificationss and requirements document. Have a document on nutator specs, another on frequency switching specs.

Have just received new configurations document from Conway; excellent performance, some differences in very large array. It's hard to get the same response (especially sidelobes) with fewer antennas. Holdaway exploring these options. It is possible to add 11 additional pads to give excellent imaging for 64 AN as well. Within a few weeks will go to site and see if it's practical

Band 4 and Band 8 review went very well. Front end delta PDR in Garching last week; major item was window over receiver and Cassegrain hole currently Gortex; works well at 3 mmm but not so good in submm. Will work with antenna IPT to set requirements for window; current material has 18% attenuation at highest frequency.

System requirementss review will occur in CV in late July; just about everything in ALMA has been built/prototyped; will go through total error budget and see if will meet specs

TW: amplitude calibration work from semi-transparent vane, report is due soon. The current thinking is that with the non-linearity of receivers, dual load calibration is probably the best.

EvD: is anyone still working on simulations?

AW: ongoing topic, but Mark currently fully occupied with configuration stuff. Have massive star forming region and protoplanetary disk images that will use for future simulations.

4. Outreach

* ESAC Report

EvD: most discussion in ESAC has dealt with recent ESO council decision; have ESAC F2F on Sept 14; optimal in that should have received rebaselining report from Tony, but 2 weeks before Council; charges same as ASAC, but in addition want them to look at issue of two vs one type of AN in array; went back to ASAC report, very well written, think should stick with that; a few more people were going to look at things like polarization to see how that would be affected; difficult to quantify without knowing all details of ANs

EvD: on EU side, are still organizing workshops; one in October (link), line surveys will be spring/early summer 2006, most likely in Denmark

* ANASAC Report (Wootten)

AW: Crutcher elected as new chairman; wrote letter to NSF on AN contract issue for ANASAC; discussed charges at F2F meeting June 12 and will have some input to ASAC from their discussions

* Madrid Meeting -- (Testi, Carilli)

LT: received an email from PC saying plans to release first announcement of conference in mid-September; SOC will start discussing things this month

EvD: we should organize a poster on ALMA and astro-chemistry at IAU

5. AOB

- nothing

6. Next Meeting 2005-August-3 15:00 UT

-- AlWootten - 27 Jul 2005
Topic revision: r2 - 2005-08-02, AlWootten
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