======================================================== Reviewer 4

Grade: 7

Title: Design Study to extend the frequency coverage of Band 2 receiver cartridge components for Band 2+ (PI: Saini)

1. Alignment with NA ALMA Partnership strategic goals;

Comment: This proposed study aims to extend the frequency coverage of Band 2 and involves a direct collaboration with an EA Partner.

2. Strength of the scientific case for the proposed ALMA upgrade concept; Comment on the relevance to the ‘ALMA 2030’ development documents.

Comment: This proposed study aims to extend the Band 2 Rx frequency coverage to 95 GHz, bridging the gap between the current Band 2 and Band 3. Along with some interesting ISM transitions, this also fills the gaps in the redshift coverage for redshifted CO transitions.

On the down side, the proposed improvement is incremental and addressing the issue leftover from the previous design study -- it should have been addressed in the earlier Band 2 design study. It seems this upgrade should be part on the Band 2 receiver system development -- is the Band 2 development still ongoing? The urgency of this project depends on the schedule for the deployment of Band 2 receivers.

3. Quality of the upgrade conceptual design;

Comment: A reasonable explanation is offered for why this shortcoming in the earlier Band 2 design is addressed only now. This team has a concrete plan for addressing the existing problem, and this study will optimize their solution for the best performance.

4. Readiness for production in the context of the ALMA Development Plan (the aim is to support a range of upgrades including both those which can be implemented rapidly and those requiring longer-term research and development);

Comment: very good

5. Strength of the consortium organization (if applicable);

Comment: very good

6. Qualifications of the key personnel of the Study;

Comment: very good

7. Technical expertise, past experience (also in series production, if relevant) and technical facilities in the Institutes taking part in the Study;

Comment: very good

8. Assessment of the level of risk inherent in the design;

Comment: anticipated risk seems minor and is addressed

9. Strength of the Scientific Team supporting the Study;

Comment: good

10. Level of support guaranteed by the Institutes;

Comment: good

11. Budgeted cost of the Study;

Comment: the budget includes indirect costs and seems somewhat high for the deliverables identified, but it seems realistic.

Reviewer 6 Grade: 6

Title Design Study to extend the frequency coverage of Band 2 receiver cartridge components for Band 2+ by Kamaljeet Saini

Summary: proposed study would extend the upper frequency range of a Band 2 prototype from 90 to 95 GHz. The cost of the proposed study would be to re-optimize, fabricate, test and iterate the existing Band 2 optics components to cover 67-91 and 75-95 GHz range. It leverages work done on a cycle 2 Band 2 prototype construction project. Alignment with NA ALMA Partnership strategic goals.

This proposed study would investigate a hardware technology to improve and extend scientific capabilities.

Strength of the scientific case for the proposed ALMA upgrade concept. Comment on the relevance to the ‘ALMA 2030’ development documents.

The science case listed is a generic plea for “more frequency”, which translates also into a slightly higher range of redshifts. It is somewhat incremental. Quality of the upgrade conceptual design

The proposal says that the design will re-optimize, fabricate, test, and iterate the existing Band 2 optics components to cover 67-91 and 75-95 GHZ. But then there is a comment that the horns and lens designs and OMT designs have already been re-optimized to improve the optics performance “well beyond 90 GHz”. It is not clear what the explicit request is for here. There is a lot of detail about what has already been done, which makes it hard to separate what additionally would need to be done under the auspices of this study.

Readiness for production in the context of the ALMA Development Plan (the aim is to support a range of upgrades including both those which can be implemented rapidly and those requiring longer-term research and development).

Hard to evaluate; this may be a near term project which can leverage off work done already in a Cycle 2 project, with small incremental change to increase the frequency range. Proposal did not stress the timeliness of such an upgrade. Strength of the consortium organization (if applicable)

N/A Qualifications of the key personnel of the Study

Well-qualified.

Technical expertise, past experience (also in series production, if relevant) and technical facilities in the Institutes taking part in the Study.

Good technical expertise + past experience. Assessment of the level of risk inherent in the design

Seems small. Strength of the Scientific Team supporting the Study

Team is comprised mostly of engineers; the scientists involved seem well-qualified. Level of support guaranteed by the Institutes

Section 10.2 lists no in-kind contributions, yet the text mentions that there is in-kin design support for the horn and lens, and initial prototype fabrication from NAOJ. Budgeted cost of the Study On the high end for studies considered.

Reviewer 8

Grade: 7

Title 537 Design Study to Extend the Band 2 receiver cartridge components for Band 2+

1. Alignment with NA ALMA Partnership strategic goals;

The addition of Band 2 spectral coverage is "moderate to high" priority in the Pathways document and important advanced hardware, although the extension of the upper frequency from 90 to 95 GHz to Band 2+ proposed here does not seem essential since Band 3 already provides the basic observational capability.

2. Strength of the scientific case for the proposed ALMA upgrade concept; Comment on the relevance to the ‘ALMA 2030’ development documents.

The proposed upgrade from Band 2 to Band 2+ could gain some efficiency for a small subset of observations. However, this must be weighed against the fact that Band 3 already covers this proposed extension of Band 2 frequency coverage. The proposal does not quantify the potential improvements, either in observing time, or over using the existing Band 3.

3. Quality of the upgrade conceptual design;

This modest extension for re-optimized optics and a new low noise amplifier to broaden the Band 2 upper frequency range seems realistic and high quality.

4. Readiness for production in the context of the ALMA Development Plan (the aim is to support a range of upgrades including both those which can be implemented rapidly and those requiring longer-term research and development);

Once the Band 2(+) prototyping is complete (with reoptimzed optics and a new low noise amplifier), construction and deployment seems like it should be a "shovel ready" project for ALMA.

5. Strength of the consortium organization (if applicable);

6. Qualifications of the key personnel of the Study;

This team has already provided the previous Band 2 design and clearly has the requisite experience to enable the proposed extension in frequency coverage.

7. Technical expertise, past experience (also in series production, if relevant) and technical facilities in the Institutes taking part in the Study;

The NRAO (with NAOJ) has a long track record of providing ALMA receivers and provides all of the requisite infrastructure.

8. Assessment of the level of risk inherent in the design;

The only real identified risk is delay in obtaining components to test, and this seems low.

9. Strength of the Scientific Team supporting the Study;

The proposers are receiver experts.

10. Level of support guaranteed by the Institutes;

I'm sure NRAO will provide a high level of support.

11. Budgeted cost of the Study;

The cost is appropriate to support the equivalent of 1.25 FTE (spread over more than a dozen contributors at NRAO) to engineer the components.

Reviewer 12

Grade: 1.0

Title: 537 Design Study to extend the frequency coverage of Band 2 receiver cartridge components for Band 2+

1. Alignment with NA ALMA Partnership strategic goals

Aligned and collaboration with NAOJ.

2. Strength of the scientific case for the proposed ALMA upgrade concept Comment on the relevance to the ‘ALMA 2030’ development documents.

ALMA 2030 document summary states that completion of Band 2 is assumed.

3. Quality of the upgrade conceptual design

Proposal is a 1 year study to extend the bandwidth and improve existing performance. Timeline is thoroughly planned and is, perhaps, somewhat compressed. Good collaboration between NRAO, CRAL, and NAOJ. The cartridge design is mature and the risk level is appropriate. Possible improvements to each component are clearly described and so the design concept is structured well.

4. Readiness for production in the context of the ALMA Development Plan (the aim is to support a range of upgrades including both those which can be implemented rapidly and those requiring longer-term research and development)

Changes realized through the study could be implemented on a short time scale.

5. Strength of the consortium organization (if applicable)

Very strong partnering institutes.

6. Qualifications of the key personnel of the Study

Highly qualified.

7. Technical expertise, past experience (also in series production, if relevant) and technical facilities in the Institutes taking part in the Study

Very strong experience.

8. Assessment of the level of risk inherent in the design

Risk level is low (e.g., MMIC development has already been paid for, cartridge development is mature, test & measurement equipment is available).

9. Strength of the Scientific Team supporting the Study

Highly qualified.

10. Level of support guaranteed by the Institutes

This is not clear from the proposal.

11. Budgeted cost of the Study

No explanation of “indirect costs” is given. In-kind support by NAOJ adds to the value of the study.

-- AlWootten - 2017-08-02
Topic revision: r1 - 2017-08-02, AlWootten
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