MInutes in bold.

CASA/JIVE VLBI Coordination Meeting

Attendance: George, Ilse, Mark, Des, Neal, Justin

2021 Mar 31 @ 1400UTC (NB: DST start March 14 & 28 in USA & Netherlands, respectively)


  • Future Meeting dates (usually last Wed of the month):
    • 2021 Apr 28 @ 1400 UTC
    • 2021 May 26?

General Admin

  • General Status w.r.t. Coronavirus measures
    • NRAO/ALMA:
      • NRAO in North America continues work@home for foreseeable future. Infections rates leveling (increases in some places), vaccinations ramping up.
      • ALMA has started science observing "Initial + Basic Science Operations Phase"
      • Science/computing staff continuing work-at-home for now
  • CASA Release Schedule
    • CASA 5.8/6.2: Development finished. Validation nearly done. Branch imminent....
    • CASA 5.9/6.3: "Bug-fix" release ~June-ish?
    • CASA 6.2.1: ALMA-specific (PL) bug-fixes ~September
    • CASA 6.4: End of year?
    • Ilse: OSX support planning in the above release sequence? (Pending...)
  • Requirements collation: 2020 May 07 document / VLBA Costing/Prioritization (2020 May 21)
    • CASA 5.9/6.3 (and 6.2.1) Planning underway
    • Mark: After 5.8/6.2 branch/release, need to update with completed items (to appendix), and circulate/publicize
  • (Ryan) CNGI/ngCASA Status:
    • Demo 'release' of prototype package in early April, including basic imaging, flagging, and self-cal (George) functions
    • FYI: CNGI Development instructions
  • Admin issues
    • DIY casa5 tarball build instructions can be found here
    • casa6 build issues: formal instructions for plotms, CASAshell, casa5/6 co-exist, c++ unit tests in casa6.
  • Meetings/workshops of relevance
    • Ilse's URSI GASS (J11) abstract accepted (Rome, 28 Aug - 4 Sep)
    • Mark gave short talk at EAVN VLBI meeting (Thailand, building 40m dish that will also be used for VLBI), 2021 Mar 5; well-received
    • Virtual VLA (casa) Data Reduction Workshop (March 15 - April 1) Good lecture attendance, but tutorial sessions (NRAO cluster computing, but students' own data) were under-subscribed (as seems typical for virtual workshops)....
    • RCI seminars: (Current series wrapped up 19 Feb, but slides/video for many talks are available.)
  • VLBI Integration Branch: CAS-13295
  • Other admin?
    • (George) Should casa-staff email list be expanded to include external groups (and thus shower them with all manner of daily trivia)? Or should there be a distinct email exploder expressly for important announcements relevant to the broader CASA contribution community?
      • Is there a digest? (Yes)
      • Add Mark and Des only for now. (Pending...)
    • Question from Bjorn: "Is fringefit still 'experimental' in CASA 6.2?"
      • Mark: remove from accor now; remove from fringefit for 6.3)


  • CASA 5.8/6.2:
    • JIRA (VLBI) Status
      • Notables:
      • (George) CAS-12735: Frequency meta-info (includes generalized fix for CAS-12553, and several other bug tickets) DEFERRED to 6.3
      • (Des) CAS-12765 (wide-spaced spws): waiting for freq meta fix in CAS-12735
      • (Neal) CAS-13184: accor corrdepflags. DONE.
      • (Mark) CAS-8537: gain curve. DONE.
      • (Neal) CAS-12736 (revised accor test). DONE.
      • (Mark) CAS-12989 (eMerlin crosshands) Validation complete (Anita Richards). Need hard-to-get eMerlin dataset for proper verification test....
      • (Pam Harris) CAS-11318: Fringe-fitting solution plotting has been implemented in plotms! DONE.
      • (CAS-13056, CAS-13003, and possibly CAS-13005 to slip to next cycle)
  • CASA 5.9/6.3+6.4 prioritization underway
    • (Justin) Anything to report?
      • (George) Several of the more interesting VLBA-specific feature requests (resolved polarization calibrators, VLBA pulse-cal, VLA SysPower for Tsys, TEC) may indeed be hard to schedule this year.
      • (Mark) Likely to support pulse-cal effort with ingestion definition and mechanics based on recent similar work for Tsys, gaincurve. NB: required algorithmic development will likely borrow heavily from the existing fringefit implementation, including an ambiguity-resoloving step using a fringefit solve on a short scan
      • (George) Scan intent-setting likely a good project for Neal
  • Other maintenance/development JIRA
    • Nearly ready for validation/merge-to-master for 5.9/6.3 (waiting for 5.8/6.2 branching)
      • (Mark, CAS-13270) Handle NaNs in imported Tsys.
      • (Des, CAS-13224?) memory management improvements in fringefit. (already essentially validated by Janssen)
      • (Mark, CAS-8550) Pulsar-binned and single-IF import now not blocked by sys power support in exportuvfits; Need to coordinate casacore merge after 5.8/6.2 branching (pending CAS-11860?). Need to push the casacore uprev.
      • (Mark, CAS-13383) Mixed polarization basis conversion for EHT (via generic freq-dep fully-general Jones matrix (JJones), enabled within basic calibration framework, with caltable generated externally by cb.createcaltable
      • Need to push these to/thru verification, to be poised for validation and merge
    • Ongoing for 5.9/6.3+6.4
      • (George, CAS-12735; 12765,12553; 12954,10276) Frequency meta-info
      • (Mark, CAS-13287) AveragingTvi2 preavg opt-out for fringefit
      • (Mark, CAS-13266) Per-scan interpolation via overloading per-obs mechanism.
        • Traditional case nearly ready, but breaks a sim test; callib in progress....
      • (Des, CAS-13056) Overlapping solution intervals
        • Initial implementation awaiting review by George)
    • Underway for 5.9/6.3+6.4
      • (Des, CAS-13361) Polarization combination for fringefit. (deploy for fringefit 6.3, other things for 6.4?)
      • (Mark, CAS-13003). EOP update (6.4?).
        • NewEOP-CorrModel vs. NewEOP-OldEOP. Prefer latter, to avoid discrepancy with possible local subtle (unknown) choices at correlator.
        • Also Calc licensing/version (JIVE vs. VLBA) concerns...
        • Use python to call Calc fortran? What is current access to Calc in CASA (eg, importasdm), if any?
        • Ask Walter re disposition/future of Calc for VLBA? (New Petrov app?)
    • Other/Miscellaneous
      • CAS-12485: OTF weight munging for solve (Can we complete validation and deploy? Des seeking interested users at JIVE)
      • (George/Justin) to coordinate initial testing on CASR-463 (TEC) to better characterize basic requirements (also CAS-13040 re TEC retrieval changes)


  • (Mark/Des) Using external storage managers (DysCo) with CASA 6. (Offringa). Lossy(!) compression of visibility data as you fill it. Used by LOFAR. This storage manager is not in casacore (should be). Easy to build in CASA5, via a shared library. More difficult in CASA6 because no shared libraries. How to do add-ons like this in CASA 6?

  • Justin: end-to-end tests for every instrument. Need something for VLBA, and Justin et al. will provide. EVN? Maybe the Des' tutorial?

  • Des: CASA Memo for fringefit nearly done.

-- GeorgeMoellenbrock - 2021-03-31
Topic revision: r2 - 2021-03-31, GeorgeMoellenbrock
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