Long Range Plans

September 2012

NRAO Portal (my.nrao.edu) and the Dashboard

NRAO has a science web page (science.nrao.edu) and a portal (my.nrao.edu) which are basically separate web pages. In contrast, ALMA merges the portal with the science web content. The NRAO portal consists of a series of tabs. The first tab is the Dashboard with links to information and data. There are other tabs for observing preparation, data processing, and profile. For some users there is a tab for proposal review. There is also an admin tab for administrators, but administrative tasks exists across other tabs.

The Dashboard concept does not really seem to work in that people do not seem to use it. Also, the portal is PST centric (not surprising given its origin). At the very least it seems we should redesign the portal to be more general and less PST centric with observing schedules, data preparation, data processing, etc. on an equal footing. We might consider the ALMA model where the portal is merged with our science page with links with the associated tools (OPT, DSS, etc.).

Observing Sessions

Currently users have to enter detailed information about their observing that includes sources, resources, and sessions. Sessions group both sources and resources into specific observing periods . But the proposal review process does not require such detailed information. The TAC does require an estimate of how the proposed observing time will be distributed in LST and frequency (and in some cases by receiver). But this information does not have to be exact and approximate data are sufficient. At some point detailed information about the observing is required but this more sensibly should occur downstream, after a proposal has been accepted. Other session editing tools can be used to input the relevant info from the PST and allow users to create the necessary session information for the OPT and DSS. It would still be necessary to have a source and resource page.

Currently the technical justification is contained within the scientific justification document. It makes more sense to separate this information out into a separate page called Technical Justification. Here would be a brief discussion of the technical justification, including results from the sensitivity/exposure calculator. Also listed would be information about the observing breakdown for the TAC. For example, a table with the following information should be sufficient. This table could be exported to the PHT and we would need a modified version to put back into the PST.

LST Range Receiver Frequency Range Time ConstraintsSorted ascending
10:00:00 - 12:00:00 Q-and 42000 - 43000 MHz 22.0 hr Daytime only
17:00:00 - 19:00:00 Ka-band 30000 - 40000 MHz 12.5 hr None

Interaction with other Services

How do the various NRAO tools (PHT, GBSE, DSS, OPT, Metrics, etc.) interact with the PST? What information is duplicated or exchanged, and what are the protocols involved?

Documentation of the Database and Ancillary tools.

While the user interface is well documented there appears to be no documentation of the database or of the underlying structures and tools. For example, authorsByProposalId for metrics processing. A schema is necessary but not sufficient.

No Large Proposals for GMVA

After a GMVA telecon in April 2014, it was agreed that no Large (>/= 200 hrs) GMVA proposals should be allowed. Need to either disallow this on the General page when the proposal is GMVA, or just do validation on this.

-- DanaBalser - 2012-09-06
Topic revision: r4 - 2014-05-08, MarkClaussen
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