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News from the 30m Telescope

Astronomer on Duty

The pooled bolometer and heterodyne observing sessions during the winter 2001/2002 have significantly increased the observing efficiency of the 30-m telescope. It meant, however, also an increased load on our astronomy staff who had to organize and supervise the pool projects, perform some of the observations, and to assist in the case of technical problems. The plan is to offer the same observing mode during the winter period 2002/2003.

Unfortunately, the scheme of ``cooperants'' has been discontinued in France. As a consequence, we may run into manpower limitations because we always had one or two cooperants helping with the astronomer on duty services. By carefully planning the presence of astronomers on the mountain, and also by involving some of the operators, we hope to maintain the same level of support to visiting astronomers that we have been able to provide in the past.

If you plan to come to the telescope and have particular questions on observing strategy and data reduction or have special requests, or need an introduction to the telescope, please contact the AoD ( before you travel.


Monitoring of atmospheric opacity

In order to assess the atmospheric conditions, in particular during pooled and remote observations, a tau-meter was designed and built by the receiver group of IRAM Granada. It is installed on top of the control building. It consists of a 1.3 mm uncooled Schottky receiver which is continuously scanning in elevation toward a norther direction (in order to avoid the sun). Results obtained so far are consistent with bolometer and heterodyne calibrations from the 30-m telescope.

The display of the actual tau values is on a monitor near the control room. We are planning to display the results, the history and statistics of tau values on our web pages.


Calibration under Unix

Starting in June 2002, we will offer online data calibration under Unix (Linux). In the first release, we will automatically calibrate data of the following observing procedures: PSWITCH, FSWITCH, WSWITCH, RASTER, OTFMAP. Data from all backends (including 4MHz, excluding continuum) will be calibrated using the last CALIBRAT observation.

The calibrated data will be written into two files:

The data files can be read from the project accounts but not be modified. We will also provide the following utilities:

Details are described in the project documentation:


next up previous
Next: IRAM Program Committee Recommendations Up: IRAM Newsletter 52 (May 2002) Previous: Personnel Changes