8 August 2016 Improving the pointing and tracking performance of the Keck telescopes
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Abstract
Pointing and tracking performance is one of the key metrics that characterize a telescope's overall efficiency. The pointing performance of the Keck telescopes, which use rotary friction encoders to provide position feedback to the control system, has been surpassed by newer large telescopes with more precise encoder systems. While poor tracking can be compensated with guiding, poor blind pointing performance can lead to loss of observing time. In this paper we present a history of the efforts to reduce the impact of poor pointing, as well as the improvements achieved after the installation of new tape encoders. We will discuss the calibration and testing methods and the tools for monitoring and maintaining the desired pointing performance. A comparative analysis of the pointing performance before and after the telescope control system upgrade will also be presented.
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Shui Hung Kwok, Shui Hung Kwok, Tomas Krasuski, Tomas Krasuski, Jim Lyke, Jim Lyke, Jeff Mader, Jeff Mader, Kevin McCann, Kevin McCann, Kevin Tsubota, Kevin Tsubota, } "Improving the pointing and tracking performance of the Keck telescopes", Proc. SPIE 9913, Software and Cyberinfrastructure for Astronomy IV, 991305 (8 August 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2231825; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2231825
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