The Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument (DESI) is under construction and will be used to measure the expansion history of the Universe using the Baryon Acoustic Oscillation (BAO) technique and the growth of structure using redshift-space distortions (RSD). The spectra of 30 million galaxies over 14000 sq deg will be measured over the course of the experiment. In order to provide spectroscopic targets for the DESI survey, we are carrying out a three-band (g,r,z ) imaging survey of the sky using the NOAO 4-m telescopes at Kitt Peak National Observatory (KPNO) and the Cerro Tololo Interamerican Observatory (CTIO). At KPNO, we will use an upgraded version of the Mayall 4m telescope prime focus camera, Mosaic3, to carry out a z-band survey of the Northern Galactic Cap at declinations δ≥+30 degrees. By equipping an existing Dewar with four 4kx4k fully depleted CCDs manufactured by the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), we increased the z-band throughput of the system by a factor of 1.6. These devices have the thickest active area fielded at a telescope. The Mosaic3 z-band survey will be complemented by g-band and r-band observations using the Bok telescope and 90 Prime imager on Kitt Peak. We describe the upgrade and performance of the Mosaic3 instrument and the scope of the northern survey.
This paper reports on progress and plans for all meta-components of the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) observatory control system (OCS). After an introduction to the scope of the OCS we discuss each meta- component in alphabetical order: application, engineering and facility database, maintenance, monitor, operator- remote, scheduler, sequencer, service abstraction layer and telemetry. We discuss these meta-components and their relationship with the overall control and operations strategy for the observatory. At the end of the paper, we review the timeline and planning for the delivery of these items.
Proc. SPIE. 9913, Software and Cyberinfrastructure for Astronomy IV
KEYWORDS: Observatories, Observatories, Telescopes, Astronomy, Cameras, Control systems, Data acquisition, Image filtering, Beam propagation method, Large Synoptic Survey Telescope, Process modeling, Process modeling
This paper reports on the early investigation of using the work flow model for observatory infrastructure software. We researched several work ow engines and identified 3 for further detailed, study: Bonita BPM, Activiti and Taverna. We discuss the business process model and how it relates to observatory operations and identify a path finder exercise to further evaluate the applicability of these paradigms.
Construction of the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope system involves several different organizations, a situation that poses many challenges at the time of the software integration of the components. To ensure commonality for the purposes of usability, maintainability, and robustness, the LSST software teams have agreed to the following for system software components: a summary state machine, a manner of managing settings, a flexible solution to specify controller/controllee relationships reliably as needed, and a paradigm for responding to and communicating alarms. This paper describes these agreed solutions and the factors that motivated these.
We describe the design, construction and measured performance of the Kitt Peak Ohio State Multi-Object Spectrograph
(KOSMOS) for the 4-m Mayall telescope and the Cerro Tololo Ohio State Multi-Object Spectrograph (COSMOS) for
the 4-m Blanco telescope. These nearly identical imaging spectrographs are modified versions of the OSMOS
instrument; they provide a pair of new, high-efficiency instruments to the NOAO user community. KOSMOS and
COSMOS may be used for imaging, long-slit, and multi-slit spectroscopy over a 100 square arcminute field of view with
a pixel scale of 0.29 arcseconds. Each contains two VPH grisms that provide R~2500 with a one arcsecond slit and their
wavelengths of peak diffraction efficiency are approximately 510nm and 750nm. Both may also be used with either a
thin, blue-optimized CCD from e2v or a thick, fully depleted, red-optimized CCD from LBNL. These instruments were
developed in response to the ReSTAR process. KOSMOS was commissioned in 2013B and COSMOS was
commissioned in 2014A.
As astronomical instruments have increased in complexity, cost and production time, sharing a major instrument
between telescopes has become an attractive alternative to duplication. This requires solving technical and logistical
problems of transportation, transferring operational support knowledge between on-site staffs, and developing effective
responses to in-service problems at a different site. The infrared camera NEWFIRM has been operated for two years on
the 4-m Mayall telescope of Kitt Peak National Observatory in Arizona. We have recently temporarily moved it to the 4-
m Blanco telescope of Cerro Tololo Interamerican Observatory in Chile for a limited period of operation. We describe
here our solutions to the challenges involved in relocating this major in-service cryogenic instrument, with an emphasis
on "lessons learned" to date.
A project is currently underway to upgrade the Kitt Peak National Observatory (KPNO) Mosaic-1 Imager, an 8192 x
8192 pixel CCD array used on the Mayall 4-meter and WIYN 0.9-meter telescopes. Mosaic-1 has been a heavily
subscribed instrument by the US astronomical community since it was commissioned more than a decade ago. In recent
years, however, the reliability and efficiency of Mosaic-1 has declined due to aging and failing components. In addition,
servicing has become more and more difficult as spare parts are used up, replacement parts become unavailable, and
technical expertise for the out-dated controller technology diminishes. The Mosaic-1 upgrade project addresses these
reliability and servicing concerns by replacing the CCDs with modern detectors and replacing the controllers with a
MONSOON image acquisition system. The upgrade will also enhance the scientific productivity of the instrument
through reduced read times, lower read noise, and improved quantum efficiency. We will describe the project status, the
technical requirements related to the installation of new CCD detectors and MONSOON controllers, the configuration of
the system, and integration of the system into the existing instrument and telescope environments.
The MONSOON Torrent image Acquisition system is being designed partially to reduce the complexity in
configuring a Detector controller system. This paper will discuss how we have achieved this goal by creating a system
of automation for the configuration task. We also discuss how the automated systems work to insure proper focal plane
operation in the face of potential network, communications and controller hardware failures during observing sessions.
The Torrent hardware design is discussed in section 2. In Sections 4 and 5 we discuss the automated processes used
to develop the description of the Torrent hardware used by the rest of the automation system. In Sections 6 through 8 we
discuss the semi automated system configuration/integration/design software. In Section 9 we present the automated
run-time configuration tools and discuss how it operates in the face of various failures. In Section 10 we discuss how
Torrent and the automated systems will achieve the goal of reducing observing down time in the face of hardware
The NEWFIRM Observation Control System (NOCS) was developed to support an IR mosaic camera. New
projects at NOAO include an OUV CCD mosaic imager upgrade and an OUV CCD (cloned) spectrograph to
be designed, developed and implemented on a relatively rapid timescale. Rather than re-invent the wheel, we
report on adapting the NOCS to support these new capabilities to the 4m instrumentation suite.
NEWFIRM is the wide-field infra-red mosaic camera just delivered and commissioned on the Mayall 4-m telescope
on Kitt Peak. As with other major instrumentation projects, the software was part of a design, development,
implementation and delivery strategy. In this paper, we describe the final implementation of the NEWFIRM
software from acquisition within a MONSOON controller environment, directed by the observation control system,
to the quick-look functionality at the telescope and final delivery of standardized data products via the pipeline.
NEWFIRM is, therefore, the culmination of several years of design and development effort on several fronts.
NEWFIRM, the widefield infrared camera for the NOAO 4-m telescopes, saw first light in February 2007 and is now in
service as a general user instrument. Previous papers have described it conceptually and presented design details. We
discuss experience gained from assembly, laboratory testing, and on-sky commissioning. We present final system
performance characteristics and summarize science use in its the first semester of general availability. NEWFIRM has
met its requirement to provide a high efficiency observing system, optimized end-to-end for survey science.
The Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) project is a partnership between ACURA, AURA, Caltech, and the University of California. The design calls for a 3.6 m diameter secondary mirror and an elliptical tertiary mirror measuring more than 4 m along its major axis. Each mirror will weigh more than two metric tons and must be articulated to compensate for deformation of the telescope structure. The support and control of these "smaller optics" pose significant challenges for
the designers. We present conceptual designs for active and passive figure control and articulation of these optics.
The Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) project is a partnership between the Association of Canadian Universities for Research in Astronomy (ACURA), Associated Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA), Caltech and the University of California. The complexity of TMT and its diverse suite of instrumentation (many of which will be assisted by adaptive optics front-ends) necessitates the design and implementation of a highly-automated, well-tuned observatory software system. The fundamental system requirements are low operating costs and excellent reliability, both of which necessitate simplicity in software design. This paper will address how these requirements will be achieved as well as how the system will handle observing program execution.
The Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) project is a partnership between ACURA, AURA, Caltech, and the University of
California. The Telescope Control System (TCS) for TMT is comprised of many subsystems. The TCS Supervisory
Controller is responsible for pointing the telescope via an embedded pointing kernel, sequencing commands to the
telescope systems, responding to errors and alarms and interacting with the telescope safety system. This paper describes
the conceptual design for the Supervisory Controller and addresses the integration with the other TMT software systems.
The requirements are discussed in terms of producing a functional, usable, safe, reliable and maintainable system.
The Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) is a collaborative project between the California Institute of Technology (CIT), the University of California (UC), the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA) and the Association of Canadian Universities for Research in Astronomy (ACURA). Current activity is focused on the design and development phase (DDP) of all systems. For the TMT to achieve seeing and diffraction limited performance, the telescope-related software systems will have to work in concert to precisely control all 738 primary mirror (M1) segments along with the active secondary mirror (M2) and an articulated tertiary mirror (M3). In this paper we discuss the conceptual design of the software control systems for these surfaces and their integration into a cohesive whole.
The NEWFIRM program will provide a widefield IR imaging system optimized for survey programs on the NOAO 4-m telescopes in Arizona and Chile. The camera images a 28 x 28 arcminute field of view over 1-2.4 microns wavelength range with a 4K x 4K pixel array mosaic. We present an overview of camera design features including optics design, manufacture, and mounting; control of internal flexure between input and output focal planes; mosaic array mount design; and thermal design. We also discuss the status of other projects within the program: array control electronics, observation and pipeline reduction software, and production of the science grade array complement. The program is progressing satisfactorily and we expect to deliver the system to the northern 4-m telescope in 2005.
MONSOON is the next generation OUV-IR controller project being developed at NOAO. The design is flexible, emphasizing code re-use, maintainability and scalability as key factors. The software needs to support widely divergent detector systems ranging from
multi-chip mosaics (for LSST, QUOTA, ODI and NEWFIRM) down to large single or multi-detector laboratory development systems. In order for this flexibility to be effective and safe, the software must be able to configure itself to the requirements of the attached detector system at startup. The basic building block of all MONSOON systems is the PAN-DHE pair which make up a single data acquisition node. In this paper we discuss the software solutions used in the automatic PAN configuration system.
MONSOON is the next generation OUV-IR controller development project being conducted at NOAO. MONSOON was designed from the start as an "architecture" that provides the flexibility to handle multiple detector types, rather than as a set of specific hardware to control a particular detector. The hardware design was done with maintainability and scalability as key factors. We have, wherever possible chosen commercial off-the-shelf components rather than use in-house or proprietary systems.
From first principles, the software design had to be configurable in order to handle many detector types and focal plane configurations. The MONSOON software is multi-layered with simulation of the hardware built in. By keeping the details of hardware interfaces confined to only two libraries and by strict conformance to a set of interface control documents the MONSOON software is usable with other hardware systems with minimal change. In addition, the design provides that focal plane specific details are confined to routines that are selected at load time.
At the top-level, the MONSOON Supervisor Level (MSL), we use the GPX dictionary, a defined interface to the software system that instruments and high-level software can use to control and query the system. Below this are PAN-DHE pairs that interface directly with portions of the focal plane. The number of PAN-DHE pairs can be scaled up to increase channel counts and processing speed or to handle larger focal planes. The range of detector applications supported goes from single detector LAB systems, four detector IR systems like NEWFIRM, up to 500 CCD focal planes like LSST. In this paper we discuss the design of the PAN software and it's interaction with the detector head electronics.
Instruments and telescopes being planned for the US community include a wide assortment of facilities. These will require a consistent interface. Existing controllers use a variety of interfaces that will make using multiple controller types difficult. A new architecture that takes maximum advantage of code and hardware re-use, maintainability and extensibility is being developed at NOAO. The MONSOON Image acquisition/Detector controller system makes maximum use of COTS hardware and Open-Source development and can support OUV and IR detectors, singly or in very large mosaics. A basic requirement of the project was the ability to seamlessly handle even massive focal planes like LSST and ODI.
Software plays a vital role in the flexibility of the MONSOON system. The authors have built on their experience with previous systems (E.g. GNAAC, wildfire, ALICE, SDSU etc.), to develop a command interface, based on a dictionary of commands that can be applied to any detector controller project. The Generic Pixel Server, or GPX, concept consists of a dictionary that not only supports the needs of projects that use MONSOON controllers, but the set of commands can be used as the interface to any detector controller with only modest additional effort. This generic command set (the GPX dictionary) is defined here as introduction to the GPX concept.
MONSOON is NOAO's diverse, future-proof, array controller project that holds the promise of a common hardware and software platform for the whole of US astronomy. As such it is an implementation of the Generic Pixel Server which is a new concept that serves OUV-IR pixel data. The fundamental element of the server is the GPX dictionary which is the only entry point into the system from instrumentation or observatory level software. In the MONSOON implementation, which uses mostly commercial off-the-shelf hardware and software components, the MONSOON supervisor layer (MSL) is the highest level layer and this communicates with multiple Pixel-Acquisition-Node / Detector-Head-Electronics (PAN-DHE) pairs to co-ordinate the acquisition of the celestial data. The MSL is the MONSOON implementation of the GPX and this paper discusses the design requirements and the techniques used to meet them.
Wide field-of-view, high-resolution near-infrared cameras on 4-m class telescopes have been identified by the astronomical community as critical instrumentation needs in the era of 8-m and larger telescopes. Acting as survey instruments, they will provide the input source discoveries for large-telescope follow-up observations. The NOAO Extremely Wide Field Infrared Mosaic (NEWFIRM) imaging instrument will serve this need within the US system of facilities. NEWFIRM is being designed for the National Optical Astronomy Observatory (NOAO) 4-m telescopes (Mayall at KPNO and Blanco at CTIO). NEWFIRM covers a 28 x 28 arcmin field of view over the 1-2.4 μm wavelength range with a 4k x 4k pixel detector mosaic assembled from 2k x 2k modules. Pixel scale is 0.4 arcsec/pixel. Data pipelining and archiving are integral elements of the instrument system. We present the science drivers for NEWFIRM, and describe its optical, mechanical, electronic, and software components. By the time this paper is presented, NEWFIRM will be in the preliminary design stage, with first light expected on the Mayall telescope in 2005.
The WIYN Tip-Tilt Module (WTTM) is an addition to the existing Instrument Adapter System (IAS) providing a high performance optical-NIR image stabilized port on the WIYN 3.5m telescope. The WTTM optical system uses a 3-mirror off-axis design along with a high bandwidth tilt mirror. The WTTM is a reimaging system with 15% magnification producing a 4x4 arcminute field of view and near diffraction limited imagery from 400-2000nm. The optics are diamond turned in electroless Nickel over an Aluminum substrate. The WTTM opto-mechanical assembly was designed and built using the principals of the "build-to-print" technique, where the entire system is fabricated and assembled to tolerance with no adjustments. A unique high performance error sensor, using an internal mirrorlette array that feeds 4 fiber coupled avalanche photodiode photon counters, provides the tilt signal. The system runs under the Real-Time Linux operating system providing a maximum closed loop rate of 3khz. In this paper we report on the successful lab testing, verification of the "build-to-print" technique and on telescope performance of the WTTM.
The WIYN Tip-Tilt Module is being developed to improve delivered image quality over a 4 X 4 arc-minute field across the B through H bands. This paper details the software implementation of the project under real time Linux and LabVIEW.
First light with the advanced cooled grating spectrometer (CGS4) was achieved at the United Kingdom Infrared Telescope on February 4, 1991 following successful delivery of the instrument from the Royal Observatory, Edinburgh. We discuss the performance of CGS4 and summarize our experience in maintaining optimum array sensitivity. CGS4 is unique in that both the data acquisition and reduction can be almost completely automated, and the key elements of the software and their impact on observing are described. We discuss how various aspects of CGS4 such as the reproducibility of flat fields relate to the ability to provide users with flat-fielded, sky-subtracted spectra almost in real-time. We also discuss the problems of the variability of OH line emission and atmospheric transmission and describe the sky subtraction techniques which we have been using both at the telescope and in post observing analysis.