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product names
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Data product names

The names of all calibration pipeline products follow a certain naming convention. This is done to have human-readable rather than technical file names. The naming scheme has been chosen to have the type of product, its date of creation, and its pipeline-relevant setup values recognizable in the product name.

The general format of user-oriented product file names is the same for all VLT/VLTI instruments.

On the archive interface, the master calibrations can be associated to science files and downloaded. Then they carry technical filenames (the archive filename ARCFILE). In order to rename them to the original filenames, search for the fits header key ORIGFILE. The naming scheme of ORIGFILE is described here.

Instrument code

All product names start with two letters which are specific for the instrument. For instance: UVES product names start with 'UV', VISIR names with 'VR'.

Product category

The full value of the product category is coded in the FITS header key HIERARCH.ESO.PRO.CATG. A short form of this tag is encoded in four characters being unique per instrument:

1st letter M or P calibration product
G general (static) calibration product
2nd to 4th letter ... type of product

Calibration products come in two flavours: dynamic ones (being updated regularly, short validity), and static ones (never or rarely updated). The static ones are also called 'general' because they often are not derived from raw data (like e.g. a line catalogue).

Both product types are stored in the archive and are available for download through the calSelector service. All VISIR pipeline product names start with "VR_".

Dynamic calibrations. The following types of dynamic calibration products of VISIR exist:

Code type of file PRO_CATG
MSIC imaging standard star IMG_PHOT_COMBINED
MSST spectro-photometric standard SPC_PHOT_TAB

Static calibrations. These are the codes for the static calibrations:

Code type of file PRO_CATG
GICT catalogue of imaging standard stars IMG_STD_CATALOG
GSCT catalogue of spectroscopic standard stars SPEC_STD_CATALOG
GSQE quantum efficiency SPEC_CAL_QEFF

The remaining part of the names follow the same convention as for the dynamic products (see below).

Date of origin, version

The date of origin is identical to the date of the raw data measurement. It is coded like, e.g., 191015 for Oct 15, 2019.

The version of a file is indicated by capital letters, starting with A. Versioning is supported when reasonable, otherwise it is always A.

Instrument parameters

The instrument parameters characterizing a setup are included in the product name. Pipeline products for VISIR imaging have the following scheme:


where <PIXSCALE> denotes the pixel scale in arcseconds and <FILTER> the name of the used filter.

Products for low-resolution spectroscopy have the naming scheme


whereas products for high-resolution spectroscopy have


<RES> is the name of the resolution mode (LRP or HRS), <WLEN> is the central wavlength, and <FILTER> is the used filter.

Static calibration products contain some self-explanatory character string.

File name extension

All product files have extension .fits. They have either image format or binary table format.


VR_MSIC_180911A_px0.0453_fPAH1.fits: an imaging standard observed durng the night of 2018-09-11 with 0.0453 arcsec pixel scale and the N-band filter PAH1.

VR_MSST_180906B_LRP_fOPEN.fits: a low-resolution spectro-photometric standard observed during the night of 2018-09-06 without a filter ("OPEN"). It is the second measurement during that night, as denoted by the tag "B".

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