VMMPS: The VIMOS Mask Preparation Software

What is VMMPS?

The VIMOS Mask Preparation Software (VMMPS) is a SkyCat plugin to specify the VIMOS instrumental setup for Multi-Object Spectroscopy (MOS) during Phase 2 Proposal Preparation. VMMPS creates and manages the instrumental setup by means of files containing the Aperture Definition in Pixels (ADP) of the MOS slitlets. The ADP files need to be loaded into the P2PP tool to become part of an Observation Block (OB). For further information, please refer to the VMMPS Tutorial in Chapter 6 of the VIMOS User Manual.

Warning concerning the HR_blue grism: with the HR_blue grism please only place slits in the lower portion of the CCD (y<1400pix) in order to ensure that at least 10 arc lines fall on the detector. Neglecting to do so will result in a significant degradation of the wavelength calibration and in the failure of the automatic pipeline.

Important Note concerning Releases

New for period 89: VMMPS has been updated to make optimal use of the field of view. The previous release (v3.24) remains valid for P89 but we recommend all users to upgrade for the preparation of their P89 MOS observation blocks.

The current public release of VMMPS is version 3.27 of the software (+ plug-in for Finding Charts).

This version of VMMPS is released as a tarball which also includes the appropriate SkyCat version (see below for download).

Supported Platforms

The latest version of the VIMOS Mask Preparation Software (VMMPS) is available for Scientific Linux 4.3 and has been used successfully on other Linux operating systems as well. Please note that it is currently not possible to run VMMPS on the MacOS X platform. If you do not have access to a PC or workstation running Linux, please contact the USD for assistance.

VMMPS Distribution

The VMMPS can be retrieved via anonymous FTP:

How to Use VMMPS

For information about the use of VMMPS, please refer to the chapter 6 of the VIMOS User's Manual.

Problem and Bug Reports

Please report all VMMPS problems and bugs to the ESO User Support Department  (USD). Here we list some documented problems, and describe how to avoid them. Unfortunately due to lack of resources these problems could not be fixed in version 3.27 of VMMPS. Therefore the mask preparation using VMMPS has to be done with care. Once the ADP files are created they cannot be modified.

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Problems with checksum in ADP files

  • When attaching the ADP file, created with VMMPS, to an OB in P2PP I get the message that the file is corrupt. What does it mean?
  • The ADP file created with VMMPS has empty CHECKSUM, which then creates error when I try to submit the OBs.

ADP files and FITS headers

  • The coordinates of MOS targets in the FITS headers make no sense. They are different from those in the VMMPS ADP files.

Instrument selector

This page is specific to VIMOS