Science Announcements

APEX LABOCA Data Handbook

Published: 19 Jul 2013

With wobbler on-off mode, the 870 micron Large Bolometer Camera (LABOCA) on APEX can obtain photometry of point sources with accurately known positions more efficiently than in the usual mapping mode. The data obtained with on-off mode can be reduced with the Bolometer Analysis (BoA) software. A new guide providing a step-by-step description of how to reduce and interpret photometry mode data (on-off observations), and assess the significance of point source detections, is now available.

Deadline for Period 92 Phase 2

Published: 19 Jul 2013

The Period 92 Phase 2 deadline for the Service Mode observations is Thursday, 8 August 2013 at 12:00 CET. The guidelines for the preparation and submission of the observing material are available here.

All P92 users preparing observations for instruments located on Paranal must use the latest version of P2PP (3.3.3) for compatibility reasons with the observation block validation scripts. This new version improves the stability of the software and brings a few new features, such as the ability of sorting and filtering observing runs in the main window.

Period 92 Telescope Time Allocation

Published: 19 Jul 2013

The 92nd Observing Programmes Committee met on 21–24 May 2013 and recommended six new Large Programmes (two at the ESO 3.6-metre telescope, one at NTT + VLT UT1, one on VLT UT3 and two at APEX). A total of 1092 (8-hour equivalent) nights of visitor and service mode observations on VLT, VISTA and VST, the 3.6-metre, NTT and APEX have been allocated.

Call for VIMOS Public Spectroscopic Surveys

Published: 19 Jul 2013

A call for letters of intent for VIMOS Public Spectroscopic Surveys has been issued. A public spectroscopic survey constitutes a commitment to a massive observing programme with up to 300 (visitor mode) nights devoted to answering a major scientific question. Fully reduced data must be made publicly available within a defined time period.

Annual Report 2012

Published: 28 Jun 2013

The ESO Annual Report for 2012 has been approved by the ESO Council and issued. The report carries news of research highlights and technical developments, summaries of the work of all the ESO Departments, digests of Committee meetings, and much more. The Annual Report is available in PDF from here.

Future VLT Instruments: ERIS

Published: 28 Jun 2013

ERIS, the Enhanced Resolution Imager and Spectrograph, is a 1-5 µm instrument for the Cassegrain focus of UT4 at the VLT. It will benefit from the Adaptive Optics Facility (AOF), including the deformable secondary mirror (DSM).

ALMA Early Science Cycles 1 and 2 Timelines

Published: 28 Jun 2013

Cycle 1 Early Science observing resumed at nominal priority in June 2013 after development work on the array and infrastructure. To ensure sufficient time to complete many Cycle 1 high priority programmes, Cycle 1 has been extended until the end of May 2014 and Cycle 1 DDT proposals will be accepted until that date.

Decommissioning of ISAAC

Published: 28 Jun 2013

In order to provide sufficient time for the preparation of the arrival of SPHERE at UT3, the activities to decommission ISAAC  will start on 10 December 2013. As of that date the instrument will no longer be available for science operations.

Start of MUSE Installation and Dismounting of NACO from UT4

Published: 28 Jun 2013

On account of the activities related to the installation of MUSE, NACO will be dismounted from the Nasmyth platform of UT4 and unavailable from 2 September 2013.  At the time of releasing the Call for Proposals the exact timeline of MUSE arrival was not finalised and it was anticipated that NACO would be removed during Period 92. The MUSE Consortium and ESO Instrumentation have now confirmed that the installation and commissioning activities will start towards the end of January 2014. To allow the required modifications of the Nasmyth platform of UT4, NACO will be disconnected at the end of Period 91 and it will therefore be unavailable for the whole duration of Period 92. The instrument will be stored for future re-use.

Portugal Confirms Participation in E-ELT

Published: 23 May 2013

Portugal confirmed that it will join the list of participants in the European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT) programme. Thirteen ESO Member States have now confirmed their full participation in the project. More details.

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