ESO-Enews #8: February 2008
In this issue:
- CALL FOR PROPOSALS FOR P82
- FIRST CALL FOR ESO/GTC PROPOSALS
- THE ESO USER PORTAL
- UVES REDUCED DATA NOW AVAILABLE ONLINE
- ESO USERS COMMITTEE QUESTIONNAIRE
The Call for Proposals for observations at the ESO telescopes during Period 82 (1 October 2008 - 31 March 2009) has been released. In this Period, a new instrument, SHFI, on APEX, is offered for the first time; APEX-2A has been retired. On La Silla, only Visitor Mode is supported as of Period 82. The minimum run length of 3 nights will be strictly enforced: proposals including runs on La Silla telescopes with a duration of less than 3 nights will be rejected by the automatic proposal receiver. Large Programme proposals are encouraged on the 3.6-m telescope and the NTT, but are not accepted on the 2.2-m telescope. Also, Period 82 sees the introduction of a programme type, the Calibration Programmes, for which users may submit proposals that aim at complementing the existing coverage of the calibration of ESO instruments.
Deadline for proposal submission is 1 April 2008, 12:00 noon CEST.
The full Call for Proposals and the ESOFORM electronic submission package can be obtained at http://www.eso.org/observing/proposals/index.html
Users should note that, as of this period, they are required to log into the ESO User Portal (see below) in order to retrieve the ESOFORM package. Also, in order to avoid last-minute problems, users are strongly encouraged to fully verify their proposal well ahead of its actual submission, using a preliminary version including all necessary fixed-format technical information, but possibly incomplete or with non-final text (see ESOFORM manual for details). Early verification of the proposal is particularly recommended in Period 82, for familiarization with, and verification of the new process of submission via User Portal login.
Together with the regular ESO Call for Proposals, ESO invites users to submit proposals for observations at the Gran Telescopio Canarias (GTC) within the framework of the accession agreement of Spain into ESO. ESO/GTC proposals can be submitted for observations to be conducted over a period of up to 2 years, starting between 1 March 2009 and 31 August 2009. For this call, the offered instruments are CanariCam and OSIRIS.
Deadline for submission of ESO/GTC proposals is 21 April 2008, 12:00 noon CEST.
More information can be found in the ESO Call for Proposals, which can be obtained at http://www.eso.org/observing/proposals/index.html
The special version of the ESOFORM electronic submission package that must be used for ESO/GTC proposals can also be accessed through this URL.
The ESO User Portal was launched last November. Within this system, account information (username, password, contact information) for all science and observation-related web-based applications (e.g. routines for requesting data from the Archive) and standalone software (P2PP, the Phase 2 Proposal Preparation tool) is unified and user-controllable. The User Portal is intended to make the use of ESO web applications and other software simpler, and more manageable. More details can be found at http://www.eso.org/ESOUserPortal/docs/faq.html and new users can create their User Portal account at http://www.eso.org/UserPortal
Please note that each user is allowed to have only one User Portal account; multiple accounts should not be created by, or used for the same user. Failure to comply with this restriction may lead to rejection by ESO of the observing proposals of the offending proposer.
Processed data for the bulk of UVES Echelle data acquired since the beginning of its operations in the year 2000 are now available online from the ESO Archive. The 1D extracted spectra, together with processing logs and ancillary files, can be accessed through a dedicated interface at http://archive.eso.org/wdb/wdb/adp/ssa/form
More than 50,000 individual raw frames of point-like sources were processed at ESO with the latest version of the instrument pipeline (v3.2). This new pipeline implements an adaptive scheme to consistently and efficiently perform optimal spectral extraction over a wide range of signal-to-noise ratios, up to the maximum Poisson limit of several hundred dictated by pixel saturation. The latest version of the pipeline is available at http://www.eso.org/pipelines/
Only quality controlled master calibration frames were used for the processing and all science products have undergone a certification procedure. This approach results in a large data set processed in a homogeneous, controlled and well understood way. A comprehensive description of the processing, including its known limitations, can be found at http://www.eso.org/qc/reproUVES/processing.html
The archived data are compliant with Virtual Observatory (VO) standards, in that relevant metadata are captured and made available for searching and in that the data themselves can be accessed with VO-compliant applications though the Simple Spectral Access Protocol (SSAP). In addition, archive users can search by target name, object class, redshift or radial velocity as provided by SIMBAD/NED.
Every year the ESO Users Committee (UC) polls the community through an online questionnaire. This is a chance for ESO users to influence ESO's policies. This year's questionnaire is available at http://www.strw.leidenuniv.nl/eso
Please provide your input by mid-March so that the UC members can collect the results in time for the User meeting in April. Should you have any further questions, please contact your national representative. The current members of the Users Committee are listed at http://www.eso.org/public/about-eso/committees/uc