GeminiFocus April 2019 - Page 20

Figure 2. The NGS2 test team, from left to right: Cristian Moreno, Mariah Birchard, Gaetano Sivo, Brian Chinn, François Rigaut, Ian Price, Ignacio Arriagada, Pedro Gigoux, Natalie Provost, Gianluca Lombardi, and Eduardo Marin. René Rutten is on the business end of the camera. Semester 2018B Outcomes Credit: René Rutten Figure 3. The NGS2 unit on the test bench in La Serena. The high-speed EM CCD camera is on the left- hand side. The orange lines are fibers to mimic multiple guide stars that are imaged onto the detector. 18 AO real-time control system. This results in much simpler acquisition procedures, and achieves much better sky coverage, since fainter stars will become accessible. In February a major milestone was achieved on this project. The system developed by ANU arrived in La Serena, Chile, where it was installed on a test bench and integrated with the AO real-time control system (Figures 2 and 3). The results have been excellent, prov- ing that the system will work as designed. Much work remains to be done. Integration of the new system, named “NGS2,” in the ex- isting multi-conjugate AO system will not be a trivial task. If all goes well, we expect to do this early in Semester 2019B. GeminiFocus We’re now in the thick of Semester 2019A and taking stock of the outcome of 18B. Preliminary completion results for pro- grams in the regular queue (in other words, excluding Targets of Opportunity and block-scheduled instrument modes) are shown in Figure 4 (following page). Band 1 programs at both sites fared rath- er well, three quarters of them reaching 100% completion. In the North, Band 3, which typically takes the more relaxed ob- serving conditions, fared relatively worse — another reflection of the fact that 18B was better than either of the preceding B semes- ters in Hawai‘i. In the South, the completion rate was better than it has been for many semesters, thanks to a healthy percentage of stable, good conditions despite the loss of five nights to a major earthquake in January 2019. Note that in 18B we took data on the last of the traditional “rollover” programs; from now on, regular queue Band 1 programs (except Target of Opportunities, Fast Turnaround, Director’s Discretionary, and Large and Long Programs) have one semester of “persis- tence,” and so some of those will continue to accumulate data as we continue into 2019A. April 2019