Instrument Announcements

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Altair unavailable

February 13th, 2020

The Gemini North Adaptive Optics system, Altair, is currently offline due to problems with its deformable mirror (DM) electronics. Issues with other mechanisms on the optical bench have been resolved, however, we are still working on finding the root cause of the DM electronics failure. We are making progress but still need to test a number of components. We will have more updates by the end of February. Please email your contact scientist if you have any questions or concerns about the potential impact on your program.

Charge smearing in GMOS-S CCD1 has re-appeared

January 10th, 2020

After the short thermal cycle on Dec 18, 2019 to replace the coldhead's displacer, the charge smearing in GMOS-S CCD1 has re-appeared as shown in the screenshot of the N&S dark from April 2019. Any programs using the N&S mode are affected and the programs set up with IFU-2 or IFU-R observations are possibly affected by this as well. PIs of those programs are contacted to assess the impact on their data quality and the programs are set on hold. A controlled thermal cycle is scheduled to resolve the issue at the end of January.

GSAOI web pages update

January 7th, 2020

The GSAOI web pages have been updated to reflect the recent changes introduced by the replacement of the guiding unit in Canopus. The new guiding unit called Natural Guide Star Next Generation Sensor (NGSNGS or NGS2) has been installed in July 2019. The on-sky characterization of NGS2 have been taken in place in October and December 2019. Results from commissioning show an improvement in sensitivity of about ~2.5 magnitudes, compared to the previous NGS guiding unit. In addition, there is a large improvement in acquisition and offsetting.

Announcements prior to 2020

January 1st, 2020

Update November 6th, 2019

F2 is back on sky, fully operational for imaging and long-slit spectroscopy with the OIWFS.

Update September 26th, 2019

Recovery of the cooling was unsuccessful and the cold-heads in F2 must be replaced. This means that the instrument will be unavailable for approximately 4 weeks.

Update September 12th, 2019

The F2 detector has been warming up and has reached the limit for operation. We are working to recover the cooling, but until this is fixed F2 is not available for observations.