NAS Fitcheck Day 8: CSI Las Campanas

A crime has been committed – and another may be in progress as I type. But we’ll get to that.

Today was less exciting than yesterday, but progress was made. MIKE, the instrument occupying the port we want to bolt to, was removed first thing this morning. After it was gone, we started getting the platform ready for our monster. It’s pretty motivating to be working on the actual telescope at long last.

Laird inspects the soon to be home of MagAO. We're about to find out if the drawings were right and if we thought of everything that needed to be thought of. I've observed that this makes the grown-ups worry a little.
The CCD cooling pump, our cable, and assorted team members enter the dome on the elevator.

Here's Emilio, just strolling along the edge of the primary. Emilio has been helping us get wired for diffraction limited data flow.

We also had a look at how our cable will work. It has to drape off the platform gracefully, and not snag as the telescope moves.

Testing how our cable drapes. Can't have it snag.
It will be hanging through a hole in the platform, not off the edge, but this shows us what the bend radius is.
The boys started cutting. This is where the cable will go.

Jason was leading the charge to get the ASM cooling system filled with Glycol.

Jason and Juan mixing glycol and water (a.k.a. making antifreeze) for the ASM cooling system.

Though it doesn’t make for good action shots, Glenn and Jared had a very successful round of software testing this afternoon. We’re ready to try our kung-fu out on the actual telescope. Keep your fingers crossed.

Tyson explaining his plan. With enthusiasm.
It's been a long run.

Now, we have some intrigue on this sleepy little mountain top. Tyson was the first person up to the ASB this morning, and much to his surprise the bananas in the kitchen were scattered about. He investigated, and found some damning evidence.

The scene of the crime.
How Tyson must have looked this morning upon realizing what had happened.
Exhibit A. Have you seen any gray-furred animals around the ASB and cleanroom lately?

If you don’t know the most likely culprit for this heinous crime, you haven’t been reading this blog. Tyson even caught a glimpse of the little guy trying to repeat his daring exploit tonight. My hypothesis is that our buddy watched us move out yesterday and decided nobody was coming back.

Here’s a shot of the Magellan telescopes from the lodge deck.

The Clay and Baade telescopes at sunset. That's the Babcock lodge in the foreground.

Days without a motherboard failure: 7