MAPS Oct. 2023B Night 1: 0 for 5

What’s this, another MAPS run? Yup, the moon is almost full, and here we are again!

Unfortunately tonight we are 0 for 5 on AO engineering/commissioning productivity. Here are the 5 things:

  1. Can we safely open the dome? No, the humidity is so high that condensation could ruin all the sensitive equipment.
  2. Can we safely expose the ASM to the elements? No, the wind is too high, it could damage/contaminate the shell.
  3. Can we see stars? No, there are clouds. Lots of very thick clouds.
  4. Can we close the AO loop? No, the controller of our wavefront sensor camera detector failed.
  5. Can we get PSFs with our science camera? No, it took longer to remove the previous instrument so longer to install ours.

Well the best night to have instrument failures is when the weather is bad anyway. We’re working on a solution. And now it’s time for bed.

No way we were opening tonight.
[Image description: Photo of the observatory status screen showing humidity at 99%, winds at 40.1 mph, and a completely socked-in all-sky cam.]
Part of trouble-shooting the Little Joe controller involved racking out the computer and directly connecting it to the controller, to make sure it wasn’t the extenders. Manny discovered the problem when he started examining individual boards. [Image description: Manny adjusts the cables and connectors of a computer placed below the Top Box, with cables directly connecting it to the instrument.]

Blog rules:

There must be a post every night.

There must be a “Video of the Night.” Something interesting to share. A song is allowed.

Video of the Night: “How this midcentury modern house harnesses the sun”