Left Direct Gregorian Technical Observing with IRTC: UT 2009 October 11

Observer: JHill (LBTO), DMiller (Tucson)
Telescope Operator: Aaron Ceranski
Instrument Support: TShih
SW support: (Tucson)


LBTO Family Picnic in the afternoon. Cloudy all night, so we were only open for 10 minutes. No chance to test the new transformation. We did take some dome flats for the guider camera. Doug made some preset tests with the dirtIgui.


All Times in UT

1:15 LBTO Family Picnic and clouds kept us from being in a hurry to test the preset.

1:56 pointo M5_0864 TelMode=ACTIVE gs=0 Success with no guide star found

Humdity: 26.5%, Temperature: 5.2C, Dew Point: -12.6C, Wind: 10 m/s, Mostly Cloudy

2:00 John moved the new /etc/oacontrol/oacontrol.conf.20091010 to oacontrol.conf according to Transform Results Email from Jesper. The oacontrol server and GCS were restarted (or attempted - see below).

2:20 Fairly clear around the telescope but could be a sucker hole. Aaron opened the ventilation doors

2:30 Rebooted lbtmu105 since we had problems with startAGW after restarting oacserver with a new configuration file. The error was this:
[agwuser@lbtmu105 ~]$ startAGW -u 4
localhost: RPC: Program not registered
startAGW: AGW4: RPC Communication Error.

Called Torsten (no answer), Called Norm, Called Jim Davis. Updated AGW4 IP addresses on the Wiki page. Rebooted lbtmu105 again with Jim.

04:08 Finally got both AGWs working again. I'm not sure exactly what happened. The answer seems to be that you have to wait more than 5 minutes after rebooting or restarting oacserver before the startAGW/stopAGW commands work. Then we had to use startAGW/stopAGW to cycle power on both units to get rid of this error:
[agwuser@lbtmu105 oacontrol]$ home -m 3 -u 4
call failed: RPC: Timed out
home: AGW4: RPC Communication Error.

At the end of the story, we are running Jesper's new transformation.

04:28 Doug sends another closed dome preset.

08:45 Doug sending closed dome presets from the IRC GUI.

Aaron reports that the sky has changed from "pea soup" to "barley corn soup".

Guider Bias Frames

09:00 John taking guider bias frames (1 millisec in dark dome) in /Repository/AGW_Data/091011guider/

Biases: guider00002-31

Guider Dome Flats

Telescope is tracking, probe is at x=-138 y=567

09:07 20 sec images for r' flats. guider00035-64

09:22 20 sec images for V flats. guider00065-79

More r' flats guider00081-94 (Doug is slewing telescope, so some illumination changes.)

09:39 30 sec images for B flats. guider00095-124


11:00 Open T=2.6 degC, D=-0.8 degC, Wind 10 m/sec, sky clear with clouds around the edges.

11:04 pointto ACT0210 gs=0 TelM="ACQUIRE" PAM- - Adjust IE=-10 CA=68

11:10 pointto StoneCagw gs=0 TelM="ACTIVE" PA=0 - seeing was around 1 arcsec.

dirtiGui Tests

The PresetTelescope and OffestPointing part of the gui works as advertised (ie works well)

The requirement of the format of the imported catalog is very stringent. You can have only one (1) space between fields. If you have two spaces, the dirtiGui assumes there is a blank field between the spaces (three spaces then two blank fields, etc). One, two, three, etc spaces together should be considered just one delimiter between fields.

The scripting part of the gui works OK, but is no better than (is the same as) running a shell script at a command prompt.

The IRTC part of the dirtiGui does not work properly.
  • Not all query of camera parameters work (irc GetIRParams, irc GetFilter fail and irc GetFOV succeeds) both at start up of the dirtiGui and when the "Refresh" (circular arrow button) is pressed.
  • Occasionally when a single image is requested, there is an ERROR (Could not read from socket). The next time a single image is requested, it succeeds.
  • If the directory to save images is changed (from /Repository), the next time a single image is requested, the dirtiGui dies and at the command prompt where the dirtiGui was started reports "St9bad_alloc".
  • Changing the IR Parameters on the dirtiGui are not passed to the IRTC gui when a single image is requested. There are sent when a sequence is requested
  • After a sequence of images is requested the image display part of the dirtiGui is messed up. The image is almost all 0's or saturated for any subsequent GetImage or GetSeqImage requests.

*Note* The usefulness of the dirtiGui to acquire IRTC images in not clear to me. However, the usefulness of the dirtiGui to send PresetTelescope, OffsetPointing, etc commands to the IIF is, I think, high.

I think the IRTC control part of the GUI could be removed from the main part of the gui, so only IIF command buttons are on the main (startup) gui. A button or drop-down menu could start an IRTC control Gui in a separate window.

I would suggest that there are no changes needed right now. We should revisit the overall usefulness the dirtiGui before we move forward with changes.


11:15 Close for rising humidity, a cap cloud, and rain sensor warning (we don't actually feel any rain).

Temperature Plot

Note the interesting feature on the attached temperature plot near 9:00 UT where two of the C-Ring air suddenly jump up by several degrees relative to everything else in the dome. Note that we did "hbsstart" around 8:45 UT in advance of doing a series of closed dome presets.

-- DougMiller - 29 Sep 2009
I Attachment Action Size Date Who Comment
Jespers_Email_Transform.pdfpdf Jespers_Email_Transform.pdf manage 28 K 11 Oct 2009 - 02:24 DougMiller Transform Results from Jesper
daq.20091011.gifgif daq.20091011.gif manage 38 K 12 Oct 2009 - 04:11 JohnHill Plot of telescope and mirror temperatures
Topic revision: r8 - 12 Oct 2009, DougMiller
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