LUCIFER Quick Reference Wiki Page

In the afternoon

  • Log into LBTO workstation using your partner account (INAF,LBTB,OSURC,AZ)
  • Start NXclient from the lucifer desktop icon, or in the menu Applications/Internet/NXClient/NXClient for Linux.
  • On the client login popup, log in as observer (get password from the ISA). This will get you to the Solaris desktop on the lucifer machine
  • Double-click the Start_Lucifer icon.
  • Re-arrange the panels to your liking. Do not exit out of the two xterms, just icon them
  • In the GEIRS (detector) initialization window, set observer to your partner ID, press enter in the box; press OK
  • Set the archive information with reasonable defaults, these are overwritten by script values
  • If not already correct in the ReadOutManager:
    • Set the SavePath to the current UT date and create it from the pop-up (not from a terminal)
    • Set the FileRoot to luci.20100410. (replace 20100410 with current UTDate, and don't forget final period)
    • Press Set New Values in the ReadOutManager
  • Data are saved on the lucifer computer in /data/luci/20100410 (replace with current UTDate)
    • A cron job copies data into the archive in /archive/ (mounted as /newdata on the LBTO workstations) once a minute.
    • You may see a log message complaining there is no data until an image is taken and saved safe to ignore).
  • Check that 'Wait for collimation' is on
  • Check that the Calibration unit it out of the beam
  • Open TCS GUIs as desired, but these must be run on the linux workstation, not the lucifer computer:
    • open xterm
    • type GCSGUI left & at the command line prompt for the guider GUI
    • type IIFGUI & for the IIF GUI (shows telescope state, coords, etc.)
    • Be careful with the TCS GUIs, they have control functions that can mess you up.
  • Supply the OSA the approximate coordinates of your intended first target. The OSA will:
    • Correct pointing near that location
    • Collimate the telescope
    • Inform you when you can commence your observations

Twilight Flats

  • For all filters:
    • Keep maximum counts below 15,000 if possible
    • Take high and low sets to difference
    • Aim for a minimum of 5 exposures at each level with Delta_ADU about 5000
  • Narrowband flats
    • Must be started up to 45 minutes before sunset
    • Are taken with the telescope parked at zenith
  • Broadband filters
    • Start around sunset
    • After sunset you can preset to a preferred field and dither
  • For K/Ks bands:
    • Monitor brightness in Br_gam + K/Ks before starting
    • Switch to K/Ks when Br_gam counts drop below 2000 ADU
  • For flats in the H, J, or z bands
    • K/Ks flats are usually completed before starting these

During the Night

  • Scripts are tested as: --test scriptname
  • Scripts are started as: scriptname
  • If a fits file does not show up in skycat, open with file->open.
  • The calibration unit is never moved by a script: move IN/OUT manually on the instrument control panel.
  • Please keep a night report, links on the PartnerObserving wiki page
  • Submit EoN, EoR reports from webforms on the Science Operations website
  • If images look odd or out of focus but GCS images look good, and all status panels are green, click initialize
  • In case of a temperature alarm, inform LBTO instrument support
  • Pressure 'alarms' are safely ignored, but check with ISA the first time it happens or if you're not sure.

Mask alignment

  • Run acquisition script - it should take a sky (if needed) and source image
  • Send mask to FPU
  • Take through-slit image once mask is in place
  • Display through-slit image on skycat, adjust stretch to see the reference slit
  • Press 'MOS ACQ' button in telescope GUI
    • Check use LMS file for Ref. Stars box, change camera as needed
    • Click Set Mask reference slit #3 button; pick third ref slit from upper right
  • Display source minus sky image on skycat, adjust stretch to see the sources
    • Click Set Alignment Stars button; follow directions to ID reference stars (use FC)
  • Click Calculate Transform
    • Check if offsets are reasonable and rms values are low (usually << 1 pixel)
    • Commit the offsets if acceptable
  • Repeat acq and pick object if you think this is needed. if rotation and offset were small, probably don't bother
  • Take source+slit image
    • Display, adjust stretch to see sources in alignment boxes (if any) or slits
  • Check alignment; apply any residual X/Y correction (manually) if needed
  • Stop alignment script on command line (carriage return to exit) and start science script

End of the Night

  • Run the script: ~/Scripts/EndOfNight.
    • This configures LUCI with the blind mask (NB3), both blind filters, N3.75 camera, and the mirror.
    • Watch the instrument move to make sure it completes.
  • Copy DoDarks.txt dark.txt, dark_int.txt and clean.txt from ~/Templatescripts/ to your script dir
  • Edit dark.txt and dark_int.txt to produce darks for all readout modes and DITs used that night (3-5 each or so)
  • Edit (comment in/out) DoDarks.txt, run it on the command line, and go to bed.
  • NOTE#1: Darks are better taken in the afternoon to reduce persistence effects
  • NOTE#2: Darks are stable over several nights; they do not need to be taken daily


You should know these, but ask your ISA for any passwords if needed.


  • If you are using HKspec or zJspec
    • Inform the OSA or Support Astronomer prior to sending the script
    • If the script fails, have the OSA or SA check that the grating order is correctly set.
  • If any subpanels on the Instrument Manager GUI turn red other than the MOS panel, click initialize
  • If the MOS subpanel turns red, or initialize fails, call the Support Astronomer
  • If a panel disappears, it can be restarted from the ~/bin directory ( start_*.sh )
    • For GEIRS, run then

-- DavidThompson - 09 Apr 2010
Topic revision: r11 - 06 May 2013, DavidThompson
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