Acronyms and Definitions in common use within the LBT

Active Optics Works by "actively" adjusting the telescope's mirrors.
Actuator A one or two axis pneumatic device for applying force to the back of the mirror.
Adaptive Optics Operates on a much shorter timescale to compensate for atmospheric effects, rather than for mirror or lens distortion.
ADOT Arizona Department of Transportation.
ADS ADS International is an engineering company working in the field of telescope and radiotelescope design as well as the design and production of innovative scientific instrumentation. Located near Lecco (Italy).
AGN Active Galactic Nucleus is a compact region at the center of a galaxy which has a much higher than normal luminosity over some or all of the electromagnetic spectrum (in the radio, infrared, optical, ultra-violet, X-ray and/or gamma ray wavebands).
AGW Acquisition, Guiding, and Wavefront sensing units (On Axis) - Recommend using "Wunit" instead of "AGW" to avoid confusion/typos
AGw Acquisition, Guiding, and Wavefront sensing units (Off Axis)
AIP Astrophysikalisches Institut Potsdam.
AOS Adaptive Optics Subsystem (part of the TCS).
AO Adaptive Optics.
API Application Program Interface - A source code interface that a computer system or program library provides in order to support requests for services to be made of it by a computer program.
Arbitrator A component of the TCS PSF or TCS PCS software that manages offloading between the optical elements or pointing during binocular operations.
Arcetri Osservatorio Astrofisico di Arcetri (Arcetri Observatory, Florence) - An astronomical observatory located in Arcetri in the outskirts of Florence, Italy.
Arcminute A unit of angular measurement, equal to one sixtieth (1/60) of one degree.
Arcsecond A subdivision of the arcminute is the arcsecond. There are 60 arcseconds in an arcminute.
Astrometric The scientific measurement of the positions and motions of celestial bodies.
AZ Azimuth - The horizontal component of a direction (compass direction), measured around the horizon, from the north toward the east (i.e., clockwise) in astronomy.
AzCam Arizona Camera (product of Mike Lesser)  
Bittware Bittware Research Systems. A company that provides Signal Processing Systems.
Breakaway What a hard point does when the force on it is too high.
C A general-purpose, procedural, imperative computer programming language.
C++ A general-purpose, high-level programming language with low-level facilities. It is a statically typed free-form multi-paradigm language, supporting procedural programming, data abstraction, object-oriented programming, generic programming and run time type identification.
CAAO Center for Astronomical Adaptive Optics.
CAN Category, Assembly, Number - The LBT document repository. It contains the on-line archive of technical drawings and engineering documents for the LBT.
CAN bus Controller Area Network - A broadcast, differential serial bus standard.
CFengine Configuration Engine - An autonomous agent and a middle to high level policy language and agent for building expert systems to administrate and configure large computer networks.
CM Configuration Management.
CommonSW The TCS SW Common Software.
Collimation Collimated light is light whose rays are parallel and thus has a plane wavefront.
Common Software See CommonSW.
CORBA Common Object Request Broker Architecture - A standard that enables software components written in multiple computer languages and running on multiple computers to work together.
CSQ Command Sequencer - A component of the TCS SW. The server for IIF commands.
DB Database.
DD Data Dictionary - A component of the TCS SW.
ddsconfig Binary version of the data dictionary.
DEC Declination - is one of the two coordinates of the equatorial coordinate system, the other being either right ascension or hour angle. Dec is comparable to latitude, projected onto the celestial sphere, and is measured in degrees north and south of the celestial equator.
Delta Tau A manufacture of high-performance machine control solutions.
Dichroic A dichroic filter or thin-film filter is a very accurate color filter used to selectively pass light of a small range of colors while reflecting other colors.
Dichroic Filter See Dichroic.
Diffraction Various phenomena associated with wave propagation, such as the bending, spreading and interference of waves passing by an object or aperture that disrupts the wave.
Diffraction Limit See Diffraction.
DL Diffraction Limited. See Diffraction.
DNS Domain Name System - It stores and associates many types of information with domain names; most importantly, it translates domain names (computer hostnames) to IP addresses. It also lists mail exchange servers accepting e-mail for each domain. In providing a worldwide keyword-based redirection service, DNS is an essential component of contemporary Internet use.
Doxygen A documentation generator for C++, C, Java, Objective-C, Python, IDL (Corba and Microsoft flavors) and to some extent PHP, C#, D and ActionScript.
DS9 Astronomical Data Visualization Application - A fully functional IRAF image display server.
DSP Digital Signal Processor - A specialized microprocessor designed specifically for digital signal processing, generally in real-time computing.
DX Dexter - The right side of the telescope.
Dynamic Balance As swing arms are moved into or out of the optical path, they change the moment of the telescope, placing it substantially out of balance. In order to keep the telescope balanced, the Dynamic Balance system compensates for these changes by redistributing weight around the telescope support structure. This is done by pumping fluid into or out of 6 different ballast tanks.
EA Enterprise Architect - a Unified Modeling Language (UML) modeling tool.
ECS Enclosure Subsystem - A component of the TCS SW.
ECSGUI The GUI for the ECS.
EL Elevation - The upward tilt of the telescope measured in degrees relative to the horizon required to aim the telescope. When aimed at the horizon, the elevation angle is zero. If it were tilted to a point directly overhead, the telescope would have an elevation of 90 degrees.
FPGA Field Programmable Gate Array - A semiconductor device containing programmable logic components and programmable interconnects.
FPIA Focal Plane Image Analysis - An IDL program for LBC collimation and focusing. (See WRS entry.)
FW Firmware.
FWHM Full width half max. A parameter commonly used to describe the width of a "bump" on a curve or function. It is given by the distance between points on the curve at which the function reaches half its maximum value.
GANTT GANTT Chart - A popular type of bar chart that illustrates a project schedule.
GCS Guiding Control Subsystem - A component of the TCS SW.
GCSGUI The GUI for the GCS.
General Standards General Standards Corporation develops and manufactures the highest-performance Analog I/O, Digital I/O and Serial I/O products based upon a variety of buses such as PMC, PCI, PC104Plus, VME, and cPCI. Our extensive product line includes I/ O boards, cables, and software drivers.
GLAO Ground Layer Adaptive Optics
GOES Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite.
GRB Gamma-ray Bursts. The most luminous events known in the universe since the Big Bang. They are flashes of gamma rays, coming from seemingly random places in the sky and at random times, that last from milliseconds to many minutes, and are often followed by "afterglow" emission at longer wavelengths (X-ray, UV, optical, IR, and radio).
gshmserver Global shared memory server - A component of the TCS SW.
GUI Graphical User Interface.
Git A free and open source distributed version control system designed to handle everything from small to very large projects with speed and efficiency.
GTO Guaranteed Time Observer/Observation - e.g. PEPSI GTO
Hammerhead DSP Hammerhead Data Signal Processor board. Hammerhead is a product line from the Bittware Research Systems.
Hardpoint A mechanical/pneumatic device for determining the position of the mirror.
HBS PLC Hydrostatic Bearing System Programmable Logic Controller.
HDF Heirarchical Data Format - A library and multi-object file format for the transfer of graphical and numerical data between computers.
Hexapod A parallel kinematics system. Hexapod structures provide rapid multi-axis motion.
HR Human Resources. The system used for administering transactions such as new employees, payroll, benefits, etc.
HTML Hypertext Markup Language - A means to describe the structure of text-based information in a document.
HTTP Hypertext Transfer Protocol - A method used to transfer or convey information on the World Wide Web.
HW Hardware.
ICE Internet Communications Engine - An object middleware system. A high-performance alternative to CORBA and SOAP.
IceGrid An ICE component - A sophisticated server activation and deployment tool for advanced grid computing.
Ice Storm An ICE component - A messaging service with support for federation. In contrast to most other messaging or event services, IceStorm supports typed events, meaning that broadcasting a message over a federation is as easy as invoking a method on an interface.
IDE Integrated Drive Electronics - A standard interface for connecting storage devices such as hard disks and CD-ROM drives inside personal computers.
IDL Interactive Data Language - A proprietary programming language used for data analysis, popular in certain science areas such as astronomy.
IIF Instrument Interface - A component of the TCS SW. The interface used by the instruments to communicate with the TCS.
Interference Interference is the addition (superposition) of two or more waves that results in a new wave pattern.
IRAF Image Reduction and Analysis Facility - A general-purpose software system for the reduction and analysis of astronomical data.
ISp Instrument Specialist
IssueTrak A tool used to report, track, and manage hardware and software problems developed by IssueTrak.
Jets See Relativistic Jets.
JIRA A Java EE web-based bug tracking, issue tracking, requirements management application.
JTAG Joint Test Action Group - The usual name used for the IEEE 1149.1 standard entitled Standard Test Access Port and Boundary-Scan Architecture for test access ports used for testing printed circuit boards using boundary scan.
LBC Large Binocular Camera - The Large Binocular Cameras (LBC) are two wide-field, high-throughput imaging cameras located at the Prime Focus stations of the Large Binocular Telescope.
LBCFPIA Large Binocular Camera
LBT672a The Arcetri development effort for unit 'a' (SX side of the telescope) of the LBT AO system with 672 actuators.
LBT672b The Arcetri development effort for unit 'b' (DX side of the telescope) of the LBT AO system with 672 actuators.
lbtmuNNN LBT mountain linux (UNIX) computing server unit # NNN.
LBT Large Binocular Telescope
LBTB LBT Beteiligungsgesellschaft - in Germany (Max Planck Institute for Astronomy in Heidelberg, Landessternwarte in Heidelberg, Astrophysical Institute Potsdam (AIP), Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics in Munich and Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn)
LBTI LBT Interferometer - A nulling and Fizeau interferometry instrument.
LBTO LBT Observatory
LDAP Lightweight Directory Access Protocol - An application protocol for querying and modifying directory services running over TCP/IP.
librrd A software library to access rrdtool archives.
LINC/NIRVANA LBT Interferometric Camera/Near-IR Visible Adaptive Interferometer for Astronomy.
Linux A Unix-like computer operating system family.
Linux kernel The central component of Linux computer operating system. Its responsibilities include managing the system's resources and the communication between hardware and software components.
LSS Logging Subsystem - A component of the TCS SW.
LUCIFER LBT NIR Spectroscopic Utility with Camera and Integral-Field unit for Extragalactic Research - A near-infrared multi-mode instrument.
LVDT Linear Variable Differential Transformer - A type of electrical transformer used for measuring linear displacement.
M1 Primary Mirror.
M2 Secondary Mirror.
M3 Tertiary Mirror.
Magic Position Position where mirror travel is approximately centered. It becomes the mirror coordinate system origin.
MAT Mount Auxiliary Telescope.
MATGUI The GUI for the MAT.
MCAO Multi-Conjugate Adaptive Optics.
MCS Mount Control Subsystem - A component of the TCS SW.
MCSGUI The GUI of the MCS.
MCSPU Mount Control System Processor Unit (hardware) - The computer system that controls and statuses the telescope mount.
MCSPU Mount Control Subsystem Processor Unit (software)- A component of the TCS SW that communicates with the MCSPU (hardware).
MGIO Mt Graham International Observatory.
MIB Management information base, a computing information repository used by SNMP.
Mirror Cell The container for the primary mirror. It consists of a steel shell and hardpoints and actuators for positioning and supporting the mirror.
MJD Modified Julian Date. Number of days (and days fractions) from 0h Nov 17, 1858, used throughout TCS logs and telemetry. Usually tied to atomic clocks. See JD on Wikipedia
MODS Multi-Object Double Spectrograph - A low- to medium-resolution Multi-Object Double CCD Spectrograph and Imager.
Mount The mount is the Azimuth and Elevation axes, bearings and their associated shaft encoders and drive hardware. The mount provides a rigid support structure for the main optical elements of the telescope, so they can be precisely pointed and made to track objects smoothly across the sky.
MPIA MPI für Astronomie (Heidelberg) - Max Planck Institute for Astronomy.
MPIR MPI für Radioastronomie (Bonn) - Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy.
MPIEP MPI für Extraterrestrische Physik (Munich) - Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics.
MR-LGS Multiple Rayleigh Laser Guide Star.
MS-LGS Multiple Sodium Laser Guide Star.
Mtn. Mt. Graham or Telescope.
MySQL My Standard Query Language (SQL) - A multithreaded, multi-user SQL database management system (DBMS).
Na Sodium. As in a Sodium Laser Guide Star.
netconfig The executable program used to start the TCS SW network servers, and once the servers are started, to start TCS subsystems.
NFS Network File System - A network file system protocol allowing a user on a client computer to access files over a network as easily as if the network devices were attached to its local disks.
NGS Natural Guide Star.
NIR Near InfraRed.
NMON Network Monitor - A component of the TCS SW.
OPE Optical Element.
OSA Observing Support Associate (including Telescope Operator duties)
OSS Optical Subsystem - A component of the TCS SW.
OSSGUI The GUI for the OSS.
OSU Ohio State University
OTA Optical Tube Assembly or Optical Telescope Alignment.
Overhead Display A component of the TCS SW.
OVMS Optical Path Difference and Vibration Monitoring System
OVMS+TT In development, same but feeds forward to the AO system
Panic What happens when VxWorks determines that a seriously bad or unsafe condition exists with the mirror.
PCI Peripheral Component Interconnect, or PCI Standard. A computer bus for attaching peripheral devices to a computer motherboard.
PCS Pointing Control Subsystem - A component of the TCS SW.
PCSGUI The GUI of the PCS.
PEPSI Potsdam Echelle Polarimetric and Spectrographic Instrument - A high-resolution echelle spectrograph with two polarimeters.
Perl A dynamic programming language.
PHP Hypertext Preprocessor - A reflective programming language originally designed for producing dynamic web pages.
PLC Programmable Logic Controller - An electronic device used for automation of industrial processes, such as control of machinery on factory assembly lines.
PM Program Manager
PM Preventive Maintenance
PMC Primary Mirror Cell - A component of the TCS SW.
PMCGUI The GUI for the PMC.
Point Source A point source is a single identifiable localized source of something. A point source has negligible extent, distinguishing it from other source geometries. Sources are called point sources because in mathematical modeling, these sources can usually be approximated as a mathematical point to simplify analysis.
Polynomials Third order polynomials used to control the slewing, tracking, and pointing of the mount.
Impulse response. The output of a system when presented with a very brief signal, an impulse.
Point Spread Function The point spread function (PSF) describes the response of an imaging system to a point source or point object. Another commonly used term for the PSF is a system's impulse response.
PSF Point Spread Function.
PSF Point Spread Function Subsystem. A component of the TCS SW.
PSFGUI The GUI for the PSF.
Python A high-level programming language.
Qt A cross platform graphical widget toolkit for the development of GUI computer programs.
Qt toolkit See Qt.
RAID Redundant Array of Inexpensive (or Independent) Drives (or Disks)) - An umbrella term for data storage schemes that divide and/or replicate data among multiple hard drives.
Relativistic Jets Extremely powerful jets of plasma which emerge from the centers of some active galaxies, notably radio galaxies and quasars.
ROE Read Out Electronics - Luci detector readout system, which connects via fiber optic cables to interface cards in the Luci control computers.
Rotator A rotator counteracts the slow rotation of the image in the telescope's focal plane which occurs as an AZ/EL telescope tracks an object across the sky. Any instrument that is sensitive to image rotation must be mounted to an instrument rotator so that the instrument can be precisely rotated as part of the tacking process to make the image remain motionless on the instrument's detector.
RPC Remote Procedure Call - a technology that allows a computer program to cause a subroutine or procedure to execute in another address space (commonly on another computer on a shared network) without the programmer explicitly coding the details for this remote interaction.
RPM RPM Package Manager (originally Red Hat Package Manager, abbreviated RPM) is a package management system.
rrdtool round-robin database - A tool designed to handle time-series data like network bandwidth, temperatures, CPU load etc.
Rtracker Rotator Tracker - Software used in the MCSPU TCS SW.
slalib Positional Astronomy Library - Software library used with the TCS pointing kernel.
SA System Administration (computer systems)
SAN Storage Area Network - An architecture to attach remote computer storage devices such as disk array controllers, tape libraries and CD arrays to servers in such a way that to the operating system the devices appear as locally attached devices.
SCSI Small Computer System Interface - A set of standards for physically connecting and transferring data between computers and peripheral devices.
Sexagesimal A numeral system with sixty as the base.
Shared Memory A component of the TCS SW. The physical incarnation of the DD.
Signal-to-Noise See S/N.
Signal-to-Noise ratio See S/N.
S-LGS Sodium Laser Guide Star.
S/N Signal-to-Noise ratio. The ratio of a signal power to the noise power corrupting the signal. Or, the level of a desired signal to the level of background noise. The higher the ratio, the less obtrusive the background noise.
SN Supernova. A stellar explosion that creates an extremely luminous object that is initially made of plasma (an ionized form of matter.)
SNMP Simple Network Management Protocol - It forms part of the internet protocol suite as defined by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF). SNMP is used by network management systems to monitor network-attached devices for conditions that warrant administrative attention.
SO Service Observer (in charge of the observing on the instrument side during Service Observing)
SOAP Simple Object Access Protocol or Service Oriented Architecture Protocol, a protocol for exchanging XML-based messages over computer networks, normally using HTTP.
SPLC Siemens Programmable Logic Controller.
SQL Standard Query Language.
Squirrel Permit A USFS permit that allows the permit bearer to travel through the endangered species habitat area, adhering to the designated area, that surrounds the LBT on Mt. Graham.
SR-LGS Single Rayleigh Laser Guide Star
SSH Secure Shell - A set of standards and an associated network protocol that allows establishing a secure channel between a local and a remote computer.
Strehl Strehl ratio.  
Strehl ratio The ratio of the observed peak intensity at the detection plane of a telescope or other imaging system from a point source compared to the theoretical maximum peak intensity of a perfect imaging system working at the diffraction limit.
Subversion Subversion (software) - A version control computer software package. Also see: git
SW Software.
Swing Arm A swing arm supports a secondary optical element of the telescope and is used to move it precisely into position on the optical axis of the primary mirror, or completely out of the primary's light path. Having multiple swing arms, each one supporting different optical elements, allows reconfiguring the optical design of the telescope in an automated way and on a short timescale.
SX Sinister - The left side of the telescope.
syslog A standard for forwarding log messages in an IP network.
TAI International Atomic Time (TAI, from the French name Temps Atomique International) is a high-precision atomic time standard that tracks proper time on Earth's geoid.
TCP/IP Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol.
TCS Telescope Control System - The software that provides high level control and status of the telescope and enclosure hardware.
tcspk The proprietary telescope pointing kernel. A component of the TCS PCS SW.
tpk The pointing kernel package. A component of the TCS PCS SW.
TPOINT An interactive modeling tool. TPOINT provides analyses of pointing observations to discover and measure misalignments and flexures.
TEL Telemetry - A component of the TCS SW.
TO Telescope Operator.
TO Station TO operators console consisting of keyboard, mouse, monitor with GUIs for control and status of the telescope.
TO Station Tucson A SW testbed used for testing and debugging the TCS SW.
TPLC Telescope Programmable Logic Controller.
TrollTech Developers of Qt and other software development platforms and frameworks.
Tucson Test Cluster A test environment for exercising the TCS SW.
Tucson TO Station See Tucson Test Cluster.
UDP User Datagram Protocol - One of the core protocols of the Internet protocol suite. Using UDP, programs on networked computers can send short messages sometimes known as datagrams (using Datagram Sockets) to one another.
UMAC Universal Motion and Automation Controller.
UML Unified Modeling Language - An object modeling and specification language used in software engineering.
UPS Uninterruptible Power Supply - A device which maintains a continuous supply of electric power to connected equipment by supplying power from a separate source when utility power is not available.
USB Universal Serial Bus - A serial bus standard to interface devices.
USFS United States Forest Service.
UTC Coordinated Universal Time - A high-precision atomic time standard.
VDC Volts DC Automation, Inc. A contractor to the LBT.
VHDL Very-High-Speed Integrated Circuit (VHSIC) Hardware Description Language - A design-entry language for field-programmable gate arrays and application-specific integrated circuits in electronic design automation of digital circuits.
Virtual Telescope A software design that hides the imperfections of the real telescope as far as possible from the user by a layer of software. A component of the TCS PCS SW.
VME See VMEbus.
VMEbus A computer bus standard, originally developed for the Motorola 68000 line of CPUs. Physically based on the Eurocard sizes, mechanicals and connectors, but uses its own signaling system, which Eurocard does not define.
VxWorks A Unix-like real-time operating system.
WBS Work Breakdown Structure - A fundamental project management technique for defining and organizing the total scope of a project, using a hierarchical tree structure.
WPC Work Project Coordination
WRS Wavefront Reconstruction Software - An IDL program for LBC collimation and focusing (often integrated into FPIA).
Wunit AO Wavefront sensor unit
WX Weather Station.
XML Extensible Markup Language - A general-purpose markup language.
XSD XML Schema Definition.
YAG Yttrium aluminum garnet (YAG, Y3Al5O12) is a synthetic crystalline material of the garnet group. YAG is commonly used as a host material in various solid-state lasers.
Yb Ytterbium. A doping material (as Yb3+) for high power and wavelength-tunable solid state lasers. Yb lasers commonly radiate in the 1.06-1.12um band. A chemical element in the periodic table that has the symbol Yb and atomic number 70. A soft silvery metallic element, ytterbium is a rare earth of the lanthanide series and is found in the minerals gadolinite, monazite, and xenotime.
Ytterbium See Yb.
YUM Yellow dog Updater, Modified - A free software/open source command line package management utility for RPM-compatible Linux operating systems.
Zernike coefficients Coefficients of polynomials describing optical distortions.
Topic revision: r8 - 03 Aug 2023, DavidThompson
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