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Daily Report #4521



 
 
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Old January 8th 08, 03:57 PM posted to sci.astro.hubble
Cooper, Joe
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Default Daily Report #4521

HUBBLE SPACE TELESCOPE - Continuing to collect World Class Science

DAILY REPORT***** # 4521

PERIOD COVERED: UT January 007, 2008 (DOY 007)

OBSERVATIONS SCHEDULED

WFPC2 11024

WFPC2 CYCLE 15 INTERNAL MONITOR

This calibration proposal is the Cycle 15 routine internal monitor for
WFPC2, to be run weekly to monitor the health of the cameras. A
variety of internal exposures are obtained in order to provide a
monitor of the integrity of the CCD camera electronics in both bays
{both gain 7 and gain 15 -- to test stability of gains and bias
levels}, a test for quantum efficiency in the CCDs, and a monitor for
possible buildup of contaminants on the CCD windows. These also
provide raw data for generating annual super-bias reference files for
the calibration pipeline.

FGS 11295

Trigonometric Calibration of the Distance Scale for Classical Novae

The distance scale for classical novae is important for understanding
the stellar physics of their thermonuclear runaways, their
contribution to Galactic nucleosynthesis, and their use as
extragalactic standard candles. Although it is known that there is a
relationship between their absolute magnitudes at maximum light and
their subsequent rates of decline--the well-known maximum-magnitude
rate-of-decline {MMRD} relation--it is difficult to set the zero-point
for the MMRD because of the very uncertain distances of Galactic
novae. We propose to measure precise trigonometric parallaxes for the
quiescent remnants of the four nearest classical novae. We will use
the Fine Guidance Sensors, which are proven to be capable of measuring
parallaxes with errors of ~0.2 mas, well below what is possible from
the ground.

NIC1/NIC2/NIC3 8794

NICMOS Post-SAA calibration - CR Persistence Part 5

A new procedure proposed to alleviate the CR-persistence problem of
NICMOS. Dark frames will be obtained immediately upon exiting the SAA
contour 23, and every time a NICMOS exposure is scheduled within 50
minutes of coming out of the SAA. The darks will be obtained in
parallel in all three NICMOS Cameras. The POST-SAA darks will be
non-standard reference files available to users with a USEAFTER
date/time mark. The keyword 'USEAFTER=date/time' will also be added to
the header of each POST-SAA DARK frame. The keyword must be populated
with the time, in addition to the date, because HST crosses the SAA ~8
times per day so each POST-SAA DARK will need to have the appropriate
time specified, for users to identify the ones they need. Both the raw
and processed images will be archived as POST-SAA DARKs. Generally we
expect that all NICMOS science/calibration observations started within
50 minutes of leaving an SAA will need such maps to remove the CR
persistence from the science images. Each observation will need its
own CRMAP, as different SAA passages leave different imprints on the
NICMOS detectors.

NIC2 11219

Active Galactic Nuclei in nearby galaxies: a new view of the origin of
the radio-loud radio-quiet dichotomy?

Using archival HST and Chandra observations of 34 nearby early-type
galaxies {drawn from a complete radio selected sample} we have found
evidence that the radio-loud/radio-quiet dichotomy is directly
connected to the structure of the inner regions of their host galaxies
in the following sense: [1] Radio-loud AGN are associated with
galaxies with shallow cores in their light profiles [2] Radio-quiet
AGN are only hosted by galaxies with steep cusps. Since the brightness
profile is determined by the galaxy's evolution, through its merger
history, our results suggest that the same process sets the AGN
flavour. This provides us with a novel tool to explore the
co-evolution of galaxies and supermassive black holes, and it opens a
new path to understand the origin of the radio-loud/radio-quiet AGN
dichotomy. Currently our analysis is statistically incomplete as the
brightness profile is not available for 82 of the 116 targets. Most
galaxies were not observed with HST, while in some cases the study is
obstructed by the presence of dust features. We here propose to
perform an infrared NICMOS snapshot survey of these 82 galaxies. This
will enable us to i} test the reality of the dichotomic behaviour in a
substantially larger sample; ii} extend the comparison between
radio-loud and radio-quiet AGN to a larger range of luminosities.

NIC3 11195

Morphologies of the Most Extreme High-Redshift Mid-IR-luminous
Galaxies II: The `Bump' Sources

The formative phase of some of the most massive galaxies may be
extremely luminous, characterized by intense star- and AGN-formation.
Till now, few such galaxies have been unambiguously identified at high
redshift, and thus far we have been restricted to studying the
low-redshift ultraluminous infrared galaxies as possible analogs. We
have recently discovered a sample of objects which may indeed
represent this early phase in galaxy formation, and are undertaking an
extensive multiwavelength study of this population. These objects are
optically extremely faint {R26} but nevertheless bright at
mid-infrared wavelengths {F[24um] 0.5 mJy}. Mid-infrared
spectroscopy with Spitzer/IRS reveals that they have redshifts z~2,
implying luminosities ~1E13 Lsun. Their mid-IR SEDs fall into two
broad, perhaps overlapping, categories. Sources with brighter F[24um]
exhibit power-law SEDs and SiO absorption features in their mid-IR
spectra characteristic of AGN, whereas those with fainter F[24um] show
a "bump" characteristic of the redshifted 1.6um peak from a stellar
population, and PAH emission characteristic of starformation. We have
begun obtaining HST images of the brighter sources in Cycle 15 to
obtain identifications and determine kpc-scale morphologies for these
galaxies. Here, we aim to target the second class {the "bump" sources}
with the goal of determining if these constitute morphologically
different objects, or simply a "low-AGN" state of the brighter class.
The proposed observations will help us determine whether these objects
are merging systems, massive obscured starbursts {with obscuration on
kpc scales!} or very reddened {locally obscured} AGN hosted by
intrinsically low-luminosity galaxies.

WFPC2 10890

Morphologies of the Most Extreme High-Redshift Mid-IR-Luminous
Galaxies

The formative phase of the most massive galaxies may be extremely
luminous, characterized by intense star- and AGN-formation. Till now,
few such galaxies have been unambiguously identified at high redshift,
restricting us to the study of low-redshift ultraluminous infrared
galaxies as possible analogs. We have recently discovered a sample of
objects which may indeed represent this early phase in galaxy
formation, and are undertaking an extensive multiwavelength study of
this population. These objects are bright at mid-IR wavelengths
{F[24um]0.8mJy}, but deep ground based imaging suggests extremely
faint {and in some cases extended} optical counterparts {R~24-27}.
Deep K-band images show barely resolved galaxies. Mid-infrared
spectroscopy with Spitzer/IRS reveals that they have redshifts z ~
2-2.5, suggesting bolometric luminosities ~10^{13-14}Lsun! We propose
to obtain deep ACS F814W and NIC2 F160W images of these sources and
their environs in order to determine kpc-scale morphologies and
surface photometry for these galaxies. The proposed observations will
help us determine whether these extreme objects are merging systems,
massive obscured starbursts {with obscuration on kpc scales!} or very
reddened {locally obscured} AGN hosted by intrinsically
low-luminosity
galaxies.

WFPC2 11012

NGC 4190-ULX1: The forgotten ULX

Although it ranks amongst the nearest (at d ~ 3 Mpc) and brightest (fx
~ 2e-12 erg/cm^2/s) ULXs, NGC 4190-ULX1 has not yet been observed in
the modern era of X-ray astronomy. We propose to remedy this omission
with three new observations designed to probe its underlying nature.
Firstly, we will obtain a high precision X-ray position of the ULX
using HRC-I. This will be used to identify an unique counterpart in
new HST/ACS imaging, plausibly the first step towards deriving a
dynamical mass function for this source. Finally, we will use an
ACIS-S observation to derive the first high quality X-ray diagnostics
(spectrum, light curve) of this ULX, with the aim of providing an
interim assessment of the nature of the compact object underlying its
extreme X-ray emission.

WFPC2 11070

WFPC2 CYCLE 15 Standard Darks - part II

This dark calibration program obtains dark frames every week in order
to provide data for the ongoing calibration of the CCD dark current
rate, and to monitor and characterize the evolution of hot pixels.
Over an extended period these data will also provide a monitor of
radiation damage to the CCDs.

WFPC2 11289

SL2S: The Strong Lensing Legacy Survey

Recent systematic surveys of strong galaxy-galaxy lenses {CLASS,
SLACS, GOODS, etc.} are producing spectacular results for galaxy
masses roughly below a transition mass M~10^13 Mo. The observed lens
properties and their evolution up to z~0.2, consistent with numerical
simulations, can be described by isothermal elliptical potentials. In
contrast, modeling of giant arcs in X-ray luminous clusters {halo
masses M ~10^13 Mo} favors NFW mass profiles, suggesting that dark
matter halos are not significantly affected by baryon cooling. Until
recently, lensing surveys were neither deep nor extended enough to
probe the intermediate mass density regime, which is fundamental for
understanding the assembly of structures. The CFHT Legacy Survey now
covers 125 square degrees, and thus offers a large reservoir of strong
lenses probing a large range of mass densities up to z~1. We have
extracted a list of 150 strong lenses using the most recent CFHTLS
data release via automated procedures. Following our first SNAPSHOT
proposal in cycle 15, we propose to continue the Hubble follow- up
targeting a larger list of 130 lensing candidates. These are
intermediate mass range candidates {between galaxies and clusters}
that are selected in the redshift range of 0.2-1 with no a priori
X-ray selection. The HST resolution is necessary for confirming the
lensing candidates, accurate modeling of the lenses, and probing the
total mass concentration in galaxy groups up to z~1 with the largest
unbiased sample available to date.

FLIGHT OPERATIONS SUMMARY:

Significant Spacecraft Anomalies: (The following are preliminary
reports of potential non-nominal performance that will be
investigated.)

HSTARS: (None)

COMPLETED OPS REQUEST:

18168-0 - FGS-2R Hybrid Mode Activation
18054-0 - Preview KF Sun Vector data via Telemetry Diags

COMPLETED OPS NOTES: (None)

*********************** SCHEDULED***** SUCCESSFUL

FGS GSacq*************** 08**************** 08
FGS REacq*************** 06**************** 06
OBAD with Maneuver* **** 28**************** 28

SIGNIFICANT EVENTS:

Flash Report: Hybrid Mode Activation Successful:

FGS/486 hybrid mode was successfully activated on FGS-2R this morning
at 007/15:03 via Ops Request 18168. The first hybrid mode acquisition
was at 15:56 and was successful. The GSAWG will continue to trend
FGS-2R performance.


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