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Daily Report #5182



 
 
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Old September 16th 10, 03:17 PM posted to sci.astro.hubble
Cooper, Joe
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Default Daily Report #5182

HUBBLE SPACE TELESCOPE - Continuing to Collect World Class Science

DAILY REPORT #5182

PERIOD COVERED: 5am September 15 - 5am September 16, 2010 (DOY 258/09:00z-259/09:00z)

FLIGHT OPERATIONS SUMMARY:

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

HSTARS:

12407 - GSAcq(2,1,1) at 259/02:27:06z and REAcq(2,1,1) at
259/03:54:49z both failed due to search radius limit exceeded on FGS2

Observations affected: WFC3 90 proposal ID#12234; STIS 67 proposal
ID#11999.


HSTAR FOR DOY 242:

12404 - GSAcq(1,2,1) at 242/15:42:17z initially received a scan step
limit exceeded flag on FGS1. The second attempt was successful and the
acquisition succeeded.


COMPLETED OPS REQUEST: (None)

COMPLETED OPS NOTES: (None)

SCHEDULED SUCCESSFUL
FGS GSAcq 12 11
FGS REAcq 05 04
OBAD with Maneuver 06 06

SIGNIFICANT EVENTS: (None)


OBSERVATIONS SCHEDULED:

ACS/WFC 11996

CCD Daily Monitor (Part 3)

This program comprises basic tests for measuring the read noise and
dark current of the ACS WFC and for tracking the growth of hot pixels.
The recorded frames are used to create bias and dark reference images
for science data reduction and calibration. This program will be
executed four days per week (Mon, Wed, Fri, Sun) for the duration of
Cycle 17. To facilitate scheduling, this program is split into three
proposals. This proposal covers 308 orbits (19.25 weeks) from 21 June
2010 to 1 November 2010.

ACS/WFC 12210

SLACS for the Masses: Extending Strong Lensing to Lower Masses and
Smaller Radii

Strong gravitational lensing provides the most accurate possible
measurement of mass in the central regions of early-type galaxies
(ETGs). We propose to continue the highly productive Sloan Lens ACS
(SLACS) Survey for strong gravitational lens galaxies by observing a
substantial fraction of 135 new ETG gravitational-lens candidates with
HST-ACS WFC F814W Snapshot imaging. The proposed target sample has
been selected from the seventh and final data release of the Sloan
Digital Sky Survey, and is designed to complement the distribution of
previously confirmed SLACS lenses in lens-galaxy mass and in the ratio
of Einstein radius to optical half-light radius. The observations we
propose will lead to a combined SLACS sample covering nearly two
decades in mass, with dense mapping of enclosed mass as a function of
radius out to the half-light radius and beyond. With this longer mass
baseline, we will extend our lensing and dynamical analysis of the
mass structure and scaling relations of ETGs to galaxies of
significantly lower mass, and directly test for a transition in
structural and dark-matter content trends at intermediate galaxy mass.
The broader mass coverage will also enable us to make a direct
connection to the structure of well-studied nearby ETGs as deduced
from dynamical modeling of their line-of-sight velocity distribution
fields. Finally, the combined sample will allow a more conclusive test
of the current SLACS result that the intrinsic scatter in ETG
mass-density structure is not significantly correlated with any other
galaxy observables. The final SLACS sample at the conclusion of this
program will comprise approximately 130 lenses with known foreground
and background redshifts, and is likely to be the largest confirmed
sample of strong-lens galaxies for many years to come.

COS/NUV/FUV/STIS/CCD/MA1 11692

The LMC as a QSO Absorption Line System

We propose to obtain high resolution, high signal-to-noise
observations of QSOs behind the Large Magellanic Clouds. These QSOs
are situated beyond the star forming disk of the galaxy, giving us the
opportunity to study the distribution of metals and energy in regions
lacking significant star formation. In particular, we will derive the
metallicities and study the ionization characteristics of LMC gas at
impact parameters 3-17 kpc. We will compare our results with high-z
QSO absorption line systems.

STIS/CCD 11845

CCD Dark Monitor Part 2

Monitor the darks for the STIS CCD.

STIS/CCD 11847

CCD Bias Monitor-Part 2

Monitor the bias in the 1x1, 1x2, 2x1, and 2x2 bin settings at gain=1,
and 1x1 at gain = 4, to build up high-S/N superbiases and track the
evolution of hot columns.

STIS/CCD 11999

JWST Calibration from a Consistent Absolute Calibration of Spitzer &
Hubble

Recently, Gordon, Bohlin, et al. submitted a successful Spitzer
proposal for cross calibration of HST and Spitzer. The
cross-calibration targets are stars in three categories: WDs, A-stars,
and G-stars. Traditionally, IR flux standards are extrapolations of
stellar models that are tied to absolute fluxes at shorter
wavelengths. HST absolute flux standards are among the best available
with a solid basis that uses pure hydrogen models of hot WD stars for
the SED slopes and is tied to Vega at 5556A via precise Landolt V-band
photometry. Consistently matching models to our three categories of
HST observations along with Spitzer photometry and the few existing
absolute IR flux determinations will provide a solid basis for JWST
flux calibration over its 0.8-30micron range. The goal of this
proposal is to complete the HST observations of the set of HST/Spitzer
cross-calibration stars. Using a variety of standard stars with three
different spectral types will ensure that the final calibration is not
significantly affected by systematic uncertainties.

STIS/CCD/MA 11668

Cosmo-chronometry and Elemental Abundance Distribution of the Ancient
Star HE1523-0901

We propose to obtain near-UV HST/STIS spectroscopy of the extremely
metal-poor, highly r-process-enhanced halo star HE 1523-0901, in order
to produce the most complete abundance distribution of the heaviest
stable elements, including platinum, osmium, and lead. These HST
abundance data will then be used to estimate the initial abundances of
the long-lived radioactive elements thorium and uranium, and by
comparison with their observed abundances, enable an accurate age
determination of this ancient star. The use of radioactive
chronometers in stars provides an independent lower limit on the age
of the Galaxy, which can be compared with alternative limits set by
globular clusters and by analysis from WMAP. Our proposed observations
of HE1523-0901 will also provide significant new information about the
early chemical history of the Galaxy, specifically, the nature of the
first generations of stars and the types of nucleosynthetic processes
that occurred at the onset of Galactic chemical evolution.

WFC3/ACS/IR 11840

Identifying the Host Galaxies for Optically Dark Gamma-Ray Bursts

We propose to use the high spatial resolution of Chandra to obtain
precise positions for a sample of Gamma-Ray Bursts (GRBs) with no
optical afterglows, where the optical light is suppressed relative to
the X-ray flux. These bursts are likely to be highly obscured and may
have different environments from the optically bright GRBs. Our
Chandra observations will (unlike Swift XRT positions) allow for the
unique identification of a host galaxy. To locate these host galaxies
we will follow up our Chandra positions with deep optical and IR
observations with HST. The ultimate aim is to understand any
differences between the host galaxies of optically dark and bright
GRBs, and how these affect the use of GRBs as tracers of starformation
and galaxy evolution at high redshift.

WFC3/IR 12265

Determining the Physical Nature of a Unique Giant Lya Emitter at
z=6.595

We propose deep WFC3/IR imaging for a giant Lya emitter (LAE) with a
Keck spectroscopic redshift of z=6.595 discovered by extensive
narrow-band imaging with Subaru in the SXDS-UKIDSS/UDS field. This
remarkable object is unique in many respects including its large
stellar mass and luminous nebula which extends over 17 kpc; no
equivalent source has been found in other surveys. The nature of this
rare object is unclear. Fundamental to progress is determining the
origin of star formation in such an early massive object; if the age
of the stellar population is short we are likely witnessing a special
moment in the formation history of a massive galaxy. The heating
source for the nebula is also unclear; options include intense star
formation, the infall of cold gas onto a dark halo or shock heating
from a merger. We will take deep broad-band (F125W and F160W) images
and an intermediate-band (F098M) image which will be analyzed in
conjunction with ultra-deep IRAC 3.6 and 4.5 micron data being taken
by the Spitzer/SEDS project. These data will enable us to constrain
the star formation rate and stellar age. Moreover, the UV continuum
morphology and Lya-line distribution will be investigated for evidence
of a major merger, cold accretion, or hot bubbles associated with
outflows. We will address the physical origin of the remarkable object
observed at an epoch where massive galaxies are thought to begin their
assembly.

WFC3/IR 12307

A public SNAPSHOT Survey of Gamma-ray Burst Host Galaxies

We propose to conduct a public infrared survey of the host galaxies of
Swift selected gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) at z3. By obtaining deep,
diffraction limited imaging in the IR we will complete detections for
the host galaxies, and in concert with our extensive ground based
afterglow and host programmes will compile a detailed catalog of the
properties of high-z galaxies selected by GRBs. In particular these
observations will enable us to study the colours, luminosities and
morphologies of the galaxies. This in turn informs studies of the
nature of the progenitors and the role of GRBs as probes of star
formation across cosmic history. Ultimately it provides a product of
legacy value which will greatly complement further studies with next
generation facilities such as ALMA and JWST.

WFC3/IR/S/C 11929

IR Dark Current Monitor

Analyses of ground test data showed that dark current signals are more
reliably removed from science data using darks taken with the same
exposure sequences as the science data, than with a single dark
current image scaled by desired exposure time. Therefore, dark current
images must be collected using all sample sequences that will be used
in science observations. These observations will be used to monitor
changes in the dark current of the WFC3-IR channel on a day-to-day
basis, and to build calibration dark current ramps for each of the
sample sequences to be used by Gos in Cycle 17. For each sample
sequence/array size combination, a median ramp will be created and
delivered to the calibration database system (CDBS).

WFC3/UVIS 11905

WFC3 UVIS CCD Daily Monitor

The behavior of the WFC3 UVIS CCD will be monitored daily with a set
of full-frame, four-amp bias and dark frames. A smaller set of 2Kx4K
subarray biases are acquired at less frequent intervals throughout the
cycle to support subarray science observations. The internals from
this proposal, along with those from the anneal procedure (Proposal
11909), will be used to generate the necessary superbias and superdark
reference files for the calibration pipeline (CDBS).

WFC3/UVIS 11907

UVIS Cycle 17 Contamination Monitor

The UV throughput of WFC3 during Cycle 17 is monitored via weekly
standard star observations in a subset of key filters covering
200-600nm and F606W, F814W as controls on the red end. The data will
provide a measure of throughput levels as a function of time and
wavelength, allowing for detection of the presence of possible
contaminants.

WFC3/UVIS 11908

Cycle 17: UVIS Bowtie Monitor

Ground testing revealed an intermittent hysteresis type effect in the
UVIS detector (both CCDs) at the level of ~1%, lasting hours to days.
Initially found via an unexpected bowtie- shaped feature in flatfield
ratios, subsequent lab tests on similar e2v devices have since shown
that it is also present as simply an overall offset across the entire
CCD, i.e., a QE offset without any discernable pattern. These lab
tests have further revealed that overexposing the detector to count
levels several times full well fills the traps and effectively
neutralizes the bowtie. Each visit in this proposal acquires a set of
three 3x3 binned internal flatfields: the first unsaturated image will
be used to detect any bowtie, the second, highly exposed image will
neutralize the bowtie if it is present, and the final image will allow
for verification that the bowtie is gone.

WFC3/UVIS 11912

UVIS Internal Flats

This proposal will be used to assess the stability of the flat field
structure for the UVIS detector throughout the 15 months of Cycle 17.
The data will be used to generate on-orbit updates for the delta-flat
field reference files used in the WFC3 calibration pipeline, if
significant changes in the flat structure are seen.

WFC3/UVIS 11914

UVIS Earth Flats

This program is an experimental path finder for Cycle 18 calibration.
Visible-wavelength flat fields will be obtained by observing the dark
side of the Earth during periods of full moon illumination. The
observations will consist of full-frame streaked WFC3 UVIS imagery:
per 22- min total exposure time in a single "dark-sky" orbit, we
anticipate collecting 7000 e/pix in F606W or 4500 e/pix in F814W. To
achieve Poisson S/N 100 per pixel, we require at least 2 orbits of
F606W and 3 orbits of F814W.

For UVIS narrowband filters, exposures of 1 sec typically do not
saturate on the sunlit Earth, so we will take sunlit Earth flats for
three of the more-commonly used narrowband filters in Cycle 17 plus
the also-popular long-wavelength quad filters, for which we get four
filters at once.

Why not use the Sunlit Earth for the wideband visible-light filters?
It is too bright in the visible for WFC3 UVIS minimum exposure time of
0.5 sec. Similarly, for NICMOS the sunlit-Earth is too bright which
saturates the detector too quickly and/or induces abnormal behaviors
such as super-shading (Gilmore 1998, NIC 098-011). In the narrowband
visible and broadband near- UV its not too bright (predictions in Cox
et al. 1987 "Standard Astronomical Sources for HST: 6. Spatially Flat
Fields." and observations in ACS Program 10050).

Other possibilities? Cox et al.'s Section II.D addresses many other
possible sources for flat fields, rejecting them for a variety of
reasons. A remaining possibility would be the totally eclipsed moon.
Such eclipses provide approximately 2 hours (1 HST orbit) of
opportunity per year, so they are too rare to be generically useful.
An advantage of the moon over the Earth is that the moon subtends less
than 0.25 square degree, whereas the Earth subtends a steradian or
more, so scattered light and light potentially leaking around the
shutter presents additional problems for the Earth. Also, we're unsure
if HST can point 180 deg from the Sun.

WFC3/UVIS/IR 11700

Bright Galaxies at z7.5 with a WFC3 Pure Parallel Survey

The epoch of reionization represents a special moment in the history
of the Universe as it is during this era that the first galaxies and
star clusters are formed. Reionization also profoundly affects the
environment where subsequent generations of galaxies evolve. Our
overarching goal is to test the hypothesis that galaxies are
responsible for reionizing neutral hydrogen. To do so we propose to
carry out a pure parallel WFC3 survey to constrain the bright end of
the redshift z7.5 galaxy luminosity function on a total area of 176
arcmin^2 of sky. Extrapolating the evolution of the luminosity
function from z~6, we expect to detect about 20 Lyman Break Galaxies
brighter than M_* at z~8 significantly improving the current sample of
only a few galaxies known at these redshifts. Finding significantly
fewer objects than predicted on the basis of extrapolation from z=6
would set strong limits to the brightness of M_*, highlighting a fast
evolution of the luminosity function with the possible implication
that galaxies alone cannot reionize the Universe. Our observations
will find the best candidates for spectroscopic confirmation, that is
bright z7.5 objects, which would be missed by small area deeper
surveys. The random pointing nature of the program is ideal to beat
cosmic variance, especially severe for luminous massive galaxies,
which are strongly clustered. In fact our survey geometry of 38
independent fields will constrain the luminosity function like a
contiguous single field survey with two times more area at the same
depth. Lyman Break Galaxies at z7.5 down to m_AB=26.85 (5 sigma) in
F125W will be selected as F098M dropouts, using three to five orbits
visits that include a total of four filters (F606W, F098M, F125W,
F160W) optimized to remove low-redshift interlopers and cool stars.
Our data will be highly complementary to a deep field search for
high-z galaxies aimed at probing the faint end of the luminosity
function, allowing us to disentangle the degeneracy between faint end
slope and M_* in a Schechter function fit of the luminosity function.
We waive proprietary rights for the data. In addition, we commit to
release the coordinates and properties of our z7.5 candidates within
one month from the acquisition of each field.


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