Thursday, July 19, 2012

Day 53, 7/19/2012 -- There! Are! SIX! Lights!

Today we ran the first fridge cycle with the cryostat on the gondola. Things mostly went well (it's pretty awesome to send a single command and have the gondola tilt to the right position and then run the cycle completely automatically) except for a few issues biasing the detectors towards the end. Franky spent the afternoon debugging what went wrong with the detector biasing.

The other big ticket item today was setting up the so-called 'lighthouse' on the water tower, requiring the first of what will be many (many) trips up to the top of the tower. Jeff had the clever idea of using small power bricks to power the lights this year, so instead of lugging two ~25 lb power supplies up the 150 meters of the water tower, we only had to take six ~1 lb (or less) 12VDC power bricks up (along with the rest of the light hardware). KyleH and I got the whole thing set up in about 2 hours, so now we have six lights up on the water tower to use as a 'fake sky' for pointing while doing water tower scans.

On the agenda for tonight is a relative timing test between the ACS and bolo systems as well as scans of the lighthouse to build a source catalog to use in subsequent scans.

Picture (just one -- I'll take more pictures from atop the tower when I don't have to lug other equipment up too):

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