Gemini Agreement

The Gemini Agreement among the six partner nations authorizes the construction and operation of the two 8-meter telescopes and describes the scope of the project, the management organization, management responsibilities, financial provisions, observing time and data rights, and other aspects of this undertaking

The Gemini Agreement, signed by NSF, SERC (now PPARC), and NRC, went into effect on 25 October 1993, and was amended the following year to include the South American partners. The amendment redefines the financial and observing shares to include all the partners.

The Gemini Agreement establishes the international Gemini Board as the supervisory and regulatory body, NSF as the Executive Agency empowered to act on behalf of the partners to arrange for Gemini construction and operations, and a Managing Organization, initially the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc. (AURA), to be appointed by the Executive Agency. This Annual Report is issued pursuant to Section 10.1(e) of the Gemini Agreement.

Cooperative Agreement between NSF and AURA

A Cooperative Agreement between NSF and AURA was awarded for the period 1 January 1994 through 31 December 1998, extendible through 31 December 2001. Under this agreement, AURA is responsible for the overall management of the construction and commissioning of Gemini, in such a manner as to meet the project specifications, the science requirements, and project time schedules set forth in Annexes A, B, and C of the Gemini Agreement. Directions and decisions of the Gemini Board are to be carried out by AURA, as communicated to it by NSF, as the Executive Agency.

As the Managing Organization, AURA is responsible for the organization and staffing of the Gemini Project Office, procedures for award of Work Packages and other contracts or subawards, accounting systems and financial reports, and other matters relating to construction and commissioning. The Gemini Agreement may be amended later to cover the operations phase of Gemini.

Operating and Site Development Agreement between NSF and the University of Hawaii

The University of Hawaii (UH), which administers the summit of Mauna Kea for the State of Hawaii, concluded an Agreement with NSF on 9 August 1994 that delineates the responsibilities of the signatories during the construction and operation of the Gemini North telescope. The Gemini site is subleased to NSF. UH will handle local permits and rights of way, arrange for and fund in part or in full the infrastructure improvements which are of common benefit to all the astronomical facilities on Mauna Kea, remove the 24" Planetary Patrol Telescope currently on the Gemini North site, and make available other facilities, such as the mid-level facility at Hale Pohaku, subject to further negotiation. NSF is responsible for all construction costs involved in relocating the spur access road to the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope, and for the payment of various costs associated with electrical power installations, and other infrastructure improvements.


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