The GHOST project continues to be on hold due to the pandemic and we do not expect to start the re-assembly and test of the instrument at Cerro Pachon this year. We are hopeful that the travel restrictions will ease in the first half of 2022 so this work can begin. In the meantime, we continue to make incremental improvements to our software and documentation, and order spare parts.
After a minor fix to its controlling computer, Zorro is back online starting May 31.
April 24th, 2022: GNIRS will be removed from the telescope on April 28th, 2022 and is planned to be unavailable for use until July 6th, 2022 due to the GNIRS IFU installation and refurbishment projects.
May 17th, 2021: The GNIRS IFU installation, originally planned for 2021B, has been postponed until 2022. Therefore, GNIRS will be available for the entire 2021B semester.
After overcoming an issue with the compressors and another with the temperature in the MOS dewar, F2 has been back to queue operations since April 23rd.
A failure in the Zorro PC will make the instrument unavailable until May ~5th.
On Sunday 4th a problem was found with the compressors, affecting the F2 vacuum. The instrument needs to be warmed-up to inspect the issue and therefore will not be available for a week or so.
The blue filter wheel of Zorro has been behaving erratically for past few monhts. This has had only minimal impact on operations, since the great majority of Zorro programs use the same filter. A new filter wheel has arrived recently to Pachon and the replacement will happen in the next few weeks.
The project has been effectively on hold since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, with the exception being progress on software and documentation. With the reopening of the Gemini South telescope, staff is now available to move the 3 containers from the base facility to be unloaded at the summit for storage until the remainder of the GHOST parts arrive. We expect the project to take another four months to complete once the Australian and Canadian crews are able to travel to Chile for the reassembly and test of GHOST at Cerro Pachón.
As Gemini South resumed nighttime operation, GMOS-S was checked out during last weekend and started operating in queue mode. To be noted is that the CCD1 CTE problem reported on Jan10, 2020 is still present, meaning that programs using the N&S mode for spectroscopy are potentialliy affected, as well as IFU programs. These programs will remain on hold, with the exception of programs where this issue has no impact on the science (e.g. region of interest outside of CCD1)