Minutes of the 35th Subaru Advisory Committee
Date: 26 Sep., 2001, 11:00-17:00 JST
Place: NAOJ TV conference room (Mitaka and Hilo)
Participants: H.Ando, M.Iye(Chair), T.Ichikawa, S.Okamura, Kataza, H.Karoji, S.Sato, N.Sugiyama, M.Tamura, Nakano, M.Hayashi, T.Mahara, T.Yamashita, S.Ichikawa, K.Sekiguchi, T.Takata, J.Nishikawa, S..Miyama, A. TokunagaAB. McLaren
1. Minutes of SAC 34 was approved; Iye, 35-1
2. Status reports of Subaru Telescope; Ando, 35-2
First Common use operation was closed down for two months starting from the beginning of August and major revision on the M1 fixation mechanism was made. M1 was re-aluminized using this chance. AO saw its first light in Dec, 2000.
(High lights) Infrared imaging of the Subaru Deep Field caught 90 % of all the observable galaxies. Seven supernovae at high red shift were found. Numerous low mass objects were detected in S106 star-forming region. Eu was measured in metal deficient stars.
16 papers were published since the first light in the year 2000, more than 23 papers are submitted for publication.
(Engineering) Revision of the M1 Fixation mechanism, M1 re-aluminization, replacement of the absolute encoder of the alt axis, Reduction of telescope vibration, Improvement in the tracking accuracy, Control system upgrade, and Improvement of chopping M2 were main activities during the last 6 months.
(Management) Total number of staff amounts to 71. Total annual budget for the fiscal year 2001 is 4 billion yen and the budget for travel is 0.13 billion yen. Transfer of additional four staff from Mitaka to Hilo is planned. A budget cut of 10% is anticipated for every institute and universities beginning next year. Internal adjustment to support ALMA project and others sparing the Subaru budget might be necessary.
(Telescope Time) Status of operation is reported.
(Forthcoming) All of the eight instruments will be offered for open use. FMOS and MOIRCS are still under development phase and applications of PI instruments are under consideration. A long term plan for improvement of the telescope performance and procurement of detector array are also under consideration.
3. General status of NAOJ (Miyama)
Financial prospects, situation for restructuring NAOJ to an agency, and the scopes of promoting ALMA project were explained.
4. Telescope Time Allocation committee Okamura, 35-3a
TAC met on 1-2, Aug. received 160 proposals requesting 337 nights in total. To reduce the load for referees in extragalactic astronomy, regrouping of categories were made and TAC decided to accept 29 proposals for 47 nights, of which 2 proposals for 5 nights were international proposals. TAC advises SAC to accept one proposal under a category of "Target of Opportunity TOO", which is not counted in the 47 nights. The basic policy of the TOO assignment should be established and understood by UH. The procedure for accepting proposals using PI instruments was discussed. Only those proposals that went through the technical assessment by the Observatory Staff and the science merit assessment (made by the TAC) can be considered for further scheduling of the telescope time.
TAC decided to recommend SAC to establish a scheme to accept proposals requesting more than three nights from S02A (35-9b), considering the increase of nights assignable to open use.
5. Summary of S01BOpen Use Yamada, Tamura, 35-3b
Support scientists are included as members of the technical assessment of submitted proposals and detailed information on observations are passed on to SS to make observation more effective. Statistics of submitted and accepted proposals for each instruments and category of observation was reported.
6. Questionnaire on S00-S01A observations; Yamada, 35-3c
More than half obtained satisfactory data but some did not. Careful analysis should be made to interpret the main cause of failure. In order to avoid insufficient assignment of nights to accomplish a particular program, it was advised to quest declaring the minimum nights to be assigned in the proposal.
7. R&D subcommittee; Sato, 35-4
Committee held on 19 Sep reviewed 10 proposals for a budget of 80 million yen and endorsed 3 of them to go forward, with 5 under continued assessment.
8. Data archive system and replacement of super computer; Takata, S.Ichikawa 35-5
The status of the SMOKA system and its access rate by users was reported. It was proposed to start the procedures for making the data, taken during the function test observations of telescope and instruments, available to the public with a permission obtained from the PIs of each program.
The replacement of the computer system will start from Feb 2002. It is foreseen that the disk capacity and CPU performance will be 10-20 times higher than present.
9. Status report of FMOS; Maihara, 35-4a
Contribution from UK counterpart is slightly behind the schedule but otherwise the progress is in a sound state. New optical design allows improvement in PSF.
10. Status report of MOIRCS; T.Ichikawa 35-4b
Design and construction is more or less on schedule and system integration is expected to finish by March 2003.
11. Arrangement on UH88 and UKIRT; Tamura and Sekiguchi, 35-5
15 proposal for 55 nights were received and 12 proposals for 26 nights were accepted by the temporary AC summoned for UH88 time.
SIRIUS was used on 4 Japanese proposals for 10 nights and additional 4 UH proposals for 5 nights were accepted. The opinions and requests from the users community to include external members in the temporary UH88 TAC was discussed and it was agreed to consider this problem by consulting with the Committee for Optical and Infrared Astronomy, that oversees the open use policy.
As for UKIRT, finalizing the wording of the draft of MOU is under way.
12. Future plans
12.1. Situation around the Subaru Telescope; Iye 35-7a
Plans for Extremely large telescopes, Interferometers, SPICA; Space mid-Infrared observatory, Infrared astrometry satellite, Utilization of the space station, Projects to search for Extraterrestrial planets were briefly reviewed.
12.2. OHANA; Nishikawa 35-7b
The concept and the progress of combining telescopes on Mauna Kea were introduced. NAOJ might participate in this program by sharing the role of developing the delay lines.
13. Observatory time and performance verification time; Ando 35-8a
Ando proposed to prolong the assignment of the telescope time for the observatory staff and for the performance verification of open use instruments that was supposed to complete by the end of S02b, considering the delay in schedule.
Regarding the UH share of nights, there was a repeated discussion and SAC chair asked both the directors to talk again to come to an friendly compromise.
14. Open use instruments and TOO; Ando
It was proposed to offer all the open use instruments for the next semester S02a and this proposal was welcomed by the SAC. As for the TOO, Ando proposed two approaches; namely A) as for Galactic supernova or prominent comets etc. telescope time can be assigned from the observatory time under the discretion of the Subaru Director and
B) as for example GRBs, the nights assigned should be counted as a part of nights for open use.
These policies were approved by the SAC. It was argued that to make the flexible observation possible TOO proposals should identify the observatory staff responsible.
15. Subaru Observatory Project; Ando 35-10
The scope and the procedure to identify concrete programs were proposed. A task force nominated will take care the coordination of the practical plan for devoting about 2/3 of the time guaranteed for telescope builders and the observatory staff for the coming two year period.
16. Nomination of new TAC members
T. Maihara was elected as the chair of the TAC. Considering the nomination from the GOPIRA and trying to keep half the members to remain in the TAC to avoid discontinuous change of policies, SAC nominated the following candidates:
Category 1(Solar system) Tadashi Mukai
Category 2(Stars and the Galaxy) Yoshikazu Nakada
Category 3(Nebulae and Interstellar matter) Motohide Tamura
Category 4(Nearby galaxies and AGN) Koji Ohta
Category 5(Clusters of galaxies and cosmology) Sadanori Okamura
Pan-category Yasushi Suto, Nobuo Arimoto, Nobuyuki Kawai
Note added: Since Koji Oath serves as the chair of Okayama TAC, SAC accepted his decline and elected Michitoshi; Yoshida for the Category 4. All the members kindly accepted to serve for the next term.
17. Subaru User Meeting; Yamada
Subaru Users Meeting will be held during 11-12 Dec (JST) at Mitaka with a TV link to Hilo and other sites. Coordinators are W.Aoki, T.Ichikawa, M.Imanishi and T.Yamada
i) To clarify the concrete procedures for archiving the observed data (35-5), additional discussion was made and it was agreed to simplify the procedure to reduce the actual load on staff working for archiving the data.
The key points of change are
(1) In principle all the data are by default mounted and made available on the Subaru archive system after 18 months of observation.
(2) Any particular data, that are not to be made available, should be requested to the archive team to postpone the release date stating clear reasons for doing so.
(3) This policy change should be announced and notified to the community appropriately.
ii) Subaru Director, Ando, reported the results of negotiation with IfA director, Kudritzki, on the number of nights to be assigned to UH, and the SAC accepted this report.
iii) As for the framework of the intensive programs, the following scheme was proposed and approved.
Any intensive program can last for one year and the number of nights requested per program should not exceed 10 nights. Maximum of 10 nights will be reserved for S02A. The program review will be made by a special joint meeting consisting of TAC and SAC members. The policy for S02B will be separately discussed later.