GBT Update

22 January 2001

GBT astronomical commissioning got underway with a regular schedule of activities on January 8. The commissioning included the first attempt at a real pointing observation with the GBT (see accompanying figure). The telescope was scanned in right ascension at a rate of three degrees per minute over a total range of three degrees. The observation was made with prime focus receiver one at a frequency of 800 MHz (the nominal beamwidth of the GBT at 800 MHz is 15 arcminutes). The received signal was transmitted over optical fiber to the electronics room in the Jansky laboratory and recorded with the digital continuum receiver (DCR). The antenna and all NRAO electronics were controlled by version 3.2 of the GBT monitor and control software. The telescope observer's interface, GO, was used to execute the pointing scans, and the operator's interface, CLEO, was used to monitor the observations. The observer was Dana Balser and the telescope operator was Greg Monk for the initial pointing observation.



Because of the continued work on the azimuth track, most of the other data-taking activities have been done with the telescope fixed in position. This has been very productive, and the staff is proceeding with characterizations, tests, and debugging. Some of the other commissioning activities of the week of January 15-21 are listed below.


P. R. Jewell

M. M. McKinnon

22 January 2001