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APASS news for 2011-01-18

HQA
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Joined: 2010-05-10

APASS-south is running smoothly.  Kevin Ivarsen (UNC) has implemented the SkyNet clamshell control program on our computer, so the clamshell now opens and closes automatically.  I no longer have to get up at 4:30am to close things down! Tom Smith has changed the "park" position so that the telescope is closer to its initalizing "home" position (saving time on startup).  I'm currently analyzing the raster-scan images to create the residual maps that are used to correct the photometry for scattered light.  Stephen Levine has done the astrometric corrections for all images taken to date. We are still on track for Data Release 2 around the end of January.  It remains clear at CTIO; our last cloudy night was November 6!

APASS-north has had its twin astrographs delivered.  Tom Smith has built the lamp projection system for the flat-fielding setup, has added flocking in appropriate places, and will be installing the astrographs in the next day or two.  There are some USB port issues with the current computer that we hope will be allieviated with a new computer card that should be delivered soon.  Tom still needs to set focus on the astrographs, create a pointing model and do some preliminary testing before we start running the northern survey.  With luck, new data will be available within a couple of weeks.  We have a couple of nights of testing using some far less expensive 150mm f/5 refractors that I will analyze in a week or two.

Arne

AAVSO 49 Bay State Rd. Cambridge, MA 02138 aavso@aavso.org 617-354-0484