Hubble Space Telescope Daily Report #3061 - 21 Feb 2002

Status Report From: Space Telescope Science Institute
Posted: Friday, February 1, 2002

PERIOD COVERED: 0000Z (UTC) 02/20/02 - 0000Z (UTC) 02/21/02
Daily Status Report as of 052/0000Z

1.1 Completed Three Sets of STIS/CCD 8901 (Dark Monitor-Part 1)

The Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (CCD) was used to monitor the darks. There was no anomalous activity.

1.2 Completed WF/PC-2 9060 (Photometry of a Statistically Significant Sample of Kuiper Belt Objects)

The WF/PC-2 was used to propel the physical study of KBOs forward by performing accurate photometry at V, R, and I on a sample of up to 150 KBOs. The sample is made up of objects that will be observed at thermal infrared wavelengths by SIRTF and will be used with those data to derive the first accurate diameters and albedos for a large sample of KBOs. The observations completed nominally.

1.3 Completed Four Sets of WF/PC-2 8937 (Cycle 9 Supplemental Darks pt2/3)

The WF/PC-2 was used obtain three dark frames every day to provide data for monitoring and characterizing the evolution of hot pixels. No problems were encountered.

1.4 Completed Three Sets of WF/PC-2 9101 (Toward Understanding the Bipolar Geometries of Preplanetary Nebulae with High-Velocity Polar Flows)

The WF/PC-2 was used to image 17 pre-planetary nebula for comparison with high-resolution spectral-line images {being obtained with VLA/MERLIN/ATCA}, enabling us to understand the fast outflow and how its hydrodynamical interaction with the AGB wind produces a bipolar nebula. No problems were reported.

1.5 Completed Three Sets of STIS/CCD 9317 (Pure Parallel Imaging Program: Cycle 10)

The Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (CCD) was used to perform the default archival pure parallel program for STIS during cycle 10. There were no reported problems.

1.6 Completed STIS/CCD 9131 (Imaging the Host Galaxies of High Redshift Type Ia Supernovae)

The Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (CCD) was used to complete the snapshot survey of distant galaxies of known redshift which hosted supernovae {SNe} of Type Ia found via the Supernova Cosmology Project {SCP}. No problems were seen.

1.7 Completed Two Sets of STIS/MA2 8920 (Cycle 10 MAMA Dark Measurements)

The Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (MA2) was used to perform the routine monitoring of the MAMA detector dark noise, and is the primary means of checking on health of the MAMA detectors systems through frequent monitoring of the background count rate. The proposal completed with no reported anomalous activity.

1.8 Completed STIS/MA2 8590 (UV Imaging and Spectroscopy of Luminous Blue Compact Galaxies from z=0 to z=1)

The Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (MA2) was used to observe two well-defined samples of low-mass starburst galaxies, one in the local universe {z<0.1} and another at intermediate redshifts {0.2 < z < 0.7}. Both samples show optical sizes, morphologies, emission line widths, and luminosities comparable to those of LBGs at z=3, and are therefore probably the best local analogs and testbeds for further study of LBGs. Our main goals are to: {1} explore the morphologies, surface brightness distributions, and half-light radii of nearby starforming galaxies in the FUV, near Ly-alpha; {2} search for systematic differences among UV, optical, and near-IR morphologies and structural parameters; {3} investigate the intrinsic emission and absorption spectra near Ly-alpha of starbursting dwarf galaxies, with special attention to Ly- alpha profiles and interstellar and stellar photospheric absorption from Si II, O I, C II, Si IV, and C IV; {4} measure their FUV-optical colors and dust extinction properties; and {5} test the hypothesis that low-mass starbursts are the local counterparts of LBGs. The observation completed normally.

1.9 Completed Eight Sets of WF/PC-2 9318 (POMS Test Proposal: WFII Parallel Archive Proposal Continuation)

The WF/PC-2 was used to perform the generic target version of the WFPC2 Archival Pure Parallel program. The program was used to take parallel images of random areas of the sky, following the recommendations of the Parallels Working Group. There were no reported problems.

1.10 Completed STIS/MA2 9573 (NUV-MAMA Daily Dark Monitor)

The Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (MA2) was used to perform daily monitoring of the NUV MAMA detector dark noise in order to monitor the effects of thermal changes on the NUV dark rate. No problems occurred.

1.11 Completed STIS/CCD/MA2 9051 (Identifying Damped Lyman-alpha Galaxies at z~1)

The Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (CCD and MA2) was used to look for damped Lyman-alpha absorption systems that contain the bulk of the neutral gas in the Universe in the redshift range z = 0.5 - 5, yet the nature of the galaxies responsible for the absorption is not well understood. Only recently have observers found more than a handful of damped absorbers at redshifts z < 1.5. Using the FIRST Bright Quasar Survey {FBQS}, with over a 1000 quasars, the proposers have undertaken a survey to build a complete picture of he nature of the galaxies responsible for damped Lyman-alpha absorption systems at z~1 and to double the sample size at this redshift. No problems were encountered.

1.12 Completed STIS/CCD 9107 (The Fundamental Plane for Nuclear Black Holes)

The Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (CCD) was used to conduct more in-depth searches for supermassive black holes in galaxy centers. Previous work has led to the discoveries that {1} most or all hot galaxies contain massive dark objects at their centers, presumably black holes; {2} there is a remarkably tight correlation between the black-hole mass and the luminosity-weighted velocity dispersion of the hot component of the galaxy. This mbh-Sigma relation has a scatter which is <0.3 dex in mbh and consistent with zero. This relationship suggests a strong link between black-hole formation, AGN activity, and galaxy formation, and once it is understood this link should advance our understanding of all three processes. The goal of this proposal is to investigate the scatter in the mbh-Sigma relation and the role of possible second parameters, by examining a sample of galaxies at fixed velocity dispersion Sigma=200+/- 20 kms. This approach decouples the effects of a second parameter from uncertainties in the shape of the mbh-Sigma relation, and minimizes spurious correlations because all of the galaxies will be studied using the same well-tested observational and modeling techniques. No anomalous activity occurred.

1.13 Completed WF/PC-2 8669 (Merger-Driven Evolution Of Galactic Nuclei: Observations Of The Toomre Sequence)

The WF/PC-2 was used to observe galaxy mergers that are believed responsible for triggering starburst and AGN activity in galaxies, and even perhaps transforming spiral galaxies into ellipticals. The proposal completed nominally.

1.14 Completed Four Sets of WF/PC-2 8941 (Cycle 10 UV Earthflats)

The WF/PC-2 was used to monitor flat field stability by obtaining sequences of earth streak flats to improve the quality of pipeline flat fields for the WFPC2 UV filter set. The proposal had no problems.


2.1 Guide Star Acquisitions:
Scheduled Acquisitions: 9
Successful: 9

Scheduled Re-acquisitions: 7
Successful: 7

2.2 FHST Updates:
Scheduled: 14
Successful: 14

2.3 Operations Notes:

The SSR-1 EDAC error counter was cleared three times per ROP SR-1A.


Continuation of normal science observations and calibrations.

// end //

More status reports and news releases or top stories.

Please follow SpaceRef on Twitter and Like us on Facebook.