rubinann20020 — Announcement

Rubin Digest 17 November 2020

17 November 2020

Project & Science News

Construction activity on Cerro Pachón continues to expand, with approximately 40 people working on the summit each day last week. That will increase this week, with the restart of the team installing critical telescope utilities. The contracted team for the dome is now about 20 people who are focused on getting the dome enclosed before the TMA team arrives in January. The dome cladding is going up fast! Photos are available in the Gallery.

The Rubin Commissioning Camera (ComCam), which has been at the base facility in La Serena since May because of COVID-19 restrictions on the summit, is scheduled to move to Cerro Pachón this week, where it will be installed on the third level of the summit facility. The team in Chile has been preparing for this move for several weeks and they hope to get ComCam up and running on the summit very soon. The Commissioning team can then continue the integration of ComCam with other components, and finally install it on the Telescope Mount Assembly (TMA). In the new year, the Commissioning team plans to conduct integration tests with the hexapod, rotator, and camera cable wrap, as well as operate the camera refrigeration pathfinder system for the first time in Chile. Photos of ComCam packed ready for its road trip to the summit are available in the Gallery

At SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, work on the LSST Camera Utility Trunk was completed, and the Utility Trunk was safely delivered to the IR2 clean room in early November. This is the last major piece of hardware for the camera to be delivered—a major milestone! Photos are available in the Gallery.

In case you missed it, the first six Rubin staff profiles are posted on this page. New profiles will be featured each month.  

Operations News

The Rubin Observatory Community Engagement Team (CET) is currently in the early stages of preparing a model for community engagement and support for science with the Legacy Survey of Space and Time (LSST). The CET recognizes that the Rubin community has a deep well of experience in both providing and receiving support from astronomical facilities for user science, and that it would benefit everyone to leverage this experience in our plans. Therefore, the CET invites all interested people to provide early-stage input to our model by participating in one (or more) of the informal discussion sessions described here. Students are especially encouraged to attend.

Personnel Announcements

The Project congratulates Brian Stalder on his promotion to Associate Scientist. This promotion is in recognition of the leadership Brian has demonstrated with his work successfully getting ComCam integrated as a working instrument both in Tucson and in Chile. He has also shown a wide range of skills in deploying the site seeing monitors (Differential Image Motion Monitors - DIMMs), supporting the startup of AuxTel, upgrades to the All-Sky Camera, being on the front line of using the Science Platform for data analysis and development of the Environmental Awareness System. In addition, Brian remains active in the analysis of moving object data from the ATLAS survey project.

Tony Tache has been promoted to Instrument Maker, having learned the many necessary disciplines of this highly skilled trade. Tony began work in the Instrument shop in 2016 as a machinist apprentice—his promotion acknowledges the fact that he has earned the title of Instrument Maker by demonstrating high-precision machining skills, and by having the ability to consistently manufacture high-quality part details for use in astronomical instrumentation. Congratulations, Tony!

Zeljko Ivezic, Project Scientist and Deputy Director for the Rubin Observatory Construction Project, was recently inducted into the Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts. Congratulations Zeljko!

The IT Team in Chile has a position available for an IT Network Engineer, based in La Serena. See the Rubin hiring web page for more information, and help spread the word.

Upcoming Meetings with Rubin Observatory Involvement

(those with asterisk* are LSSTC funded):


November 30-December 4: Dark Energy Science Collaboration (DESC) Sprint Week, Virtual

December 8-9: Survey Cadence Optimization Committee (SCOC) Workshop on Cadence Notes, Virtual

December 13-18: SPIE Astronomical Telescopes and Instrumentation Conference, Virtual


Jan 11-15: AAS 237th Meeting, Virtual

Feb 1-5: Dark Energy Science Collaboration (DESC) Meeting, Virtual

About the Announcement



Logo: Vera C. Rubin Observatory
Logo: Vera C. Rubin Observatory