rubinann21014 — Announcement

Rubin Digest 18 August 2021

18 August 2021

Project & Science News

This year’s Rubin Observatory Project and Community Workshop (Rubin 2021) wrapped up on Friday, August 13. The 5-day meeting was held virtually again this year, and set a new record: 828 registrants! The workshop covered topics important to Construction, Operations, science, and community engagement. More details about the meeting can be found in this news item. We encourage everyone who attended to fill out the exit survey (available through August 27th), which is linked from the meeting website.  

The AURA Roman-Rubin Synergy Working Group is soliciting “science pitches” from the community that incorporate synergies between Rubin Observatory and the NASA Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope. The deadline for submission is August 31, 2021. More information is available on the AAS website

All six of the LSST Camera filters have now been delivered to the Rubin Construction Project by the coating vendor, with excellent performance. The Camera team has completed installation of five of the filters in their frames, and they are now at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory waiting to be used for the final verification of the Camera in the spring of 2022. The final filter (u-band) is awaiting final integration in its frame at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) and is scheduled to ship to SLAC by the end of September. 

In the integration hall on the third level of the summit facility building on Cerro Pachón, the LSST Commissioning Camera (ComCam) was successfully mounted to the Telescope Mount Assembly (TMA) integration structure on August 11th (photos in the Gallery). This marks a significant milestone for the Construction Project, combining Rubin hardware and several vendor-supplied subsystems (camera rotator, camera hexapod, and camera cable wrap). The team performed their tasks flawlessly, and the process went very smoothly. The entire assembly is scheduled to be mounted onto the TMA around the beginning of next year.

The Chilean Minister of Science, Technology, Knowledge and Innovation, Andrés Couve, accompanied by the Coquimbo Region’s representative of the Science Ministry, María José Escobar, visited the Rubin Observatory construction site on August 11th to learn more about the latest developments. They were accompanied by Vice President and Director of AURA in Chile, Mario Hamuy. More information and photos of the visit are available at this link

The Heising-Simons Foundation has awarded a grant of just under $900,000 over 18 months to support astronomers exploring the potential of Rubin Observatory for Galactic, stellar, and Solar System science. The three Rubin Observatory/LSST Science Collaborations dedicated to these topics; Transients and Variable Stars (TVS); Stars, Milky Way and Local Volume (SMWLV); and the Solar System Science Collaboration (SSSC); held a virtual meeting in late July to discuss the details of the new research and community-building initiative that will be supported by the grant. More information is available at this link.

Six new staff highlights are now featured on the Rubin website. Read about your colleagues Hsin-Fang Chiang, Giovanni Corvetto, Hannah Pollek, Jonathan Sick, Brian Stalder, and Colin Winslow at this link.

On August 4th, the annual AURA awards ceremony was held virtually. This year’s AURA awardees were Aime Weist, who received the Outstanding Service award; Ranpal Gill, who received the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion award for her efforts in promoting DEI initiatives; Michael Reuter, who received the award for Technology and Innovation; and the summit maintenance team, a group of 26 staff members who were instrumental in keeping the summit site safe and equipment maintained during the early part of the COVID-19 pandemic. Congratulations to all of this year’s award winners!

Do you need some Rubin Observatory swag in your life? Visit our online store where you can purchase Rubin t-shirts, coffee mugs, tote bags and more. 

Operations Updates

A Federation Charter formalizing the relationship between Rubin Observatory and the Rubin LSST Science Collaborations (SCs) has been ratified. This document formalizes the SCs and their relationship to Rubin Observatory, and describes rules of self-governance (i.e. independent of Rubin) and rights of the Science Collaboration members. More details and a link to the full document are available in this news item.

Corporation News

A new postdoctoral fellowship, the LSSTC Catalyst Fellowship, was announced in a session at Rubin 2021. Details about the fellowship can be found at this link.

Personnel Announcements

Giovanni Corvetto has been officially promoted to Rubin Safety Manager in Chile. In this role, Giovanni will be providing safety leadership for Rubin construction sites and will join Chuck Gessner; Head of Safety, Health & Environment at NOIRLab; in representing the Rubin safety team to both internal and external stakeholders. Congratulations Giovanni!

Yuyi Guo joined the pre-Operations Data Production group on August 1st. Yuyi will be a member of the Infrastructure & Support team, in the Data Curation group at Fermilab, performing Butler repository-related work on the Interim Data Facility hosted in the Google Cloud.

Steve Kahn has announced that he will be stepping down as Director of Rubin Observatory Construction during the second quarter of 2022. Planning is underway for the AURA Board and NSF approvals for the appointment of a new Director of the Rubin Construction Project to effect a smooth transition following Steve’s departure. Aaron Roodman will be taking on the role of LSST Camera Program Lead for SLAC/DOE.

Upcoming Meetings with Rubin Observatory Involvement

(those with an asterisk* are LSSTC funded):


September 23, 24 & 27: AURA Management Council for Rubin Observatory (AMCR) meeting, Virtual

October 4-7: Joint Status Review, Virtual

October 25-29: DESC Sprint Week, Virtual with in-person hubs at AstroParticule et Cosmologie (APC), France, Princeton University, and University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (UIUC)

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