Status Report

NASA Hubble Space Telescope Daily Report # 3581

By SpaceRef Editor
April 1, 2004
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HUBBLE SPACE TELESCOPE – Continuing to collect World Class Science





CCD Daily Monitor

This program consists of basic tests to monitor, the read noise, the
development of hot pixels and test for any source of noise in ACS CCD
detectors. This programme will be executed once a day for the entire
lifetime of ACS.


Morphologies of EROs and Field Galaxies in SIRTF’s First Look Survey:
A Rich Early Release Dataset

The SIRTF First Look Survey {FLS} will be the first scientific program
undertaken with NASA’s next Great Observatory. The FLS provides the
first large sample of dusty galaxies to redshifts to z < 2 and a
census of large-scale global IR properties {luminosities, color
temperatures, total dust mass, etc.} HST observations to measure
morphology are critical to provide insight into the mechanisms which
build up the various galaxy components–disks, bulges as well as
chaotic morphologies. We will measure quantitative morphology of fifty
extremely red objects {EROs} with targeted NICMOS pointings and
hundreds of field galaxies with ACS in parallel in the FLS. We aim to
understand how EROs fit into the evolutionary sequence of galaxy
formation. The combined HST and SIRTF observations will provide clues
into the physical processes responsible for generating powerful far-IR
sources or, conversely, may explain why some galaxies are inactive in
the far-IR. Ancillary ground-based optical, near-IR, and radio data
have already been obtained and DEIMOS spectra are scheduled for June,
2003. We waive the proprietary period for the HST observations and if
executed early in Cycle 12 the FLS will be the first complete
SIRTF+HST survey made available to the astronomical community, well in
advance of the majority of the Legacy observations and all of the GTO

NIC1/NIC2/NIC3 8792

NICMOS Post-SAA calibration – CR Persistence Part 3

A new procedure proposed to alleviate the CR-persistence problem of
NICMOS. Dark frames will be obtained immediately upon exiting the SAA
contour 23, and every time a NICMOS exposure is scheduled within 50
minutes of coming out of the SAA. The darks will be obtained in
parallel in all three NICMOS Cameras. The POST-SAA darks will be
non-standard reference files available to users with a USEAFTER
date/time mark. The keyword ‘USEAFTER=date/time’ will also be added to
the header of each POST-SAA DARK frame. The keyword must be populated
with the time, in addition to the date, because HST crosses the SAA ~8
times per day so each POST-SAA DARK will need to have the appropriate
time specified, for users to identify the ones they need. Both the raw
and processed images will be archived as POST-SAA DARKSs. Generally we
expect that all NICMOS science/calibration observations started within
50 minutes of leaving an SAA will need such maps to remove the CR
persistence from the science images. Each observation will need its
own CRMAP, as different SAA passages leave different imprints on the
NICMOS detectors.

NIC3 9824

NIC3 SNAPs of nearby galaxies imaged in the mid-UV: the remarkable
cool stellar population in late-type galaxies.

We propose a NIC3 H-band {F160W} SNAPshot survey of 48 nearby mid- to
late-type galaxies covering all inclinations. In Cycle 9 and 10, we
imaged ~100 galaxies in the mid-UV {F300W/F255W} and I-band {F814W}
with WFPC2, and obtained UBVR CCD surface photometry from the ground.
Early-mid-type galaxies show the usual small radial color-gradients,
where disks become somewhat bluer at larger radii. But, remarkably,
the majority of {lower luminosity, smaller and rounder} late-type
galaxies shows the opposite trend and becomes redder outwards in all
filters. While young UV/blue-bright stellar populations dominate their
inner morphology, most late-type galaxies must have a significant halo
or thick disk of older stars. Combining our proposed NIC3 H-band with
existing WFPC2 images will span the wavelength range 0.29-1.6 micron
at resolutions of 0.04-0.16" {FWHM}. This Panchromatic Nearby Galaxy
Atlas will be applicable to a wide range of problems, and will be made
public immediately. Our NIC3/F160W science goals are to: {1} Establish
the nature of the old outer stellar population. All target galaxies
have z<0.005, allowing us to resolve any luminous, cool supergiant
population. NIC3 is essential to make a pixel-to-pixel color-magnitude
study of the nature, distribution and uniformity of the outer stellar
populations, which will constrain dwarf galaxy formation theories. {2}
Determine galaxy structure at 5-20 pc resolution, tracing the old
stellar population and mass distribution compared to the star-forming
regions seen in the mid-UV. A range of inclinations is needed to
distinguish between old thick disks or halos in late-type galaxies.
{3} Make a multi-wavelength pixel-to-pixel decomposition to help
delineate the effects of dust, age, and metallicity. Since we must
cover a range of inclinations, NIC3 H-band is essential to map the
effects from dust, and see how these may affect the studies of {1} and

STIS 9506


We propose a STIS G140L spectroscopic Snapshot program of bright
{V<=16.5} AGN not previously observed in the UV to discover new
high-column density {N_H >= 10^15 cm^-2} LyAlpha absorbers in the
local Universe {z <= 0.45}. Many more of these high column density
systems are needed because: {1} They contribute most of the baryons to
the local IGM; {2} They include systems for which valuable metallicity
and D/H measurements can be made; {3} They include many of the
“warm-hot” absorbers, thought to be a large baryon reservoir in the
local Universe; and {4} They are most likely to be “associated” with
galaxy halos. Because of their low-z, many of these absorbers can be
located relative to galaxies of known redshifts, allowing an immediate
scientific return from these snapshots.

STIS 9786

The Next Generation Spectral Library

We propose to continue the Cycle 10 snapshot program to produce a Next
Generation Spectral Library of 600 stars for use in modeling the
integrated light of galaxies and clusters. This program is using the
low dispersion UV and optical gratings of STIS. The library will be
roughly equally divided among four metallicities, very low {[Fe/H] lt
-1.5}, low {[Fe/H] -1.5 to -0.5}, near-solar {[Fe/H] -0.3 to 0.1}, and
super-solar {[Fe/H] gt 0.2}, well-sampling the entire HR-diagram in
each bin. Such a library will surpass all extant compilations and have
lasting archival value, well into the Next Generation Space Telescope
era. Because of the universal utility and community-broad nature of
this venture, we waive the entire proprietary period.

STIS/CCD 10018

CCD Dark Monitor-Part 2

Monitor the darks for the STIS CCD.

STIS/CCD 10020

CCD Bias Monitor – Part 2

Monitor the bias in the 1×1, 1×2, 2×1, and 2×2 bin settings at gain=1,
and 1×1 at gain = 4, to build up high-S/N superbiases and track the
evolution of hot columns.


Towards a global understanding of accretion physics – Clues from an UV
spectroscopic survey of cataclysmic variables

Accretion inflows and outflows are fundamental phenomena in a wide
variety of astrophysical environments, such as Young Stellar Objects,
galactic binaries, and AGN. Observationally, cataclysmic variables
{CVs} are particularly well suited for the study of accretion
processes. We are currently carrying out a Cycle 11 STIS UV
spectroscopic snapshot survey of CVs to fully exploit the diagnostic
potential of these objects for our understanding of accretion physics.
While the data obtained so far are of excellent quality, the number of
targets that will be observed in Cycle 11 is too small for a
statistically significant analysis {only 19 objects out of our 149
accepted Cycle 11 snapshot targets have been observed at the time of
writing}. We propose here to extend this survey into Cycle 12,
building a homogenous database of accretion disc and wind outflow
spectra covering a wide range of mass transfer rates and binary
inclinations. We will analyze these spectra with state-of-the-art
accretion disc model spectra {SYNDISK}, testing our current knowledge
of the accretion disc structure, and, thereby, providing new insight
into the so far not well understood process of viscous dissipation. We
will use our parameterised wind model PYTHON for the analysis of the
radiation driven accretion disc wind spectra, assessing the
fundamental question whether the mass loss rate correlates with the
disc luminosity. In addition, our survey data will identify a number
of systems in which the white dwarf significantly contributes to the
UV flux, permitting an analysis of the impact of mass accretion on the
evolution of these compact stars. This survey will triple the number
of currently available high-quality accretion disc / wind outflow /
accreting white dwarf spectra, and we waive our proprietary rights to
permit a timely use of this database.

WFPC2 10070

WFPC2 CYCLE 12 Supplemental Darks Part 2/3

This dark calibration program obtains 3 dark frames every day to
provide data for monitoring and characterizing the evolution of hot


Significant Spacecraft Anomalies: (The following are preliminary
reports of potential non-nominal performance that will be

HSTAR 9364: Current spikes in STIS Input Current (CPDU1CUR) @
090/11:31:06Z and 11:32:24Z. STIS was executing a transition from CCD
Standby to Operate. SI SEs investigated STIS Input Current and did
not find any current anomalies. CMNBUSAV and CMNBUSBV were also
flagging OOL, as a result of Battery 2 Capacity Testing that was in
progress near end of orbit night. Under investigation.

HSTAR 9365: OTA SE in reviewing PTAS Processing Log for SMS SA082O,
revealed GS Reacquisition (2,3,2) @ 084/16:57:59Z required two
attempts before FGS-2R was able to achieve FL-DV on its GS. Under


1213-1 Tracking waiver during Battery 2 capacity test (On going through
end of Batt#2 Test)

                           SCHEDULED     SUCCESSFUL    FAILURE TIMES
FGS GSacq               13                        13
FGS REacq               05                         05
FHST Update             10                         10


Continued Battery 2, Two-stage Capacity Testing. Battery 2 discharge
switched to Low-rate 50 O resistor (~26.09 Volts) @ 090/11:57Z. As of
091/11:00Z, discharge reached 22.4 Volts. EPS SEs continue to monitor
progress from the STOCC.

JSC Command Test with SOCPSS scheduled 091/12:00Z – 20:00Z with GDOC,
SOC, and HITT using CCS "H" String with CCS Release and PRD
O06300ST. The purpose of this testing is to verify command
capabilities for CCS Release in JSC mode.

SpaceRef staff editor.