Status Report

NASA Hubble Space Telescope Daily Report # 3604

By SpaceRef Editor
May 5, 2004
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HUBBLE SPACE TELESCOPE – Continuing to collect World Class Science




ACS/HRC 9747

An Imaging Survey of the Statistical Frequency of Binaries Among
Exceptionally-Young Dynamical Families in the Main Asteroid Belt

We propose an ambitious SNAPSHOT program to determine the frequency of
binaries among two very young asteroid families in the Main Belt, with
potentially profound implications. These families {of C- and S-type}
have recently been discovered {Nesvorny et al. 2002, Nature 417, 720},
through dynamical modeling, to have been formed at 5.8 MY and 8.3 MY
ago in catastrophic impact events. This is the first time such
precise and young ages have been assigned to a family. Main-belt
binaries are almost certainly produced by collisions, and we would
expect a young family to have a significantly higher frequency of
binaries than the background, because they may not yet have been
destroyed by impact or longer-term gravitational instabilities. In
fact, one of the prime observables from such an event should be the
propensity for satellites. This is the best way that new numerical
models for binary production by collisions {motivated largely by our
ground-based discoveries of satellites among larger asteroids}, can be
validated and calibrated. We will also measure two control clusters,
one being an "old" family, and the other a collection of background
asteroids that do not have a family association, and further compare
with our determined value for the frequency of large main-belt
binaries {2%}. We request visits to 180 targets, using ACS/HRC.

ACS/HRC 9974

Mid-Ultraviolet Spectral Templates for Old Stellar Systems

We propose a three-year program to provide both observational and
theoretical mid-ultraviolet {2300A — 3100A} spectral templates for
interpreting the age and metallicity of globular clusters and
elliptical galaxies from spectra of their integrated light. The mid-UV
is the region most directly influenced by stellar age, and is observed
directly in optical and infrared studies of high-redshift quiescent
systems. The reliability of age and metallicity determinations remains
questionable until non-solar metallicities and abundance ratios are
considered, and stars spanning the color-magnitude diagram are
included, as we propose here. With archival HST STIS spectra we have
improved the list of mid-UV atomic line parameters, then calculated
spectra from first principles which match observed spectra of standard
stars up to one- fourth solar metallicity. We will extend both
observations and calculations to stars of solar metallicity and
beyond, and to those in short-lived stages hotter than the
main-sequence turnoff, stars not currently well-represented in
empirical libraries. The necessary line-list improvements will come
from new high-resolution mid-UV spectra of nine field stars. A key
application of the results of this program will be to the old systems
now being discovered as `Extremely Red Objects’ at high redshifts.
Reliable age-dating of these places constraints on the epoch when
large structures first formed in the universe.


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.


The COSMOS 2-Degree ACS Survey

We will undertake a 2 square degree imaging survey {Cosmic Evolution
Survey — COSMOS} with ACS in the I {F814W} band of the VIMOS
equatorial field. This wide field survey is essential to understand
the interplay between Large Scale Structure {LSS} evolution and the
formation of galaxies, dark matter and AGNs and is the one region of
parameter space completely unexplored at present by HST. The
equatorial field was selected for its accessibility to all
ground-based telescopes and low IR background and because it will
eventually contain ~100, 000 galaxy spectra from the VLT-VIMOS
instrument. The imaging will detect over 2 million objects with I> 27
mag {AB, 10 sigma}, over 35, 000 Lyman Break Galaxies {LBGs} and
extremely red galaxies out to z ~ 5. COSMOS is the only HST project
specifically designed to probe the formation and evolution of
structures ranging from galaxies up to Coma-size clusters in the epoch
of peak galaxy, AGN, star and cluster formation {z ~0.5 to 3}. The
size of the largest structures necessitate the 2 degree field. Our
team is committed to the assembly of several public ancillary datasets
including the optical spectra, deep XMM and VLA imaging, ground-based
optical/IR imaging, UV imaging from GALEX and IR data from SIRTF.
Combining the full-spectrum multiwavelength imaging and spectroscopic
coverage with ACS sub-kpc resolution, COSMOS will be Hubble’s ultimate
legacy for understanding the evolution of both the visible and dark

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.

NIC1/NIC2/NIC3 9723

Deep NICMOS imaging

We have obtained ultra-deep Js, H, Ks imaging of the Hubble Deep Field
South WFPC2 field with the VLT, in order to study high redshift
galaxies. The Ks-band data are the deepest obtained to date in any
field. We find that the population of Ks selected galaxies at z=2-4 in
HDF-South differs in two important aspects from previous studies in
HDF-North. First, we find several galaxies which are large and
apparently regular in the rest-frame optical, with more complex rest-
frame UV morphologies. These objects resemble large disk galaxies in
the local Universe. Second, we have identified a population of
galaxies with red J-K colors that are extremely faint in the
rest-frame UV. The galaxies have ages of 0.5-2 Gyr and are highly
clustered, and may be progenitors of nearby bulges and early-type
galaxies. We propose to obtain a deep mosaic with the NICMOS/NIC3
camera in the H band, covering the WFPC2 field. The increased depth
and spatial resolution of the NICMOS mosaic would allow us to
determine the restframe optical morphologies of a large sample of high
redshift galaxies, in order to study the relative distributions of
young and old stars, to decompose the galaxies in bulges and disks, to
measure scale lengths, and to model the stellar populations of the
sub-components. The lack of large U- dropouts and red galaxies in
HDF-North, and the need for larger samples call for the proposed
imaging of HDF-South. We waive all proprietary rights.

NIC3 9999

The COSMOS 2-Degree ACS Survey NICMOS Parallels

The COSMOS 2-Degree ACS Survey NICMOS Parallels. This program is a
companion to program 9822.

S/C/NIC1/NIC3 9994

NICMOS Focus Stability

The purpose of this activity is to determine if the best focus
determined in SMOV is stable. This program will execute in
approximately one month intervals starting about 1 month after the
last execution of proposal 8980.

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 10016

STIS CCD Performance Monitor

This activity measures the baseline performance and commandability of
the CCD subsystem. Only primary amplifier D is used. Bias and Flat
Field exposures are taken in order to measure bias level, read noise,
CTE, and gain. Numerous bias frames are taken to permit construction
of "superbias" frames in which the effects of read noise have been
rendered negligible. Full frame and binned observations are made, with
binning factors of 2 x 1, 1 x 2, 2 x 2, 4 x 1, and 4 x 2. Bias frames
are taken in subarray readouts to check the bias level for ACQ and
ACQ/PEAK observations. All exposures are internals.

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.

STIS/CCD 10021

CCD Read Noise Monitor

This proposal measures the read noise of all the amplifiers {A, B, C,
D} on the STIS CCD using pairs of bias frames. Full frame and binned
observations are made in both Gain 1 and Gain 4, with binning factors
of 1×1, 1×2, 2×1 and 2×2. All exposures are internals. Pairs of visits
are scheduled for bimonthly execution.

STIS/MA1 10034

Cycle 12 MAMA Dark Monitor

This test performs the routine monitoring of the MAMA detector dark
noise. This proposal will provide the primary means of checking on
health of the MAMA detectors systems through frequent monitoring of
the background count rate. The purpose is to look for evidence of
change in dark indicative of detector problem developing.

WFPC2 10068

WFPC2 CYCLE 12 Standard Darks

This dark calibration program obtains dark frames every week in order
to provide data for the ongoing calibration of the CCD dark current
rate, and to monitor and characterize the evolution of hot pixels.
Over an extended period these data will also provide a monitor of
radiation damage to the CCDs.

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

WFPC2 10072


This calibration proposal is the Cycle 12 routine internal monitor for
WFPC2, to be run weekly to monitor the health of the cameras. A
variety of internal exposures are obtained in order to provide a
monitor of the integrity of the CCD camera electronics in both bays
{gain 7 and gain 15}, a test for quantum efficiency in the CCDs, and a
monitor for possible buildup of contaminants on the CCD windows.

WFPC2 10074

WFPC2 Cycle 12 UV Earth Flats

Monitor flat field stability. This proposal obtains sequences of earth
streak flats to improve the quality of pipeline flat fields for the
WFPC2 UV filter set. These Earth flats will complement the UV earth
flat data obtained during cycles 8-11.


Significant Spacecraft Anomalies: (The following are preliminary
reports of potential non-nominal performance that will be
investigated.) None



                          SCHEDULED     SUCCESSFUL    FAILURE TIMES
FGS GSacq              14                          14
FGS REacq              01                           01
FHST Update           23                           23


SpaceRef staff editor.