UIST observing programmes are run from the OM. The observer at the summit uses the Query Tool (QT )to access and extract observations from the database (observations which were previously prepared using the OT ). The QT allows the user to select observations based on their “observability”, using constraints such as seeing, photometric requirements, dryness and of course source accessibility. A copy of the QT screen is shown below.
An observing programme will consist of a list of “Minimum Schedulable Blocks”, or MSBs. For example, a standard star and source observation might constitute an MSB. By entering a project ID in the QT (usually the project PATT number, e.g. u/03a/99), a list of MSBs can be displayed in the bottom half of the QT window. MSBs may then be selected and their components displayed on a second page of the QT window, as shown below.
Once an MSB has been selected, it can be sent to a second window, the “Queue Manager”. Here the individual observations in the MSB are queued, ready for execution.
With the queue running, each observation will be sent automatically to a third window, the “Sequence Console”, which shows the individual steps of the observation (the slew to the source, the configuration of the instrument, and the actual observations). From the sequencer the observer is finally ready to take data using the “run from highlight” button. The sequence console is shown below.
A more general guide to using the OMP is also available.