M1M3 Mirror Cell Progress

February 25, 2016 - Since its completion in January 2015, the LSST M1M3 mirror has been in storage in Tucson awaiting completion of the mirror cell.  When the cell is complete, it will be joined to the M1M3 mirror for additional testing at the University of Arizona’s Richard F. Caris Mirror Lab.  The two pieces will ship separately to Chile and then be reunited for the duration of the LSST ten-year survey from Cerro Pachon.

LIGO & LSST - Catching the Wave

February 19, 2016 – As part of last week's announcement that LIGO has directly detected gravitational waves emitted by a pair of merging black holes, the LIGO collaboration has released a map showing the probable location of the wave’s origin.  In anticipation of future gravitational-wave detections of merging compact objects involving neutron stars, we can hope to spot such events as visible lights sources accompanying gravitational-wave emission.

LSST Altitude Adjustment

Telescope Mount Assembly (TMA) subcontractor Asturfeito in Spain has begun to produce the circular steel tracks for the elevation hydrostatic bearings.  Project Manager Francisco Romero is shown here standing on the material used for the azimuth bearing track assembly with the circular tracks that support the elevation bearings to his left.  Two tracks will be stacked on each side of the telescope in the central structure to support the elevation trunnion bearings.  To Francisco’s right, note the plasma cutter’s glowing arc as it is used to cut steel plates for additional azimuth track sectors. 

Fiber Optic Data Links Agreements

February 5, 2016 - In Chile, dedicated fiber-optic lines will connect the Cerro Pachón summit and base site in La Serena, but additional networks are required to provide 100Gbs connectivity LSST requires from La Serena to Santiago and onwards to the USA. As part of a larger effort to improve network redundancy and connectivity, the National University Network (REUNA) is leveraging an initiative by the three major telecommunications providers in Chile to provide fiber-optic links up the Elqui Valley, which adjoins the AURA property on which LSST is being built.

TMA and Tapas

January 29, 2016 - Eleven members of the LSST Telescope and Site and Project Office have been in Madrid, Spain, this week participating in a successful Final Design Review of the Telescope Mount Assembly (TMA) with prime contractor Empresarios Agrupados (EA). The panel members evaluated EA’s design and sub-contractor efforts, reviewing design conformance and assessing risk to advancing the key components into...

Celebrating Safety

January 22, 2016 - To mark the first year of construction activities on Cerro El Peñon, General Manager of Besalco Construcciones, Mr. Guillermo Garcia, was presented with a letter of appreciation from LSST Project Manager Victor Krabbendam and gave recognition to his employees for the excellent work done and emphasis on safety in this first year.  Victor wrote:

“Piering” down on LSST Construction

January 12, 2016 - A DJI Phantom 3 Pro Drone is being used on Cerro Pachón to monitor LSST construction progress from a birds-eye view.  Multiple images will be used to generate a 3D model of the Summit Facility, suitable for inspection via virtual reality.  In these initial images taken by Systems Engineer Jacques Sebag on January 8, 2016, preparation of the telescope pier is clearly visible.

Holiday Greetings / Saludos de fin de año

Holiday Greetings from LSST - On behalf of the Project Office, we wish you a joyous holiday season and Happy New Year!

Saludos de fin de año del LSST - En nombre de la oficina del proyecto, les deseamos unas felices fiestas y un próspero año nuevo

Promoting Workplace Culture

December 18, 2015AURA’s Workforce and Diversity Committee (WDC) met in Tucson last week, to further the important work this committee has been doing since its inception in 2008.    Each AURA Center, including the LSST Project Office, is represented on the WDC through their Diversity Advocate (DA); the WDC is the only AURA governance committee with members who are AURA employees.  This committee supports a partnership between the DAs, Human Resources representatives, and external experts to realize AURA’s vision of a modern organization:a fully diverse staff (in all dimensions) who feel genuinely empowered to bring their diverse perspectives into the ongoing creation

Inspiring Future Astro-Engineers in Chile

December 11, 2015 - LSST Optics Engineer Constanza Araujo attended the III Astro-Engineering Workshop in Santiago in November and gave a talk on the LSST Optical System.  To promote engineering disciplines that are needed in the new and current observatories in Chile, her presentation included a brief description of the work of an optical engineer in a telescope project while in construction phase. 


Financial support for Rubin Observatory comes from the National Science Foundation (NSF) through Cooperative Agreement No. 1258333, the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science under Contract No. DE-AC02-76SF00515, and private funding raised by the LSST Corporation. The NSF-funded Rubin Observatory Project Office for construction was established as an operating center under management of the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA).  The DOE-funded effort to build the the Rubin Observatory LSST Camera (LSSTCam) is managed by the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory (SLAC).
The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency created by Congress in 1950 to promote the progress of science. NSF supports basic research and people to create knowledge that transforms the future.
NSF and DOE will continue to support Rubin Observatory in its Operations phase. They will also provide support for scientific research with LSST data.   

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