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Proceedings Paper

New database for nighttime programs at the National Optical Astronomy Observatories
Author(s): Catherine A. Pilachowski; Christa Brown
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Paper Abstract

The National Optical Astronomy Observatories has developed a new database system, ALPS, to track proposals for telescope time from original receipt through the review process, scheduling, observing, and final statistical reporting. The database is written in Microsoft Access, and is integrated with observatory operations. Proposals arrive in a LATEX format and are parsed into files suitable for import into Access using a Perl script running under Unix. The database system provides tools to support al activities associated with handling proposals, including support for the Telescope Allocation Committee through reviewer assignments, grades imported via the Web, and comments for the principal investigator. The telescope schedules are prepared through a scheduling interface, and the final schedule is posted automatically to the Web. Statistics on telescope usage are collected via the Web and imported into the database as well. The new database has been in operation since March, 1997, for proposals submitted for observing time at the Kitt Peak National Observatory, and has been installed at Cerro Tololo Interamerican Observatory as well. The program is written to be easily adaptable for new facilities which will be available through NOAO, including public access to time at independent observatories and access to the Gemini telescopes.

Paper Details

Date Published: 3 July 1998
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 3349, Observatory Operations to Optimize Scientific Return, (3 July 1998); doi: 10.1117/12.316500
Show Author Affiliations
Catherine A. Pilachowski, National Optical Astronomy Observatories (United States)
Christa Brown, National Optical Astronomy Observatories (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3349:
Observatory Operations to Optimize Scientific Return
Peter J. Quinn, Editor(s)

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