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Proceedings Paper

Giant Magellan Telescope site evaluation and characterization at Las Campanas Observatory
Author(s): Joanna E. Thomas-Osip; Gabriel Prieto; Matt Johns; Mark M. Phillips
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Paper Abstract

Las Campanas Observatory has been designated as the location for the Giant Magellan Telescope (GMT). We report results obtained since the commencement, in 2005, of a systematic site testing campaign at LCO. Meteorological (cloud cover, temperature, pressure, wind, and humidity) and DIMM seeing data have been obtained at three potential sites, and are compared with identical data taken at the site of the twin Magellan 6.5m telescopes. In addition, measurements of the turbulence profile of the free-atmosphere above LCO have been collected with a MASS/DIMM. We examine the contribution to the seeing arising from turbulence in the ground layer (defined here as below an altitude of 500 m) through the difference between the turbulence integrals in the full atmosphere (as measured by DIMM) and in the free atmosphere (as measured by MASS). Additionally, we consider photometric quality, light pollution, and precipitable water vapor at LCO.

Paper Details

Date Published: 10 July 2008
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 7012, Ground-based and Airborne Telescopes II, 70121U (10 July 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.789863
Show Author Affiliations
Joanna E. Thomas-Osip, GMT/Las Campanas Observatory (Chile)
Gabriel Prieto, GMT/Las Campanas Observatory (Chile)
Matt Johns, Observatories of the Carnegie Institute of Washington (United States)
Mark M. Phillips, Observatories of the Carnegie Institute of Washington (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7012:
Ground-based and Airborne Telescopes II
Larry M. Stepp; Roberto Gilmozzi, Editor(s)

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