PROCEDURE FOR ABANDONING THE ING TELESCOPES SITE

revised 01/11/99


This note compliments and is additional to "Winter Procedures". Winter procedures primarily deals with safety of Personnel travelling to and from site.
Abandoning the ING Telescopes primarily deals with the protection and safe shutdown of telescopes, domes and associated equipment (which will be referred to as "close down"), in the event of adverse weather conditions. Notes for Guidance.
No compromise on safety should be made in carrying out any tasks or duties in "closing down" the site. The decision to carry out these tasks should not be at last minute thing. On normal working days the Ops team leader, in consultation with the Safety Officer and DE should monitor and plan for a co-ordinated "close down".
If the decision to "close down" is made an additional member of staff should stay on site to support the DE. (This would usually be a member from site services or the mechanical group) On many occasions day staff may be required to leave site without the telescopes being completely abandoned. If this is the case then day staff should help carryout the "close down" before leaving site.
In silent hours the DE or the WHT Telescope operator in consultation with the DE, make the decision to abandon the telescopes. Judgement by both parties should be made on which "close down" tasks can be completed without compromising the safety of personnel.
If the telescopes are to be completely abandoned then all remaining personnel should be contacted for a co-ordinated convoy down to the residencia. This would be implemented by the DE or the WHT Telescope operator in consultation with the DE.
In the highly unlikely event of the residencia being evacuated then the DE must co-ordinate transport plans for all remaining ING personnel and visitors down to sea level.
Please note snow and/or falling ice can kill or seriously injury you. Only enter telescope buildings through the main entrances. Do not walk or park any cars close to any telescopes buildings, which have snow and or ice on them. If you have any doubt please ask the DE or the safety officer for advice.
Closing Down.
Before abandoning site try and complete as many of the following tasks as possible.
  1. Check all dome shutters are properly sealed. In the day you can check this by turning the lights off.

  2. Keep domes rotating as long as possible when snow is falling. Only when the telescopes are abandoned of all staff should the domes be positioned so that the blue painted arrows on the moving and stationary parts of the domes are aligned. The positions for the dome in snowy/icy conditions are: These positions are easily obtained by using the DOME command from the TCS computer, before closing down the telescope. In wet weather, the domes should be rotated at the end of the night so that the shutters point into the wind

  3. Fill all cryostats and switch off the CCD controllers (don't bother about the autoguiders)

  4. Bring the telescopes to a low elevation ( 25-30 deg from zenith) to reduce the chances of rain leaking on to optical surfaces.

  5. Try and collect all two wheel drive cars around site and get them into buildings (WHT/INT aluminising areas or garage). They are a liability buried outside the residencia or our telescope buildings.

  6. Check and fill with Diesel if necessary all on site 4X4s. If you abandon to the residencia take all 4X4s down with you, they are no good under snow at the telescopes.

  7. Keep a log of staff and visitors i.e. who and where.
Prepared by Kevin Dee / Alan Chopping & Clive Jackman