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Planning Observations

As soon as possible

  1. If you have been awarded time for LIRIS multi-object spectroscopy, please contact the LIRIS MOS specialist as soon as possible, in order to initiate preparation of the slit masks.

  2. For long INT runs where there is a change of observing team planned within the run, you must inform your Support Astronomer (SA) of the names of the observers and date(s) of the handover(s) so we can provide training for the new observers on the day of each handover.

  3. Observers bringing visitor instruments should allow enough time before and after the run to supervise packing of their equipment, read more at freight information.

  4. La Palma is a holidays destination so please book your travel and accommodation well in advance, especially during peak periods such as Carnival, Easter and Christmas when flights are heavily booked, and in July in years ending in 0 or 5 (when the Bajada de La Virgen, a big festival, takes place in Santa Cruz de La Palma). The ING sea-level office, which is responsible for making the visiting observers' bookings (travel to/from site, sea-level accommodation and computing requirements), is open from 9:00 to 17:00 Monday to Thursday (9:00 to 16:30 on Friday), and closed from 13:00 to 14:00, on weekends and public holidays. You can get the La Palma public holidays from the ING schedules (dates shown in green).

At least one month in advance of your run

  1. Make contact with your SA, as listed in the schedules, and explain who will be coming to observe, and when. Confirm to the SA the instrument and detector setup required, and feel free to ask his/her advice about any outstanding observing issues. Prepare your target catalog. You´ll find useful observation-planning tools on the astronomy web pages. Your SA will remind you about the need to provide driving-licence details if you plan to use an ING car on-site.

  2. Inexperienced observers MUST be accompanied by a suitably experienced observer. Read about the current observer support scheme at the telescope. If in doubt, seek the advice of your SA.

  3. Your continued health and safety throughout your visit is of paramount importance to us. Please familiarise yourself with ING's Health and Safety guidelines.

  4. DDS3 tapes (INT/WFC) or DVD media (WHT and INT/IDS), guest computer accounts and laptop wireless network access are provided by default at the control rooms. Be aware that for security reasons, you can read but not send out email connecting with your usual email server from within the ING network. Instead, make the proper arrangements to use webemail, SSH, VPN or EDUROAM connections. Read about our astronomy computing facilities on site and complete the computing facilities questionnaire for any additional computing requirements.

  5. Read about the visitor programme, including the seminar programme.

On arrival

  1. During periods of bad weather you will be asked to follow special Winter Procedures, which means that the taxi can't get to the observatory before 09:15am, and the way down must be done in daylight. Due to these restrictions, or if the observatory is unreachable, you will be reallocated in a hotel at sea-level or have to stay longer at the observatory's residence.

  2. Observers should be aware that there are override programmes active which could affect your programme. A summary of these and the procedure by which they are triggered and carried out is given at ING override programmes. The overriden observing time cannot be returned.

  3. Ask for an ING welcome visitor pack on check-in. You will be also provided with the following safety checklists which should be read and returned signed: WHT, INT.



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Last modified: 13 November 2014