2014B Day 11: Non così normale

The other day we said we were back to normal… the clouds had gone away and we had a great night on-sky with a good AO correction, doing fun science. However, some not-so-normal problems cropped up again, and we just got through a bit of a stressful time. We were losing communication with our slope computer, and having other strange symptoms. In the end, we managed to get ahold of our Italian friends, who helped us trouble-shoot.

The project spent a lot of time in Florence and some in Bolzano, and we are so grateful for our friends and colleagues who show such great interest in our project and in helping to keep it running! Here is Arcetri where Laird and Jared built the system with Alfio, Simone, Armando, Runa, Marco, Enrico, Luca, and more:

We contacted our friends in Firenze and Bolzano, Italy. Here is Arcetri Observatory in Florence.

Alfio has been following our progress this run, our first run without him. Here’s Alfio with Jared last summer:

Jared and Alfio in Firenze, summer 2013. With the Arno and the Ponte Vecchio

And here is Laird, Jared, and me with Galileo in Florence:

Jared, Laird, and me with Galileo

So after Laird went home, we talked to Alfio, Roberto, and Mario, and got some ideas on what to check. So Jared, Pato, and I adjusted the voltage in the BCU and also switched to the spare fibers.

Jared is testing the voltage at the BCU

Jared is about to adjust the voltage in the BCU

Pato and Jared connect the BCU back up

And…success! Slopes were being sent, slopes were being received, and nary a divide-by-zero error to be seen!

Yay! It’s alive! Slopes are being sent & received!

We celebrated by replacing the batteries in the wind monitor, getting on sky, and closing the loop!

Here I am hooking up the wind monitor. We replaced its batteries … but there was no wind tonight!

Laird left me in charge. I let TJ point to the North tonight — there was no wind!

At the end of a night of good hard work, we were rewarded with the sunrise, a vizcacha, and a herd of burros:

Sunrise and the trucks of LCO

A burro runs away from Jared

Burros at dawn

A wild vizcacha… or is it Grumpy on his morning perch?

Shake it off!

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