2015A Day 5: This Close . . .

We got this close:

This is how much distance is between MagAO and being on-sky in 2015.

We wanted to at least be testing the guider tonight, even if not closed-loop AO. But alas, we didn’t quite make it. The last thing we didn’t quite get accomplished was bolting the NAS to the telescope. It’s ready to go though, and we’ll be operating at the diffraction limit soon.

We, by which I mean Katie, did a little more last minute work on Clio today.

MagAO’s Instrument Scientist has been putting in endless hours in the cleanroom making sure Clio is ready to go.

Here’s another shot of the instrument scientist instrument scientisting.

Perhaps the biggest news is that our adaptive secondary mirror (ASM) is alive and well. It was mounted on the telescope this morning and tonight we powered it up.

Here’s the ASM coming up to the dome floor yesterday.

Look at the beautiful flat shell! The gap is 48-66 microns, unchanged since December. That means no contamination!

You have no idea how good this feels. The shell survived and is ready to rock and roll.

Let the record reflect: on this date the NAS mounting toolbox had a complete set of ball drivers in both metric and imperial units. Hands off Clio.

There has been a minor problem with birds in the cleanroom. This is a reenactment.

Some quotes from today:

“After I’ve been here too long I get kinda giggly.” — Povilas

“The problem with Povilas is that he’s almost always right.” — Laird

“You see Laird, this is why I don’t trust you.” — Povilas

“No, I did NOT ask for double onions!!!!” — Laird

Katie set a new precedent yesterday by posting a cover as the song of the day, but satisfying the 2015 A Blog Rules by posting the song being covered as the cover. See how that works? Well I’m going to follow her lead and start with the covers.

This is a MagAO blog first: the song of the day is by a group of people who have MagAO access — who knows, maybe they have time this semester. Stick around at least through the 3rd solo starting at 3:00, she absolutely KILLS it.

Like any other truly great song, Madonna’s “Like a Prayer” is just as amazing in many very different styles. Here’s a sampling:

And for completeness, here’s the one and only original:

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