AAS 199th meeting, Washington, DC, January 2002
Session 102. Instrumentation for the Optical and Infrared
Display, Wednesday, January 9, 2002, 9:20am-6:30pm, Exhibit Hall

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[102.05] Analysis of Mayall 4m Environment

N.A. Sharp (NOAO), E.J. Klein (Brandeis University)

To deliver the best possible science, a telescope needs to provide optimal seeing. Thermal control is used at Kitt Peak's Mayall four-meter telescope to try to match the temperature of the primary mirror to its environment, as a difference is known to degrade seeing. For some years, KPNO has been logging a great deal of information about the telescope's environment, while measuring the seeing. Although there has been a significant and welcome decrease in the delivered seeing, our analysis of these data shows that there is still room for improvement. We make specific recommendations for changes to both the mirror cooling system and the observing procedures used at the 4-meter.

This work was carried out through the NOAO/KPNO REU Program, supported by the National Science Foundation.

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