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What's new with LEDAS?


Nov 2005: PIMMS/WebPIMMS updated to v3.7a

The X-ray mission simulator software PIMMS (and the online counterpart WebPIMMS) have been updated to the latest version v3.7a. This version contains updated effective area curves for the Suzaku instruments. We recommend that Cycle 1/AO-1 proposers use v3.7a.

October 2005: ARNIE5 contains Spitzer Space Telescope Observation Log

The Spitzer Space Telescope Observation Log is now available via ARNIE5.

This database table contains the Spitzer Space Telescope (SST) log of executed and scheduled observations, and is updated on a weekly basis.

Spitzer is the fourth and final element in NASA's family of Great Observatories and represents an important scientific and technical bridge to NASA's Astronomical Search for Origins program. The SST Observatory carries an 85-cm cryogenic telescope and 3 cryogenically cooled science instruments capable of performing imaging and spectroscopy in the 3.6 to 160 micron (um) range. Spitzer was launched on a Delta 7920H from Cape Canaveral into an Earth-trailing heliocentric orbit in August 2003. While the Spitzer cryogenic lifetime requirements are 2.5 years, current estimates indicate that acheiving a goal of a 5-year cryogenic mission is possible.

For more overview information, refer to the Spitzer Science Center (SSC) Observatory and Instruments Overview at http://ssc.spitzer.caltech.edu/obs/overview.html.

Sept 2005: PIMMS/WebPIMMS updated to v3.7

The X-ray mission simulation software PIMMS (and the online counterpart WebPIMMS) have been updated to the latest version v3.7. This version includes the AO-5 versions of XMM-Newton EPIC effective area curves, which differs slightly from the AO-4 versions. There are no updates for the RGS effective area.

This version also includes calibration updates of the RXTE PCA effective area curves. The count rate should increase by about 11% compared to previous versions. This is deemed minor enough that no impact is expected in proposal preparationss and in observation planning.

This version also includes post-launch calibration of the Swift XRT, in three data modes (photon counting, photodiode, and windowed timing).

PIMMS now uses the post-launch name, Suzaku, for the former Astro-E2.

This version now provides assumptions regarding the input count rate (such as extraction region for imaging instruments) for various missions.

June 2005: Chandra data reduction software updated

The Chandra X-Ray Center released v3.2.2 of the Chandra data reduction and analysis software CIAO, and v3.1.0 of the calibration database CalDB on 23 Jun 2005.

The CIAO 3.2.2 patch contains significant bug fixes to the mkacisrmf and asphist tools. Read the patch release notes for full details. In order for CIAO 3.2.2 to work properly, you must have at least CalDB 3.1.0 installed.

CalDB 3.1.0 is being released simultaneously with the CIAO 3.2.2 software patch. The new CalDB is required for proper performance of CIAO 3.2.2. CalDB 3.1.0 is not fully compatible with CIAO 3.2.1 due to certain bugs in the tool mkacisrmf. Hence users are encouraged to upgrade both their CIAO and CalDB installations to the latest versions.

CalDB 3.1.0 is a major upgrade to CalDB 3.0.x, which includes the new ACIS N0004 responses suite. This suite includes upgraded CTI correction, GAINs, T_GAIN corrections, and a new Phase 2 response (P2_RESP) file, the input to CIAO tool mkacisrmf. See the CalDB 3.1.0 release notes for a detailed list of the changes.

June 2005:Chandra calibration database CalDB3.03 available for download

The Chandra X-Ray Center introduced version 3.03 of the Chandra Calibration Database (CalDB) on 09 May 2005.

CalDB 3.03 is a patch to CalDB 3.0x which includes a repaired version of the mkacismf CalDB input file for generating ACIS responses. The new file is acisD2000-01-29p2_respN0003.fits and is found in $CalDB/data/chandra/acis/cpf/p2_resp/. See the CalDB 3.0.3 release notes for a detailed list of the changes.

June 2005:GINGARAW: raw Ginga data in FITS format

The Ginga raw science data (First Reduction Files: FRFs) are now available in FITS format through the GINGARAW database table. The FITS Ginga data are the FRF files converted into FITS format from their native format (ADP grant, PI Corbet, at Penn State). The FITS files are bintable with 5 extensions containing raw counts (science data), raw orbital data, raw operational status data, raw housekeeping data and good time intervals. The layout of the science data extension consists of several columns containing counts, stored as an array per row, and one containing time. The datamode sets the number of channels for the count arrays, how the signal from each counter is summed (number of columns) and the integration time.

The GINGARAW database was derived using keywords stored in the primary header of the FITS file. Each record corresponds to a different pointing position, therefore it is possible that up to 3 records are associated with the same FITS file, but different object name and position.

For further information on generating and processing GINGARAW FITS files, see the Ginga FITS Data System (GFDS) project page at Penn State. The site provides software and documentation for the GFDS system.

June 2005: ARNIE5 supports SDSS DR3 QSO catalogue

The Sloan Digital Sky Survey DR3 Quasar Catalog described in Schneider et al. (2005, ApJ accepted) is now available via ARNIE5. The catalog contains 46,420 objects from SDSS DR3 that have apparent i-band PSF magnitude fainter than 15, absolute i-band magnitudes brighter than -22, contain at least one emission line, or are unambiguously broad absorption line quasars, and have highly-reliable redshifts. See the SDSS DR3 page for more information.

April 2005: ARNIE5 advanced search enhanced to support inequalities, wildcards

The ARNIE5 advanced search interface now allows users to search table fields using the following operators: >, <, >=, <=, ==, != and 'LIKE', the SQL operator for string searching with wildcards, e.g. searching for NAME LIKE 'Mkn%' will return all Markarian objects in the table.

April 2005: LEDAS hosts mirror of Astronomer's Telegram

LEDAS now hosts a full searchable mirror of the Astronomer's Telegram, an observation reporting service with a strong emphasis on high-energy astrophysics.

April 2005: LEDAS supports AstroGrid demo at NAM2005

LEDAS provided hardware and systems support for the recent AstroGrid demonstration of Virtual Observatory (VO) operations at NAM 2005. LEDAS provides the core Registry server for the first phase of AstroGrid development, as well as data storage servers. AstroGrid interfaces for LEDAS data holdings are currently in development.

March 2005: Chandra data reduction software updated

The latest version of the Chandra data reduction software CIAO (v3.2.1) and the calibration database CalDB (v.3.0.1) are now available for download from LEDAS.

March 2005: Swift analysis software updated

An updated version of the Swift data reduction tools (v1.2) is available for download. See the Swift v1.2 Release Notes for more information.

February 2005: ARNIE5 advanced multisearch available

ARNIE5 advanced multisearch allows the user to search simultaneously through all, or any subset of the nearly 400 catalogues held in the ARNIE5 system. The user can search by waveband, catalogue type, or mission.

February 2005: PIMMS, WebPIMMS updated to v3.6c

The interactive X-ray mission simulator PIMMS has been upgraded to the latest version v3.6b. This version contains new Swift BAT effective area curves.

January 2005: Current XSPEC patches available for download

The latest patchfile for XSPEC (dated Jan 18 2005) is now available for download from LEDAS. For more information, see the XSPEC Known Issues page.

January 2005: Swift Analysis Software available for download

An updated version (v1.1) of the Swift software is now available for download, along with HEASoft 5.3.1 with a change in xselect (v2.2a), extractor (v4.47) and CalDBinfo (infoCalDB v1.0.1). For more information, see the Swift 1.1 Release Notes.

January 2005: Interface to AstroGrid

LEDAS has successfully tested an interface between its catalogue servers and the UK Virtual Observatory project AstroGrid. This limited demonstration provided access to one catalogue (the HEASARC Master Optical Catalogue). We expect that a full AstroGrid public interface to all LEDAS holdings will be available later this year.

January 2005: Chandra Data Archive Upgrade

The LEDAS Chandra Data Archive will be offline for a brief period for maintenance and software upgrades. Update: This upgrade is now complete. We apologise for the inconvenience caused by the system downtime.

January 2005: Enhanced ARNIE5 product download facility

Users of the ARNIE5 archive search interface now have the option to download multiple product files simultaneously as a single zipfile.

January 2005: XMM Serendipitous Source Catalogue 1XMM updated to version 1.1

1XMM is the first comprehensive catalogue of serendipitous X-ray sources from the European Space Agency's (ESA) XMM-Newton observatory, and has been constructed by the XMM-Newton Survey Science Centre on behalf of ESA.The catalogue contains source detections drawn from 585 XMM-Newton EPIC observations made between 2000 March 1 and 2002 May 5; all datasets were publicly available by 2003 January 31 but not all public observations are included in this catalogue. The catalogue contains 33026 X-ray source detections with likelihood values >8 and summary quality flag >0, together with a further 23685 detections with lower likelihood values and/or summary quality flag=0. These latter sources have lower reliability, since those with quality flag=0 are deemed to be false detections due to processing deficiencies, whilst at likelihoods below 8 the fraction of spurious sources expected on a statistical basis increases rapidly. The 33026 X-ray source detections relate to 28279 unique X-ray sources. The median flux (in the total photon energy band 0.2-12 keV) of the catalogue sources is ~3 × 10-14 erg cm-2 s-1; ~12% have fluxes below 1 × 10-14 erg cm-2 s-1.

The version of 1XMM which contains revised positional errors was released on 2004 December 16th by the SSC and designated as Version 1.1.0. This catalogue is now available in ARNIE5. For more information, see the 1XMM User Guide.

January 2005: ARNIE5 includes Swift Master Catalog

LEDAS now supports a new satellite mission, with the inclusion in ARNIE5 of the Swift Master Catalog (SWIFTMASTR). Each record in the catalogue is associated with a single observation of the Swift Gamma-Ray Burst Explorer satellite, and includes the status of all onboard instruments. The BAT is the large field of view instrument and operates in the 10-300 keV energy band. The narrow field instruments, XRT and UVOT, operate in the X-ray and UV/optical regime, respectively.

For more information, see the catalogue helpfile.

January 2005: ARNIE5 multisearch capability

The ARNIE5 archive web interface now has a multisearch facility which allows the user to search across all 380+ catalogues simultaneously on a single sky position.

January 2005: PIMMS, WebPIMMS upgraded to v3.6b

The interactive X-ray mission simulator PIMMS has been upgraded to the latest version v3.6b. This version contains updated Chandra effective area curves for Cycle 7 proposals.


Older LEDAS updates are archived separately:-