Archive for the ‘HerMES’ Category

Clustering and Sky at Night

June 15, 2010

A couple of news items I’ve missed over the last month…

Firstly a new science result, looking at the clustering of the dusty galaxies that Herschel is detecting.

Secondly, two members of the Herschel team appeared on the BBC Sky at Night programme on 7th June. You may still be able to catch this on the BBC iPlayer.


HIFI troubles in Nature

September 15, 2009

The science journal Nature has some more details of the issues we’re having with the HIFI instrument on Herschel.

Bottom line is that HIFI are still trying to understand the problem, but can switch to the redundant power supply and things should work again. In the mean time PACS and SPIRE are doing fine and their PV phase work has been accelerated. In fact, some science observations are beginning to be taken. For one of the programmes I’m involved with some were taken on Sunday, though we won’t get the data to look at for some time.

The Night Begins

March 30, 2009

My first ever night on Subaru has started. The cirrus hasn’t gone away, but it’s not as bad as it looked when I took the photos yesterday.

We’re currently observing one of the fields to be studied by the Herschel HerMES project. The aim is to get optical data so that we can identify the optical counterparts to the sources that Herschel will find in HerMES.

Let’s hope the weather holds up!


March 29, 2009

While Herschel will be a great far-IR observatory, for a lot of our science goals we need data at other wavelengths as well. One of the projects I’m working on with Herschel is the HerMES deep cosmological survey. We aim to uncover the history of dusty galaxies and their role in the universe by getting very deep observations with Herschel. However, to fully understand the objects that Herschel finds we need to match the Herschel objects up with sources at other wavelengths.

I’m currently in Hawaii at the Mauna Kea Observatory to start to get the deep optical data we need for this task. I’ll be observing on the Subaru telescope, of which more later. Tonight is my acclimatization night, staying 24 hours at 10000 feet altitude so that I’m functional when I get to the telescope at 14000 feet tomorrow night.

Unfortunately the weather isn’t looking great…

Rather too much cirrus cloud for good observing

Rather too much cirrus cloud for good observing

The weather forecast for the next few days is that the sky should stay like this, which wouldn’t be good.

Fingers crossed that it improves!

Of course one thing Herschel won’t suffer from is weather in space.