Meeting agenda:

  1. News & announcements.
  2. Activities on each instrument branch.
  3. FY2021 planning.
  4. Closing remarks.

Discussion items


1. News & announcements

  • Arpita Roy (new Assistant Astronomer at STScI) will be joining the institute (and the NIRISS branch; working on SOSS) starting next week. Pending on her interests and final definition of work by the NIRISS Branch lead, she will be joining the TSO WG as well.

2. Activities on each instrument branch

  • NIRISS branch activities. Nestor Espinoza mentions that lately most of his work on the branch has been to figure out complementary observations for the wavelength calibration commissioning program. Idea is to calibrate using an M-dwarf, but the team has yet to be convinced that models are doing a good job at reproducing the spectral features good enough for these purposes (hence, why a high resolution ground-based spectrum would be great for this). Because the schedule has not yet been defined, which object to target with these observations still not defined. Sarah Kendrew mentions they also went through a similar discussion in the MIRI team, and decided to go for some Be stars, although that also has some limitations on its own. Tony Keyes mentioned for completeness that there was a Wavelength Calibration WG (now dissolved) that was supposed to look at issues like these (i.e., target optimization for wavelength calibration, etc.).

  • NIRSpec branch activities. Tony has been trying to get the Pipeline Testing Tracking Sheet updated; a lot of progress on testing by Maria Peña-Guerrero on the NIRSpec team. Also looking into FY2020 task on saturated TA targets, that will have to be translated to FY2021. 

  • MIRI branch activities. Still doing some pipeline testing. Going with photom and extract1d; don't think there will be big things here other than updating reference files perhaps on extract1d. Sarah is also going to look into the NormalOPS run, which included some MIRI TSO simulations. This week also worked on defining FY2021 activities together with Nestor Espinoza.

  • NIRCam branch activities. Nikolay Nikolov mentions that the team has resumed CAP and CAR overviews. For CAP-033 (Time Series Stability Verification) they are meeting again today to define plans on this. Probably not many changes, but need to define a data analysis plan. Also, need to work on CAP-032 which is GRISM calibration. Brian Brooks mentions that getting data from NormalOPS has been a bit difficult from MAST; asks Sarah Kendrew if she knows something about this. They will contact each other offline (i.e., after the meeting) to figure this out. Brian Brooks also mentions work on the FPE clock analysis. The current model to explain the data needs better analysis; going to move that to FY2021.
30min3. FY2021 planning

  • Nestor Espinoza shares the FY2021 live planning document, explaining and detailing each of the defined tasks for FY2021 prepared by Sarah Kendrew and him. Key idea of FY2021 planning is "having no (or as little) surprises (as possible) during commissioning/ERO/ERS/GO programs". Idea is to be as well prepared as possible on all possible sources of systematic noise that might impact TSO observations and that can be characterized with ground testing (e.g., 1/f noise, non-linearity corrections), with a particular emphasis on transiting exoplanet science.

  • Nikolay Nikolov suggests that the activities include not only analyses on ground-based data, but also on simulated data using that ground-based dataNestor Espinoza agrees, and believes that the wording of the tasks (e.g., 3.2a and 3.2b) include this (i.e., they say that current data will be used, but it is not stated how). Nikolay Nikolov suggests overheads on data simulation and analyses are included in the final budgeting of these tasks.

  • Sarah Kendrew mentions that some of the MIRI tasks require inclusion of external stakeholders, as well as to adding an extra task on overall checks of NIR detector knowledge from ground testing. She will be contacting key people to help out on this ASAP.
  • Nestor Espinoza asks everyone on the different branches to please help "promote" branch-specific tasks from the "Tasks proposed for FY2021" table (the blue table) to the actual FY2021 schedule (the white table). Ideally before the end of the week — otherwise, he and Sarah Kendrew will just promote based on their discretion. 

5min5. Closing remarks of the meeting

Nestor Espinoza congratulates the TSO WG on the amazing work done during FY2020. Says farewell in the context of FY2020 — and is looking forward to seeing everyone on the next TSO WG meeting in FY2021!