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LSST eNews

LSST enews is no longer an active publication. For current updates, please see our Monthly Updates, Digests and News Items.

August 2015 eNews

Considerable activity in both hemispheres has kept the Project Office quite busy the past few months. And looking ahead we have our calendars marked for the week of August 17, when the LSST2015 Project and Community Workshop takes place in Bremerton, WA, and for September 1, the date Deputy Director Beth Willman officially takes up residence in her new office in the LSST Project Office. The LSST team continues to increase in size and hiring opportunities continue to be promoted at lsst.org/hiring. Our web presence has a new look at www.lsst.org, presenting a coherent look for our various audiences: Public & Scientists, Project team, and LSST Corporation.


LSST 2015 takes place in Bremerton, WA, the week of August 17 and consists of a Project Meeting followed by a community Observing Cadence Workshop. As we go to press, 228 individuals have registered to attend with Wednesday having the largest attendance (195). Main themes for the Bremerton meeting include improving our communication, internal and external, as well planning for LSST Operations, a proposal for which will be due tothe agencies at the end of calendar year 2016. The workshop agenda is posted online, and all can follow the action with hashtag #LSST2015.

Web Presence

After many months of effort, new LSST web pages went live on July 28 at www.lsst.org. This new web presence offers a more modern look, consistent across the many audiences served by the site, including the Public and Scientists, Project Team, and LSST Corporation. The site architecture allows for easier updates with the responsibility for keeping content current distributed across a group of subject-specific content editors.

SLAC Clean Room

SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory celebrated completion of the LSST camera assembly clean room on May 8. The clean room is necessary for assembly of the LSST camera because any dust settling on the image sensors would degrade the quality of the precision device. The air inside the new facility is about 1,000 times “cleaner” than ordinary air.

Welcome Pat Osmer

After a long and distinguished career at The Ohio State University, first as Chair of the Department of Astronomy and then since 2006 as Vice Provost of Graduate Studies and Dean of the Graduate School, Patrick Osmer is stepping down from university administration effective August 31 to return to his roots in the astronomy research community. We are very fortunate that Pat has agreed to join the LSST team as a senior advisor to the Corporation.

M1M3 Moved

Before dawn on May 19, the completed LSST primary/tertiary mirror (M1M3) was safely moved from the UA’s Richard F. Caris Mirror Lab (formerly Steward Observatory Mirror Lab) to long-term secure storage at Tucson International Airport. Contractor Precision Heavy Haul executed the eight-mile, three-hour move under the supervision of LSST technical and safety personnel. The mirror move is the culmination of years of hard work and dedication from the LSST technical team, the mirror lab, and generous support from the LSST Corporation and private donors. Local coverage of the event in the Tucson newspaper includes images and a short video.

Excavation Activities

Excavation activities on site are nearing completion, but during excavation, substantial amounts of fractured rock and clay materials were discovered in the area where the support building facilities will be constructed. Removing the surface rock on the slope off the main peak revealed clay deposits that were not identified during the geotechnical surveys completed prior to construction. The general contractor, Besalco, has completed the removal of the fractured rock and clay, and following a detailed inspection by architectural and engineering firm Arcadis, a remedy of concrete fill has been identified and initiated to build up the necessary foundation.

Education Summit

LSST Manager for EPO Suzanne Jacoby participated in the first Chile-U.S. Astronomy Education Summit the week of March 21, 2015. Organized by Associated Universities Inc. (AUI), Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA), Carnegie Institution for Science, the United States Embassy in Chile, and CONICYT, the summit took place at various locations throughout Chile.

Asteroid Day 2015

LSST Project Scientist Zeljko Ivezic presented a talk describing LSST’s asteroid detection capabilities during Asteroid Day June 30, 2015 at the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco. During his talk, entitled “Hunting for Asteroids with LSST,” Zeljko described LSST as an “amazing discovery machine for new asteroids” whose unique design, particularly its large mirror and huge field of view, addresses the main challenges of finding asteroids: detecting faint objects and covering the whole sky. Zeljko's talk can be viewed on YouTube.

Summer Interns

David Enciso, a senior in aerospace engineering at Iowa State University, began an IINSPIRE internship with LSST in late May. Rose Gibson, a junior studying astrophysics at Wellesley College in Massachusetts, is working over the summer as an REU intern with System Scientist Chuck Claver.

LSST E-News Team


Suzanne Jacoby (Editor-in-Chief)
Robert McKercher (Staff Writer)
Mark Newhouse (Design & Production: Web)

Emily Acosta (Design & Production: PDF/Print)
Additional contributors as noted


LSST E-News is a free email publication of the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope Project. It is for informational purposes only, and the information is subject to change without notice. 
Copyright © 2015 LSST Project Office, Tucson, AZ



Financial support for Rubin Observatory comes from the National Science Foundation (NSF) through Cooperative Agreement No. 1258333, the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science under Contract No. DE-AC02-76SF00515, and private funding raised by the LSST Corporation. The NSF-funded Rubin Observatory Project Office for construction was established as an operating center under management of the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA).  The DOE-funded effort to build the Rubin Observatory LSST Camera (LSSTCam) is managed by the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory (SLAC).
The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency created by Congress in 1950 to promote the progress of science. NSF supports basic research and people to create knowledge that transforms the future.
NSF and DOE will continue to support Rubin Observatory in its Operations phase. They will also provide support for scientific research with LSST data.   

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