Last Update: 21st July 2020

A Flowchart for the Remote Observations with the Nobeyama 45-m Telescope

This flowchart illustrates the processes of the observations with the Nobeyama 45-m telescope. Successful observations follow the left side of the flow. An assistant helps you to do processes coloured in orange. What your assistant can do for you is summarised in Rules for the Assistant. To shorten communication time between users and the assistant, the observatory encourages experienced users to tune the receiver by themselves. For some procedures, detailed information is described in links. Some links that are indicated italic letters can be only accessed via the NRO VPN connection or inside the NAOJ network. Instructions for remote observations are described in For Remote Observers page, Remote Observations Manual for Users (From Mitaka) page, and Remote Observations Manual for Users (From Institute) page. We are sorry for the inconvenience that information is not aggregated into one page due to the security reason.

Preparation for the Observation
Connect to the NRO network via VPN (not necessary for Mitaka remote site). For conducting remote observations, you should select the user name "NRO_RemoteObs". At least 15 minutes before the start of your observation, please access Rocket.Chat and check the situation at #ObsMessages channel. Note that Rocket.Chat needs the NRO VPN connection to access, and the URL is shown at For Remote Observers page. If there is a previous observer, contact each other on #ObsMessages at Rocket.Chat to ensure a smooth transition.

Please launch programs including the following viewers for the remote observation (manuals for launching procedure are also found at Remote Observations Manual for Users (From Mitaka) for Mitaka remote site and Remote Observations Manual for Users (From Institute) for the remote site in institutes):
  1. "NRO RemoteObs 1" viewer
    COSMOS GUI, COSMOS Monitor, Mirror Control Window, and MMC Execute Panel
  2. "NRO RemoteObs 2" viewer
    Quick Look for the Spectrometer SAM45 (QLOOK), GUI for Correction of the Pointing Accuracy (AZEL Offset), and Quick Look for the Continuum Backend (QLOOKC)
  3. "NRO RemoteObs 3" viewer
    Scan Monitor, Antenna Monitor, Web Browser, Observation Log, and Pointing Log
  4. "NRO RemoteObs 4" viewer
    Weather Monitor, Live Camera, FOREST Command Terminal, FOREST Monitor, Live Camera for FOREST, T70 Tuning Window, and IF Monitor
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Before Your Observations There is snow
Check the weather. The current weather at Nobeyama site can be checked in the ''Condition'' column of the following monitors:
1. NRO Weather Condition
2. The 45m weather monitor (shown in the viewer of NRO_RemoteObs_4) through the NRO VPN connection.
You also check messages on #ObsMessages channel at Rocket.Chat whether the assistant declares moratorium of the antenna operation due to snow forecast.
right arrow You cannot observe even if there is a little snow on a surface of the antenna. You should leave a comment that you will not observe due to snow on #ObsMessages channel at Rocket.Chat.
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It is not Snowing There is Strong Wind, or It Rains Heavily
All observing time is based on Local Sidereal Time (LST). LST Clock may be useful to know the LST at the observatory. A conversion tool from Japan Standard Time (JST) to LST is provided at JST-LST Table (NRO). If there is too strong wind or heavy rain not to observe your observations, you can give up observations. Weather criterion is described at Rules for Suspension of the Observation. Please leave a message at #ObsMessages channel in our Rocket.Chat if you decide not to observe.
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Taking Over the Priority of the 45-m telescope
When the LST from which your observations start comes, you take over the priority of the telescope from the previous observer. First of all, you fill observing ID and project name in the COSMOS GUI, the observing system of the 45-m telescope.

If you find on the Antenna Monitor in the NRO RemoteObs 3 viewer, press check the cause to be locked (such as snow, strong wind, etc.) (this must be written on the "lock" window). Make sure that the cause is solved, proceed to observations to push "Release" button.
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Changing the Direction of Mirrors
Since the Nobeyama 45-m telescope has multiple receivers, users should change the mirrors in order to ensure a light path to the receiver which you will use.
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Receiver Tuning
For T70 and FOREST receiver, choose an observing table of the main target which you want to observe on that day and press the button "TUNING" on COSMOS (You don't need this process when you use the H22, H40, and Z45 receiver). Details on the receiver tuning are different with each receiver. Follow the receiver tuning instruction page.
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Observations
Observations with the 45-m telescope consist of 3 parts:
  1. Main Observations:
    Observations of your target(s).
  2. Pointing Observations:
    Observations of a pointing source in order to check and correct the pointing accuracy of the telescope. Generally saying, you need to perform pointing observations once per 1-1.5 hours (it depends on weather conditions).
  3. Standard Source Observations:
    The observatory recommends performing observations of a standard source in order to calibrate the daily variation of the system. Standard source observations should be done once per day. If the target line intensity of the standard source is too weak (< a few Kelvin), you can calibrate the daily variation with measuring the image rejection ratio for a 2SB receiver at the receiver tuning process, instead.
If you use different receivers between main observations and pointing observations (typically, H40 receiver), you need to change mirrors when switching between the two.
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During Observations Troubleshooting
You should check some monitors and weather during your observations. The COSMOS Monitor presents the current status of your observations according to your observing script. The Quick Look for the Spectrometer SAM45 shows the spectra (if you observe the emission line). Weather Monitor and weather conditions around the Nobeyama 45-m telescope can help you to decide the frequency of pointing observations. right arrow In case that observations stop with a red message on the COSMOS Monitor and a crack of breaking glass, there should be trouble(s) on the execution of observations. The first way to do is to check the error message. The assistant may know the action on error. Please follow his/her instruction. Note that if the trouble happened with your observing script which has not used ever, please check your script whether it may be due to your script. The troubleshooting page may help to solve the common troubles.
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End of Observations
You MUST quit the observation BEFORE the end of your allocated observation time. The log of your observations can be found at the Observation Log and Pointing Log windows. These logs of your observations can be sent through e-mail. Please declare to release the priority of the telescope at #ObsMessages channel in our Rocket.Chat, and give control to the next observer. If there is no next observer, set the antenna at zenith (EL = 90 degrees) position and standby mode by pushing [ALL STBY] on Antenna Monitor. Close the viewer windows of the remote observation, and disconnect VPN. For Mitaka site, please logout from iMac.

Please send "45m Observation Daily Report" (The URL address is indicated in the "Finished Observations" section at For Remote Observers page). If there is any instrumental trouble, please report it on #trouble_report channel at Rocket.Chat.