Last week was held the fourth LSST-DESC Calibration workshop.
On the last day, Eli Rykoff showed a slide that most strikingly summarize the challenge that measuring the variability of the atmospheric transparency, at the milimagnitude level from the monitoring of its constituents, represents :
So, we just need to monitor...
The precipitable water vapor at 0.2 mm,
the aerosol optical depth at 0.0005
and the Ozone at 8 dobsons.
Mm. May be ok for the Ozone, thinkable for the water. But to say the least, the Aerosols are going to be tough to nail at this level of precision :(
Following remotly LSST@Europe third meeting, I saw for the first time a living Hertzsprung-Russell diagram with variable stars from Gaia DR2. The speaker nicely linked his video on youtube :
I find quite fascinating to realize how diverse and animated stars are.
We just had our third LSST/DESC Calibration Workshop, which took place this year in Paris.
Among the nice new things I learnt, one was the 3 mili-magnitude residuals between the Gaia and DES photometry, as you can see from Eli Rykoff slide ;)
A few days ago, I attended Rémi Le Breton PhD defense at Jussieu. I was impressed by the results he obtained with his optoelectronic tests of LSST sensors : The measurement of pixels' spatial correlation was improved by two order of magnitude in the last two years !
I was last week in Lyon to participate to an LSST Workshop.
As I learned many things, I must say that my most surprising finding happended at the meeting's dinner when I discovered that none of my US collegues knew what the english word for 'Papille' was.
What a surprise ?!
I recently attended a seminary by Adam Riess about the determination of the Hubble constant and the tension that manifests with the Lambda-CDM model.
It drove me to read the paper that it was based on : A 2.4% Determination of the Local Value of the Hubble Constant (https://arxiv.org/pdf/1604.01424.pdf). As I found it excellent, I tried to give a snapshot at it : expanding-universe
I participated in a workshop hosted by Harvard to discuss the calibration of the LSST : It looks like we have what the French would call "ceinture et bretelles" ... Which is great when it comes to metrology.
I visited the Laboratoire de Physique Corpusculaire in Clermont-Ferrand and gave a seminar on the status of the "brighter-fatter" effect and how to deal with it when using wide field imagers.
I went at Brookhaven National Laboratory in Long Island to participate to the 3rd Precision Astronomy with Fully Depleted CCDs meeting. There was many interesting talks that are available here, in particular, observation of a possible "brighter-fatter" like effect in CMOS devices ...
On a trip to CTIO to collect images from the .9-meter telescope so as to study the atmosphere there, I had a chance to take a tour at DECam under the dome of the 4-meter telescope.