LBT Guiders

These are the guider cameras built at ITL for LBTO. All LBT guider cameras use the same CCD detectors and dewars. The software is based on the AzCam image acquistion system. The TEC cooled dewars are built at Steward Observatory. The detectors are E2V CCD57 devices.


Here are links to cable wiring drawings.

LBT Guider Upgrade 2009

In 2009 a new project was initiated to make several changes in the guider systems, initially for MODS. These changes are as follows:

Build and test two 3-m cables, flexible, with straight connectors for MODS. Build and test two small PC's with SSDs, with 1 PCI board each from existing systems. Upgrade AzCam software to new drivers with a parser which allows legacy commands from LBT control system. Test and replace new flare fittings on MODS dewars to prevent possible coolant leakage. Experiment with dewar back-fill using an insert gas to avoid yearly vacuum maintenance.

  1. (cables). Two 3-meter cables have been completed and tested for an ARC controller and LBT guider camera. We actually measure slightly lower noise with these new longer cables. They are very flexible due to the silicone based insulation in the cables. We note that we do see pickup noise if the cables move during image readout. This is also true for the older cables, and is due to very slight capacitance changes in the cable during flexure. COMPLETE
  2. (PC's). The solid state disks have been ordered and received. They have been installed in two test computers are found to operate AzCam very well. These disks are a viable option for LBT systems. COMPLETE
  3. (Software). The new parser has been completed and tested. Pending tests are needed by LBTO to verify that the new method of data transfer over sockets is acceptable (sockets are opened and closed for each image in case of network failure). The new code also allows aborting an exposure from a Magellan controller. COMPLETE
  4. (Fittings). Fitting have been installed on two LBT dewars. These fittings are acceptable to ITL for installation in other dewars.See this report for information on the retrofitting tests. As part of these tests we also verified the dewars are able to withstand 100 psi pressure for 24 hours. We found no problem with this pressure. COMPLETE
  5. (back filling). We found an increase in detector temperatue of nearly 10 degrees C and so determined that back filling was not an optimal solution. COMPLETE

LBTGuider installation Notes

Version Configuration

New in December, 2013 are two configuration utilities (python scripts) which set the versions for AzCamServer and ControllerServer. These configuration utility files should be located in the lbtguiders folder.

To set a specific version, run the appropriate script from File Explorer. The script will find the currently installed versions and present the user with a menu from which to select the desired version to use.

The AzCamServer utility overwrites a text file which is read when AzCamServer starts.

The ControllerServer utility is more complex. It stops all ControllerServers which may be running on the local machine, installs the version selected, and then starts that version. The ControllerServer installation files must already be set up properly as per normal installation instructions.