Coordinated and Time Critical
Observation Policy


Starting immediately through July 31, coordinated and time-critical observations will be scheduled only if they have the highest scientific priority.

The present observing program was designed using our understanding of the capabilities of the FUSE mission prior to launch. Actual mission procedures are in many cases quite different from those planned prior to launch. These revised procedures significantly affect operations and reduce scheduling flexibility. Any observation that requires scheduling at or near a particular time, either due to coordination with other facilities or for any other time-specific driver, falls into this category.

Two issues which greatly affect time critical observations are:

  1. It is not possible to move between different beta angle ranges without realignment of the four telescopes, a process that can take 12 hours or more, and can be disruptive to downstream scheduling.
  2. The automated software tools used for normal planning are not yet well adapted for rapid replanning or for fixing observations at specific, rigid times. This has increased the workload on the planning staff, limiting their ability to respond quickly or to schedule activities that are quite different from standard observations.

Therefore, for the next 4 months, the FUSE project will severely restrict the planning of coordinated or time-critical observations. Each instance will be reviewed for its operational impacts on a case-by-case basis and only in exceptional cases will time critical observations be scheduled. Final decisions will be made in the case of the PI Team by the PI, and in the case of Guest Investigators by the NASA Project Scientist. Toward the end of this time period, the situation will be reassessed, and this policy either extended or revised.

For the same reasons, late changes in the Phase 2 proposals (less than 30 days ahead) generally will not be accommodated in this time period.

William Blair
Chief of Mission Planning
FUSE Project