End of Noise, End of Juan

Yesterday, after some aggressive treatment, our noise problems went into remission. Turns out the fix was some preamp board modifications we wanted to do from the beginning, but had decided didn’t work, so never completed. Isn’t that always the way.

On a sadder note, yesterday was Juan’s last official day. Delays are not uncommon, but […]

Noise, SBSC Crafts

Yesterday continued the saga of woes over detector noise and other funny behaviour. The point has been reached at which interesting tests start to be tried, like hitting things with hammers, isolating the gondola from the crane, etc. That and more of the things we’ve found useful before: reducing the number of cards in use, […]


Yesterday was a quiet day, because almost everybody needed a day to sleep thanksgiving off, take a Sunday tour of Cape Evans, or in some cases just work from town, for a change of scenery. Again, I was too busy coding (and being really sleepy) to take any pictures, so I figure I’ll give Thanksgiving […]

Old Ob Hill Stuff

Yesterday I spent the whole day dealing with some big new problems we’d encountered. I didn’t take any pictures at all. But, I was prepared for this eventuality and have a stash of older unposted photos to fill this gap. For now, I’ll go through some taken on a hike up Ob Hill with Laura, […]

BLAST Outside!

BLAST-Pol went outside yesterday, in an attempt to do focus and beam map tests. They didn’t work, which meant I was really busy all day (and I would have been pretty busy even if they did work). But, there were a few mandatory photography moments that I had to give in to.

I’ve supplemented the […]

Sun Shields

Yesterday we mounted the as-finished-as-they’ll-get-until-flight-ready sun shields. This first involved moving the shields around the gondola, which is really tricky in a highbay where the crane only runs down the middle, and you can’t move things off to the side. But it worked.

This makes the gondola start to look really complete. That isn’t to […]

Star Camera Lifting

The big operation yesterday was the star cameras being lifted up on top of the inner frame. This allowed Mark to climb up to his Safety-Luke-approved favourite place—on top of the inner frame. Juan also finished up most of the job of mylarizing the sun shields. There are still some foam panels to stick in […]

Star Cameras and Other Randomness

Yesterday was another day of many random small happenings. Lorenzo and Jeff worked on finishing up the main star cameras, while Natalie has been working at her test bench for the SBSC. The receiver crate and DAS were wired up on the gondola to make use of the now-on-the-gondola cryostat.

For the morning, Juan had […]

The Most Hazardous Lift

Yesterday the cryostat was put up on the gondola. This is possibly the trickiest lift we do, but we ended up doing it so many times in Palestine, that we’ve had a lot of practice. Anyway, even though “all lifts are hazardous lifts”, this one warranted more attention. So, about a dozen people were involved.


Castle Rock Loop

Yesterday members of the first, second, and fourth waves took a well-earned day off (except Elio, who’s crazy). After failing to join a Cape Evans tour as alternates, Laura, Juan, and I walked the Castle Rock Loop. It was a gorgeous day, and it was good to go for a long-ish hike (at 7 miles, […]