The staff at EAO would like to announce that we are planning an approximately month-long observing campaign without our iconic Gore-Tex membrane windblind.
The removal of the membrane is due to the high demand for sub-mm polarimetry. Currently the instrument POL-2 is commissioned and working beautifully at 0.85mm, with some fantastic science results. POL-2 science at 0.85 mm has been so successful that we are keen to see if operating without the membrane – which can limit the throughput and increase instrumental polarization – we can commission POL-2 at 0.45 mm.
Observing without the membrane is not our normal mode of operation and the telescope will have additional operational limitations during this time. The JCMT will not take daytime observations and the operational wind limits will be reduced.
We expect to remove the membrane early in December and thank the JCMT astronomical community for their support.