Subject: Director's Discretionary Time - CFP

From: elt@astro.Princeton.EDU

Submitted: Tue, 13 Jan 1998 18:21:33 -0500 (EST)

Message number: 242 (previous: 241, next: 243 up: Index)

This message requests proposals for Director's Discretionary
Time (hereafter DDT) on the APO 3.5-meter telescope.

At its November 1997 meeting the ARC Board of Governors (BoG)
approved a DDT policy for the 3.5m which allows up to 8%
of the total observing time to be used at the Director's
discretion.  The DDT is further limited by the constraint that it
should not cause DDT plus engineering time to exceed 20%, excluding
only long term (>=7 nights) shutdowns for *routine* maintenance
(e.g., for re-aluminization).  These percentage limits are to apply
on average over periods of approximately one year or greater.  Use
of the DDT will be reported annually to the BoG.  The DDT policy
will go into effect starting 2Q1998.

I intend to use DDT primarily to facilitate excellent science using
the 3.5m in the most effective ways we can collectively devise.
Possibilities which have been discussed to date include target
of opportunity programs, exceptional scientific opportunities of
any sort which are not supportable through the normal TAC process
for any reason, risky/innovative projects, experimentation with
new observing modes (e.g., queue observing), inter-observatory
cooperative projects, time (or perhaps matching time) for 
Observatory "key projects", and incentives/rewards for those
providing exceptional service (e.g., providing instruments) to the
Observatory.  This list should not be regarded as exclusive of any
other possibilities, of course; I urge you to be creative with this
opportunity.  Chris Stubbs, 3.5m Telescope Scientist, has suggested
a set of general criteria by which DDT requests might be judged.  I
attach them below; they suggest/define desirable properties of
DDT programs but also should not be seen as exclusive of other
possible creative approaches.

A small amount of DDT will also be used for secondary purposes such
as correction of scheduling errors, compensation for time lost to
egregious/unusual problems at the Observatory, adjustment to late
breaking schedule changes, public outreach or educational programs
and so forth.

Please send me proposals for allocations of DDT at your earliest
convenience.  A write-up on our standard ASCII scheduling request
template will ultimately be needed for any approved program, and
it may be simplest just to send them in that form initially.  However,
I am happy to respond to requests in a less formal format, so long
as they contain enough information to allow evaluation.  Please copy
your institutional scheduler(s) with any DDT requests.  Although
there will be no formal TAC process for DDT requests, I may consult
disinterested individuals (usually but not necessarily from other
ARC institutions) for expert advice as needed.  DDT proposals may be
submitted at any time, but obviously it might be impractical to
grant them time in a particular quarter if they arrive too late in its
scheduling cycle.

In part, I see the DDT as an opportunity to move somewhat away
from our conception of the 3.5m as a "pie cut into six (unequal)
slices, each being consumed separately" and towards a more
cohesive view in which we try to exploit our facility's strengths
in a more systematic/rational way.  I hope this will allow us to do
some exciting science and look forward to hearing your ideas.

Ed Turner


1. World-class science that takes advantage of our strengths:
	-fast instrument switches
	-large aperture
	-staff on site 

2. Project not to exceed XX hours and/or half nights per quarter.

3. Demonstrated viability with current setup.

4. Interest across multiple ARC institutions.

5. Data accessible to all ARC scientists.

6. Identified coordinator within ARC.

7. Mode of operation that is not accessible via standard TAC allocation 
   of time.

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