Gemini's first satisfied users are happy recipients of data from the Keck "NIRSPEC" 1-5 mm IR spectrometer. These observations are made possible by the exchange of twelve nights of NIRSPEC time over the next two years in return for one of Gemini's Aladdin InSb arrays. The NIRSPEC observations are being organized and undertaken as a "service" program by Gemini staff. Forty-six proposals (24 from the US) were received in the first round for April 8 observations, and an additional 23 proposals were received for the second evaluation cycle for observations in May. On the first scheduled night, data were obtained for two (US) programs, despite thick cirrus. Because of mechanical problems with NIRSPEC, the "Gemini" nights of May 10 and 11 are being rescheduled, probably to later in May.
Additional opportunities to apply for Keck NIRSPEC observations will occur over the next 18 months. The next opportunity to apply for observations is likely to be October 2000 for observations later in the year. For further information on the Keck NIRSPEC observing opportunity, see http://www.us-gemini.noao.edu/sciops/instruments/nirspec/nirspecIndex.html.