Call for Proposals for Early Scientific Use
of the Gemini Telescope on Mauna Kea

Submission Deadline: 31 March 2000

The Gemini Observatory has announced a Call for Proposals for early scientific use of the Gemini Observatory. This call is in two parts: the Quickstart Service Observing Program and the Demonstration Science Program.

Under the Quickstart Service Observing Program, Gemini will carry out observing programs using visiting instruments on the Gemini North telescope prior to the start of normal operations. The Observatory will endeavor to make available at least one week of telescope time each month for the Quickstart program starting 1 August 2000 and continuing until 31 January 2001. The US share of this observing time will be 15-20 nights.

The Gemini Quickstart Program is a service observing opportunity in which Gemini staff will execute observations proposed by members of the Gemini communities. Instrumentation includes the University of Hawaii's Hokupa'a/QUIRC 1-2.5 micron adaptive optics camera and the University of Florida's OSCIR 8-25 micron imager/spectrometer.

Quickstart observations that illustrate the capabilities of the Gemini North telescope and are likely to produce scientific results quickly, are particularly encouraged. Since the observations will be obtained in service mode, programs as short as one houróas well as longer programsówill be considered. Observations with Hokupa'a/QUIRC and OSCIR on Gemini will likely be scheduled in classical mode in future semesters, so this Call for Proposals represents a special opportunity to obtain small amounts of data with these instruments.

Proposals for Gemini Quickstart Service observations should be submitted through the normal NOAO proposal process. Proposals are initiated and submitted over the World Wide Web at http://www.noao.edu/noaoprop/noaoprop.html with a submission deadline of 31 March 2000. All investigators are welcome and encouraged to submit proposals for Gemini observations. Proposals may be combined with requests for other NOAO facilities due at the same time. Proposals will be reviewed and ranked by the regular NOAO Telescope Allocation Committee, and successful proposals will be forwarded to the Gemini Observatory.

Because of the as yet untested nature of some performance aspects of the telescope and visiting instruments, the Gemini Observatory will endeavor to provide the advertised capability and telescope time, but cannot guarantee either the performance or the observing efficiency. All Quickstart Service observations will be subject to the normal Gemini proprietary period. For further information on this special opportunity, please refer to:

http://www.noao.edu/gateway/gemini/.


Gemini Demonstration Science Program

Letters of Interest Due 31 March 2000

The Gemini Demonstration Science Program is a focused observing program which will pursue two scientific themes: one using University of Hawaii's Hokupa'a/QUIRC 1-2.5 micron adaptive optics camera and one using the University of Florida's OSCIR 8-25 micron imager/spectrometer. Each theme will be allocated 1 to 1.5 weeks of telescope time prior to the start of the Quickstart observations. The intent of the Demonstration Science program is to produce data sets for the community that illustrate the capabilities of the Gemini telescope and that will be of immediate scientific interest. Thus the Demonstration Science data products will be released within two months of completion of the observations. The Demonstration Science program will be the first scientific use of the Gemini North telescope, so program observations will necessarily have to be simple, but should be of a scope unlikely to be accommodated within the Quickstart Service Program.

The Gemini Observatory will be forming two international Demonstration Science teams (one for each theme) to work closely with the Gemini Observatory staff to define the two themes and their scientific goals together with the necessary observations, to execute the observations, and to participate in the data reduction and preparation of data products. Examples of themes suggested by the Gemini Staff are adaptive optics observations of the galactic center, and a 10-m deep field. Alternative themes are being solicited from the community, and members of the community are also invited to participate in the Demonstration Science teams.

Letters of Interest for participation in the Demonstration Science program should be submitted directly to the Gemini Observatory at demoscience@gemini.edu. The deadline for Letters of Interest is 31 March 2000. Letters of Interest should describe your scientific interest in one or the other of the above themes or propose an alternative theme, including a scientific and technical rationale. Letters should also include a description of your proposed role(s) and responsibilities. Proposers for the Demonstration Science program may have the opportunity to travel to Hawaii to participate in the execution of observations and data reduction. Some travel support will be available from NOAO .

Selection of the Demonstration Science themes and definition of the Demonstration Science teams will be made by the Gemini Observatory together with the Gemini National Project Scientists. Selected Demonstration Science teams will be expected to complete the definition of the theme and scientific goals, together with the observing program, by the end of April.

Further information on the Gemini Demonstration Program can be found at the NOAO Website:

http://www.noao.edu/gateway/gemini/.