The NOAO, on behalf of the National Science Foundation, is soliciting applications for the continued operation of the 0.9-meter and Coudé Feed telescopes located on Kitt Peak. Because of its changing mission of increasing support of US users of the Gemini telescopes and of new community-based development projects, NOAO will discontinue operation of the two telescopes by the end of its Semester 2000B. We now solicit applications by institutions or consortia that are prepared to assume the full responsibility --- technical, scientific, and financial --- for operations of either or both of the telescopes. Applications will be reviewed by an independent panel of astronomers.
Factors to be considered in the evaluation include: 1) quality and significance of the proposed scientific programs; 2) educational impact of the proposed use; 3) plans for instrumenting the telescope; 4) plans for public outreach; 5) technical and financial resources available to ensure that the proposed program will be implemented successfully; and 6) benefit to the collective operations and scientific impact of Kitt Peak.
Proposals will be for continued operation of the telescope facilities on Kitt Peak. In the case of the Coudé Feed, the new operators will need to provide only a detector, data system, and guide camera, although additional dispersers may be desired after examination of the complement being offered. The 0.9-meter will require a scientific instrument and guide camera; proposers are urged to plan for upgrading the telescope control system within a year of the transfer of operations authority.
Letters of intent to submit a proposal should be sent to Richard Green and are due by 31 May 2000. Specifications for the telescope and estimated costs of operation will be available through the NOAO web page. Requests for additional information about the telescope and its performance should be directed to Richard Green.
The proposals themselves are due July 15.