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7 July 2008 GeMS: Gemini Mcao System: current status and commissioning plans
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The Gemini Multi-Conjugate Adaptive Optics project was launched in April 1999 to become the Gemini South AO facility in Chile. The system includes 5 laser guide stars, 3 natural guide stars and 3 deformable mirrors optically conjugated at 0, 4.5 and 9km to achieve near-uniform atmospheric compensation over a 1 arc minute square field of view. Sub-contracted systems with vendors were started as early as October 2001 and were all delivered by July 2007, but for the 50W laser (due around September 2008). The in-house development began in January 2006, and is expected to be completed by the end of 2008 to continue with integration and testing (I&T) on the telescope. The on-sky commissioning phase is scheduled to start during the first half of 2009. In this general overview, we will first describe the status of each subsystem with their major requirements, risk areas and achieved performance. Next we will present our plan to complete the project by reviewing the remaining steps through I&T and commissioning on the telescope, both during day-time and at night-time. Finally, we will summarize some management activities like schedules, resources and conclude with some lessons learned.
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