CARMA Correlator Graphical Setup

Pound, Marc

CARMA Correlator Graphical Setup (CGS) is a Java tool to help users of the Combined Array for Research in Millimeter-wave Astronomy (CARMA) plan observations. It allows users to visualize the correlator bands overlaid on frequency space and view spectral lines within each band. Bands can be click-dragged to anywhere in frequency and can have their properties (e.g., bandwidth, quantization level, rest frequency) changed interactively. Spectral lines can be filtered from the view by expected line strength to reduce visual clutter.

Once the user is happy with the setup, a button click generates the Python commands needed to configure the correlator within the observing script. CGS can also read Python configurations from an observing script and reproduce the correlator setup that was used.

Because the correlator hardware description is defined in an XML file, the tool can be rapidly reconfigured for changing hardware. This has been quite useful as CARMA has recently commissioned a new correlator.

The tool was written in Java by high school summer interns working in UMD's Laboratory for Millimeter Astronomy and has become a critical planning tool for CARMA PIs.

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