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Safety & Alarm Systems

  • Emergency system

    This is activated by pushing the red button on the box underneath the phone in the control room or on the pendant. If you push either button by accident (or curiosity), you can deactivate the emergency system by pushing the button on the control box again (repeated pushing of the pendant button has no effect). In case you are alone at the telescope, you should wear the lone worker alarm pendant around your neck. If you push its button, you will also activate the emergency alarm system

  • Alarm system

    This is reset by first pushing the left and then the right reset button on the LED panel on the rack in the electronics room and after that turning first the left and then the right key below the LED panel

  • Stair alarm

    Remember not to step into the light-beam at the bottom of the staircase at the telescope entrance, as it will stop the telescope.

  • Emergency exits

    You can find a trap door in the floor of the control room, opening this will activate the alarm system and stop the telescope. Also, there is a rope ladder in the dome at the south side port

  • Emergency buttons

    At the bottom of the staircase there is a grey button. In the dome right inside the door and in the control room on the wall to the electronics room there is a red button. Pressing any of these buttons will stop the telescope immediately. Remember to release the red buttons by turning them clockwise

  • First aid kit

    You can find one on the wall in the toilet in the service building and in the control room on the wall besides the door to the electronics room

  • Residencia night porter

    In case of an emergency you can call him(ext. 500), and he will be at the telescope shortly. Usually he drives by the telescope a couple of times per night


  • Closure limits

    The telescope closes down, if the humidity is above 90%. It must be below 90% for 20 minutes, before the telescope again can be opened.
    If there is no dust in the air, you should close the lower hatch and the side-ports if the wind speed reaches 12 m/s. Only observe downwind if the wind speed reaches 15 m/s. Close the telescope if the wind speed reaches 20 m/s.
    If there is dust in the air, the lower hatch and the side-ports should be closed at 10 m/s and the telescope closed at 12 m/s.
    These limits can be violated for four minutes after which the telescope will shut down automatically. If the lower hatch closes, you must close the side-ports as well.

  • Rain and ice

    If the humidity reaches 100% or the rain sensor senses rain, the telescope close immediately. The telescope hatches should not be opened, if ice can be felt on any part of the walkway hand-rail

  • Altitude limits

    They are 6 degrees above the horizon and 5 degrees from the zenith
    When the lower hatch is closed the vignetting starts at zenith distance of 55 degrees.

  • Side-ports

    These should slide easily. If not, use one of the hexagonal wrenches to lift them. Never force them open!

  • Dome and baffle flats

    To take photometric dome flats find the lamp marked 'FF lamp' in the dome, put it on the floor at the south side-port, and put the telescope to 60 degrees.
    To take spectroscopic dome flats turn on the round tungsten lamps in the dome, and adjust their luminosity.
    To take baffle lamp spectroscopic flats(bluer than halogen) turn off the guide TV, close the mirror covers, and use the switches next to the lisa terminal. The exposure times for baffle flats are usually very short(~1s)

  • White board

    This can be found in the control room. On it you can find telephone numbers for your astronomy/tech support and passwords for various computers

  • Automated observation log

    It can be started on the instrument control computer by running the following commands in a terminal:

    1. cd /data/data1
    2. obslog ob19\*.fits

    'ob19' is the prefix for the night, 'o' refers to the 15th year using this naming convention(i.e. 2005), 'b' refers to the second month of the year, and '19' refers to the 19th day in the month.
    If you are using NOTCam, the executable is called obslog-notcam

  • Service and override programs

    If there are any service observations during your run (either for a monitoring or an override program) you will be informed.
    Normally there are several of these programs running and if any of these are activated, you can find observing instructions on the NOT web pages

  • Manuals

    In the control room is the Observer's Cookbook which will guide you through a night of observations. Normally it is not necessary to consult any other manuals. All the information in the Observer's Cookbook can also be found on the NOT web pages.

  • TCS access code

    For the instrument control program to access the TCS, e.g. to make small offsets, it needs a code. It can be found on page 84 on the TCS info pages. It changes every day at noon.

  • The wall behind the lisa terminal

    Here you can find closure and altitude limits, telescope, TV and filter foci, and info on where to find the weather pages and the TCS access code on the TCS.


  • Visitor's office

    Here you can find a desktop computer, a printer, a DHCP-connection for your laptop, and a telephone

  • Telephones

    There is a phone in the control room(+34 922 405 660) and one in the visitor's office(+34 922 405 662). Dial '0' for an outside line, and wait for the tone. To call a number on the mountain, dial a `2' followed by the last three digits in the number. If you call abroad, please note it down on the call log sheet in the visitor's office

  • Fax machine

    It can be found in the main room in the service building, it's number is +34 922 405 665


  • Data recording and archiving

    Data from the previous night can be found to the left in the bookcase in the visitor's office. Also, the data will enter the NOT archive, from which they can be retrieved later

  • Florence guest account

    This will be deleted after your run unless you arrange something with staff

  • Relevant web pages
  • Computer policy

    The following is our policy for use of NOT computers by short term visitors. Following these rules will help protect our site's security and your observations:

    • Any and all use of the computers indicated by NOT staff is permitted in the pursuit of an observing run.
    • Non-profit, personal use of NOT computer facilities is permitted provided it does not interfere with observations, normal NOT work and provided all applicable laws are followed.
    • New software may not be installed on any Windows computer nor on any Linux machine except for temporary use in the guest accounts.
    • Only computers indicated by NOT staff may be used by short-term visitors.
    • Do not try to connect (telnet, rlogin, ssh, etc.) to other machines
      in the domain where you do not have an account.
    • Do not advertise any NOT passwords outside of the NOT.
    • Do not use instrument computers for anything except data acquisition.
    • Do not set 'xhost +' on any NOT computers.
    • Use 'ssh' for communications where possible.
    • When leaving a computer unattended for any length of time (i.e. more than over lunch), preferably log out but under no circumstances leave a screen-saver active which password locks the display.

Practical Information

  • Drinking water

    The tap water is not meant for drinking or any other internal use. You can find drinking water on the floor underneath the kitchen table

  • Kitchen

    You can find plates, utensils, a coffee machine with a timer, a toaster, and a microwave here. Also there is room for any food you might have brought along in the freezer, the fridge, and the cupboard there. Please remember to do your dishes at the end of your run and remove any food you still have left

  • Torches

    These are placed on the wall right outside the visitor's office and on the left when you enter the telescope

  • Window shutters

    Please use these during night time in the service building. The TNG will otherwise be light-polluted

  • Air conditioning

    The telescope is air conditioned, so please keep the doors closed, and enjoy the nice indoor climate

  • No smoking

    Please do not smoke inside any of the buildings. There is an ashtray on the stairway into the dome

  • Music

    In the control room you can find a stereo system and the NOT collection of CD's. Also, it is possible to connect a laptop to the stereo

  • Souvenirs

    The staff can sell you t-shirts, coffee mugs, mouse pads etc.

Back to top Last modified: July 27 2023