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Center for
Adaptive Optics
Volume 2

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In this Volume:

Sharper Image with Adaptive Optics

Low Cost Wavefront Correctors for Vision Science Adaptive Optics

Creating and Detecting Rayleigh Laser Guide Stars

People and Profiles

From the Director

Year 2 - NSF Site Visit a week after Sept 11

First Light for Keck Laser Guide Star

Astronomers Observe Distant Galaxies More Clearly

Education and Human Resource Activities

Education and Human Resources Notices

Upcoming AO Related Conferences

CfAO visits the USAF's Advanced Electro-Optical System site at Maui and Gemini Observatory – January 2002.

Year 2 - NSF Site Visit a week after Sept 11

The Center for Adaptive Optics (CfAO) as a Science and Technology Center (STC) funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) is evaluated on an annual basis by a visiting committee of researchers and technologists. Last year this was scheduled for September 19th to 21st, 2001. The tragic events of September 11th intervened and after extensive discussions, it was decided, because of potential difficulties in travel, to proceed with a "virtual" site visit. It was agreed that only in-state site visitors would assemble at Santa Cruz, the others including the NSF officers in Washington, would participate via video-conference or tele-conference links.

Over a five day period speakers were informed of the decision to proceed. Slides were prepared and presentations reviewed, discussed and edited via tele-conference and email. The final versions of slides to be used were placed in a "secure" location on the Center web-site. This enabled participants to download presentations onto their terminals while watching or listening to the speaker located at another site. Our presenters were at geographically diverse locations ranging all the way from London to Honolulu. Consequently, time zones were taken into account when preparing the schedules. In the main, despite the potential for catastrophe and a few technical glitches that occurred, the "virtual site visit" went extremely well. Irrespective of their location, Center presenters were there ready and waiting when called upon. In all cases they stayed within their allocated time periods and no difficulties were experienced in maintaining the schedule.

The subsequent panel report was com-plimentary of the enormous effort spent in the past year refocusing the Center's efforts from research goals to themes that are more technology oriented and also commented on the relative smoothness of the "virtual site visit". There had been some concern as to the efficacy of this communication mode for transferring information and encouraging discussion. A "wrap-up" evaluation by the NSF staffers and the site visit committee concluded that overall the information exchange was good and probably ninety per cent as effective as that for an actual on-site visit.

CfAO visits the USAF's Advanced Electro-Optical System site at Maui and Gemini Observatory – January 2002.

Technical Sergeant USAF, Rob Medrano speaks to site visitors from left Dr. Scot Olivier (CfAO) Lisa Hunter, (CfAO) Dr. Morris Aizenman (NSF) Dr. Julian Christou (CfAO), Dr Joseph Janni (Air Force Maui Optical and Supercomputing Site), Dr Kent Miller (AFOSR), Mrs J. Agee, Mrs. K. Miller.

Dr. Jean-Rene Roy (Gemini North Observatory), meets with site visitors Dr. Morris Aizenman (NSF), Major Paul Bellaire Jr. (AFOSR) and Dr. James Beckinridge (NSF)

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