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Winter sky brightness and cloud cover at Dome A, Antarctica

Moore, Anna M. and Yang, Yi and Fu, Jianning and Ashley, Michael C. B. and Cui, Xiangqun and Feng, LongLong and Gong, Xuefei and Hu, Zhongwen and Lawrence, Jon S. and Luong-van, Daniel M. and Riddle, Reed and Shang, Zhaohui and Sims, Geoff and Storey, John W. V. and Tothill, Nicholas F. H. and Travouillon, Tony and Wang, Lifan and Yang, Huigen and Yang, Ji and Zhou, Xu and Zhu, Zhenxi (2013) Winter sky brightness and cloud cover at Dome A, Antarctica. In: Astrophysics from Antarctica. IAU Symposium. No.288. Cambridge University Press , Cambridge, pp. 34-37. ISBN 9781107033771.

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At the summit of the Antarctic plateau, Dome A offers an intriguing location for future large scale optical astronomical observatories. The Gattini Dome A project was created to measure the optical sky brightness and large area cloud cover of the winter-time sky above this high altitude Antarctic site. The wide field camera and multi-filter system was installed on the PLATO instrument module as part of the Chinese-led traverse to Dome A in January 2008. This automated wide field camera consists of an Apogee U4000 interline CCD coupled to a Nikon fisheye lens enclosed in a heated container with glass window. The system contains a filter mechanism providing a suite of standard astronomical photometric filters (Bessell B, V, R) and a long-pass red filter for the detection and monitoring of airglow emission. The system operated continuously throughout the 2009, and 2011 winter seasons and part-way through the 2010 season, recording long exposure images sequentially for each filter. We have in hand one complete winter-time dataset (2009) returned via a manned traverse. We present here the first measurements of sky brightness in the photometric V band, cloud cover statistics measured so far and an estimate of the extinction.

Item Type:Book Section
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Moore, Anna M.0000-0002-2894-6936
Riddle, Reed0000-0002-0387-370X
Additional Information:© 2013 International Astronomical Union. Published online: 30 January 2013. The research is supported by the Chinese PANDA International Polar Year project and the Polar Research Institute of China. The project was funded by the following awards from the National Science Foundation Office of Polar Programs: ANT 0836571, ANT 0909664 and ANT 1043282. We thank Shri Kulkarni and Caltech Optical Observatories, Gerard Van Belle and Chas Beichman for financial contribution to this project. The operation of PLATO at Dome A is supported by the Australian Research Council, the Australian Antarctic Division, and the University of New South Wales. The authors wish to thank all the members of the 2008/2009/2010 PRIC Dome A heroic expeditions.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Chinese PANDA International Polar Year ProjectUNSPECIFIED
Polar Research Institute of ChinaUNSPECIFIED
Australian Research CouncilUNSPECIFIED
Australian Antarctic DivisionUNSPECIFIED
University of New South WalesUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:site testing, surveys
Series Name:IAU Symposium
Issue or Number:288
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20131002-131453985
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:41618
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:02 Oct 2013 22:46
Last Modified:09 Mar 2020 13:19

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