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NICMOS STScI Analysis Newsletter 42


| STScI Analysis Newsletter
| 10 July 2009

Visit the NICMOS web site 
"New in the Last 45 Days" for all new information about

- NICMOS Instrument Handbook Version 11.0 Release
- NICMOS Data Handbook Version 8.0 Release
- New Reference Files
- NICMOS NCS/NCC Restart Plans
- NICMOS Data Released in the HLA (Hubble Legacy Archive)


NICMOS Instrument Handbook Version 11.0 Release

The latest version of NICMOS Instrument Handbook has been released. 
It can be found on the NICMOS web site at:

This version includes up-to-date information (as of June 2009)
about the observational capabilities of NICMOS including
imaging, coronagraphy, polarimetry and grism spectroscopy.
It also describes the detector characteristics, including
updated information on the dark current, flat-fields and
bad pixels on the detectors, as well as the available
detector readout modes, exposure time overheads, dithering
strategies, and exposure time calculator information.


NICMOS Data Handbook Version 8.0 Release

The latest version of NICMOS Data Handbook has been released. 
It can be found on the NICMOS web site at:

Major updates include up-to-date information (as of March 2009) 
-Photometric calibrations, bias-derived temperature, temperature 
 dependent reference files, dark current and polarimetry. 
-New calibration routines CalTempFromBias and runcalsaa
-Bright Earth persistence and a new calibration routine 
 nic_rem_persist (which is part of runcalsaa)

List of figures and tables are available at the beginning
of the handbook.

Minor updates include updated flags, updated *_cal.fits primary 
header, NICMOS Cycle 17 calibration Plan, Link to new Multidrizzle 
handbook, updates to several other sections



The NICMOS team has published the following Instrument Science Reports:

NICMOS ISR 2009-001 (E. A. Barker & T. Dahlen):
"New Bad Pixel Mask Reference Files for the Post-NCS Era"

NICMOS ISR 2009-002 (T. Dahlen et al.):
"Temperature Dependent Dark Reference Files: Linear Dark
and Amplifier Glow Components"

NICMOS ISR 2009-003 (T. Dahlen, M. Sosey & E. Bergeron):
"Updates to Calnica: Using Temperature Dependent Reference Files"

NICMOS ISR 2009-004 (A. C. Viana, R. S. de Jong & A. M. Koekemoer): 
"NICMOS Photometric Calibration Pipeline"

NICMOS ISR 2009-005 (D. Thatte & T. Dahlen):
"NICMOS Temperature Dependent Flat-fields"

NICMOS ISR 2009-006 (N. Pirzkal, R. Bohlin & D. Thatte):
"NICMOS Grism Wavelength Calibration"

NICMOS ISR 2009-007 (N. Pirzkal, D. Grumm & E. Bergeron):
"CalTempFromBias:Implementation and Testing:

NICMOS ISR 2009-008 (T. Wiklind & D. Thatte): 
"NICMOS Breathing and Focus Field Variations"


New Reference Files

The NICMOS team has delivered several new/updated reference files within 
past few months. The files delivered after October 1, 2008 include new
persistence model (extension pmd) and persistence mask (extension msk)
files for NIC2 to correct for the effects of Bright Earth persistence,
updated linearity correction files (extension lin), updated photometric 
calibration tables (extension pht), updated static flat files (extension 
flt) to calibrate post-NCS data, updated temperature dependent darks 
(extension tdd) and new temperature dependent flat-fields (extension tdf), 
updated mask files (extension msk) with updated bad pixels for both  
pre-NCS and post-NCS masks and grot pixels added to the pre-NCS masks  
(which previously only the post-NCS mask had included).

Users who have data retrieved before October 1st, 2008 are advised to 
retrieve the data again from the archive so that it will have new/updated
header keywords and their values or calibrate the data with calnica 
version 4.4 and later using the new reference files.

Users can retrieve the reference files from NICMOS dynamic reference file 
pages located at:
or from the archive.


NICMOS NCS/NCC Restart Plans

The HST Project has been discussing plans over the past few
months to restart the NICMOS Cooling System (NCS), using
slightly different startup procedures aimed at mitigating
the issues that were encountered during the previous
startup attempts. A startup attempt will likely proceed
in the near future, with the exact timing depending on
achieving the thermal conditions needed in order to proceed
with a startup. If a startup proceeds, details on its
progress and the NCS status will be disseminated via the
NICMOS web site.


NICMOS Data Released in the HLA (Hubble Legacy Archive)

A preliminary release of all the pre-NCS NICMOS data,
about 30% of the total NICMOS archive, has been made
available in the HLA (Hubble Legacy Archive) as part
of Data Release 3. These data have been reprocessed
using new temperature-dependent flat-fields and dark
reference files, along with several other calibration
improvements aimed at reducing low-level residuals, and
have also been processed through MultiDrizzle to produce
cosmic-ray cleaned, distortion-corrected, combined
images for all the filters in each visit, aligned to
a common pixel grid. We are currently reprocessing the
post-NCS NICMOS data, and invite the community to send
comments and feedback for any further improvements
that can be performed on the data. The products can
be accessed at:


For more detailed information and updates, please consult the
NICMOS webpages:

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