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Computer setup

The data acquisition system for PANIC includes three computers:

  • DEBONAIR: The main control computer running Windows 2000 Professional Edition.
  • DUKE: A data reduction computer running Linux.
  • DUTCHESS: A data acquisition computer in the Big Black Rack (mounted by the telescope) running Windows 98.

DUKE and DEBONAIR have Athlon 1400 processors, while DUTCHESS has a Athlon XP2100 processor. All three machines have 512Mb of RAM. DUKE and DEBONAIR are located in a small rack enclosure in the equipment room. DUTCHESS is mounted by the instrument in the Big Black Rack. All three computers are behind their own firewall and form a private local area network. By being so isolated their network performance is not affected by general LAN traffic. This also prevents most outside login to these computers, although it is still possible to connect to other computers from them.

    • DEBONAIR is the main control computer for the system. It controls the camera, guiding functions and telescope control with a variety of GUIs written by Christoph Birk. DEBONAIR is a dualheaded machine (two monitors) to facilitate the display of these many control GUIs.

    • DUKE runs Linux and includes IRAF, ds9, and various other astronomical software packages. Completed image frames in FITS format are streamed onto DUKE from DUTCHESS for analysis. DUKE also contains a DDS-4 DAT drive and a CD writer for data storage.

    • DUTCHESS is dedicated to array readout and runs autonomously under control of DEBONAIR. All functions of DUTCHESS should be transparent to the observer, including bootup. The only required visitor interaction with DUTCHESS would be to verify that it is up and running in case there is a problem with the system.
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