Science Highlight




Known Issues

Known Issues affecting the Cycle 4 release of the ALMA Observing Tool

The following table lists those issues which are known to affect the Cycle-4 version of the Observing Tool. This will be updated to denote whether an issue has been fixed and whether this fix has made it into an updated release.

C1_023 Calibration searches may crash due to problems with the database. Reducing the number of results may avoid the problem.
C1_032 Leaving the OT open for days at a time can cause an error upon saving. Saving to another file, closing the OT and re-opening produces a "ZLIB input stream" error i.e. the project is unreadable. This issue is yet to be satisfactorily characterised.
C2_009 Placing spectral windows that are exactly as far apart as they can possibly be can cause an error, the text of which is also misleading.
C4_001 The ALMA Sensitivity Calculator requires that a valid 7-m angular resolution be entered.
C4_002 Copy and Paste and changing the Representative Frequency will cause the Bandwidth for Sensitivity to be changed if this is in 'User' units.
C4_003 Immediately after starting, the OT GUI can minimize itself such that only the title bar buttons (close, maximize, minimize) are visible. This has been reported on Macs and Ubuntu. The workaround is to just maximize the GUI with the appropriate button.
C4_004 The current OT pointing file format cannot be directly read by CASA in order to simulate observations. This is now possible in CASA 4.6.

In the Technical Justification editor, the achieved RMS over the total bandwidth and over 1/3 of the line width are reported as 0.00, regardless of the actually expected values. Similarly, the corresponding S/N values are reported as 'Infinity'.

Yes u1

High redshifts can lead to the OT refusing to display the time-estimate dialogue. There is no validation error and the project times can still be seen elsewhere. A workaround would be to zero the redshift and enter manually-redshifted frequencies instead.

Yes u1

Under certain circumstances, an ATM calibration is being scheduled with every phase-calibrator scan. This will lead to an over-estimate of the time required.


Sources read in from a source list will have their coordinate system set to FK5. This should be ICRS.

Yes u1

A value entered into the minutes field of the 'single visit' time-constrained interface will automatically reset to zero. Time constraints read in via an ASCII file are not affected.


Executive shares for Large Programs that include a stand-alone ACA Science Goal are not being calculated correctly - all the time is assigned to the PI's Executive. In addition, some projects that included the stand-alone ACA could not be submitted due to a spurious validation error.

Yes u2

Some PIs from East Asia will find that their Executive Share is assigned to Chile. A possible workaround is the following: download the affected project from the archive, expand the project tree such that the Science Goals are visible and click on one of the nodes of the Science Goal e.g. Spectral Setup. The PDF should now show the correct Executive Share.

Yes u2

The OT is not observing the sensitivity unit that was previously set by the user when reading a new project into the OT. A project read into a newly-started OT will always show Jy, whilst subsequent projects will use the most recent selected unit. The "equivalent" sensitivity unit is correctly displayed and time estimates are also unaffected.


Co-PIs are not receiving email confirmations after proposal submission (or resubmission).


The spectral setup can report the following error: "The spectral window range exceeds the baseband width". This error is spurious and the result of a rounding error. It only affects spws with the maximum allowed bandwidth and can be removed by modifying the spw central frequency slightly - usually 0.1 MHz will suffice.


Proposal submission may hang for proposals that request many hundreds of sources or pointings. The probable solution is to install the tarball version of the OT and replace "-Xmx1024m" with "-Xmx2048m" in the ALMA-OT.sh script. This increases the OT's memory allocation.