LIGO Weekly Report for the week of 3 October - 7 October 2016

Special Announcements LIGO Laboratory Administration LIGO Laboratory Safety
Computer Security LIGO Hanford Observatory (LHO) and Interferometer Operations LIGO Livingston Observatory (LLO) and Interferometer Operations LIGO India Update Engineering
Data Analysis and Astrophysics LabWide Activities Advanced Distributed Data Analysis R&D
Laboratory Computing Advanced LIGO
Past Weekly Reports

The LIGO Executive Committee Agenda for Monday 10 October 2016 will be:

(Meeting time: 10:30 Pacific Time/12:30 Central Time/13:30 Eastern Time)

  1. Announcements
  2. LSC - Gonzalez
  3. Focus Topic
  4. Commissioning - Fritschel
  5. Operations Management Team (OMT) - Coyne
  6. Observatories
  7. Campuses
  8. Review, assignment of actions, if any (Action item list -- restricted access )

  9. Adjourn

Calendar of future Executive Committee Meetings

Special Announcements
Albert Lazzarini

LIGO gives NSF Director and MPS Assistant Director for MPS a plaque acknowledging the Foundation's long-term commitment and vision in support of LIGO

Click on image for hi-res photo
L to R: Dr. Mark Coles (NSF LIGO Program Officer), Albert Lazzarini, Dr. France Córdova (NSF Director),
Dr. Fleming Crim, (NSF Assistant Director for MPS) and Dave reitze

LIGO-India milestone: monument markers erected at L-I site

Click on image for hi-res photo
Coverage in Indian media: New Delhi TV, Indian Express and The Hindu

L1 Interferometer reaches Binary Neutron Star range of 90Mpc

Click on image for higher resolution version
See LIGO Livingston Commisioning below for details

LIGO Laboratory Administration
Reports & Editing
Kim Burtnyk

LIGO Laboratory Safety
David Nolting

Reminder: Report “Good Catches” to your supervisor or at the following URL: When we report a “Good Catch”, we give ourselves the greatest opportunity to correct unsafe conditions, equipment or even risky work behavior before an incident occurs

Computer Security
Ryan Blair

LIGO Hanford Observatory (LHO) and Interferometer Operations
General Operations
Michael Landry
Detector Maintenance/Operations
Vernon Sandberg


Hugh Radkins


Betsy Weaver


Jeff Kissel
Detector Engineering

Opto-mechanical Systems

Jason Oberling
Optical Lever

Electronics, Control and Data Systems Operations
Richard Mccarthy
Control Room Operators
Corey Gray


Last week we started 24/7 coverage for a pre-ER10 epoch. Due to PSL issues, the OWL/graveyard shifts were pulled back until the PSL was fixed. Once the PSL reliability is assessed to be better, we will return to having OWL shifts.

Operator Guardian training session given by TJ & Jaimie on 10/5.


Jeff Bartlett:

Corey Gray:

Nutsinee Kijbunchoo:

Ed Merilh:

Patrick Thomas:

Cheryl Vorvick:

H1 Commissioning
Daniel Sigg (Keita Kawabe)

We identified the broad structure between 500 Hz and 1 kHz as caused by jitter from the HPO. The coupling is not understood and is not looking like traditional jitter coupling through misaligend interferometer optics.

Below 30 Hz we have excess noise in the auxiliary loops which was introduced this spring. Cause unknown. However, it limits the performance of the darm subtraction paths.

Education and Public Outreach
Amber Henry

Hosted joint virtual visit with ATLAS experiment for Peachtree Charter MS in Atlanta GA

LIGO Livingston Observatory (LLO) and Interferometer Operations
General Operations
Richard Oram

Following finding by commissioners that the recently installed and new CPy was installed significantly out of alignment in pitch it was decided to conducted a short turn around vent and incursion into BSC1 to adjust the CPy pitch back into range. The work was completed in one day and chamber pump down proceeded over the weekend and Monday.

The gate valves were opened up to the main volume on Tuesday evening and commissioning of IFO recommenced on Wednesday. This hard work and excellent team work was rewarded by an increase in sensitivity in BNS range approach ~90 Mpc. See Valera’s report for details.

Many thanks for to all of the staff and visitors that have worked so hard to achieve this milestone.

Operations is preparing for ER10 which was scheduled to commence at the end of September but this week was pushed back until end of October to allow for more commissioning time.

From Monday 12th Sept LLO commenced on-duty operators both day shift and evening shift. Gary is planning to commence full day, evening and night operator shift schedule starting Oct 17th 2016 to be ready for ER10 and O2.

Now that the Planned Engineering work has been completed the second round of Post O1 Commissioning and locking effort has begun(08/01/2016). Access to the VEAs is now restricted and requires pre-approval.

For commissioning progress see Valera’s report below

Link to alog summary of Faults in FRS for this week: Closed

Link to alog summary of Service Requests in FRS for this week: Closed

Key Performance Indicator dashboard of issues tracked in the FRS.

Link to alog of Work Permit Summary is here:

Operations staff executed a smooth Tuesday maintenance period. Note LLO has time shifted the maintenance period the back by one hour. From now on it is scheduled from 9:00 am until 1:00 pm (local time) instead of 8:00 am until 12:00 pm.

Preventive Maintenance activities that were scheduled for execution during the month.

Month Total Open Closed %Complete
Sep–2015 86 0 86 100%
Oct–2015 122 0 122 100%
Nov–2015 148 0 148 100%
Dec–2015 163 0 163 100%
Jan–2016 160 0 160 100%
Feb–2016 199 0 199 100%
Mar–2016 207 1 206 99.5%
Apr–2016 194 2 192 98.9%
May–2016 238 2 236 99.1%
Jun–2016 228 2 226 99.1%
Jul–2016 240 16 224 93.3%
Aug–2016 261 37 234 90.8%
Sep–2016 222 84 138 62.1%
Oct–2016 102 63 39 38.2%
Month Total Open Closed %Complete
Sep–2015 9 0 9 100%
Oct–2015 19 0 19 100%
Nov–2015 22 0 22 100%
Dec–2015 39 0 39 100%
Jan–2016 60 0 60 100%
Feb–2016 41 0 41 100%
Mar–2016 50 0 50 100%
Apr–2016 61 0 61 100%
May–2016 70 0 69 98.5%
Jun–2016 72 3 66 93%
Jul–2016 102 3 97 95%
Aug–2016 91 4 86 94.5%
Sep–2016 81 5 75 81.2%
Oct–2016 30 14 16 53.3%
L1 Commissioning
Valery Frolov

The interferometer locking restarted on Tuesday after the vertex vent to correct the ITMY compensation plate pitch. The first order ghost beams are no longer present on the SRM suspension cage. There is a higher order ghost beam which disappears from the cage when the CPY is yawed into the nominal position. As result of the past few weeks scattered light mitigation (the CPY ghost beams realignment but also removal from the vacuum chamber and shut down of the unused equipment that produced vibration) the DARM noise has improved but we are still witnessing a few non-stationary noise peaks at 65, 85, and 135 Hz that vary on the time scale of several hours and modulate the BNS inspiral between 80 and 90 Mpc.

The DARM actuation above 20 Hz was transferred from the nominal electrostatic actuator to the photon calibrator while ITMX/Y and ETMX ESDs were shorted and grounded at the vacuum chamber feedthrough to look for the electrical pick up noise from the ESD electronics and cabling - we will also attempt to short the ETMY ESD but it will have to be in low noise lock on Pcal. During this test we rediscovered the 18 bit DAC zero crossing noise on the ETM ESD actuator. The DAC was last calibrated two months ago (recalibration requires model restart) and we still have not implemented the periodic checking of the DAC zero crossing glitches which we plan to do weekly and restart the models when calibration drifts outside of the limit. As a stop gap we are offsetting the control signals from zero after the interferometer is locked (this already done on PRC and SRC optics). We will have to switch back and forth between the ESD/Pcal to evaluate if there are other noise associated with the ESD electronics/cabling.

When the coupling from the non-stationary noise peaks is at its minimum the DARM is mostly limited by the quantum (shot) noise down to 80 Hz. We performed the cross correlation measurement between the two antisymmetric port photodetectors and obtained the new limit on coating thermal noise of 1.21m/rtHz at 100 Hz. This is only 20% above the design value.

L1 Detection Coordination
Brian O'Reilly

LSC Fellows

This week Jess McIver visited to provide training for LSC Fellows in advance of O2. It was a very successful visit. This week we welcomed two new LSC Fellows: Chris Billman from UF and Karan Jani from Georgia Tech.

Nikhil Mukund

Week of 10/3

  1. Worked on modelling the scattering upconversions seen in DARM. Made models that could explain the bumps seen around 59 Hz and its harmonics. Compared the results with other existing models.

  2. Worked on identifying the presence on low magnitude earthquakes in seismometer channels. Compared Earthquake GPS (USGS list) against seismometer BLRMS channels. Planning to extend the code to study effects from wind and its impact on locking the interferometer.

  3. Improved Sesimon lockloss prediction model by optimizing the corresponding machine learning algorithm.

Chris Billman

Week of 10/3

Vacuum Group
Scott Mccormick (Richard Oram)

Reporting for the Vacuum Group, Harry Overmier and Scott McCormick

For Post O1 Vent Progress see


Detector Group
Janeen Romie (Richard Oram)

Reporting for the LLO Detector Engineering Group: Stuart Aston, Matt Heintze, Adam Mullavey, Arnaud Pele

Control Room Operators
Gary Traylor (Richard Oram)

Reporting for:

Gary Traylor, Mike Fyffe, Doug Lormand, Joe Hanson, Danny Sellers, Jeremy Birch, Tom Evans, William Parker and Bryan Smith.

Jeremy Birch, Bryan Smith

Gary Traylor

Mike Fyffe

Jeremy Birch

Joe Hanson

William Parker

Bryan Smith

Danny Sellers

Doug Lormand

Tom Evans

Computing and Electronics (CDS, etc.)
Keith Thorne

Doug Lormand

Michael Thomas

Keith Thorne

Paul Corban

Michael Laxen, Carl Adams

Timothy Nelson (Richard Oram)

Each item listed has been identified by Facilities with a resolution. The requests have been completed or the work has been scheduled and is pending completion.

Major Infrastructure efforts
Richard Oram

Preparing Facility Condition Assessment Report

"Subject to the availability of funding, the Awardee will provide by October 1, 2016 an Asset Condition Report evaluating the remaining life of civil infrastructure at the LHO and LLO sites, and estimating the cost of significant replacement or refurbishment to be scheduled during Oct 1, 2018 - Sept 30, 2023." Operations Management Team: Bug 112 - Provide Civil Infrastructure Condition Report to NSF by Oct 1, 2016

In response LIGO selected a consulting civil engineering firm (Accruent LLC.) and is conducting condition assessment of the sites and staff training during June and July 2016.

The final report was sent to the LIGO directorate for review: 1) Overview: LLO & LHO Facility Condition Assessment report 2) VFA Facility Condition Assessment of LLO/LHO Final Report Sept 2016. Note there are two reports one for each site.

Future work. The data from this assessment are now entered into web based VFA.auditor and will be used for future maintenance management, capital planning & budgeting and report generation.

An appendix to this report is being developed by the LIGO Vacuum/ System Engineering teams and will include the vacuum Infra-structure. An appendix to this report is being developed to include assets beyond the scope of this third party assessment, i.e. assets not part of the building systems, e.g. the Beam Tube Enclosure and roads, parking lots and grounds at both sites.

Repurpose High Power Laser Facility to HPO Test and Training Facility.

Status: In progress. The project requires improving the particle control and HVAC capability. Ceiling tiles have been replaced with appropriate cleanroom compatible tiles. The wall between the main lab and the adjacent lab (which will house the laser diode power supply) was knocked through and a new metal door added. The old laser table has been removed along will associated cabinets both labs are now completely empty. A new vinyl has been laid over the existing concrete floor to improve particle control and a new wall mounted HVAC unit has been installed. Delivery of new 5’X 12" optical table which has now been relocated into the lab. Installation and set up of mobile HEPA filter clean room over laser table. Upgrades the electrical panel for the room.

Progress this week: None reported

Decommissioning of the initial LIGO LDAS Facility.

Status: In progress. The LDAS facility was shutdown on (07/14/2016). Work has began to decommission this space which will re-purposed to provide additional storage.

No progress this week. Pending: Property disposal

Education and Outreach
William Katzman

LIGO India Update
Fred Raab

LIGO-India Site Acquisition Progress:

Data Center Progress:

Other news:

Mechanics, Optics & Vacuum
Garilynn Billingsley
Norna Robertson
Fabrice Matichard

Squeezer engineering

Eduardo Sanchez
Stephen Appert
Alena Ananyeva
Control and Data Systems
Rich Abbott
  1. Luis has finished schematics and simulations for the electronic fuse part of the SR3 heater driver function. The remainder of the design is straight forward, and will be drawn next.
  2. Calum and I have been working on setting up the fast shutter for high speed filming this Friday. A film crew is showing up early Friday to take video of various operational shutter modes in hopes of finding a better solution to the reliability.
  3. Helping with electronic setup of Alena’s PZT study as relates to a newly purchased QPD
  4. Working on Squeezer electronics manufacturing process by refining assumed initial conditions relating to potential spares
Benjamin Abbott

I revved the ISI Outer Loop Transimpedance board per Keita and Daniel’s suggestions, and sent it to them for comment. I am making some test assemblies to vet the SUS Satellite boxes in the 40m lab. I also modified the design of the Eurocrate extender boards, and sent them out for production for Koji.

Data Analysis and Astrophysics LabWide Activities
Remote screens
Alan Weinstein
Caltech (CIT)
Kent Blackburn
Thomas Massinger
Jessica Mciver
Rory Smith
Alexander Urban
Hanford (LHO)
Gregory Mendell

Advanced Distributed Data Analysis R&D
Kent Blackburn

Laboratory Computing
aLIGO Analysis and Open Data
Roy Williams
LDAS Software Systems
Ed Maros




LDAS System Administration
Dan Kozak
Phil Ehrens
Juan Barayoga
Gregory Mendell
Dan Moraru
Michael Thomas
General Computing
Larry Wallace
Melody Araya



Christian Cepeda
Veronica Kondrashov
Larry Wallace
Ryan Blair
Matthew Cowart
Fred Donovan

Advanced LIGO
David Shoemaker (Stuart Anderson)

No significant oversight activity.

Data Computing System (DCS)
Stuart Anderson
Data Analysis Optimization
Peter Couvares
Joshua Willis
Data Analysis Optimization Operations supported
Sharon Brunett
For additional information about this report, contact Albert Lazzarini