WIRCam Large Programs

Second round of proposals

Submission deadline: 21 September 2006 - 24:00 UTC





The CFHT Agencies, as well as the Korean and Taiwanese partners, have made a significant investment in the construction of the new CFHT wide field near IR imager WIRCam. As a return on this investment the Canadian and French Agencies, through the CFHT Board of Directors (BoD), have indicated their willingness to make a significant fraction (25% to 50%) of their bright time available to large programs executed with WIRCam. Given the commitment of CFHT dark time to the CFHT Legacy Survey, the BoD in particular urges the design of WIRCam programs that support or extend the components of the CFHTLS.

Based on the tremendous interest shown by community astronomers in the WIRCam Steering Group (SG) "Call for Ideas" for WIRCam surveys, the SG and the CFHT Scientific Advisory Council (SAC) also recognize that there is very significant interest in the possible execution of ambitious scientific programs with WIRCam requiring large amounts of observing time over several years, possibly involving co-investigators from more than one of the member communities.

A first Call for Proposals (CfP) for WIRCam Large Programs has been issued in August 2005, anticipating that a second call would be done one year later.

We are therefore pleased to announce the second Call for Proposals (CfP) for WIRCam Large Programs.

A large WIRCam program is defined as any proposal requesting approximately 30 or more nights over a one- or two-year period, and can involve any or all of the CFHT member agencies and/or partners. The proposals are to be submitted using the regular POOPSY software system for CFHT time applications and should be limited to 8 pages. Proposals must give detailed scientific and technical justifications for the requested time, a detailed schedule for the proposed observations on a semester-by-semester basis, and plans and schedules for data reduction and data and high-level data product distribution. Proposals should also justify the requested proprietary period for the data (which may be short or zero). Applicants are encouraged to seek the involvement of the Terapix and Canadian Astronomy Data Centers in their data production and distribution plans.

WIRCam Large Program observations submitted in this second round will be carried out as Queued Service Observations (QSO) starting with semester 2007A. Requests for filters other than the standard WIRCam set should be carefully justified since they may have important scheduling and operational consequences. Deadline for the submission of such Large Programs will be the same as for normal programs, i.e.  21 September 2006 - 24:00 UTC.

To eliminate concerns about duplicate observations, all submitted WIRCam Large Program proposals will be forwarded to the WIRCam participating agencies, the SAC chair, and the ED, whether or not the proposals include investigators from multiple agencies or partners. The Large Program proposals will be ranked and allocated time by the national TACs in competition with normal PI proposals at the regularly scheduled TAC meetings.

Large programs requiring more than two years of observations must be resubmitted every two years for peer review and competition with other PI proposals for a continuation of time allocation. Time is not guaranteed for WIRCam Large Programs longer than two years without such subsequent successful peer review.

Time will be allocated solely on the basis of scientific excellence, especially in comparison to normal programs.

It is expected that a call for large WIRCam programs will be issued every year.


Christian Veillet, CFHT Executive Director