17 July 2024 - Mission Day: 10456 - DOY: 199
Science Operations

Solar Joint Observing Programme (JOP) Guidelines

For multiple instrument studies — anything from a collaboration between two SOHO instruments to full fledged multi-site, multi-spacecraft campaigns - a JOP proposal is usually necessary. To increase the likelihood of your JOP being accepted and run, you should read the entire set of guidelines below before starting your work.

Writing and submitting the JOP

If you have a fairly good idea of the capabilities of each instrument involved, you should start by making a DRAFT proposal. If not, you should send a query to the instrument contacts (see below) before starting, to make sure your JOP objective does not require the impossible from any of the instruments.

A JOP description should include the following items:

  • Title
  • Short title (for SOHO campaign database — maximum length 40 characters)
  • Author(s)
  • Update History
  • Participating SOHO instruments, and other observatories
  • Scientific Objective
  • Scientific Justification
  • Operational Considerations (e.g. Near Real Time commanding required, method for target selection, fall-back strategies
  • Detailed Observing Sequences per Instrument (may need revision later, based on input from instrument teams).

Also, when available and fixed at the time of writing the JOP, supply the proposed observation dates or target of opportunity periods. Unless the JOP is a very special collaboration that will take place only once, the dates should not be part of the JOP itself, but should accompany the JOP description in emails etc.

Even if you're not planning on using a particular instrument for anything except planning/target selection, make sure that you specify your minimum requirements for such purposes. Otherwise the instrument may schedule bakeouts, engineering studies, etc, in conflict with your observations.

Please write the JOP description in either HTML or plain text. Also, please keep lines below 80 characters. Beware that your email program may start wrapping the text around before 80 characters when you submit the text (making a mess of your tables, paragraphs, etc).

Documents "Saved as HTML" or HTML generated by a "web page design program" are not generally accepted, due to the difficulty of maintaining such documents without the original, architecture-dependent program.

Well-structured LaTeX is acceptable, if it can be converted to HTML without problems by using latex2html. This is usually the case for "well-structured LaTeX". Ad hoc formatting commands don't come through very well in HTML, no matter how good it looks on paper.

The Scientific Justification should preferably include an explanation of why existing observations cannot fullfill the scientific objective of the JOP. Keep it short, a paragraph or two is normally sufficient. Refer to existing JOPs and the SOHO Campaign Database for previous observations.

Contact the relevant instruments and the Science Operations Coordinators (SOC) with the draft proposal.

This is to ensure the feasibility of fulfilling the scientific objective, and to assist you in determining what observations are most suitable given instrument limitations and restrictions.

Make sure to suggest dates for the JOP run, especially if you are coordinating with ground-based observatories.

This also insures that observations are not scheduled in conflict with spacecraft activities (i.e. maneuvers), and that extra Deep Space Network (DSN) support that may be needed can be requested far in advance (typically 6 months).

The following email addresses can be used for this purpose [Substitute (at) with @]:

soc (at) esa.nascom.nasa.gov (SOHO Science Operations Coordinators)
mdiers (at) mdisas.nascom.nasa.gov (A "group of knowledgeable MDI'ers")
gurman (at) gsfc.nasa.gov (Joe Gurman)
cds-jops (at) cdso8.nascom.nasa.gov (A. Fludra, P. Young, D. Pike, W. Thompson)
stenborg (at) kreutz.nascom.nasa.gov (Guillermo Stenborg)
yko (at) cfa.harvard.edu (Yuan-Kuen Ko)
curdt (at) linmpi.mpg.de (Werner Curdt)

For JOPs to be scheduled during MEDOC campaigns:

karine.bocchialini (at) ias.u-psud.fr

For JOPs involving the TRACE spacecraft, questions & requests can be sent to

trace_planner (at) lmsal.com

For JOPs involving the STEREO mission:

stereo-ssc (at) listserv.gsfc.nasa.gov
simon.plunkett (at) nrl.navy.mil

For JOPs involving the Hinode mission:

jlc (at) mssl.ucl.ac.uk, watanabe.tetsuya (at) nao.ac.jp, john.mariska (at) nrl.navy.mil
berger (at) lmsal.com, sekii (at) solar.mtk.nao.ac.jp
golub (at) head.cfa.harvard.edu, shibasaki (at) nro.nao.ac.jp

Note on Hinode planning process:General discussion of campaign plans that are evolving and are several months away should go to the Hinode instruments' science schedule coordinators (SSCs — listed above). If a single clearly primary Hinode instrument can be identified, the campaign coordinators should contact the SSCs of that instrument only. The Hinode instrument planners will not be involved until the details of the observations are being planned.

Based on the feedback from the instruments, revise & refine your JOP (especially the description of each instrument's observation sequence).

Submit the revised version to the SOCs, who will assign your JOP a number and place the JOP on the Solar JOPs WWW pages for review at the SOHO monthly meetings (Science Planning Working Group - SPWG).

At the SPWG, the JOP description may be accepted (as a whole or partially) or rejected (usually only partially). If the JOP is partially rejected, it is then up to the JOP author to modify the JOP to have it accepted (at the next SPWG).

JOP scheduling

Once the JOP has been accepted, it may be scheduled for any number of runs, as long as the PI's or their representatives agree. The scheduling is usually finalized at the SPWG meetings. However, the individual instruments (as well as the SOCs) should be contacted before the SPWG meetings to ensure their participation.

For the initial run of a JOP, the JOP leader (usually the principal author of the JOP) must be present in case last-minute changes to the observing programme is needed due to unforeseen conflicts. In exceptional cases, a Deputy JOP leader (with intimate knowledge of the observing programs and scientific objectives of the JOP) may be accepted by the SPWG.

In your role as JOP leader, you are responsible for keeping in touch with all parties involved.

A major concern with JOPs is that a local point of contact be established for each observing run, to coordinate target selection and deal with last minute issues. Someone should be present a day prior to our Friday weekly meeting for the upcoming observing week, and remain throughout the duration of the observations. You will have full access to instrument planners and operations personnel to guide you through your observation.

After the observations

After a JOP is completed, JOP leaders should use the campaign database to provide a brief report on the data collected, and how successful this JOP was in terms of the intended targets.

It is the JOP leader's duty to analyse the data and to publish results in the refereed literature. The Science Working Team may ask JOP leaders for reports on the progress of this process.

When publishing data from a JOP, you should update the entry in the SOHO Campaign Database to include references.

Please use the standard acknowledgement "SOHO is a project of international cooperation between ESA and NASA" in published papers.

The relevant PIs, and the SOHO Project Scientist Office (see below) would appreciate references to (and reprints of) published papers.

We encourage JOP leaders to make sure all JOP data (especially non-SOHO data) is available to other groups.

For future scheduling of new runs, submit a revised version of the JOP including the references.

SOHO has a series of monthly, weekly, and daily planning meetings to organize observations from initial scheduling down to final pointing coordinates. The minutes of the planning meetings are available via the SOHO operations web page.

Questions about science operations planning can be directed to the Science Operations Coordinators.


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Last modification: July 27, 2020

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