PIMMS, viewing and roll are program utilities for helping proposers. They are all available, with accompanying documentation, via anonymous FTP at legacy.gsfc.nasa.gov. PIMMS, viewing, both multi-mission programs, can be obtained from the directory
and roll from the directory
All three utilities run on VAX/VMS machines, Sun workstations and Ultrix DECstations. They are also available for remote use with the HEASARC on-line service. Any release of upgraded versions will be announced electronically. Those who wish to run the programs on platforms other than VAX/VMS, Sun workstations or Ultrix DECstation should email firstname.lastname@example.org. In future, more utility programs may become available. They will be announced electronically.
PIMMS (Portable, Interactive, Multi-Mission Simulator) is designed for the evaluation of source count rate as well as for the simulation of simple images. Currently, PIMMS outputs information onto the terminal screen and can write out FITS image files. The capability of writing photon data in binary FITS format is under development. Chapter 10 gives concrete examples of how to use the program. Users who have installed version 1.2 of PIMMS at their home institutions need not obtain the currently available version.
viewing is a stand-alone program that allows users to calculate the ASCA viewing window, either in interactive or batch mode. The following sample shows the most basic way in which viewing may be used:
$ viewing Enter object name (<CR> to quit) > test Enter RA (hh mm ss.s or dd.ddd) > 23.45 Enter Dec ((s)dd mm ss.s or (s)dd.ddd) > 33.21 * test (at alpha= 24.0706, delta= 33.4314, precessed) is observable between 1992 Dec 24 and 1993 Feb 26 is observable between 1993 Jun 24 and 1993 Aug 31 Enter object name (<CR> to quit) >NB Those users who already have this program should obtain the current version since the Sun-angle constraints have changed in the past. Formerly it was and this was tightened to by the ASCA team.
For roll-critical observations, a similar program roll exists. It can predict when a certain roll angle is available or, conversely, what roll angle range is allowed on a given period of time. It can be found in the same directory as viewing.