Welcome to ARC ! This is an introductory handbook for new students starting research projects within the Astrophysics Research Centre. You might be a final year MSci student or a summer placement student, or a even a beginning MPhil/PGR student and want some quick links to get you started and going. As students ask the same questions of their supervisor (what is a Mac and how do I see my files !) this is a quick start guide to get you going and will have some more detailed links to software, manuals etc. It is a living document and will updated by supervisors, and students as we answer your questions.
You are about to do a research project. You work will be based on the history of scientific work in your field and putting your effort into context is the first step in realising how the scientific process works. Your science training to date will mostly have been through text books and repeatable undergraduate lab or computer based experiments. Now you need to consider the scientific work that has been published as papers. This will primarily put your work in context, but you will also have to critically assess what is written in the papers. You must judge the scientific content, either the data or the theory, and judge if the conclusions are supported by the data and analysis presented.
Fortunately you now do not need to stray from your desk to do this. The whole of the scientific literature in astronomy and astrophysics (and much of physics) is available through two sites
You should complete these two tutorials :
The linux shell and command line : Code Academy link for tutorial
Python for beginners (you will need python to plot, and manipulate data) : https://www.codecademy.com/learn/learn-python-3
You will be allocated an iMac and given a user name and password, this will only work on the specific iMac you are allocated. You may/may not change the password RSIR to advise!
Safari is the web browser - and you may setup the mail tool
The MacOS system is a Unix or linux based system, with more graphical user interfaces and easier installation for many packages and application. You can open a terminal and use it as a Unix/linux based system
If you a complete beginner, try this Code Academy link for tutorial
Basic tools are already installed, such as python, perl, C and Fortran compilers
You can install various useful bits of software from the Managed Software Centre - search for munki, and the window will pop up a menu of various applications. Useful things like ds9 , aquamacs for editing, evernote for sharing notebooks.
If you have useful tutorials on bash and tsch use and scripting, then add here
Installing IRAF through conda and anaconda on Mac
cdto change dir to home
mkirafchoosing the xgterm as the perferred option
Dave's Young's explanation and alternative to installing conda, miniconda, astroconda etc. Having these pre-installed on your machine can really take the headache out of then installing the PESSTO pipeline or Orbfit and the likes.
IRAF tutorials :