SC telecon 26-01-2021


Francesco Piacentini, Paolo Natoli, Enrique Martinez-Gonzalez, Ludovic Montier, Eiichiro Komatsu, Erminia Calabrese, Juan-Rong Gao, Radek Stompor, Thierry Maciaszek, Pete Hargrave.


– Approval of minutes of previous calls and choice of notetaker for the day

– Updates, including 

+ Spain contribution for PRODEX (Enrique et al)

+ Plan B’/detectors

– Newly proposed members

– Organization of S2S

– Inputs for next global call

– Next telecon of Gov Subcommittee 



Approval of minutes of previous calls and choice of notetaker for the day

Notetaker Francesco

Minutes approved

Updates, including Spain contribution for PRODEX (Enrique et al)

Prodex call is out, deadline March 8th. 

The activity should start at the end of Spring, for the duration of 1 year. 


The 100mK stage thermometers were not included in the original UK proposal. 

Can contemplate studying other stages too. 

Spain can propose to Prodex responsibility of this stage


ESC should assign responsibility on the 100mK stage thermometers to Spain. 


Berend discussed with his team, and mentioned that they have a manpower issue and financial support. 

Berend agrees having Spain responsible for 100mK stage thermometry. 


This is acceptable for Spain. This is a challenging task, proposing novel technology. 



  • we need fine thermometers on several stages. All read-out by similar electronics.  
  • the more reasonable solution is to have one country/institute in charge of the full package



  • the proposed split is more for formal reasons. Both groups will consider the full packages of thermometry, but formal responsibility can be split. 



  • the proposal must be first habilitated by Spain. Then ESA will follow the project, in charge of the development, timing. 



  • prodex call can be put forward to ESA for 1 year study. 
  • Critical evaluation of all the thermometry stages. E2E.
  • Can be a paper study, and can be independent from future responsibility.
  • Responsibility of implementation will be in a next stage. 



  • official responsibility on the 100mK stage could facilitate Prodex approval. 
  • The study should remain very open 



  • the idea of Prodex is to start funding the spanish contribution to different missions
  • still to see the details of the calls. 
  • good results of the study (including company contribution) is clearly critical for preparation of the next stages. 



  • we have other shared responsibilities (absorbers). This allowed Jon to ask for supporto to Sweden. 
  • Some shared responsibility can be fine



  • Thierry thinks that co-sharing, if any, should be on fine/coarse thermometry
  • the concept of the readout should be the same for 100mK, 300mK and above
  • CEA experts suggest that the same technology can be used for 100mK to 5K. 



  • we should find the most effective path for passing the selection. 


PH will re-discuss with Berend, and organize a new call


EMG: we need to discuss these details with the rest of the group. 

Need to formally show that in Spain we will have a clear chance to continue with the following phases. 


TM: if everybody in MHFT agrees to assign to Spain the task, it will be critical to have longer term funding. 

EMG: for phase-B it will be 3 years, and can be longer if justified. 

The total amount for the call is 8.5 Meuro. The funding will be split according to ranking. 

If a group asks for full funding and will rank first, only one proposal will be funded, 


Email update from Pete on Jan 28:

Erminia and I have just spoken to Berend to clarify the MSSL position on provision of housekeeping electronics and thermometry – summary below:

  1. Currently, MSSL have no funding to do anything this year
  2. Manpower at MSSL is also tied up for the next year due to Euclid and Plato commitments
  3. Berend is happy for Spain to proceed with the PRODEX proposal
  4. We see no real benefit or logic at this stage in differentiating between sub-Kelvin thermometry (RuOx) and control, and higher temperature thermometry (Cernox) – this should be progressed as one workpackage for now.
  5. MSSL and Cardiff are very happy to advise/assist on the PRODEX proposal preparation, and to collaborate unfunded going forwards if funded to maintain significant involvement (lots of collective experience from Herschel & Planck)
  6. Should the UK funding situation change going forwards, MSSL would like to reserve an option of still being in contention for future contribution to this workpackage.


Plan B’/detectors

Current version updated by FP, TM, LM. Minor changes discussed. 

Agreed by ESC.


Send to the IGB. 


LM suggests to trigger some key US people, at the same time of sending to the full IGB. 

So we have those people already convinced. 

Action on Ludo: send a specific message to Masashi, Adrian, Julian, Keith, Matt


What if we don’t have an IGB agreement?

We should have a path to send it to agencies in case IGB disagrees. 


EC: what is an ESC document not approved by IGB?

PN: the IGB may not endorse it, still being ok to send it to ESA as “not for distribution”

If the IGB disagrees, we may need to ask Masashi to resolve. 


EC: we are one collaboration, and we need an agreement. If agreed, it will be a litebird doc. LM: Very difficult to send the doc without an agreement. 


PN: if the IGB don’t authorize, we will not send it. A possibility is that IGB doesn’t endorse the plan, but can allow us to send it to ESA.





PH: Cardiff discussion ongoing with Cambridge/SRON

Cambridge keen to go on with the proposal. 

Requirements from Adrian not yet received. Due by end of January 

Newly proposed members

About Chapron, we had feedback from Yutaro. No from MHFT WG conveeners.  

He already reported at the last PLM. 

Application is strongly supported.


Paolo can go ahead and pass it to Masashi, Adrian. 


Other proposals:

Ludo didn’t discuss CEA proposals for an update. Deferred 


Beglian proposals. 

Action on Ludo to discuss with them if 1/2 proposals + observers was fine. 


Ludo discussed with Christian. 

  • limited FTE involvement: to be revised for 2 main points of contacts. 
  • Christian will revise the proposal
  • about the scientific proposal, we discussed to have one person leading the activity: Sebastian Clesse proposed as EC
  • The others as Observers for the moment. 


PN: it is important to define the “observers” status. 


Definition in the Policy document:

4.1.3. Observers

A proposal can be made to the IGB to have observers at meetings/telecons. Various kinds of people including scientists, technical staff, agency representatives, graduate students, can be observers. If the IGB agrees, observers are allowed to access some of internal pieces of information of LiteBIRD. Such access should be proposed to the IGB and agreed by the IGB.


Christian is preparing a single proposal for Belgium. Discuss next week. 


LM: we had a meeting with 4 CNES people working on the anechoic chamber, making tests to check the performances of the chamber. They would like to be involved in the discussion, especially for RF – Optics discussion. 


Ludo will ask Masashi to approve them as observers. 


Organization of S2S

FP: get prepared for a european presentation.

Try to coordinate the european presentations. 

Inputs for next global call

send to Ludo by thursday 


Next telecon of Gov Subcommittee 

Planned for friday 



LM contacted by Jan Tauber. Gruber prize money not spent due to COVID-19. 

Planning to organize a meeting of future CMB observations. In presence, after COVID solution. 

Jan proposed Ludo to participate in the organization.