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Optical sky brightness spectra from the Nigel experiment at Dome A, Antarctica
Entry ID: AAS_4011_DomeA_Sky_Brightness

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Abstract: The "Nigel" spectrometer was operated at Dome A, Antarctica, over the 2009 Austral winter. As part of the PLATO (PLATeau Observatory) astronomical instrument suite, Nigel was designed as a site-testing instrument, to provide quantitative measurements of the day time, twilight and night time sky brightness. In particular, one of the main the aims of the experiment was to determine the airglow and ... View entire text
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Description: Citation reference for this metadata record and dataset
Geographic Coverage
Spatial coordinates   
  N: -80.37   S: -80.37   E: 77.35   W: 77.35

Data Set Citation
Dataset Originator/Creator: Ashley, M.C.B., Sims, G. and Burton, M.
Dataset Title: Optical sky brightness spectra from the Nigel experiment at Dome A, Antarctica
Dataset Series Name: CAASM Metadata
Dataset Release Date: 2014-08-04
Dataset Publisher: Australian Antarctic Data Centre
Online Resource:
Temporal Coverage
Start Date: 2009-03-03
Stop Date: 2009-10-05
Spectrometers Ancillary Description
Quality For a complete list of people involved in the project, see the word document in the download file.

Time constraints prevented an absolute flux calibration from being performed before the instrument was deployed to Antarctica. We present a way to estimate the calibration (by using a nearby calibrated instrument) in the supplementary material.

Data taken during the dark winter nights has an extremely low signal-to-noise ratio, with night sky emission lines being right at the noise limit. Auroral events are, however, readily detectable.
Access Constraints These data are publicly available for download from the provided URL. Please keep in mind their large size though (greater than 5 GB).
Use Constraints This data set conforms to the PICCCBY Attribution License

Please follow instructions listed in the citation reference provided at when using these data.
Data Set Progress
Data Center
Australian Antarctic Data Centre, Australia Supplemental Info
Data Center URL:

Data Center Personnel
Phone: +61 3 6232 3244
Fax: +61 3 6232 3351
Email: metadata at
Contact Address:
Australian Antarctic Division
203 Channel Highway
City: Kingston
Province or State: Tasmania
Postal Code: 7050
Country: Australia
Distribution Media: HTTP
Distribution Size: 5.3 GB
Distribution Format: Excel, Word
Fees: Free
Phone: +61 2 9385 5465
Email: m.ashley at
Contact Address:
University of New South Wales
School of Physics
City: Sydney
Province or State: NSW
Postal Code: 2052
Country: Australia
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Sims, Geoff, Ashley, Michael C. B., Cui, Xiangqun, Everett, Jon R., Feng, LongLong, Gong, Xuefei, Hengst, Shane, Hu, Zhongwen, Lawrence, Jon S., Luong-van, Daniel M., Moore, Anna M., Riddle, Reed, Shang, Zhaohui, Storey, John W. V., Tothill, Nick, Travouillon, Tony, Wang, Lifan, Yang, Huigen, Yang, Ji, Zhou, Xu and Zhu, Zhenxi (2013), Airglow and Aurorae at Dome A, Antarctica, Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific, 124, 916, 637-649, ISSN 0004-6280
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Creation and Review Dates
DIF Creation Date: 2014-05-07
Last DIF Revision Date: 2017-08-24