[AstroPy] TABLES/STSDAS v3.7 and STScI_PYTHON v2.5 now available

Warren J. Hack hack at stsci.edu
Mon Jun 18 16:24:20 EDT 2007




The Astronomy Tools and Applications Branch of the Space Telescope
Science Institute wishes to announce the availability of version
3.7 of the Space Telescope Science Data Analysis Software (STSDAS).
Concurrent with the STSDAS release, we have also released v3.7 of
the TABLES external package. Both of these packages are layered upon
IRAF as external packages; it is therefore necessary to obtain and
install IRAF (from http://iraf.noao.edu) before installing TABLES
and STSDAS.  STSDAS is linked against libraries in TABLES, so TABLES
must be installed before STSDAS.

This release of STSDAS includes updated versions of CALWP2, CALSTIS
and CALACS as used in the HST calibration pipeline, along with revised
versions of SYNPHOT, MSTOOLS, and NICMOS packages, and the CVOS and
HSTIO libraries.

STSDAS also includes some Python-based tasks; running these requires the
STScI Python Libraries to be installed (all the non-Python tasks
can be used in the traditional way and do not require Python
or the STScI Python libraries). These tasks can only be run from
PyRAF using standard IRAF CL task syntax, or within Python scripts
using Python syntax.

The Astronomy Tools and Applications Branch of STScI also wishes
to announce the availability of version 2.5 of STSCI_PYTHON.
Stsci_python is a collection of Python modules, packages and C
extensions that has been developed to provide a general astronomical
data analysis infrastructure. They can be used for Python tasks
that are accessible from within STSDAS when running under PyRAF or
standalone from within Python.

All tasks in this release of STScI_Python have been updated to
use numpy for array operations. In addition, this release updated
versions of Multidrizzle as used by the HST ACS pipeline, along with
new versions of aXe, saaclean, PyFITS and PyRAF. Use of the Python
tasks requires upgrading to this version of STSCI_PYTHON.

This release is the first release that uses numpy as the base array
package. Numarray is no longer used within STScI_Python. Support
for numarray will be phased out entirely within a year of this
release. Support for numarray now is limited to critical problems or
major platform support issues. The threshold for 'critical' or 'major'
is continually becoming harder to meet; you are advised to migrate
to numpy as soon as possible.

This switch to numpy represents a step towards unifying the Python
scientific community in the use of a common array package.  This is
a very desirable outcome despite the inconvenience in making the switch. 
Information on making the switch to numpy from numarray can be found in 
this document:


This is the first public release of stsci_python on Windows.
Note that PyRAF is not available for Microsoft Windows since IRAF is
not available on that platform. This means that, in this release, all
the tasks in the STScI_Python distribution will be run under Python
(or preferably, IPython) on Windows using Python syntax rather than
a parameter-based interface provided by PyRAF and IRAF.

The primary requirement is that the Windows executables were built
against and, therefore, can run only under Python 2.5.

STSDAS/TABLES v3.7 can be downloaded from the STSDAS web site


Installation instructions are available on the web site. Precompiled
binaries also exist for some of the ports supported by NOAO, including
Sun Solaris, RedHat Linux and Mac OS X.

STSCI_PYTHON v 2.5 be downloaded from the PyRAF web site


Installation instructions are available from the PyRAF web site, with
support for installations on Sun Solaris, RedHat Linux, Mac OS X,
and Windows.

Please contact us through e-mail (help at stsci.edu), by telephone at
(410) 338-1082.

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