CASA at NRAO

Internal Use of CASA in Socorro and Charlottesville

As part of the standard computing infrastructure at NRAO, we maintain many versions of CASA and pipelines for use by our staff and visitors. The operating system that is used internally at NRAO is Linux Red Hat, which is under the management of the NRAO Computing Infrastructure Group.

To run the default version of CASA or the pipeline on NRAO machines or the NRAO cluster, simply type

casa

or

casa --pipeline

on any NRAO machine. The default version is typically the most recent CASA release.

Note that some new features may not have been fully tested for ALMA and the VLA. Therefore, the ALMA and VLA instrument teams sometimes recommend a previous CASA versions as the default for processing ALMA and VLA data. To run the latest recommended CASA versions for ALMA and the VLA, type

casa-alma

or

casa-vla

Visitors should consult their local contact which version of CASA should be used.



Any available version of CASA can be accessed at NRAO with the following command:

casa -r [version number]

Similarly, availabe versions of the pipelines can be accessed as follows:

casa --pipeline -r [version number]

Warning: the addition --pipeline is necessary for loading the pipeline-specific tasks in CASA.



To see all available versions for a given casa or pipeline version, use -ls:

casa -ls

This will produce a list of all the currently-installed CASA releases:

available versions: (per 1 Oct 2021)

4.7.0-1-el7
4.7.0-el7
4.7.1-el7
4.7.2-el7
5.0.0-218
5.1.0-68
5.1.0-69
5.1.0-71
5.1.0-73
5.1.0-74
5.1.1-5
5.1.2-4
5.3.0-143
5.4.0-68
5.4.0-70
5.4.1-31
5.4.1-32
5.4.2-5
5.4.2-8
5.5.0-149
5.6.0-60
5.6.1-8.el7
5.6.2-2.el7
5.6.2-3.el7
5.6.2-6.el7
5.6.3-19.el7
5.7.0-134.el7
5.7.2-4.el7
5.8.0-109.el7
6.1.0-118
6.1.1-13-pipeline-2020.1.0.36
6.1.1-15-pipeline-2020.1.0.40
6.1.2-7-pipeline-2020.1.0.36
6.1.2-7-pipeline-2020.1.0.40
6.2.0-124
6.2.1-7-pipeline-2021.2.0.128
6.3.0-48


Current version of casa is 6.3.0-48    (This is the default)
Current version of casa-alma is 6.2.1-7-pipeline-2021.2.0.128    (This is the ALMA default)
Current version of casa-vla is 6.2.1-7-pipeline-2021.2.0.128    (This is the VLA default)



Example: typing casa --pipeline -r 6.1.1-15-pipeline-2020.1.0.39 on an NRAO machine will run CASA 6.1.1 and start the pipeline that is included for ALMA Cycle-8 observing.

Note that as per CASA 6, the CASA naming convention changed to explicitly call the pipeline number in those CASA versions that include a pipeline. Older CASA versions may or may not include a pipeline, but this is not explicitly mentioned in the file name. Please consult with your local contact which version of CASA you should use.



CASA pre-release versions are also available. These pre-release version contain the latest functionality, but have not been as rigorously tested as CASA release versions. CASA pre-release versions are not officially supported.

To run a casa pre-release versions, type

casa-prerelease [version number]

If the version number is omitted, then by default the latest pre-release version will be started.

Listing all available casa pre-release versions can be done by typing

casa-prerelease -ls



Apart from running the full CASA distribution, users can also run certain GUIs, such as the CASA Viewer or plotms, in stand-alone mode:

casaviewer

casaplotms

which will run the viewer or plotms from the default CASA version that is installed at NRAO.

Similar to running different CASA or pipeline versions, the -r command can be used to run different versions of the viewer or plotms in stand-alone mode:

casaviewer -r 6.1.1-15-pipeline-2020.1.0.39

casaplotms -r 6.1.1-15-pipeline-2020.1.0.39

Certain other tasks can also be run in stand-alone mode. These include casabrowser, casafeather and casalogger, all of which may be started in a similar manner.



CASA Version Numbers


A more self-consistent numbering method for version identification has been adopted for CASA 4.3 onwards.

All current and future CASA versions are identified by a number of the format X.Y.Z-V (e.g. 5.1.0-74) which is reported when CASA is launched. The X.Y.Z-V number is also reflected in the filename of the corresponding downloadable tarball.

In addition, starting with CASA 6, pipeline numbers are explicitly mentioned in the package name for those CASA versions that include a pipeline.


User Support for internal NRAO CASA Users


Please consult your local NRAO contact for question on how to run CASA on NRAO machines, or contact the HelpDesk.

is the official CASA documentation and the primary reference for instructions on how to use CASA. Your local NRAO contact can get in touch with CASA staff-members in Socorro and Charlottesville for further questions.

The CASA team also welcomes feedback from visitors at casa-feedback_at_nrao.edu



CASA is being developed by an international team of scientists based at the National Radio Astronomical Observatory (NRAO), the European Southern Observatory (ESO), and the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ), under the guidance of NRAO.