Image taken from the Kepler-16b travel poster

Call for ExoExplorer Applications 2022

Program Description

NASA's Exoplanet Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) invites postdocs and graduate students at US and international institutions[a] to participate in the second Exoplanet Explorers (ExoExplorers) Science Series. This ExoExplorers cohort, which will run from January 2022 to July 2022, will each present a seminar on their research to the larger exoplanet community.

Each of the ExoExplorers will receive $1,000[b] for the purchase of a presentation of their research results during the Science Series on topics focusing on observation, theory, and instrumentation in support of the broad themes outlined in the “ExEP Science Gap List.”

In addition, the ExoExplorers will be invited to participate in:

  1. Weekly interactions between members of the cohort
  2. Monthly informal group discussions with prominent scientists (“ExoGuides”) in the fields of exoplanet science and diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA), and individual conversations with other researchers
  3. One to two professional development training sessions on topics to be decided by the cohort, such as proposal writing, building inclusive collaborations, and public speaking
  4. The development and/or execution of cohort-driven activities pertaining to DEIA.

The activities described above will largely be shaped by the unique interests and needs of the cohort. Therefore, we seek applicants who are actively seeking to enrich and enhance their exoplanet science and DEIA in the broader exoplanet community via engaging with each other, as well as with the ExoGuides and program organizers. In the event that this vibrant discussion between cohort members leads to the conception of a DEIA-related initiative, the ExoExplorer organizers will be happy to consider support to enhance it. However, we emphasize that this is not a program requirement.

Members of the ExoPAG Executive Committee (EC) will review and accept up to 12 people for this cohort.

[a] NASA places restrictions on interactions with several countries: Iran, Syria, North Korea, and China. If you are a citizen of one of these countries or are currently affiliated with an institution in one of these countries, please see our FAQ page for guidance.

[b] Both US and international participants will be eligible for payment. [Updated Aug 24, 2021]

Application Instructions

Those who wish to apply should submit a 700-1000 word statement describing:

  1. your research and how it supports the broad themes outlined in the ExEP Science Gap List (and related exoplanet topics),
  2. what would you bring to the cohort, and how would you participate in and contribute to the cohort's efforts through the activities described above,
  3. how you would leverage your ExoExplorers experience to become leaders in exoplanet science and to increase DEIA in the broader exoplanet community.

Your application will be evaluated based on how you address these three prompts. Applicants should substantively address all of the above areas.

Please use the application portal to submit your application. Your statement and CV must be PDF files. Applications are due September 23, 2021 by 8:00 PM Pacific time.

You must be signed in to a Google account to access the portal. If you do not have a Google account, please follow the “create an account” link to sign up. The name and photo (if applicable) associated with your Google account may be recorded; we will remove your photo from your application before review.


Please see our FAQ page to view answers to previously submitted questions or to submit a question. If your question isn’t answered, please email ensure that all potential applicants have access to the same information, we will post answers to received questions on that webpage. The last day to submit substantive questions about the ExoExplorers program, call, or application content is September 14. After this date, we will only answer procedural questions about the application process.

Code of Conduct

All participants in the Exoplanet Explorers program will be required to adhere to the Code of Conduct.