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ExoPAG News and Announcements (May 4, 2021)

  1. ExoPAG 24: Save the Date (June 24, 2021; 11am-5pm EDT/8am-2pm PDT)
  2. NASA ROSES Extreme Precision Radial Velocity (EPRV) Foundation Science Selections
  3. ExoExplorers Science Series: Jules Fowler (UCSC) & Rachel Fernandes (U Arizona/LPL) (May 14, 2021, 4-5pm EDT/1-2pm PDT)
  4. JWST Transiting Exoplanet Community Early Release Science (ERS) Summer 2021 Activities: ERS Pre-launch Data Hackathon (June 21-25, 2021) and the ERS Theory Webbinar
  5. CHEOPS Science Workshop VI (July 13-16, 2021)
+ more

1) ExoPAG 24: Save the Date (June 24, 2021; 11am-5pm EDT/8am-2pm PDT)

Please save the date for ExoPAG 24, 11 am to 5 pm EDT (TBC), June 24. The agenda will include programmatic updates of relevance for the ExoPAG community, science updates and descriptions of exciting new capabilities, updates from SIGs and SAGs, as well as our regular business meeting. Members can propose ideas for future ExoPAG findings here:

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1S9kZEVfdutSaTvQcFuD3yMioFen_3UenmNgfu_59Z-4/edit

(see a description of past findings), as well as suggest new activities for ExoPAG activities (SAGs and SIGs). Please note that we also plan to hold a community forum later in the summer to review the exoplanet related recommendations of Astro2020 after its release.


2) NASA ROSES Extreme Precision Radial Velocity (EPRV) Foundation Science Selections

As part of the EPRV Initiative, a NASA ROSES Solicitation in EPRV Foundation Science was formulated as a first investment. We are pleased to announce that selections have been made:

https://nspires.nasaprs.com/external/viewrepositorydocument/cmdocumentid=817258/solicitationId=%7B8BEF2D63-6E33-C28A-B68B-8EF929B90D74%7D/viewSolicitationDocument=1/EPRV20%20Abstracts.pdf


3) ExoExplorers Science Series: Jules Fowler (UCSC) & Rachel Fernandes (U Arizona/LPL) (May 14, 2021, 4-5pm EDT/1-2pm PDT)

The ExoExplorers Science Series presents talks by cohort members Jules Fowler (UCSC) & Rachel Fernandes (U Arizona - LPL) on May 14, 2021 from 4-5pm EDT/1-2pm PDT.

https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/events/341/exoexplorer-science-series-jules-fowler-ucsc-rachel-fernandes-u-arizona-lpl/

Jules Fowler (UCSC)
"Don't Heckle My Speckle: A Coronagraph Design Study for the SEAL Testbed"

&

Rachel Fernandes (U. Arizona - LPL)
"Exoplanet Demographics Beyond Kepler: Giant Planets with Radial Velocity & Young Planets with TESS"


4) JWST Transiting Exoplanet Community Early Release Science (ERS) Summer 2021 Activities: ERS Pre-launch Data Hackathon (June 21-25, 2021) and the ERS Theory Webbinar

Dear Exoplanet Colleagues,

The JWST Transiting Exoplanet Community Early Release Science (ERS) team is hosting two summer 2021 activities related to exoplanet science with the Webb Telescope: the ERS Pre-launch Data Hackathon (21-25 June 2021) and the ERS Theory Webbinar (weekly starting 1 July 2021).

The key goals of these events are to teach the tools and concepts needed to make the most from JWST exoplanet observations, to inspire the development of new and better analyses in advance of JWST’s launch, and to provide an inclusive space where scientists can work together in preparing for the revolution in exoplanet science that JWST will provide. While broadly focused on the Early Release Science (ERS) datasets, these events are open to the broader exoplanet community, and we encourage all those interested in participating to register. All levels of expertise are welcome, from the novice student to the expert exoplaneteer!

Details and registration can be found at ers-transit.github.io. Registration is due by 21 May 2021 for the ERS Pre-launch Hackathon and suggested by 1 July 2021 for the ERS Theory Webbinar.

Cheers,
Zach Berta-Thompson, Mike Line, Mercedes Lopez-Morales (Data Challenge Co-Chairs)
Natalie Batalha, Kevin Stevenson, Jacob Bean (ERS Co-PIs)
and the entire Exo-Webb ERS Team!


5) CHEOPS Science Workshop VI (July 13-16, 2021)

https://cheops.unibe.ch/scienceworkshop2021

Goal of the meeting:

The CHEOPS workshop VI will be held 13-16 July, 2021, some 15 months after the beginning of CHEOPS science operations. The workshop will be the occasion for the planetary science community at large to discuss and share the first main results of CHEOPS in different fields, from the planetary internal structure to atmospheric characterization, etc. Participants are invited to propose contributed talks and posters on all scientific aspects linked to CHEOPS, including CHEOPS based-results as well as proposals for future observations and synergies with other facilities, as for example:

  • mission update and performances
  • finding transits of already known planets
  • mass-radius relation and planetary internal structure
  • TTV
  • tidal deformation
  • moons and rings
  • tidal decay
  • phase curves
  • planet heat redistribution
  • cloud properties
  • albedo

Registration deadline: May 31, 2021

https://cheops.unibe.ch/cheops-science-workshop-2021-registration

(note: After reaching 200 registrations, you will be put on a waiting list for physical attendance. Note that online participation will still be possible.)


ExoPAG News and Announcements (April 21, 2021)

  1. Announcing New Members of the ExoPAG Executive Committee
  2. ExoExplorers Science Series: Jules Fowler (UCSC) & Rachel Fernandes (U Arizona/LPL) (May 14, 2021, 4-5pm EDT/1-2pm PDT)
  3. Roman Space Telescope Exoplanet Imaging Data Challenge: Final Jamboree (Apr. 30, 2021)
  4. Dual-Anonymous Peer Review Town Hall for Planetary and Exoplanets Research Programs (Apr. 28, 2021; 3-4pm EDT/12-1pm PDT)
  5. TESS Atmospheric Characterization Working Group (ACWG) Website
  6. Exoplanets IV (May 1-6, 2022, Las Vegas, NV)
  7. Rocky Worlds II Conference (Jan. 10-12, 2022, Oxford, UK)
+ more

1) Announcing New Members of the ExoPAG Executive Committee

"Dear All,

We are very pleased to announce the new members of the ExoPAG EC:

  • Michael Bottom, The University of Hawaii
  • Ofer Cohen, The University of Massachusetts, Lowell
  • Knicole Colon, NASA GSFC
  • Ilaria Pascucci, The University of Arizona

They bring new expertise and diverse perspectives to the ExoPAG Executive Committee. Please join me in welcoming Michael, Ofer, Knicole, and Ilaria. We are grateful that they have accepted the invitation to join the EC and contribute in this way.

We are also grateful for the significant contributions of departing Executive Committee members Thomas Barclay, Jessie Christiansen, and Rebecca Jensen-Clem, as well as out-going Past Chair Emeritus, Vikki Meadows. Please join me in thanking them for their service.

In the meantime, please everyone stay safe and well during these trying times.

Sincerely,
Michael Meyer"


2) ExoExplorer Science Series: Jules Fowler (UCSC) & Rachel Fernandes (U Arizona/LPL) (May 14, 2021, 4-5pm EDT/1-2pm PDT)

The ExoExplorer Science Series presents talks by cohort members Jules Fowler (UCSC) on TBD & Rachel Fernandes (U Arizona - LPL) on TBD on May 14, 2021 from 4-5pm EDT/1-2pm PDT.

https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/events/341/exoexplorer-science-series-jules-fowler-ucsc-rachel-fernandes-u-arizona-lpl/

Please sign up to receive announcements about ExoExplorers at:
https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/exopag/exoexplorers/exoexplorers-announcements/


3) Roman Space Telescope Exoplanet Imaging Data Challenge: Final Jamboree (Apr. 30, 2021)

Roman Space Telescope Exoplanet Imaging Data Challenge: FINAL JAMBOREE
Friday April 30, 2021, 11am to 2:30pm EDT (online)

https://www.stsci.edu/contents/events/stsci/2021/april/the-roman-exoplanet-imaging-data-challenge-final-jamboree
https://www.exoplanetdatachallenge.com/

Public event to announce winners, prizes and discuss lessons learned, our legacy tutorial.

Hear our finalist teams and participants give their feedback!

Agenda: https://www.exoplanetdatachallenge.com/events
Registration: https://na.eventscloud.com/ereg/index.php?eventid=615224&
Live Stream: https://www.facebook.com/STScILiveScienceEvents

The ROMAN Exoplanet Imaging Data Challenge (https://www.exoplanetdatachallenge.com/) ran for 8 months in 2019-2020. Organized by the Turnbull Science Investigation Team (SIT), this data challenge was a unique opportunity for exoplanet scientists of all backgrounds and experience levels to get acquainted with realistic Roman CGI (coronagraphic) simulated data with a new contrast regime enabling to unveil giant planets in reflected light. Participants had to recover the astrometry of an exoplanetary system combining precursor radial velocity data with up to 6 coronagraphic imaging epochs throughout the mission. They had to perform accurate orbital fitting and determine the mass of any planet hidden in the data. It involved PSF subtraction techniques, post-processing, and other astrophysics hurdles to overcome such as contamination sources (stellar, extragalactic, and exozodiacal light).

We are now ready to announce the results to the community, present our in-house analysis, and discuss lessons learned and paths forward to best exploit scientifically the first data coming out of Roman CGI. For that, we welcome you to attend our 3 ½ hour event on Friday, April 30 2021. The event will be publicly live streamed on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/STScILiveScienceEvents). However, if you would like to actively participate in the discussion and/or the Q/As, please register (https://na.eventscloud.com/ereg/index.php?eventid=615224&) and we will send you a BlueJeans link to connect.

Contact: Julien Girard - jgirard@stsci.edu


4) Dual-Anonymous Peer Review Town Hall for Planetary and Exoplanets Research Programs (Apr. 28, 2021; 3-4pm EDT/12-1pm PDT)

On April 28, 2021 at 3 PM Eastern, NASA's Planetary Science Division will host a webinar to discuss the implementation of Dual-Anonymous Peer Review for the following programs under ROSES-2021: Cassini Data Analysis Program, Discovery Data Analysis Program, Exoplanet Research Program, New Frontiers Data Analysis Program, Lunar Data Analysis Program, and the Mars Data Analysis Program.

In Dual-Anonymous Peer Review, not only are proposers unaware of the identity of reviewers, but the reviewers do not have explicit knowledge of the proposing teams and institutions during the scientific evaluation of the proposal. The webinar will: (1) discuss the motivation for switching to dual-anonymous peer review, (2) describe important changes to proposal writing to be compliant with dual-anonymous peer review, and (3) explain how dual-anonymous peer reviews will work.

In advance of the webinar, questions may be submitted and upvoted on at:

https://arc.cnf.io/sessions/tgwj/

The webinar will be broadcast live via WebEx. Connection details follow:

Join from the meeting link

https://nasaenterprise.webex.com/nasaenterprise/j.php?MTID=mc0083f862cf0d9ce33b27fc0391dd6f0

Join by meeting number
Meeting number (access code): 199 756 1176
Meeting password: DaPR-2021

Join by phone
+1-929-251-9612 USA Toll 2
+1-415-527-5035 US Toll

For more information on dual-anonymous peer review, please visit: https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/dual-anonymous-peer-review


5) TESS Atmospheric Characterization Working Group (ACWG) Website

From Eliza Kempton:

"The TESS Atmospheric Characterization Working Group (ACWG) has compiled a new website with various resources aimed at aiding the atmospheric characterization and TESS follow-up communities. The link to the website is given here: https://tess.mit.edu/science/tess-acwg/

On this website, you will find the following resources:

  1. A set of plots to motivate and plan for future statistical surveys of exoplanet atmospheres.
  2. A webform for community members to identify priority atmospheric characterization targets for communication to the TESS Follow-Up Observing Program (TFOP).
  3. A downloadable spreadsheet listing information on all approved JWST transiting planet observations.

Any questions or comments on the website content can be sent to the ACWG via Eliza Kempton (ekempton@astro.umd.edu)."


6) Exoplanets IV (May 1-6, 2022, Las Vegas, NV)

https://aas.org/meetings/aastcs9/exoplanets


7) Rocky Worlds II Conference (Jan. 10-12, 2022, Oxford, UK)

ROCKY WORLDS II CONFERENCE
January 10-12, 2022
Oxford, United Kingdom

https://www.rockyworlds.org

Registration deadline: September 30, 2021

The detailed understanding gleaned from the terrestrial planets in the Solar System is crucial in the interpretation of extrasolar planets. As the characterisation of these new planetary systems proceeds, it in turn improves our understanding of the Solar System, and in particular of how potentially habitable worlds form, evolve, and are distributed throughout the galaxy.

The newly established Rocky Worlds conference series brings together planetary scientists, astronomers, and earth scientists to foster discussion and build collaborations that will pave the way for the next decade of rocky exoplanet discovery and characterisation.

Confirmed invited speakers: Nathalie Carrasco, Linda Elkins-Tanton, Rebecca Fischer, Sascha Quanz, Elishevah van Kooten, Allona Vazan

Scientific organisers: Tim Lichtenberg, Amy Bonsor, Vivien Parmentier, James Bryson, Oliver Shorttle, Colin Wilson, Jayne Birkby, Ray Pierrehumbert


ExoPAG News and Announcements (April 2, 2021)

  1. Dr. Christine Corbett Moran named Deputy Manager for Exoplanet Exploration Program
  2. Exoplanet Explorers Presentation (Friday, April 16, 2021; 4-5pm EDT/1-2pm PDT)
  3. JATIS Special Issue on Starshades
  4. NASA SMD Seeks Volunteer Reviewers for Research Proposals
  5. Astrophysics Advisory Committee (APAC) March 15-17, 2021 Meeting Presentations Posted
  6. Dual-Anonymous Peer Review Town Hall for Planetary and Exoplanets Research Programs (April 28, 2021; 3-4pm EDT/12-1pm PDT)
  7. Stars and Planets in the Ultraviolet (May 3-5, 2021)
  8. 2nd TESS Science Conference (August 2-6, 2021; registration deadline July 1, 2021)
  9. AbGradCon (Virtual Meeting, September 14-17, 2021; abstract deadline April 15, 2021)
+ more

1) Dr. Christine Corbett Moran named Deputy Manager for Exoplanet Exploration Program

From Exoplanet Exploration Program Manager Gary Blackwood:

"I am delighted to announce the selection of Dr. Christine Corbett Moran as the Deputy Manager for the Exoplanet Exploration Program, a NASA Headquarters Program that JPL manages for the NASA Astrophysics Division and the exoplanet science community.

Dr. Moran is an interdisciplinary physicist and engineer, with a strong science communications background and extensive entrepreneurial experience. She has authored or co-authored 24 publications and proceedings, held foundational roles at three successful startups, and has more than fifteen years of experience as a highly sought-after public speaker and writer.

Dr. Moran earned two Bachelor of Science degrees from MIT in Physics and Computer Science & Engineering, with minors in Mathematics and Philosophy. She also holds a Master’s of Fine Arts in creative writing from the University of Southern Maine. Dr. Moran earned her Master’s and Ph.D. in Astrophysics from the University of Zurich, where her thesis work focused on computational cosmology.

Dr. Moran has been a member of the Caltech/JPL community for six years, first serving as an NSF Astronomy and Astrophysics Postdoctoral Fellow (NSF AAPF) at Caltech in the Theoretical AstroPhysics Including Relativity and Cosmology (TAPIR) group. She joined JPL in 2018, where she most recently served as the Group Supervisor in the Cyber Defense Engineering and Research Group (CDER, 319C) and in the M2020 Engineering Cameras (ECAM) operations team as a Payload Downlink Lead (PDL). Before joining JPL, Dr. Moran worked in the propulsion group at SpaceX and served at the South Pole Telescope (SPT) in Antarctica as a Winter-over scientist with the University of Chicago to perform preliminary data analysis and maintain and operate the telescope’s mechanical, electrical, and computer systems.

Dr. Moran begins her new role as Deputy Manager of the Exoplanet Exploration Program on April 12 and will continue on-going support of the ECAM operations team through September. She joins a program office team that will respond to the science, technology, and mission study priorities that will be described in the upcoming release of the Astro2020 Decadal Survey, and will continue to support our growing exoplanet science community and public engaged by active science and public communications.

I wish to take this opportunity to thank Kendra Short for her outstanding service to the Exoplanet Exploration Program and wish her success in her new assignment as Deputy Flight System Manager on the Europa Clipper Mission.

Please join me in warmly welcoming Dr. Christine Corbett Moran as Deputy Manager of the Exoplanet Exploration Program."


2) Exoplanet Explorers Presentation (Friday, April 16, 2021; 4-5pm EST/1-2pm PST)

The third ExoExplorers Science Series presentation will take place on Friday, April 16, 2021, from 4-5pm EDT/1-2pm PDT.

This session features cohort members:

  • David Coria (University of Kansas)
    "The Missing Link: Connecting Exoplanets and Galactic Chemical Evolution via Stellar Abundances"
  • Jason Williams (USC/Carnegie)
    The Design and Construction of Henrietta, a high-precision low resolution near-infrared spectrograph to explore exoatmospheres

You can find talk and connection information for all our upcoming events.

Sign up to receive announcements about ExoExplorers.

The Exoplanet Explorers (ExoExplorers) Science Series, sponsored by the ExoPAG Executive Committee and by NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration Program, aims to enable the professional development of a cohort of graduate students and postdocs (“ExoExplorers”) in exoplanet research. The first cohort is running through June 2021 and consists of 10 early career scientists. ExoExplorer talks will be live and open to the entire exoplanet community. ExoGuide talks will be delivered directly to the cohort and posted online following the event.

If you have any questions or feedback or are interested in becoming an ExoGuide for a future cohort, please email exoexplorers_questions@jpl.nasa.gov.


3) JATIS Special Issue on Starshades

A special section of the April 2021 Journal of Astronomical Telescopes, Instruments, and Systems (JATIS) focuses on starshades and includes 15 articles on starshade science and technology, including seven describing work conducted under NASA’s Starshade To Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 5 Technology Development Activity (also known as "S5") and eight by members of the larger astrophysics community.

There is further information on the starshade technology development page.


4) NASA SMD Seeks Volunteer Reviewers for Research Proposals

NASA's Science Mission Directorate is seeking subject matter experts to serve as external (email) and/or virtual panel reviewers of proposals to the "ROSES" research solicitation: https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/volunteer-review-panels


5) Astrophysics Advisory Committee (APAC) March 15-17, 2021 Meeting Presentations Posted

Presentations from the March 15-17, 2021 meeting of the Astrophysics Advisory Committee (APAC) meeting are now posted at: https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/nac/science-advisory-committees/apac


6) Dual-Anonymous Peer Review Town Hall for Planetary and Exoplanets Research Programs (April 28, 2021; 3-4pm EDT/12-1pm PDT)

On April 28, 2021 at 3 PM Eastern, NASA's Planetary Science Division will host a webinar to discuss the implementation of Dual-Anonymous Peer Review for the following programs under ROSES-2021: Cassini Data Analysis Program, Discovery Data Analysis Program, Exoplanet Research Program, New Frontiers Data Analysis Program, Lunar Data Analysis Program, and the Mars Data Analysis Program.

In Dual-Anonymous Peer Review, not only are proposers unaware of the identity of reviewers, but the reviewers do not have explicit knowledge of the proposing teams and institutions during the scientific evaluation of the proposal. The webinar will: (1) discuss the motivation for switching to dual-anonymous peer review, (2) describe important changes to proposal writing to be compliant with dual-anonymous peer review, and (3) explain how dual-anonymous peer reviews will work.

In advance of the webinar, questions may be submitted and upvoted on at:

https://arc.cnf.io/sessions/tgwj/

The webinar will be broadcast live via WebEx. Connection details follow:

Join from the meeting link

https://nasaenterprise.webex.com/nasaenterprise/j.php?MTID=mc0083f862cf0d9ce33b27fc0391dd6f0

Join by meeting number

Meeting number (access code): 199 756 1176

Meeting password: DaPR-2021

Join by phone

+1-929-251-9612 USA Toll 2

+1-415-527-5035 US Toll

For more information on dual-anonymous peer review, please visit: https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/dual-anonymous-peer-review.


7) Stars and Planets in the Ultraviolet (May 3-5, 2021)

Note: this meeting was originally scheduled for early 2020 at Arizona State University in Tempe, AZ, but has been rescheduled to be a virtual meeting to be held May 3-5, 2021 (11am-4:30pm EDT / 8:00am-1:30pm PDT=MST each day)

https://na.eventscloud.com/ultraviolet

Registration has now re-opened for poster submissions or general attendance (and existing registrations can be modified) and the near-final agenda with speakers, poster pops, and breakout rooms can be found here (https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1aPat-AvqYFX2PblDuxBryZTkpHcv7V9wnLVXxz118DU/edit#gid=325687229)


8) 2nd TESS Science Conference (August 2-6, 2021; registration deadline July 1, 2021)

https://tsc.mit.edu/

"Dear colleague,
We are happy to announce the opening of registration for the TESS Science Conference II (TSC2; http://tsc.mit.edu, @TessSciCon2), and would like to take this opportunity to provide some updates about the conference.

Due to the global COVID-19 pandemic the TSC2 conference will be fully online (fully virtual) and there will be no in-person meeting.

The conference has no registration fee. However, registration is mandatory for all participants through the online registration form. We ask that you submit your registration by July 1, 2021 so the LOC can make sure the conference online tools will be able to support the number of participants.

We plan to use Zoom webinars for delivering all talks during the conference, and use Slack for Q&A and other communications. Posters will be presented throughout the conference week via Zenodo (https://zenodo.org/) and Gather.Town (https://gather.town/), with the latter used also for social interaction. We expect to have time slots dedicated for online poster sessions on Gather.Town. Detailed instructions about using these online platforms will be sent later and be made available on the conference website.

The deadline for suggesting Splinter Sessions (using this form: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSegaLnCjynv3kvd54oxnhzdKTm-X0HcBA5khjLmOlx_YtVjjw/viewform) is April 2nd (postponed from original deadline), and the deadline for submitting abstracts for talks and posters (using this form: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeKAZwkAOqgdKWvtjxX1Rwk3XXLBsvlRbbpTaqJurW6MS4cDA/viewform) is April 30.

Please send any questions to: tsc2@mit.edu.

Jenn and Avi,
On behalf of the SOC and LOC."


9) AbGradCon (Virtual Meeting, September 14-17, 2021; abstract deadline April 15, 2021)

https://www.abgradcon.org/abgradcon-2021

Astrobiology Graduate Conference (AbGradCon) 2021 will be a virtual meeting hosted by the Earth-Life Science Institute (ELSI) September 14-17, 2021.

The application deadline is April 15, 2021 (23:59 JST): https://www.abgradcon.org/application


ExoPAG News and Announcements (March 23, 2021)

  1. REMINDER: NEID Information Session (March 23, 2021; 1pm-3pm EDT/10am-12pm MST=PDT)
  2. Recorded Talks Posted for ExoPAG SAG 21 Community Symposium on "The Effect of Stellar Contamination on Space-based Transmission Spectroscopy"
  3. ROSES-2021 Exoplanets Research Program (XRP21) (Mandatory NOI delayed to April 2, 2021 and change in points of contact)
  4. Exoplanet Explorers Presentation (Friday, April 16, 2021; 4-5pm EST/1-2pm PST)

+ more

1) REMINDER: NEID Information Session (March 23, 2021; 1pm-3pm EDT/10am-12pm MST=PDT)

A reminder about the NEID information session, which might be valuable for proposers responding to the NN-EXPLORE semester 2021B proposal call (proposals due March 31, 2021; http://ast.noao.edu/observing/wiyn-exoplanets-2021b):

"Dear Prospective NEID user,

This is an invitation to join NEID Instrument Scientist, Sarah Logsdon, and other WIYN staff to discuss best practices for proposing for time with NEID on WIYN. This will be an open forum to discuss NEID, its capabilities and respond to any queue related questions. Prospective 2021B PIs are encouraged to attend to gain knowledge on using NEID, setting up your NEID observing parameters, and on how best to apply for NEID time. This is an excellent opportunity for PIs to directly ask Sarah (and others) any NEID-specific or queue related questions.

Please mark your calendars for March 23, 10am-noon MST for this session. Connection information is listed below. Please feel free to distribute this information to any interested parties.

If you are unable to attend this session (or if you have further NEID-specific questions) feel free to reach out at neid_info@noirlab.edu or contact Sarah directly at sarah.logsdon@noirlab.edu.

We hope you’ll join us!

Cheers,
Heidi Schweiker, NEID Queue Coordinator
Sarah Logsdon, NEID Instrument Scientist
Jayadev Rajagopal, WIYN Executive Director


2) Recorded Talks Posted for ExoPAG SAG 21 Community Symposium on "The Effect of Stellar Contamination on Space-based Transmission Spectroscopy"

The ExoPAG SAG 21 Community Symposium was a two-day virtual meeting held March 8-9, 2021 with talks and discussions exploring the impact of stellar contamination on space-based transmission spectroscopy. The symposium was co-chaired by Néstor Espinoza (STScI) and Benjamin Rackham (MIT).

The recorded talks have now been posted at: https://sites.google.com/view/sag21symposium

Description of the symposium:

Transmission spectroscopy has been one of the main workhorses in the past decade for probing the chemical composition and physical structure of the upper atmospheres of transiting exoplanets. The technique holds great promise to keep delivering these exciting results, with the excitement rising given the imminent launch of the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST). These measurements, however, can be impacted by inhomogeneities on the stellar disk the planets transit, including spots, faculae, and plages. This symposium aims at exploring the different results and views on the nature, constraints and ideas on this “stellar contamination”.

This symposium was organized as part of NASA’s ExoPAG Study Analysis Group 21 on “The Effect of Stellar Contamination on Space-based Transmission Spectroscopy”, whose main aim is to gather expertises from the stellar, solar and exoplanet communities in order to work together towards providing analysis and findings to constrain the effect, to be delivered to NASA in mid-2021.


3) ROSES-2021 Exoplanets Research Program (XRP21) (Mandatory NOI delayed to April 2, 2021 and change in points of contact)

F.3 Exoplanets Research Program:

https://nspires.nasaprs.com/external/solicitations/summary.do?solId={78A0C930-57B2-F312-C123-5E66D3743CA2}&path=&method=init

"The due date for Mandatory Notices of Intent has been delayed by one week to April 2, 2021. The due date for proposals remains unchanged at May 27, 2021. In addition, the points of contact have been updated."

The updated list of points of contact for XRP is:

  • Megan Ansdell, Planetary Science Division
  • Hannah Jang-Condell, Astrophysics Division
  • Richard Eckman, Earth Science Division
  • Galen Fowler, Heliophysics Division

4) Exoplanet Explorers Presentation (Friday, April 16, 2021; 4-5pm EST/1-2pm PST)

The third ExoExplorers Science Series presentation will take place on Friday, April 16, 2021, 4-5pm EDT/1-2pm PDT.

This session features cohort members:

  • David Coria (U Kansas)
    "The Missing Link: Connecting Exoplanets and Galactic Chemical Evolution via Stellar Abundances"
  • Jason Williams (USC/Carnegie)
    "Detecting exoplanet atmospheres: Achieving high spectrophotometric precision on ground-based telescopes"

Connection information: https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/events/340/exoexplorer-science-series-david-coria-u-kansas-jason-williams-usccarnegie/

Sign up to receive announcements about ExoExplorers

The Exoplanet Explorers (ExoExplorers) Science Series, sponsored by the ExoPAG Executive Committee and by NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration Program, aims to enable the professional development of a cohort of graduate students and postdocs (“ExoExplorers”) in exoplanet research. The first cohort is running through June 2021 and consists of 10 early career scientists. ExoExplorer talks will be live and open to the entire exoplanet community. ExoGuide talks will be delivered directly to the cohort and posted online following the event.

If you have any questions or feedback or are interested in becoming an ExoGuide for a future cohort, please email exoexplorers_questions@jpl.nasa.gov.


ExoPAG News and Announcements (March 17, 2021)

  1. Results of the ExoPAG Community On-line Vote Regarding Finding
  2. NN-EXPLORE: Proposals Invited for CTIO/SMARTS 1.5m with CHIRON and MINERVA-Australis in Semester 2021B (deadline March 31, 2021, 11:59pm MST)
  3. NEID Information Session (March 23, 2021; 1pm-3pm EDT / 10am-12pm MST=PDT)
  4. ROSES-2021 Exoplanets Research Program (XRP21) Mandatory NOI (due March 26, 2021)
  5. Final Report for ExoPAG SAG 19 (Exoplanet Imaging Signal Detection Theory and Rigorous Contrast Metrics) Posted
  6. NASA Infrared Telescope Facility (IRTF) Call for Proposals (deadline April 1, 2021)
  7. PLATO Mission Conference 2021: Exploring Exoplanets in the Habitable Zones of Solar-like Stars (October 11-15, 2021)

+ more

1) Results of the ExoPAG Community On-line Vote Regarding Finding

From ExoPAG chair Michael Meyer:

“Because our regular business meeting to be held on January 6 was cancelled due to events beyond our control, the ExoPAG EC initiated an on-line vote of the proposed finding that was discussed at the December 15, 2020 Community Forum.

To read the text of the finding, please go to: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1x0Z9m6lyJU7V-WPD5xIwugbxSXQrB_mSTw0rkJKm72o/

The virtual poll was open on March 1, and closed March 10, at 6 pm EST (3 pm PST).

Participants could vote “yes” supporting that the text of the finding is shared with the ADP Leadership along with the results of the poll, “no” to not support the measure, or “abstain”. Any member of the ExoPAG community was allowed to participate in the poll. This process was meant to mimic as closely as possible the process we would use to conduct such a vote at our face-to-face ExoPAG meetings (where we have typically had about 60 participants vote on past findings).

The results, with 50 participants were: 41 in favor, seven opposed, with two abstentions. The Executive Committee has agreed to forward the results of the vote, along with the finding to the APD Leadership if the vote is at least 2:1 in favor versus against (abstentions excluded).

If you have questions, please send them to exopag-info@jpl.nasa.gov.

For context, we remind everyone of the purpose of the ExoPAG:

The ExoPAG serves as a community-based, interdisciplinary forum for soliciting and coordinating community analysis and input in support of Exoplanet Exploration objectives and of their implications for architecture planning and activity prioritization and for future exploration. It provides findings of analyses to the NASA Astrophysics Division Director.

Besides the ExoPAG SAGs and SIGs, findings on topics relevant to NASA ExEP and APD may be proposed by community members either at ExoPAG meetings or through email announcements, and may be discussed, have their wording amended, and voted upon at ExoPAG meetings or through email polls. Findings approved by vote will be passed along to the NASA APD director and posted on the ExoPAG site (https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/exopag/exopagFoundingDocuments/exopag-findings/).

Slides prepared for the ExoPAG 23 business meeting, including an overview of the process to propose and review findings can be found at: https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/system/presentations/files/214_Jan06_1530_meyer_busmtg.pdf ).

These findings are input to the Astrophysics Division (ADP) leadership as part of their decision making process and are not recommendations that must be followed in any specific way.


2) NN-EXPLORE: Proposals Invited for CTIO/SMARTS 1.5m with CHIRON and MINERVA-Australis in Semester 2021B (deadline March 31, 2021, 11:59pm MST)

SMARTS/CHIRON:

NN-EXPLORE continues to support community observing time on the CTIO/SMARTS 1.5m (operated by the SMARTS consortium) with the precision radial-velocity spectrometer CHIRON, with 300 hours (equivalent to 30 nights of service observing) of observing time for 2021B. Information on CHIRON can be found at http://www.astro.yale.edu/smarts/1.5m.html and https://chiron.astro.gsu.edu/ .

MINERVA-Australis:

As part of the NN-EXPLORE program, NASA is continuing in a partnership with the MINERVA-Australis consortium that began in 2020B. That agreement continues in Semester 2021B, with 300 hours of observing time open to NN-EXPLORE proposals. MINERVA-Australis is a dedicated exoplanet observatory operated by the University of Southern Queensland (USQ) in Queensland, Australia. The facility is located at USQ's Mt. Kent Observatory, and saw first light in quarter two 2018; commissioning of the facility was completed in mid-2019. MINERVA-Australis currently consists of 5 (0.7m) PlaneWave CDK700 telescopes; these telescopes have two ports, allowing each to be used for either spectroscopic or photometric observations. A summary of the facility and its capabilities can be found in the commissioning paper by Addison et al. 2019 (https://ui.adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2019PASP..131k5003A). The photometric channel is capable of milli-magnitude precision and currently, the light from four telescopes can be combined onto one R=75,000 echelle spectrograph for radial velocity precisions of 1-10 m/s depending on the target brightness and how many telescopes are combined. For further information, see the "MINERVA-Australis Time Through NN-Explore" website at NExScI (https://nexsci.caltech.edu/missions/Minerva/).

WIYN 3.5m:

Approximately 30 nights devoted to NN-EXPLORE programs will be available for NOIRLab observing time in 2021B.

"On behalf of that partnership, NOIR Lab hereby requests observing proposals for the 2021B semester on the WIYN telescope that are targeted to general exoplanet-related research, with particular emphases on follow-up observations of Kepler and K2 exoplanet-related targets, and observations in support of the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) mission. The scope of the NN-EXPLORE Program includes observations to:

  • Confirm or validate exoplanet candidates;
  • Characterize known exoplanets and exoplanetary systems;
  • Characterize the (exozodiacal) dust environments of exoplanet-hosting or potentially-exoplanet-hosting stars;
  • Explore the formation, evolution, and diversity of exoplanetary systems

Stellar observations such as spectroscopy and imaging to characterize stellar properties and search for background eclipsing binaries fall within the scope of the NN-EXPLORE Program, providing the relevance of the proposed work to the exoplanet-research focus of the program is clearly established."

More details on the NN-EXPLORE Program on WIYN can be found at http://ast.noao.edu/observing/wiyn-exoplanets-2021b.

NEID: NEID is a new cutting edge high-precision spectrograph at WIYN designed for radial velocity measurements of exoplanet host stars. NEID is designed with a goal of achieving 27 cm/s precision per data point, providing the US exoplanet community with high-precision radial velocity measurements appropriate for studying Earth and super-Earth mass planets orbiting bright host stars over a wide range of spectral type. Information specific to proposing for time using the precision radial-velocity spectrograph NEID can be found at http://ast.noao.edu/observing/wiyn-neid and https://www.wiyn.org/Observe/wiynstatus.html. Note the NEID Information Session scheduled for March 23, 2021 (see details below).

The Gemini Observatory has released a Call for Proposals for 2021B at:

http://www.gemini.edu/observing/phase-i/standard-semester-program/2021b-call-proposals

High resolution imaging on Gemini & WIYN:

NN-EXPLORE is supporting community observations with three high-resolution imagers - NESSI on WIYN, 'Alopeke on Gemini-North and Zorro on Gemini-South. In speckle mode they provide simultaneous two-color diffraction-limited optical imaging (FWHM~0.02" at 650nm) of targets as faint as V~13/17 over a 1.5" field of view. Wide-field mode provides simultaneous two-color imaging in standard SDSS filters over a 60" field of view. For further information seehttps://www.wiyn.org/Instruments/wiynnessi.html, https://www.gemini.edu/instrumentation/alopeke-zorro and contact the PI: Steve Howell (NASA Ames Research Center) steve.b.howell@nasa.gov .


3) NEID Information Session (March 23, 2021; 1pm-3pm EDT / 10am-12pm MST=PDT)

"Dear Prospective NEID user,

This is an invitation to join NEID Instrument Scientist, Sarah Logsdon, and other WIYN staff to discuss best practices for proposing for time with NEID on WIYN. This will be an open forum to discuss NEID, its capabilities and respond to any queue related questions. Prospective 2021B PIs are encouraged to attend to gain knowledge on using NEID, setting up your NEID observing parameters, and on how best to apply for NEID time. This is an excellent opportunity for PIs to directly ask Sarah (and others) any NEID-specific or queue related questions.

Please mark your calendars for March 23, 10am-noon MST (=PDT) for this session.

If you are unable to attend this session (or if you have further NEID-specific questions) feel free to reach out at neid_info@noirlab.edu or contact Sarah directly at sarah.logsdon@noirlab.edu .

We hope you’ll join us!

Cheers,
Heidi Schweiker, NEID Queue Coordinator
Sarah Logsdon, NEID Instrument Scientist
Jayadev Rajagopal, WIYN Executive Director


4) ROSES-2021 Exoplanets Research Program (XRP21) Mandatory NOI (due March 26, 2021)

XRP21 Mandatory Notices of Intent are due March 26, 2021 (11:59:59 PM EDT)

https://nspires.nasaprs.com/external/solicitations/summary.do?solId={78A0C930-57B2-F312-C123-5E66D3743CA2}&path=&method=init

Note that one of the big changes to XRP this year is: "Proposals submitted to XRP will be evaluated using a Dual-Anonymous Peer Review (DAPR) process, in which not only are proposers unaware of the identities of the members of the review panel, but also the reviewers are not told the identities of the proposers until after the evaluation of Intrinsic Merit. The overarching objective of DAPR is to reduce unconscious bias in the evaluation of the scientific merit of a proposal."


5) Final Report for ExoPAG SAG 19 (Exoplanet Imaging Signal Detection Theory and Rigorous Contrast Metrics) Posted

"SAG19: exoplanet imaging signal detection theory and rigorous contrast metrics"

Authors: Dimitri Mawet, Rebecca Jensen-Clem, Olivier Absil, Faustine Cantalloube, Elodie Choquet, Jean-Baptiste Ruffio, John Krist, Garreth Ruane, John Trauger, Carlos Gomez-Gonzalez, Marie Ygouf, Bijan Nemati, Ruslan Belikov, Thayne Currie, Steve Bryson, M. Kenworthy, Johan Mazoyer, Christian Marois, Tiffany Glassman, Maggie Turnbull, Angelle Tanner, and T.J. Rodigas

Abstract: As planning for the next generation of high contrast imaging instruments (e.g. Roman-CGI, HabEx, and LUVOIR, TMT-PSI, ELT-EPICS, Magellan-GMagAO-X, SPHERE+, GPI-2.0, SCExAO, and MagAO-X) matures, and first-generation extreme adaptive optics facilities (e.g. VLT-SPHERE, Gemini-GPI) finish their large main surveys, it is imperative that the performance of different designs, post-processing routines, observing strategies, observing calibration procedures, and survey results be compared in a consistent, statistically robust framework. SAG19, exoplanet imaging signal detection theory and rigorous contrast metrics, is meant to address the performance of these direct imaging instruments, strategies, and methods. In this report, we create a reference document for high contrast exoplanet detection terminology (Sections 2 and 3, drawing from work published as part of SAG19), summarize the results of three additional publications that resulted from SAG19 (Section 4, 5, and 6), and summarize the broad findings of SAG19 (Section 7).

https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/exopag/sag/#sag19


6) NASA Infrared Telescope Facility (IRTF) Call for Proposals (deadline April 1, 2021)

http://irtfweb.ifa.hawaii.edu/observing/callForProposals.php

NASA Infrared Telescope Facility Observing Proposals: The due date for the 2021B semester (August 1, 2021 to January 31, 2022) is Thursday, April 1, 2021. See our online submission form (http://irtfweb.ifa.hawaii.edu/observing/applicationForms.php), which is available for proposal submission from 12:00AM on March 01, 2021 until 5:00PM on April 01, 2021 HST.

NASA IRTF Spring 2021 Newsletter: http://irtfweb.ifa.hawaii.edu/information/newsletter.php?2021A


7) PLATO Mission Conference 2021: Exploring Exoplanets in the Habitable Zones of Solar-like Stars (October 11-15, 2021)

http://platomissionconference2021.iaa.es/

"Dear Colleagues,

We are pleased to announce the PLATO Mission Conference 2021: Exploring exoplanets in the habitable zone of solar-like stars, which will be held from 11 to 15 October 2021 as online event.

PLATO is the M3 mission in ESA’s Cosmic Vision programme and currently under development with a planned launch date in 2026. PLATO will search for exoplanets and perform their bulk characterisation with an unprecedented accuracy, focusing on Earth-size planets orbiting in the habitable zone of bright Sun-like stars. PLATO will use the transit method combined with the seismic analysis of the host star and with ground-based radial velocity measurements, to determine the planetary mass, radius, age, and orbital characteristics of the system.

The detection and characterisation of small planets with long periods (> 1 month) pose a number of challenges on the satellite development and on the processing of the light curves. Likewise, ground-based radial-velocity measurements of long-period small planets require the most advanced instrumentation and observation strategies. And, in addition, an accurate determination of their planetary parameters can only be achieved by an enhanced knowledge of the host star characteristics, which involves new developments in asteroseismology and stellar modelling. To tackle these issues, the PLATO Mission Consortium has set-up an extended network of working groups that are devoted to the preparation of the operations and the scientific exploitation of the mission.

PLATO is expected to have a major impact on the areas of exoplanet diversity, composition, evolution, architecture of planetary systems, and stellar modelling. PLATO will follow the exoplanet observatories CoRoT and Kepler/K2, and will operate in similar time frames to Gaia, TESS, CHEOPS, JWST, ESPRESSO/VLT, Roman Space Telescope, Ariel, and the ELT. The PLATO observing strategy will be defined considering the synergies with these facilities.

This Conference aims at presenting the status of the PLATO mission to the community, both on the satellite development and scientific preparation, and at bringing experts working on observations and theory associated with any of the PLATO science objectives (for more information go to https://www.cosmos.esa.int/web/plato/).

The major themes of the Conference are:

  • PLATO development status
  • Selection of the PLATO sky fields and the PLATO Input Catalogue
  • Light-curve analysis for detection and characterisation of long-period small planets
  • Asteroseismology and stellar characterisation
  • Advances in modelling stellar internal structure and evolution
  • Stellar activity
  • Ground-based observations for the confirmation and mass determination of planets
  • Long-period small planets and habitability
  • Planetary structure, composition, evolution, and architecture of planetary systems
  • PLATO in the context of Kepler/K2, TESS, CHEOPS, JWST, Roman Space Telescope, Ariel, and large ground-based observatories
  • Complementary science topics benefitting from PLATO high-precision photometry

Important dates:

  • 15 March 2021: Opening of registration and abstract submission
  • 18 June 2021: Deadline of abstract submission for oral contributions
  • 30 July 2021: Announcement of final program, and deadline of abstract submission for poster contributions
  • 24 September 2021: Deadline of registration

Scientific Organising Committee: Conny Aerts, Jessie L. Christiansen, Magali Deleuil, Marc Antoine Dupret, Rafael Garrido, Laurent Gizon, MarieJo Goupil, Ana M. Heras, Hans Ludwig, Rosemary Mardling, J. Miguel Mas-Hesse, Isabella Pagano, Giampaolo Piotto, Don Pollacco, Roberto Ragazzoni, Gavin Ramsay, Heike Rauer, Keivan Stassun, Juan Carlos Suárez, Stephane Udry

Confirmed Invited Speakers: Maria Bergemann, Andrew Collier-Cameron, Guy Davies, Sebastien Deheuvels, Caroline Dorn, Scott Gaudi, Raphaelle Haywood, Natalie Hinkel, Laura Kreidberg, Joshua Pepper, Aldo Serenelli, Ignas Snellen, Andrew Tkachenko, Andrew Vanderburg


ExoPAG News and Announcements (March 1, 2021)

  1. ExoPAG Community On-line Vote Regarding Findings (requesting vote by March 10, 2021, 6pm EST/3pm PST)
  2. NN-EXPLORE: Proposals Invited for CTIO/SMARTS 1.5m with CHIRON and MINERVA-Australis in Semester 2021B (deadline March 31, 2021, 11:59pm MST)
  3. Exoplanet Explorers Presentation (March 12, 2021; 4-5pm EST/1-2pm PST)
  4. NASA Astrophysics Advisory Committee (APAC) Virtual Meeting (March 15-17, 2021)
  5. 6th Emerging Researchers in Exoplanet Science Symposium (ERES) (May 24-26, 2021; virtual; abstract deadline April 2, 2021)

+ more

1) ExoPAG Community On-line Vote Regarding Findings (requesting vote by March 10, 2021, 6pm EST/3pm PST)

Our January ExoPAG 23 meeting was very successful, but our business meeting was cut short due to events beyond our control.

For context, we remind everyone of the purpose of the ExoPAG:

The ExoPAG serves as a community-based, interdisciplinary forum for soliciting and coordinating community analysis and input in support of Exoplanet Exploration objectives and of their implications for architecture planning and activity prioritization and for future exploration. It provides findings of analyses to the NASA Astrophysics Division Director.

Besides the ExoPAG SAGs and SIGs, findings on topics relevant to NASA ExEP and APD may be proposed by community members either at ExoPAG meetings or through email announcements, and may be discussed, have their wording amended, and voted upon at ExoPAG meetings or through email polls. Findings approved by vote will be passed along to the NASA APD director and posted on the ExoPAG site (https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/exopag/exopagFoundingDocuments/exopag-findings/).

We would like to take this opportunity to hold a virtual on-line vote regarding one of the findings that was discussed at our community forum last December, and which was to be discussed at the ExoPAG 23 business meeting (Slides prepared for the ExoPAG 23 business meeting are at: https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/system/presentations/files/214_Jan06_1530_meyer_busmtg.pdf). These findings are input to the Astrophysics Division (ADP) leadership as part of their decision making process and are not recommendations that must be followed in any specific way.

The virtual poll will be open from March 1st through March 10, 2021 (6pm EST/3pm PST).

The poll information is in the exopagannounce (March 1, 2021) email. If you have questions, please send them to exopag-info@jpl.nasa.gov.


2) NN-EXPLORE: Proposals Invited for CTIO/SMARTS 1.5m with CHIRON and MINERVA-Australis in Semester 2021B (deadline March 31, 2021, 11:59pm MST)

SMARTS/CHIRON:

NN-EXPLORE continues to support community observing time on the CTIO/SMARTS 1.5m (operated by the SMARTS consortium) with the precision radial-velocity spectrometer CHIRON, with 300 hours (equivalent to 30 nights of service observing) of observing time for 2021B. Information on CHIRON can be found at http://www.astro.yale.edu/smarts/1.5m.html and https://chiron.astro.gsu.edu/.

MINERVA-Australis:

As part of the NN-EXPLORE program, NASA is continuing in a partnership with the MINERVA-Australis consortium that began in 2020B. That agreement continues in Semester 2021B, with 300 hours of observing time open to NN-EXPLORE proposals. MINERVA-Australis is a dedicated exoplanet observatory operated by the University of Southern Queensland (USQ) in Queensland, Australia. The facility is located at USQ's Mt. Kent Observatory, and saw first light in quarter two 2018; commissioning of the facility was completed in mid-2019. MINERVA-Australis currently consists of 5 (0.7m) PlaneWave CDK700 telescopes; these telescopes have two ports, allowing each to be used for either spectroscopic or photometric observations. A summary of the facility and its capabilities can be found in the commissioning paper by Addison et al. 2019 (https://ui.adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2019PASP..131k5003A). The photometric channel is capable of milli-magnitude precision and currently, the light from four telescopes can be combined onto one R=75,000 echelle spectrograph for radial velocity precisions of 1-10 m/s depending on the target brightness and how many telescopes are combined. For further information, see the "MINERVA-Australis Time Through NN-Explore" website at NExScI (https://nexsci.caltech.edu/missions/Minerva/). [note that language regarding restrictions on the call is still being updated, so check back for updates in the coming days or reach out via the contact links on the website].

WIYN 3.5m:

Approximately 30 nights devoted to NNEXPLORE programs will be available for NOIRLab observing time in 2021B. More details on the NNEXPLORE Program on WIYN can be found athttp://ast.noao.edu/observing/wiyn-exoplanets-2021b. Information specific to proposing for time using the precision radial-velocity spectrograph NEID can be found at http://ast.noao.edu/observing/wiyn-neid and https://www.wiyn.org/Observe/wiynstatus.html.

The Gemini Observatory has released a Call for Proposals for 2021B at:

http://www.gemini.edu/observing/phase-i/standard-semester-program/2021b-call-proposals

High resolution imaging on Gemini & WIYN:

NN-EXPLORE is supporting community observations with three high-resolution imagers - NESSI on WIYN, 'Alopeke on Gemini-North and Zorro on Gemini-South. In speckle mode they provide simultaneous two-color diffraction-limited optical imaging (FWHM~0.02" at 650nm) of targets as faint as V~13/17 over a 1.5" field of view. Wide-field mode provides simultaneous two-color imaging in standard SDSS filters over a 60" field of view. For further information see https://www.wiyn.org/Instruments/wiynnessi.html,https://www.gemini.edu/instrumentation/alopeke-zorro and contact the PI: Steve Howell (NASA Ames Research Center) steve.b.howell@nasa.gov.


3) Exoplanet Explorers Presentation (March 12, 2021; 4-5pm EST/1-2pm PST)

The second ExoExplorers Science Series presentation will take place on March 12, 2021, from 4-5pm Eastern/1-2pm Pacific!

This session features cohort members:

  • Amy Glazier (UNC Chapel Hill) - "Constraints on Post-Superflare Exo-Auroral Emission with SOAR and the Evryscope Fast Transient Engine"
  • Quang Tran (UT Austin) - "Establishing the Epoch of Giant Planet Migration"

Connection information will be available on our website and via our mailing list.

The Exoplanet Explorers (ExoExplorers) Science Series, sponsored by the ExoPAG Executive Committee and by NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration Program, aims to enable the professional development of a cohort of graduate students and postdocs (“ExoExplorers”) in exoplanet research. The first cohort is running through June 2021 and consists of 10 early career scientists. ExoExplorer talks will be live and open to the entire exoplanet community. ExoGuide talks will be delivered directly to the cohort and posted online following the event.

If you have any questions or feedback or are interested in becoming an ExoGuide for a future cohort, please email exoexplorers_questions@jpl.nasa.gov.


4) NASA Astrophysics Advisory Committee (APAC) Virtual Meeting (March 15-17, 2021)

The next APAC meeting (virtual) will be held March 15-17, 2021, 11:00am-5pm EST/8:00am-2pm PST each day.

https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/nac/science-advisory-committees/apac

See the draft agenda.

The Astrophysics Advisory Committee (APAC) is a FACA (Federal Advisory Committee Act) committee of NASA. The APAC supports the advisory needs of the Astrophysics Division (APD), the Science Mission Directorate (SMD) and other mission directorates as required, and NASA Administrator. The scope of the APAC includes projects and observational and theoretical study of the origins, evolution, and destiny of the universe and the search for and study of Earth-like planets and habitable, extrasolar environments. In addition to scientific research, the scope encompasses considerations of the development of near-term enabling technologies, systems, and computing and information management capabilities, developments with the potential to provide long-term improvements in future operational systems, as well as training of the next generation of astronomers, and education and public outreach.


5) 6th Emerging Researchers in Exoplanet Science Symposium (ERES) (May 24-26, 2021; virtual; abstract deadline April 2, 2021)

https://eres2021.com/

"Dear colleagues,

We are pleased to announce that the sixth Emerging Researchers in Exoplanet Science Symposium (ERES) will take place virtually May 24-26, 2021! The ERES series aims to give early-career scientists a chance to present their research and network with peers in order to enhance collaboration within the exoplanet community.

The deadline for abstract submission is Friday, April 2, 2021. Researchers of all career stages working in all branches of exoplanetary science and related disciplines are encouraged to attend, though preference will be given to early-career participants in the talk selection process. For more information or to submit an abstract please visit https://eres2021.com/.

Please do share this announcement with the junior scientists in your department. And finally, if you have any questions, please contact: eresorganizers@gmail.com.

Sincerely,
The ERES VI Organizing Committee"


ExoPAG News and Announcements (February 22, 2021)

  1. 2021 Sagan Summer Virtual Workshop: Circumstellar Disks and Young Planets (July 19-23, 2021)
  2. Data Release #1 of the Starshade Exoplanet Data Challenge
  3. NASA Keck 2021B Call for Proposals (Deadlines: March 4, 2021 to request letters from NASA HQ for general mission support; proposal submission deadline March 18, 2021 7pm Eastern/4pm Pacific)
  4. Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Sciences 2021 (ROSES-2021) & Exoplanets Research Program (XRP)
+ more

1) 2021 Sagan Summer Virtual Workshop: Circumstellar Disks and Young Planets (July 19-23, 2021)

Free registration and the preliminary agenda for the 2021 Sagan Summer Workshop are now available on the workshop website.

The 2021 Sagan Summer Workshop on Circumstellar Disks and Young Planets, will focus on young planets and the circumstellar disks from which they form during the first few million years of a star's lifetime. The workshop will address how transformational new datasets are allowing us to address key questions about the formation and evolution of planets and their potential habitability. The preliminary agenda is available on the workshop website.

The workshop will be held July 19-23, 2021 via Zoom webinar; Slack will be used to facilitate discussion before, during, and after the workshop. The workshop will consist of live and pre-recorded talks, live discussions, hands-on sessions, contributed online posters and poster sessions, and virtual 'lunches with speakers'. As in previous years, all talks will be recorded and posted on the Sagan Summer Workshop YouTube channel.

The Sagan Summer Workshops are aimed at upper level undergraduates, grad students, and postdocs, however all are welcome to attend. Please visit the workshop website to register and for more information.

Website: https://nexsci.caltech.edu/workshop/2021/

Questions: sagan_workshop@ipac.caltech.edu


2) Data Release #1 of the Starshade Exoplanet Data Challenge

"Dear Colleague,

The Starshade Exoplanet Data Challenge (SEDC) has started and is open to the general astronomy and exoplanet community. The first batch of synthetic images for the SEDC has been posted on the web page along with the documentation helpful for image processing and analysis. We welcome members of the general astronomy and exoplanet community to inspect, process, or analyze the synthetic images and participate in maturing the starshade technology for exoplanet imaging and characterization.

A community telecon of the SEDC has taken place on January 27. Presentations made at the telecon can also be viewed from the web page.

The Starshade Exoplanet Data Challenge is an activity of the Starshade Science and Industry Partnership (SIP). The Exoplanet Exploration Program of the NASA Astrophysics Division charters SIP. The purpose of the Starshade SIP is to maximize the technology readiness level of starshades to enable potential future exoplanet science missions. Presentations and recording of the past SIP telecons and forums are available, along with the terms of reference and the released Starshade Technology Development Plan.

Best regards,
Renyu
Renyu Hu, PhD
Starshade Scientist, NASA Exoplanet Exploration Program
W: 818 354 6090, M: 818 281 9459"


3) NASA Keck 2021B Call for Proposals (Deadlines: March 4, 2021 to request letters from NASA HQ for general mission support; proposal submission deadline March 18, 2021 7pm Eastern/4pm Pacific)

The 2021B NASA Keck Call for Proposals is now available with proposals due on March 18, 2021.

Mission Support and General Observing proposals to support all NASA's Science Goals and Missions (https://nexsci.caltech.edu/missions/KeckSolicitation/gen-info.shtml#Ia) in astrophysics and planetary science are solicited. The opportunity to propose as a Principal Investigator for NASA's time on the Keck Telescopes is open to all U.S.-based astronomers (i.e. those who have their principal affiliation at a U.S. institution).

Key Dates

March 4, 2021: deadline to request letters from NASA HQ for general mission support proposals (https://nexsci.caltech.edu/missions/KeckSolicitation/gen-info.shtml#IIb)

March 18, 2021 by 7pm Eastern/4pm Pacific: proposal submission deadline

2021B Highlights; please read the Call for Proposals for a complete list of this semester's highlights.

  • New for 21B: Please enter a short program title (~3-5 words) in the online submission form. This will give the TAC members a short hand way to refer to each proposal as we move towards a Dual Anonymous Review Process.
  • Twilight Observing: NASA is able to allocate one twilight program per telescope for a total of up to two programs per semester per partner. On Keck I, OSIRIS-NGS (imager only) is available, and on Keck II, NIRC2-NGS is available. This program is designed to accommodate extra infrared observations during normally scheduled visible observations, when those observations end early and the last portion of the night is surrendered. Longer term twilight programs (>1-2 years) will be given priority. Please read the guidelines here:https://nexsci.caltech.edu/missions/KeckSolicitation/gen-info.shtml#IV
  • In 2021B At-Home ('pajama mode') Observing will continue to be available to observers.
  • Special notes and considerations for the Keck and Subaru instruments in 2021B are available on the WMKO instrument page (https://www2.keck.hawaii.edu/observing/instavail.html); please read these before preparing your proposal.

Questions: keckcfp@ipac.caltech.edu


4) Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Sciences 2021 (ROSES-2021) & Exoplanets Research Program (XRP)

NASA ROSES-2021:

https://nspires.nasaprs.com/external/solicitations/summary.do?solId={7E892B3A-4F62-AEB4-6A08-9DCA1977F31A}&path=&method=init

Solicited programs and due dates:

https://nspires.nasaprs.com/external/viewrepositorydocument/cmdocumentid=798020/solicitationId=%7B7E892B3A-4F62-AEB4-6A08-9DCA1977F31A%7D/viewSolicitationDocument=1/ROSES-21%20Table%202%202021%20amend1.html

F.3 Exoplanets Research Program (XRP):

https://nspires.nasaprs.com/external/solicitations/summary.do?solId={78A0C930-57B2-F312-C123-5E66D3743CA2}&path=&method=init

XRP has a mandatory Notice of Intent (NOI) and proposals must be prepared following guidelines for dual-anonymous review process. Expected program budget for first year of new awards is ~$5.5 million. Points of contact: hq-xrp@mail.nasa.gov.

"NOTICE: This program element is expected to solicit proposals this year, but final details and dates are not yet determined... When final dates are established, this program element will be amended, full information will be provided in a revised solicitation document, posted above, and the close date will be changed to reflect the proposal due date." (see XRP ROSES website for updates).


ExoPAG News and Announcements (February 11, 2021)

  1. Inaugural Cohort for Exoplanet Explorers and First Presentation (Feb. 12, 2021, 4-5pm EST/1-2pm PST)
  2. Updated ExEP Science Gap List 2021
  3. The Effect of Stellar Contamination on Space-based Transmission Spectroscopy: ExoPAG SAG 21 Symposium (Mar. 8-9, 2021)
  4. TESS Science Conference II (TSC2; Aug. 2-6, 2021)
  5. PI Launchpad: Developing Your First Flight Mission Proposal (Application Deadline Mar. 22, 2021)
+ more

1) Inaugural Cohort for Exoplanet Explorers and First Presentation (Friday, Feb. 12, 2021, 4-5pm EST/1-2pm PST)

The ExoPAG is pleased to announce the beginning of the ExoExplorers Science Series, which highlights the research of the first ExoExplorers cohort.

The first presentations will feature Caprice Phillips (OSU; “Detecting Biosignatures in the Atmospheres of super-Earths with JWST”) and Samson Johnson (OSU; “Science Enabled by the Roman Galactic Exoplanet Survey”) and will occur Friday, February 12, 2021 from 4-5pm Eastern / 1-2pm Pacific (details below).

Future presentations will occur monthly, from 4-5pm Eastern/1-2pm Pacific and include:

  • March 12: Quang Tran (UT Austin) & Amy Glazier (UNC Chapel Hill)
  • April 16: David Coria (Univ. of Kansas) & Jason Williams (USC/Carnegie)
  • May 14: Jules Fowler (UCSC) & Rachel Fernandes (Univ. of Arizona)
  • June 11: Kaitlin Rasmussen (Univ. of Michigan) & Eileen Gonzalez (Cornell University)

This Friday, February 12, 2021 (4-5pm EST/1-2pm PST):

ExoExplorer Science Series: Caprice Phillips (OSU) & Samson Johnson (OSU)

Speaker: Caprice Phillips (OSU)

Title: "Detecting Biosignatures in the Atmospheres of super-Earths with JWST"

Abstract: No Solar System analog planet to super-Earths exists, a class of exoplanets with masses 2-10x Earth’s mass which can retain a hydrogen atmosphere. Super-Earth atmospheres can have different compositions from nitrogen and oxygen dominated atmosphere of Earth. The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) will offer unprecedented insight into the atmospheric composition of potentially habitable super-Earths through transmission and emission spectroscopy. I will present work on the investigation of NH3 (ammonia, a potential biosignature) detectability on super-Earths with an H2-dominated atmosphere using the Mid-Infrared Instrument (MIRI) and the Near InfraRed Spectrograph (NIRSpec) on the upcoming JWST mission. We use a radiative transfer code, petitRADTRANS, to generate synthetic spectra of optimal targets for observations given their proximity to Earth (<50 pc), radii (1.7-3.36 Earth radii), and equilibrium temperature (< 450 K). I will review the constraints of the MIRI LRS Instrument (flux ratio contrast of host star and planet ~ 10^-4), and discuss optimal targets for this instrument. For NIRSpec, I explore how varying cloud conditions, mean molecular weights (MMWs), and NH3 mixing ratios affects spectral features. Finally, I will discuss the use of PandExo to simulate mock observations with JWST and the detection significance findings for ammonia features with transmission spectroscopy.

Speaker: Samson Johnson (OSU)

Title: "Science Enabled by the Roman Galactic Exoplanet Survey"

Abstract: The Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope (Roman) will perform its Galactic Exoplanet Survey when it launches in the mid-2020's. With this first space-based microlensing survey, Roman will be sensitive to planets with orbital separations from roughly 1 AU to those unbound from any host star with masses as low as ten percent that of Earth's. The Roman Galactic Exoplanet Survey will be similar in scale to the Kepler mission, and will produce statistics on exoplanet demographics vital in improving planet formation models that are otherwise inaccessible. In this talk, I will give a brief overview of the Roman Galactic Exoplanet Survey and how it will use microlensing to detect these planets. I will highlight some of the unique insights Roman will give us, including its ability to detect Earth-analog systems and what it can teach us about the presence of free-floating planets in our Galaxy.

For connection details and more information about the ExoExplorers program, please visit the program website (https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/exopag/exoexplorers) or sign up for our mailing list (https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/exopag/exoexplorers/exoexplorers-announcements/) to stay up to date.


2) Updated ExEP Science Gap List 2021

The ExEP Science Gap List (SGL) identifies science investigations that would advance NASA's exoplanet exploration goals, including the definition of future missions and maximizing the science return of missions currently operating. A new 2021 version of the SGL has been prepared by the Program Scientists and is now available for download at the link below. We thank the many members of the community and the ExoPAG Executive Committee for their thoughtful inputs which helped improve this document over the prior version.

ExEP Program Science page (home to latest ExEP Science Plan documents).

ExEP Science Gap List 2021:

A presentation on the update of the ExEP Science Gap List was given by ExEP Program Chief Scientist Karl Stapelfeldt at ExoPAG 23 on Jan. 5, 2021.

The NASA Science Mission Directorate anticipates the release of ROSES-2021 on or about February 16, 2021 at http://solicitation.nasaprs.com/ROSES2021. The XRP 2021 Solicitation will state:

XRP proposals will be evaluated, in part, on how the proposed work would support past and current NASA missions and/or how it would facilitate the formulation and development of future NASA missions and strategic exoplanet programs. Proposers are encouraged to familiarize themselves with the Exoplanet Program’s Science Development Plan and Science Gap List (which can be downloaded from https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/science-overview).”

Proposers are encouraged to refer to the ExEP Science Gap List to describe the relevance of their work to NASA goals. The ExEP Science Gap List will remain frozen until after the XRP 2021 proposal deadline. Over the summer the annual period for community comments/suggestions will be open until late September. Depending on the Decadal Survey direction, significant changes may take place.


3) The Effect of Stellar Contamination on Space-based Transmission Spectroscopy: ExoPAG SAG 21 Symposium (Mar. 8-9, 2021)

"Dear colleagues,

NASA’s ExoPAG Study Analysis Group (SAG) 21 on “The Effect of Stellar Contamination on Space-based Transmission Spectroscopy” would like to invite you to its Community Symposium, to be held virtually on March 8th and 9th, 2021. Along with presentations from SAG21 subgroup leads on the activities and preliminary findings of the SAG, the Symposium has allocated 20 contributed talks from researchers around the world on the topic.

The final schedule, including titles and abstracts of the contributed talks, can be found on the Symposium website:

https://sites.google.com/view/sag21symposium/

While abstract submission is already closed, RSVP to participate on the talks & discussion is open until March 8th!

Please do redistribute the message within your institutions.

All the best,
Néstor Espinoza & Benjamin Rackham (SAG21 co-chairs)"


4) TESS Science Conference II (TSC2; Aug. 2-6, 2021)

TESS Science Conference II
August 2-6, 2021, MIT/Cambridge, USA
https://tsc.mit.edu/2021/

  • February 4: Open abstract submission
  • Mid-March (exact date TBD): Open registration.
  • March 26: Splinter session abstract deadline.
  • April 30: Talks and posters abstract deadline.
  • June 4: Announcement of the program.
  • August 2: The first day of the conference.

The TESS Science Conference II (TSC2) is timed at the beginning of the 2nd year of the TESS Extended Mission, and the 4th year overall. The conference will cover all science done with TESS data, from Solar System (asteroids, trans-neptunian objects, comets), through exoplanets and stellar astrophysics (asteroseismology, variable stars, stellar binaries), to extragalactic astronomy (supernovae, AGN, TDEs). The conference will focus on all aspects of the mission: TESS data analysis techniques developed by the community, follow-up observations of targets identified using TESS data, and how discoveries made with TESS data impact theoretical understanding.

To contact the SOC or LOC write to: tsc2@mit.edu


5) PI Launchpad: Developing Your First Flight Mission Proposal (Application Deadline Mar. 22, 2021)

The PI Launchpad: From Science Idea to NASA Mission

https://nspires.nasaprs.com/external/solicitations/summary.do?solId=%7b11058886-6D7C-0D96-761B-01C3615C1DC4%7d&path=&method=init

Important Dates:

  • Applications due on NSPIRES: March 22, 2021
  • Selections made no later than: May 3rd, 2021
  • Workshop Dates: June 14-25, 2021
  • Workshop Location: Virtual via WebEx

Workshop description:

Are you thinking about developing your first flight mission proposal in the next few years but have no idea where to start? If you are a researcher in any NASA Science Mission Directorate (SMD) discipline who wants to take your career to the next level but have not yet held a leadership position on mission proposals or large science teams, this is the workshop for you.

NASA SMD, the University of Arizona, the University of Michigan, JPL, and the Heising-Simons Foundation will host the PI Launchpad to guide participants through turning their science question into a mission concept. Participants will go step-by-step through the process of developing a science case, defining requirements, building a team, securing partnerships, and obtaining support from the home institution. Participants will also have time for networking and personal reflection as they mature their mission concepts.

We are interested in broadening the pool of potential NASA space mission PIs. People with potentially intersecting marginalized identities are strongly encouraged to apply. There is no cost to attend the workshop. We will select between 35-40 participants from the pool of applicants.

Please visit https://nspires.nasaprs.com/external/solicitations/summary.do?solId={11058886-6D7C-0D96-761B-01C3615C1DC4}&path=&method=init to apply and watch https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/pi-launchpad for new announcements.

Please email questions to hq-smd-piworkshop@mail.nasa.gov


ExoPAG News and Announcements (January 29, 2021)

  1. Inaugural Cohort for Exoplanet Explorers and First Presentation (Feb. 12, 2021, 4-5pm EST/1-2pm PDT)
  2. Call for Nominations to the Executive Committee of the Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) (Deadline Extended to Feb. 5, 2021)
  3. NASA SMD Community Town Hall (Jan. 25, 2021) Presentation Now Posted
  4. PI Launchpad: Developing Your First Flight Mission Proposal (Application Deadline Mar. 22, 2021)
  5. 2021 STScI Spring Symposium "Towards the Comprehensive Characterization of Exoplanets: Science at the Interface of Multiple Measurement Techniques" (Apr. 19-23, 2021; Abstract Submission Deadline Feb. 1, 2021)
  6. JWST User Committee: Call for Nominations (Deadline Apr. 7, 2021)
+ more

1) Inaugural Cohort for Exoplanet Explorers and First Presentation (Feb. 12, 2021, 4-5pm EST/1-2pm PDT)

The ExoPAG is pleased to announce the inaugural cohort for Exoplanet Explorers:

https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/exopag/exoexplorers/exoexplorers-2021/

The first presentation by cohort members Caprice Phillips (OSU) and Samson Johnson (OSU) will be February 12 from 1-2 PM Pacific / 4-5 PM Eastern. Connection information will be announced on our website and via our mailing list.

The Exoplanet Explorers (ExoExplorers) Science Series, sponsored by the ExoPAG Executive Committee and by NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration Program, aims to enable the professional development of a cohort of graduate students and postdocs (“ExoExplorers”) in exoplanet research. Each member of the cohort will have the opportunity to give a live webinar presentation on their research to the exoplanet community and interact with established exoplanet researchers in the field (“ExoGuides”) via a combination of tailored presentations and small group discussions. The first cohort is running through June 2021 and consists of 10 early career scientists. ExoExplorer talks will be live and open to the entire exoplanet community. ExoGuide talks will be delivered directly to the cohort and posted online following the event.

If you have any questions or feedback or are interested in becoming an ExoGuide for a future cohort, please email exoexplorers_questions@jpl.nasa.gov.


2) Call for Nominations to the Executive Committee of the Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) (Deadline Extended to Feb. 5, 2021)

"Dear Colleagues:

The Astrophysics Division of NASA's Science Mission Directorate is pleased to issue this open call for nominations to serve on the Executive Committee (EC) of NASA's Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG). In the coming months, NASA anticipates making three new appointments to the ExoPAG EC, replacing three current members of the committee who have reached the end of their appointments. New appointments will start in the Spring of 2021 and will be for a period of three years.

The ExoPAG is an open, interdisciplinary forum that provides a conduit for community input into NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration Program (ExEP, https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep), and for conducting analyses in support of ExEP science objectives and their implications for planning and prioritization of Program activities. The ExoPAG is led by a Chairperson drawn from the membership of the Astrophysics Advisory Committee (APAC), and a volunteer Executive Committee, whose membership is chosen to reflect the broad range of scientific disciplines and interests represented in the field of exoplanet exploration. Together, the ExoPAG Chair and Executive Committee are responsible for capturing and organizing community input, overseeing ExoPAG analyses, reporting ExoPAG findings and inputs to the Astrophysics Division Director, and keeping the scientific community apprised of ongoing activities and opportunities within NASA’s ExEP. Detailed information about the structure and function of the ExoPAG, including the current and past membership of the EC, can be found at https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/exopag.

Nominations for the ExoPAG EC should be submitted via email to the address: douglas.m.hudgins@nasa.gov. Nominations must include both a cover letter and a one-page CV summarizing the nominee’s relevant background. The cover letter should provide a description of the nominee’s area of expertise and qualifications for service on the ExoPAG Executive Committee. Nominations will only be accepted for scientists who reside at a U.S. institution for the period of the service. There are no citizenship restrictions. Nominations from individuals at academic institutions—university, college, or non-NASA research laboratory—are strongly encouraged. Self-nominations are welcome. The deadline for nominations is February 5, 2021, with announcement of selections anticipated in April 2021. Selections will be announced by the ExoPAG mailing list (http://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/exopag/announcementList).

Because the NASA Astrophysics Division seeks the best possible input from the widest possible community, representing diverse perspectives, we encourage nominations of (and from) people holding any identity(ies) that have been traditionally underrepresented in the field of astrophysics.

We look forward to working with all of our stakeholders to develop a robust and compelling Exoplanet Exploration Program.

Sincerely,
Douglas Hudgins, NASA Headquarters
Exoplanet Exploration Program Scientist, ExoPAG Executive Secretary"


3) NASA SMD Community Town Hall (Jan. 25, 2021) Presentation Now Posted

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6qdB6eoxfOk


4) PI Launchpad: Developing Your First Flight Mission Proposal (Application Deadline Mar. 22, 2021)

https://nspires.nasaprs.com/external/solicitations/summary.do?solId=%7b11058886-6D7C-0D96-761B-01C3615C1DC4%7d&path=&method=init

The PI Launchpad: From Science Idea to NASA Mission

Important Dates:

  • Applications due on NSPIRES: March 22nd, 2021
  • Selections made no later than: May 3rd, 2021
  • Workshop Dates: June 14th-June 25th
  • Workshop Location: Virtual via WebEx

Workshop description:

Are you thinking about developing your first flight mission proposal in the next few years but have no idea where to start? If you are a researcher in any NASA Science Mission Directorate (SMD) discipline who wants to take your career to the next level but have not yet held a leadership position on mission proposals or large science teams, this is the workshop for you.

NASA SMD, the University of Arizona, the University of Michigan, JPL, and the Heising-Simons Foundation will host the PI Launchpad to guide participants through turning their science question into a mission concept. Participants will go step-by-step through the process of developing a science case, defining requirements, building a team, securing partnerships, and obtaining support from the home institution. Participants will also have time for networking and personal reflection as they mature their mission concepts.

We are interested in broadening the pool of potential NASA space mission PIs. People with potentially intersecting marginalized identities are strongly encouraged to apply. There is no cost to attend the workshop. We will select between 35-40 participants from the pool of applicants.

Please visit https://nspires.nasaprs.com/external/solicitations/summary.do?solId={11058886-6D7C-0D96-761B-01C3615C1DC4}&path=&method=init to apply and watch https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/pi-launchpad for new announcements.

Please email questions to hq-smd-piworkshop@mail.nasa.gov


5) 2021 STScI Spring Symposium "Towards the Comprehensive Characterization of Exoplanets: Science at the Interface of Multiple Measurement Techniques" (Apr. 19-23, 2021; Abstract Submission Deadline Feb. 1, 2021)

https://www.stsci.edu/contents/events/stsci/2021/april/towards-the-comprehensive-characterization-of-exoplanets

"The Space Telescope Science Institute is excited to host the 2021 STScI Spring Symposium, 'Towards the Comprehensive Characterization of Exoplanets: Science at the Interface of Multiple Measurement Techniques' occurring Monday, April 19 through Friday, April 23, 2021. The symposium will be held virtually and will include invited reviews and regular/short contributed talks and posters selected from abstract submissions.

The field of exoplanets has grown considerably over recent years, with more than 4000 exoplanets detected to date. In consonance, the characterization of exoplanets has become an increasingly important aspect of the field, to understand the diversity of these objects and answer fundamental astrophysical questions about their composition, structure, formation, and evolution. Beyond isolated detection methods, we are now facing a new paradigm in exoplanet science where we must consolidate resources and combine observational methods to probe different physical characteristics and understand the true nature of these planets.

The symposium will bring the community together to enable collaborations between diverse exoplanet sub-fields, in observation, theory, and instrumentation. We will share our current capabilities in combining different detection and characterization techniques and address the needs and wants of the exoplanet community as we work towards closing the gaps towards a more complete understanding of exoplanets.

This symposium will address these scientific questions:

  • How do we combine techniques to have a more complete census of exoplanets?
  • Which sets of observed quantities best enable holistic planetary characterization?
  • How do observed architectures of exoplanet systems compare to the Solar System?
  • How atmospheric chemistry of exoplanets correlates with the physical properties and compositions of their host stars?
  • How do planets form and evolve?
  • What are the emerging areas in exoplanet science?

Important Dates:

January 4 Registration Opens
February 1 Registration Opens
February 22 Abstract Submission Deadline
March 19 Abstract Notifications Sent

Abstract Submittal

Abstracts for talk and poster consideration should be submitted using the following link: https://forms.gle/4AYZhbR3Effs4qxD6

There is no registration fee to attend the symposium.

Questions? Please contact us via symposium mailbox: SS2021@stsci.edu"


6) JWST User Committee: Call for Nominations (Deadline Apr. 7, 2021)

“JWST User Committee: Call for Nominations

The JWST User Committee (JSTUC) is responsible for advising STScI and the JWST Project on all aspects of observatory operations. Membership is drawn from the U.S, Canadian and ESA communities, and includes representatives from the JWST instrument teams. Further information can be found here https://www.stsci.edu/jwst/science-planning/user-committees/jwst-users-committee.

A number of members are rotating off the committee in the coming year, and STScI is calling for expressions of interest from community members who would like to serve as JSTUC members. Self-nomination is welcome. Submissions should include a cover letter and a one-page curriculum vitae summarizing the nominee’s relevant background and JWST-related interests, and should be submitted by e-mail to jstuc@stsci.edu. There is no restriction on citizenship. Nominations will be considered through April 7, 2021.

Ken Sembach,
Director, Space Telescope Science Institute
John Mather
Senior Project Scientist, James Webb Space Telescope, Goddard Space Flight Center"


ExoPAG News and Announcements (January 7, 2021)

  1. Note on ExoPAG 23 and Early Adjournment
  2. Joint PAG Session: NASA Astrophysics Division Update With APD Director Paul Hertz and Astrophysics Technology Development Process (FRIDAY, January 8, 2021; 1:00-3:00pm EST)
  3. Cross-PAG Session on “Enhancing Participation of Minority Serving Institutions in NASA Space Science" (Monday, January 11, 2021, 6:50-8:20pm EST)
  4. NASA Astrophysics Division R&A Town Hall (Wednesday, January 13, 2021, 12:00-1:30pm EST)
  5. Call for Nominations to the Executive Committee of the Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) (DEADLINE EXTENDED to February 5, 2021)
  6. Draft Astrophysics Explorers Program Solicitations Released for Community Comment
+ more

1) Note on ExoPAG 23 and Early Adjournment

Note from ExoPAG chair Michael Meyer:

"The ExoPAG voted to adjourn ExoPAG 23 early on Wednesday, January 6, 2021 before the regular business meeting was held. The ExoPAG EC and the Program Office will work to provide additional information to be discussed at that meeting on the ExoPAG website with alerts provided via the exopagannounce email list. It is possible an additional community forum could be organized in the next several weeks, and/or any required votes could be done virtually."


2) Joint PAG Session: NASA Astrophysics Division Update With APD Director Paul Hertz and Astrophysics Technology Development Process (Friday, January 8, 2021; 1:00-3:00pm EST)

Please join us this Friday, January 8, 2021, 1-3pm EST for a joint PAG session organized by the Physics of the Cosmos (PCOS), Cosmic Origins (COR), and Exoplanet Exploration (ExEP) programs. The joint PAG session will feature an update on NASA Astrophysics by Dr. Paul Hertz (Astrophysics Division Director) and a presentation on The Astrophysics Technology Development Process from Bruce T. Pham, PCOS/COR Technology Development Manager, NASA GSFC, and Nick Siegler, ExEP Chief Technologist, JPL.


3) Cross-PAG Session on “Enhancing Participation of Minority Serving Institutions in NASA Space Science" (Monday, January 11, 2021, 6:50-8:20pm EST)

Please join us Monday, January 11, 2021, 6:50-8:20pm EST for a cross-PAG session on “Enhancing Participation of Minority Serving Institutions in NASA Space Science”. This 90-minute session will provide an overview of ways in which Minority Serving Institutions are encouraged to participate in NASA Space Science across the Astrophysics Division, assessing barriers to participation, and developing solutions to overcome those barriers.


4) NASA Astrophysics Division R&A Town Hall (January 13, 2021, 12:00-1:30pm EST)

The NASA Astrophysics Division will be holding a virtual town hall for Research and Analysis (R&A) at the 237th meeting of the American Astronomical Society on Wednesday, January 13, from 12-1:30 PM Eastern Time. During the town hall, updates and information on current and upcoming R&A activities will be presented and questions from the community about the R&A program will be answered.

Please submit questions for the NASA Astrophysics Division R&A Program town hall and vote for other questions that you would like to see answered. Top questions will be addressed by the Astrophysics Division’s R&A team during the town hall on January 13 from 12-1:30 PM Eastern Time. Submissions will be accepted until noon on January 11. Please submit your questions through the portal: https://arc.cnf.io/sessions/zxkr

Questions regarding the R&A town hall may be directed to Stefan Immler (stefan.immler@nasa.gov).


5) Call for Nominations to the Executive Committee of the Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) (DEADLINE EXTENDED to February 5, 2021)

“Dear Colleagues:

The Astrophysics Division of NASA's Science Mission Directorate is pleased to issue this open call for nominations to serve on the Executive Committee (EC) of NASA's Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG). In the coming months, NASA anticipates making three new appointments to the ExoPAG EC, replacing three current members of the committee who have reached the end of their appointments. New appointments will start in the Spring of 2021 and will be for a period of three years.

The ExoPAG is an open, interdisciplinary forum that provides a conduit for community input into NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration Program (ExEP), and for conducting analyses in support of ExEP science objectives and their implications for planning and prioritization of Program activities. The ExoPAG is led by a Chairperson drawn from the membership of the Astrophysics Advisory Committee (APAC), and a volunteer Executive Committee, whose membership is chosen to reflect the broad range of scientific disciplines and interests represented in the field of exoplanet exploration. Together, the ExoPAG Chair and Executive Committee are responsible for capturing and organizing community input, overseeing ExoPAG analyses, reporting ExoPAG findings and inputs to the Astrophysics Division Director, and keeping the scientific community apprised of ongoing activities and opportunities within NASA’s ExEP. Detailed information about the structure and function of the ExoPAG, including the current and past membership of the EC, can be found at http://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exopag.

Nominations for the ExoPAG EC should be submitted via email to the address: douglas.m.hudgins@nasa.gov. Nominations must include both a cover letter and a one-page CV summarizing the nominee’s relevant background. The cover letter should provide a description of the nominee’s area of expertise and qualifications for service on the ExoPAG Executive Committee. Nominations will only be accepted for scientists who reside at a U.S. institution for the period of the service. There are no citizenship restrictions. Nominations from individuals at academic institutions—university, college, or non-NASA research laboratory—are strongly encouraged. Self-nominations are welcome. DEADLINE EXTENDED to February 5, 2021, with announcement of selections anticipated in April 2021. Selections will be announced by the ExoPAG mailing list.

Because the NASA Astrophysics Division seeks the best possible input from the widest possible community, representing diverse perspectives, we encourage nominations of (and from) people holding any identity(ies) that have been traditionally underrepresented in the field of astrophysics.

We look forward to working with all of our stakeholders to develop a robust and compelling Exoplanet Exploration Program.

Sincerely,
Douglas Hudgins, NASA Headquarters
Exoplanet Exploration Program Scientist, ExoPAG Executive Secretary”


6) Draft Astrophysics Explorers Program Solicitations Released for Community Comment

Draft Astrophysics Explorers Program Solicitations Released for Community Comment

Release Date: January 6, 2021

Comments Due: February 25, 2021

Identification Number: NNH21ZDA004J (Draft 2021 Astrophysics Medium Explorer (MIDEX) AO)

Identification Number: NNH21ZDA005J (Draft 2021 Astrophysics Explorers Missions of Opportunity (APEXMO))

On January 6, 2021, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Science Mission Directorate (SMD) is releasing two draft solicitations for community review and comment: the Draft 2021 Astrophysics Medium Explorer (MIDEX) Announcement of Opportunity (AO) and the Draft 2021 Astrophysics Explorers Missions of Opportunity (APEXMO) Program Element Appendix (PEA) for the Third Stand Alone Missions of Opportunity Notice (SALMON-3) AO. Upon the release date, the full text will be available at https://nspires.nasaprs.com/.

The Astrophysics Explorers Program conducts Principal Investigator (PI)-led space science investigations relevant to SMD's astrophysics programs. Explorer investigations must address NASA’s goals to discover the origin, structure, evolution, and destiny of the Universe and search for Earth-like planets.

Participation is open to all categories of organizations or institutions, U.S. or non-U.S., including educational, industrial, and not-for-profit institutions, Federally Funded Research and Development Centers (FFRDCs), University Affiliated Research Centers (UARCs), NASA Centers, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), and other Government agencies.

The comment period for the Draft 2021 MIDEX AO and the Draft 2021 APEXMO PEA ends on February 25, 2021.

The issuance of the Draft 2021 MIDEX AO does not obligate NASA to issue the 2021 Medium Explorer AO and solicit proposals. The issuance of the Draft 2021 APEXMO PEA does not obligate NASA to issue a 2021 Astrophysics Explorers MO PEA and solicit proposals. Any costs incurred by prospective investigators in preparing submissions in response to either of these draft solicitations are incurred completely at the submitter's own risk.

Comments on either or both drafts may be addressed via email to the Astrophysics Explorers Program Scientist: Dr. Patricia M. Knezek (subject line to read "2021 MIDEX AO", "2021 MO" or both) at: patricia.m.knezek@nasa.gov. Responses to comments will be given by email and posted in the MIDEX/MO QAs section on the Astrophysics Explorers Program Acquisition websites at https://explorers.larc.nasa.gov/2021APMIDEX/MIDEX/index.html and https://explorers.larc.nasa.gov/2021APMIDEX/MO/index.html; anonymity of persons/institutions who submit comments will be preserved. Comments will be accepted by email only.


ExoPAG News and Announcements (January 1, 2021)

  1. ExoPAG 23 Agenda (January 5-6, 2021)
  2. NASA Joint PAG Session (Friday January 8, 2021, 1pm-3pm EST)
  3. NASA Astrophysics Division R&A Town Hall (January 13, 2021, 12:00pm-1:30pm EST)
  4. Call for Nominations to the Executive Committee of the Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) (Deadline January 22, 2021)
  5. Cool Stars 20.5 (March 2-4, 2021) & Cool Stars 21 (Delayed Until 2022)
+ more

1) ExoPAG 23 Agenda (January 5-6, 2021)

NASA's Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) will hold its twenty-third meeting (virtually):

  • Tuesday January 5, 2021: 12:00pm-4:45pm ET/9:00am-1:45pm PT
  • Wednesday January 6, 2021: 11:40am-5:00pm ET/8:40am-2:00pm PT

View the draft agenda for ExoPAG 23.

The business meeting will be Wednesday Jan. 6 between 3:30pm-5:00pm ET/12:30pm-2:00pm PT.

As part of the agenda, the ExoPAG will have a regular business meeting, including discussion of proposed findings, which was the subject of an ExoPAG community forum held on December 15, 2020. A document discussing the proposed finding as well as a link to past findings can be found here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1j9eRWSp7Ze2V1dGeS8brv4Lgxitfujo8o0G2XudUidg/edit?usp=sharing

ExoPAG meetings offer an opportunity to participate in discussions of scientific and technical issues in exoplanet exploration, and a forum for community input on the prioritization of activities in NASA's Exoplanet Exploration Program (ExEP). All interested members of the space science community are invited to attend and participate.


2) NASA Joint PAG Session (Friday January 8, 2021, 1pm-3pm EST)

Organized by the Physics of the Cosmos (PCOS), Cosmic Origins (COR), and Exoplanet Exploration (ExEP) programs, this session will feature an update on NASA Astrophysics by Dr. Paul Hertz (Astrophysics Division Director) and a presentation on the Astrophysics Technology Development Process by Bruce T. Pham (GSFC) and Nick Siegler (JPL). NOTE: This two-hour session will begin on Friday 8 January at 1pm EST. This is prior to the AAS meeting start, and it is not necessary to be registered for the AAS meeting to attend this Joint PAG session. Connectivity info will be provided on the PCOS AAS Meeting page.


3) NASA Astrophysics Division R&A Town Hall (January 13, 2021, 12:00pm-1:30pm EST)

The NASA Astrophysics Division will be holding a virtual town hall for Research and Analysis (R&A) at the 237th meeting of the American Astronomical Society on Wednesday, January 13, from 12-1:30 PM Eastern Time. During the town hall, updates and information on current and upcoming R&A activities will be presented and questions from the community about the R&A program will be answered.

Please submit questions for the NASA Astrophysics Division R&A Program town hall and vote for other questions that you would like to see answered. Top questions will be addressed by the Astrophysics Division’s R&A team during the town hall on January 13 from 12-1:30 PM Eastern Time. Submissions will be accepted until noon on January 11. Please submit your questions through the portal below:

https://arc.cnf.io/sessions/zxkr

Questions regarding the R&A town hall may be directed to Stefan Immler (stefan.immler@nasa.gov).


4) Call for Nominations to the Executive Committee of the Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) (Deadline January 22, 2021)

“Dear Colleagues:

The Astrophysics Division of NASA's Science Mission Directorate is pleased to issue this open call for nominations to serve on the Executive Committee (EC) of NASA's Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG). In the coming months, NASA anticipates making three new appointments to the ExoPAG EC, replacing three current members of the committee who have reached the end of their appointments. New appointments will start in the Spring of 2021 and will be for a period of three years.

The ExoPAG is an open, interdisciplinary forum that provides a conduit for community input into NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration Program (ExEP), and for conducting analyses in support of ExEP science objectives and their implications for planning and prioritization of Program activities. The ExoPAG is led by a Chairperson drawn from the membership of the Astrophysics Advisory Committee (APAC), and a volunteer Executive Committee, whose membership is chosen to reflect the broad range of scientific disciplines and interests represented in the field of exoplanet exploration. Together, the ExoPAG Chair and Executive Committee are responsible for capturing and organizing community input, overseeing ExoPAG analyses, reporting ExoPAG findings and inputs to the Astrophysics Division Director, and keeping the scientific community apprised of ongoing activities and opportunities within NASA’s ExEP. Detailed information about the structure and function of the ExoPAG, including the current and past membership of the EC, can be found at http://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exopag.

Nominations for the ExoPAG EC should be submitted via email to the address: douglas.m.hudgins@nasa.gov. Nominations must include both a cover letter and a one-page CV summarizing the nominee’s relevant background. The cover letter should provide a description of the nominee’s area of expertise and qualifications for service on the ExoPAG Executive Committee. Nominations will only be accepted for scientists who reside at a U.S. institution for the period of the service. There are no citizenship restrictions. Nominations from individuals at academic institutions—university, college, or non-NASA research laboratory—are strongly encouraged. Self-nominations are welcome. The deadline for nominations is January 22, 2021, with announcement of selections anticipated in April 2021. Selections will be announced by the ExoPAG mailing list.

Because the NASA Astrophysics Division seeks the best possible input from the widest possible community, representing diverse perspectives, we encourage nominations of (and from) people holding any identity(ies) that have been traditionally underrepresented in the field of astrophysics.

We look forward to working with all of our stakeholders to develop a robust and compelling Exoplanet Exploration Program.

Sincerely,
Douglas Hudgins, NASA Headquarters
Exoplanet Exploration Program Scientist, ExoPAG Executive Secretary”


5) Cool Stars 20.5 (March 2-4, 2021) & Cool Stars 21 (Delayed Until 2022)

Cool Stars 20, which was originally supposed to be scheduled for mid-2020, was postponed until 2021. The main meeting will be postponed again until July 4-9, 2022 in Toulouse, France.

https://coolstars21.github.io/

However, due to the long gap between Cool Stars 20 and 21, the SOC is organizing a 3-day remote virtual conference called Cool Stars 20.5, which will be held March 2-4, 2021.

http://coolstars20.cfa.harvard.edu/cs20half/index.html

For an up-to-date listing of exoplanet-related meetings & events, please see the calendar at:
https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/events/

(and to bring any new events or suggested changes, please contact us at exopag-info@jpl.nasa.gov)


ExoPAG News and Announcements (December 14, 2020)

  1. REMINDER: ExoPAG Community Input Forum (Tuesday Dec. 15, 2020, 3:00-4:30pm EST/12:00-1:30pm PST)
  2. ExoPAG 23 Agenda (January 5-6, 2021)
  3. Call for Nominations to the Executive Committee of the Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) (Deadline January 22, 2021)
+ more

1) REMINDER: ExoPAG Community Input Forum (Tuesday Dec. 15, 2020, 3:00-4:30pm EST/12:00-1:30pm PST)

We welcome the ExoPAG community to an ExoPAG Community Input Forum on Tuesday, December 15, 2020 at 3:00-4:30pm EST/ 12:00-1:30pm PST. The purpose of this forum is to provide an overview of the role of the Exoplanet Program Analysis Group (which is comprised of all of us, the members of the NASA Exoplanet science community!) in providing analyses to the Astrophysics Division as input to their decision making processes. We will also take the opportunity to review past “findings” (based on the results of such analyses) provided to NASA Headquarters, as well as discuss potential new findings of interest to members of the community.

To get to the proposed findings, please visit this link:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1j9eRWSp7Ze2V1dGeS8brv4Lgxitfujo8o0G2XudUidg/

If you wish to comment on existing findings, please follow the link to the proposed findings above, leave comments, proposed amendments, and/or endorsements of suggested findings by using the commenting feature in the shared document (see the document for more details).

To suggest a possible new finding, please visit this link to a google form:

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScjAUiemQTbgjnMAtMnqlawJtBM_hs8DsQtfu5KE2G5mHa02w/viewform?usp=sf_link

Your suggestion will be transferred to the findings document for community review and comment.

Potential findings will be discussed at the community forum. After review by the ExoPAG EC, proposed findings with strong community support will be presented to the ExoPAG for a vote at the January 5-6, 2021 virtual meeting (ExoPAG 23).


2) ExoPAG 23 Agenda (January 5-6, 2021)

NASA's Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) will hold its twenty-third meeting:

  • Tuesday January 5, 2021: 12:00pm-4:45pm ET/9:00am-1:45pm PT
  • Wednesday January 6, 2021: 11:40am-5:00pm ET/8:40am-2:00pm PT
  • The business meeting will be Wednesday Jan. 6 between 3:30pm-5:00pm ET/12:30pm-2:00pm PT.

The agenda is posted on the ExoPAG 23 website.

This will be a fully virtual meeting. ExoPAG meetings offer an opportunity to participate in discussions of scientific and technical issues in exoplanet exploration, and a forum for community input on the prioritization of activities in NASA's Exoplanet Exploration Program (ExEP). All interested members of the space science community are invited to attend and participate.


3) Call for Nominations to the Executive Committee of the Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) (Deadline January 22, 2021)

Dear Colleagues:

The Astrophysics Division of NASA's Science Mission Directorate is pleased to issue this open call for nominations to serve on the Executive Committee (EC) of NASA's Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG). In the coming months, NASA anticipates making three new appointments to the ExoPAG EC, replacing three current members of the committee who have reached the end of their appointments. New appointments will start in the Spring of 2021 and will be for a period of three years.

The ExoPAG is an open, interdisciplinary forum that provides a conduit for community input into NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration Program (ExEP, https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep), and for conducting analyses in support of ExEP science objectives and their implications for planning and prioritization of Program activities. The ExoPAG is led by a Chairperson drawn from the membership of the Astrophysics Advisory Committee (APAC), and a volunteer Executive Committee, whose membership is chosen to reflect the broad range of scientific disciplines and interests represented in the field of exoplanet exploration. Together, the ExoPAG Chair and Executive Committee are responsible for capturing and organizing community input, overseeing ExoPAG analyses, reporting ExoPAG findings and inputs to the Astrophysics Division Director, and keeping the scientific community apprised of ongoing activities and opportunities within NASA’s ExEP. Detailed information about the structure and function of the ExoPAG, including the current and past membership of the EC, can be found at http://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exopag.

Nominations for the ExoPAG EC should be submitted via email to the address: douglas.m.hudgins@nasa.gov. Nominations must include both a cover letter and a one-page CV summarizing the nominee’s relevant background. The cover letter should provide a description of the nominee’s area of expertise and qualifications for service on the ExoPAG Executive Committee. Nominations will only be accepted for scientists who reside at a U.S. institution for the period of the service. There are no citizenship restrictions. Nominations from individuals at academic institutions—university, college, or non-NASA research laboratory—are strongly encouraged. Self-nominations are welcome. The deadline for nominations is January 22, 2021, with announcement of selections anticipated in April 2021. Selections will be announced by the ExoPAG mailing list.

Because the NASA Astrophysics Division seeks the best possible input from the widest possible community, representing diverse perspectives, we encourage nominations of (and from) people holding any identity(ies) that have been traditionally underrepresented in the field of astrophysics.

We look forward to working with all of our stakeholders to develop a robust and compelling Exoplanet Exploration Program.

Sincerely,
Douglas Hudgins, NASA Headquarters
Exoplanet Exploration Program Scientist, ExoPAG Executive Secretary


ExoPAG News and Announcements (December 9, 2020)

  1. ExoPAG Community Input Forum (Tuesday Dec. 15, 2020, 3:00-4:30pm EST/12:00-1:30pm PST)
  2. Exoplanets in our Backyard 1.5 at AGU (Dec. 16, 2020, 8am-1pm PT)
  3. Five Years After HL Tau: a New Era in Planet Formation (Dec. 7-11, 2020; Talks on YouTube)
+ more

1) ExoPAG Community Input Forum (Tuesday Dec. 15, 2020, 3:00-4:30pm EST/12:00-1:30pm PST)

** NOTE REVISED LINKS ***

We welcome the ExoPAG community to an ExoPAG Community Input Forum on Tuesday, December 15, 2020 at 3:00-4:30pm EST/ 12:00-1:30pm PST. The purpose of this forum is to provide an overview of the role of the Exoplanet Program Analysis Group (which is comprised of all of us, the members of the NASA Exoplanet science community!) in providing analyses to the Astrophysics Division as input to their decision making processes. Will also take the opportunity to review past “findings” (based on the results of such analyses) provided to NASA Headquarters, as well as discuss potential new findings of interest to members of the community.

To get to the proposed findings, people need to go to: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1j9eRWSp7Ze2V1dGeS8brv4Lgxitfujo8o0G2XudUidg/

To submit a form response: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScjAUiemQTbgjnMAtMnqlawJtBM_hs8DsQtfu5KE2G5mHa02w/viewform?usp=sf_link

Please leave comments, proposed amendments, and endorsements of suggested findings by using the commenting feature in the shared document (see the document for more details).

Your suggestion will be transferred to the findings document for community review and comment. Findings with the most support will be discussed at the community forum. After review by the ExoPAG EC, proposed findings with strong community support will be presented to the ExoPAG for a vote at the January 5-6, 2021 virtual meeting (ExoPAG 23).


2) Exoplanets in our Backyard 1.5 at AGU (Dec. 16, 2020, 8am-1pm PT)

"Dear colleagues attending the virtual AGU meeting,

We’d like to invite you to join us on December 16th at 8am – 1pm PT / 11 am – 4 pm ET for Exoplanets in our Backyard 1.5, an AGU special Innovative Session. This session is intended to continue the conversations and collaborations fostered at the successful Exoplanets in our Backyard (EioB) meeting held in Feb 2020, which was the first ever inter-assessment group (AG) meeting, organized by members of VEXAG, OPAG, and ExoPAG. The half-day AGU Innovative Session for Exoplanets in our Backyard 1.5 will use the well-received format from the original EioB meeting, with special focus on laboratory, field, and observation studies. We hope you will join us!

This session will encourage participants to think about:

  • How can exoplanet and solar system scientists most effectively work together?
  • What tools and techniques can be shared across the exoplanet and solar system fields?
  • How we grow the community of interdisciplinary researchers, including early career scientists and researchers from underrepresented groups?
  • How can we enhance communication between the exoplanet and solar system communities?

When: Wednesday December 16, 2020, 8:00 am-1:00 pm SAN FRANCISCO TIME. (Please adjust for your time zone).

Link to program: https://agu.confex.com/agu/fm20/meetingapp.cgi/Session/101495

Session Organizers: Noam Izenberg (JHU APL) and Giada Arney (NASA GSFC)

AGENDA: (all times PST)

All talks will be given live.

  • 8:00 Opening remarks (5 min)
  • 8:05 Primer Session. This session echoes the style of the flagship session of our workshop, consisting of 3*20-minute invited overview talks on the major themes/areas of the meeting by subject matter experts, followed by a half-hour panel discussion involving the three speakers.
  • 8:05 Noam Izenberg - Exoplanets In Our Backyard - Bringing Solar System and Exosystem sciences together
  • 8:25 Stephen Kane - Why Studying the Solar System Planets is Absolutely Critical for the Future of Exoplanet Characterization and Understanding Habitability
  • 8:45 Erika Kohler - Laboratory and Virtual Models as Bridges between Solar System Planets and the Exoplanets.
  • 9:05 Panel Discussion (Izenberg, Kane, Kohler)
  • 9:35 Break (15 min)
  • 9:50 Topic Session introduction
  • 9:55 Topic Session: Laboratory, field, and observation work in support of Planetary and Exoplanetary observations and modeling. 4*15-minute talks, followed by a half-hour panel with all 4 speakers.
  • 9:55 Sara Port - Venus and Exo-Venus Atmospheric Chamber Experiments
  • 10:10 Sarah Hörst - Hazes and Exoplanetary Atmospheres in the Lab
  • 10:25 Britney Schmidt - Icy Moons in our Solar System and Icy Worlds Outside
  • 10:40 Laura Mayorga - The Jupiter System: An exoplanet testbed
  • 10:55 Panel Discussion (Port, Hörst, Schmidt, Mayorga)
  • 11:25 Break (5 min)
  • 11:30 Discussion Session: A 30 to 60-minute moderated open session on Exoplanets in our Backyard topics with questions to and from all speakers and the session attendees.

We hope to see you there!
Giada Arney & Noam Izenberg

P.S. Recorded presentations from the original Exoplanets in our Backyard meeting (including a public IMAX talk by Emily Lakdawalla) can be viewed at: https://www.hou.usra.edu/meetings/exoplanets2020/"


3) Five Years After HL Tau: a New Era in Planet Formation (Dec. 7-11, 2020; Talks on YouTube)

Public contributed talks from this week's "Five Years After HL Tau" virtual conference can be watched on this YouTube channel:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCMr5B2mQR2MafVC0GuhpyqQ


ExoPAG News and Announcements (December 1, 2020)

  1. ExoPAG Community Input Forum (Tuesday December 15, 2020, 3:00-4:30pm EST/12:00-1:30pm PST)
  2. Call for Nominations to the Executive Committee of the Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) (Deadline January 22, 2021)
  3. Attention Early Career Scientists, Postdocs and Graduate Students: Apply to Present at ExoPAG 23 (***DEADLINE EXTENDED*** 8pm EST/5pm PST December 3, 2020)
  4. ExoPAG SAG 21 “The Effect of Stellar Contamination on Space-based Transmission Spectroscopy” Community Virtual Symposium (March 8-9, 2021; Registration & Abstract Deadline January 19, 2021)
  5. 2021 Sagan Summer Workshop (July 19-23, 2021)
  6. Habitable Worlds 2021 (Abstract Deadline December 8, 2020; Online Conference February 22-26, 2021)
  7. Seeking Volunteer Reviewers in Earth and Space Science
  8. ARIEL Moves from Study to Implementation Phase (Launch Scheduled for 2029)
  9. Cool Stars 20.5: Cambridge Workshops on Cool Stars, Stellar Systems and the Sun (March 2-4, 2021)
+ more

1) ExoPAG Community Input Forum (Tuesday December 15, 2020, 3:00-4:30pm EST/12:00-1:30pm PST)

We welcome the ExoPAG community to an ExoPAG Community Input Forum on Tuesday, December 15, 2020 at 3:00-4:30pm EST/ 12:00-1:30pm PST. The purpose of this forum is to provide an overview of the role of the Exoplanet Program Analysis Group (which is comprised of all of us, the members of the NASA Exoplanet science community!) in providing analyses to the Astrophysics Division as input to their decision making processes. Will also take the opportunity to review past “findings” (based on the results of such analyses) provided to NASA Headquarters, as well as discuss potential new findings of interest to members of the community.

To get to the proposed findings, people need to go to: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1j9eRWSp7Ze2V1dGeS8brv4Lgxitfujo8o0G2XudUidg/

To submit a form response: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScjAUiemQTbgjnMAtMnqlawJtBM_hs8DsQtfu5KE2G5mHa02w/viewform?usp=sf_link

Suggestions here will be translated to another document, which will be shared with the community on the same drive, where community members can indicate their support for any proposed finding. Those with the most support will be discussed at the community forum. After review by the ExoPAG EC, proposed findings with strong community support will be presented to the ExoPAG for a vote at the January 5-6, 2021 virtual meeting (ExoPAG 23).

2) Call for Nominations to the Executive Committee of the Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) (Deadline January 22, 2021)

“Dear Colleagues:

The Astrophysics Division of NASA's Science Mission Directorate is pleased to issue this open call for nominations to serve on the Executive Committee (EC) of NASA's Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG). In the coming months, NASA anticipates making three new appointments to the ExoPAG EC, replacing three current members of the committee who have reached the end of their appointments. New appointments will start in the Spring of 2021 and will be for a period of three years.

The ExoPAG is an open, interdisciplinary forum that provides a conduit for community input into NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration Program (ExEP), and for conducting analyses in support of ExEP science objectives and their implications for planning and prioritization of Program activities. The ExoPAG is led by a Chairperson drawn from the membership of the Astrophysics Advisory Committee (APAC), and a volunteer Executive Committee, whose membership is chosen to reflect the broad range of scientific disciplines and interests represented in the field of exoplanet exploration. Together, the ExoPAG Chair and Executive Committee are responsible for capturing and organizing community input, overseeing ExoPAG analyses, reporting ExoPAG findings and inputs to the Astrophysics Division Director, and keeping the scientific community apprised of ongoing activities and opportunities within NASA’s ExEP. Detailed information about the structure and function of the ExoPAG, including the current and past membership of the EC, can be found at https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exopag.

Nominations for the ExoPAG EC should be submitted via email to the address: douglas.m.hudgins@nasa.gov. Nominations must include both a cover letter and a one-page CV summarizing the nominee’s relevant background. The cover letter should provide a description of the nominee’s area of expertise and qualifications for service on the ExoPAG Executive Committee. Nominations will only be accepted for scientists who reside at a U.S. institution for the period of the service. There are no citizenship restrictions. Nominations from individuals at academic institutions—university, college, or non-NASA research laboratory—are strongly encouraged. Self-nominations are welcome. The deadline for nominations is January 22, 2021, with announcement of selections anticipated in April 2021. Selections will be announced by the ExoPAG mailing list (https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/exopag/announcementList).

Because the NASA Astrophysics Division seeks the best possible input from the widest possible community, representing diverse perspectives, we encourage nominations of (and from) people holding any identity(ies) that have been traditionally underrepresented in the field of astrophysics.

We look forward to working with all of our stakeholders to develop a robust and compelling Exoplanet Exploration Program.

Sincerely,
Douglas Hudgins, NASA Headquarters
Exoplanet Exploration Program Scientist, ExoPAG Executive Secretary”


3) Attention Early Career Scientists, Postdocs and Graduate Students: Apply to Present at ExoPAG 23 (*** DEADLINE EXTENDED*** 8pm EST/5pm PST December 3, 2020)

Note: deadline extended to Thursday, apply now.

NASA's Exoplanet Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) and NASA's Exoplanet Exploration Program (ExEP) Office invites early career scientists, postdocs and graduate students to present at the virtual ExoPAG meeting, to be held on January 5-6, 2021 from roughly 11:30 am to 5 pm EST each day. We are particularly interested in presentations from early career scientists, postdocs, and graduate students from diverse backgrounds.

The presentations for early career scientists, postdocs and graduate students will have a focus on exoplanet-solar system synergies. Proposed contributions can address topics related to the Science Interest Group 3 (SIG #3).

Proposed contributions can also address one of the topics outlined in the “2020 Science Gap List”:

As the ultimate users of future NASA facilities, early career scientists, postdocs and graduate students are encouraged to attend the ExoPAG meetings to:

  • Share their work with a broad audience of scientists, technologists, and program managers;
  • Learn about NASA's strategic goals and plans, and learn how to impact them through ExoPAG activities.

The ExoPAG helps NASA and ExEP in assessing and analyzing exoplanet science in support of future exoplanet missions relevant to NASA's strategic goals through meetings, organizing science interest groups (SIGs), as well as science analysis groups (SAGs).

Those who wish to propose short talks should apply now. The deadline to receive the proposed contributions has been extended to 8pm EST/5pm PST Thursday December 3, 2020. Successful applicants will be notified the week of December 7th.


4) ExoPAG SAG 21 “The Effect of Stellar Contamination on Space-based Transmission Spectroscopy” Community Virtual Symposium (March 8-9, 2021; Registration & Abstract Deadline January 19, 2021)

"Dear colleagues,
NASA’s ExoPAG Study Analysis Group (SAG) 21 on “The Effect of Stellar Contamination on Space-based Transmission Spectroscopy” is delighted to announce its Community Symposium, to be held virtually on March 8th and 9th, 2021. The motivation for this meeting is appended at the end of this e-mail. Along with presentations from SAG21 subgroup leads on the activities and preliminary findings of the SAG, the Symposium will also have many slots available for researchers within SAG21 and the broader community to give contributed talks on relevant topics.

Registration and abstract submission are now open. A form for both can be accessed at the Symposium website: https://sites.google.com/view/sag21symposium. The deadline for registration & abstract submission will be January 19, 2021.

Please do redistribute the message within your institutions!

All the best,
Néstor Espinoza & Benjamin Rackham (SAG21 co-chairs)

SAG 21 Community Symposium on “The Effect of Stellar Contamination on Space-based Transmission Spectroscopy” motivation:

Transmission spectroscopy has been one of the main workhorses in the past decade for probing the chemical composition and physical structure of the upper atmospheres of transiting exoplanets. The technique holds great promise to keep delivering these exciting results and even more, given the imminent launch of the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST). These measurements, however, can be impacted by inhomogeneities on the disks of exoplanet host stars, including spots, faculae, and plages. This symposium aims to explore the different results and views on the nature of on this “stellar contamination” and ideas on future avenues for its study.

This symposium is being organized as part of NASA’s ExoPAG Study Analysis Group 21 on “The Effect of Stellar Contamination on Space-based Transmission Spectroscopy,” whose main aim is to gather expertise from the stellar, solar, and exoplanetary communities in order to work together towards solutions for constraining this effect. SAG 21 will detail its findings in a report delivered to NASA in mid-2021.


5) 2021 Sagan Summer Workshop (July 19-23, 2021)

The 2021 Sagan Summer Workshop will take place July 19-23, 2021. As with last year, we expect that the 2021 workshop will be fully virtual.

The topic for this year's workshop is: Circumstellar Disks and Young Planets

The 2021 Sagan Summer Workshop will focus on young planets and the circumstellar disks from which they form during the first few million years of a star's lifetime. The workshop will address how transformational new datasets are allowing us to address key questions about the formation and evolution of planets and their potential habitability; topics will include:

  • Properties of transiting young planets detected by the Kepler/K2 and TESS missions
  • Gaia identification of groups of young stars and determination of their ages
  • Properties of planets and disks imaged directly with ground-based faculties (e.g., Gemini/GPI, SPHERE/VLTI, Keck and ALMA) and space-based telescopes (Spitzer, HST and, soon, JWST)
  • Environment influence of an active young star on the evolution of the primordial atmosphere of a young planet
  • Theoretical bases for the formation and evolution of a planetary systems, including both the disk and planets

Attendees will have the chance to submit posters, participate in hands-on tutorials, and meet in small groups with our speakers.

There is no registration fee for this workshop. Registration will open in February 2021.

Questions or to be added to the email list: sagan_workshop@ipac.caltech.edu

Website: http://nexsci.caltech.edu/workshop/2021/index.shtml


6) Habitable Worlds 2021 (Abstract Deadline December 8, 2020; Online Conference February 22-26, 2021)

“Abstract submission and Registration for the Habitable Worlds 2021 workshop is open! If you have not done so already, please submit your abstract by the December 8, 2020 deadline.

The goal of the workshop is to identify opportunities and obstacles to cross-disciplinary collaboration on the questions of what makes planets habitable, and life on them detectable. The culminating event will be a synchronous, online conference February 22-26, 2021.

In preparation for the meeting in February, we have three ice-breaking, community-wide, collaborative online activities, designed to promote interdisciplinary communication and to set the agenda for the conference. These activities are generating input from the fields of astronomy/astrophysics, planetary sciences, heliophysics, and Earth sciences, and are open (after a free signup) to all who wish to participate. The activities are mostly about getting the different communities on the same page and involve very little time commitment.

You do NOT have to participate in the pre-meeting activities to fully participate in the meeting in February.

For more information, and to register and submit your abstract for the Conference please see: https://aas.org/meetings/aastcs8/habitable

Your expertise from your discipline is needed to help shape the future study of habitability and detectability of life on exoplanets!

We look forward to seeing you!

Habitable Worlds 2021 SOC”


7) Seeking Volunteer Reviewers in Earth and Space Science

“NASA's Science Mission Directorate is seeking subject matter experts to serve as external and/or (virtual) panel reviewers of proposals to ROSES. Start at the landing page at https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/volunteer-review-panels or just follow the links below to the volunteer review forms and click the boxes to indicate the topics in which you consider yourself to be a subject matter expert. If your skills match our needs for that review and there are not too many organizational conflicts of interest, we will contact you.

The following new volunteer reviewer forms have been (re)posted recently:

  • Astrophysics Research and Analysis (ROSES program element D.3)
  • Carbon Monitoring System (ROSES A.6) and
  • Carbon Cycle Science - Terrestrial (ROSES A.5)
  • Future Investigators in NASA Earth Science and Technology (FINESST Earth)
  • Future Investigators in Space Science and Technology (FINESST Space)
  • Habitable Worlds (ROSES E.4)
  • Heliophysics Living With a Star Science (ROSES B.6)
  • Lunar Data Analysis (ROSES C.8)
  • Solar System Workings (ROSES C.3)

In addition to these previously posted volunteer forms that are still available:

  • Astrophysics Data Analysis Program (Appendix D.2 of the annual ROSES NRA)
  • Discovery Data Analysis (ROSES C.11)
  • Heliophysics Supporting Research (ROSES B.2)
  • Mars Data Analysis Program (ROSES C.9)
  • Physical Oceanography Program (PO)
  • Planetary Instrument Concepts for the Advancement of Solar System Observations (PICASSO)”

8) ARIEL Moves from Study to Implementation Phase (Launch Scheduled for 2029)

https://www.esa.int/Science_Exploration/Space_Science/Ariel_moves_from_blueprint_to_reality


9) Cool Stars 20.5: Cambridge Workshops on Cool Stars, Stellar Systems and the Sun (Mar. 2-4, 2021)

Cool Stars 20.5 - Virtually Cool (March 2-4 2021, virtual meeting)

The "Cambridge Workshops on Cool Stars, Stellar Systems and the Sun" are normally held biennially and have evolved to be the premier conference series for cool star research.

With the ongoing pandemic, the organizers of Cool Stars 21 consider it unlikely we will be able to meet in person in the summer of 2021. This would put a four year gap between our meetings for the first time. Therefore we have decided to hold a virtual conference to keep everyone in our field up to date. But don't worry, we still plan to meet in Toulouse in mid-2022.

What is "Cool Stars"? The Cambridge Workshop on Cool Stars, Stellar Systems, and the Sun ("Cool Stars") has been running for 40 years. The first workshop was held in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1980. Since then, Cool Stars has been held largely biennially, alternating between North America and Europe, where approximately 400 international experts in Low-Mass Stars, Solar Physics, and Exoplanets meet to exchange ideas in a cross-disciplinary and friendly environment.

For more information and to register (no fee) for Cool Stars 20.5, go to http://coolstars20half.com.


ExoPAG News and Announcements (November 9, 2020)

  1. Attention Early Career Scientists, Postdocs and Graduate Students: Apply to Present at ExoPAG 23 (Deadline 6pm EST/3pm PST Nov. 30, 2020)
  2. Save the Dates: 2021 Sagan Exoplanet Summer Virtual Workshop: Circumstellar Disks and Young Planets (July 19-23, 2021)
  3. ExoPAG Study Analysis Group 22 (SAG22) Task Force 3 Requests Community Input (Response Requested by Nov. 16, 2020)
  4. NASA Science Mission Directorate Town Hall Meeting (Nov. 17, 2020)
  5. Call for proposals for observing time on CHEOPS (AO-2) (Proposal Deadline Dec. 1, 2020)
  6. ROSES-20 Amendment 68: New Opportunity in ROSES: E.11 Payloads and Research Investigations on the Surface of the Moon (PRISM)
  7. AbSciCon Postponed to 2022
+ more

1) Attention Early Career Scientists, Postdocs and Graduate Students: Apply to Present at ExoPAG 23 (Deadline 6pm EST/3pm PST Nov. 30, 2020)

NASA's Exoplanet Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) and NASA's Exoplanet Exploration Program (ExEP) Office invites early career scientists, postdocs and graduate students to present at the virtual ExoPAG meeting, to be held on on January 5 - 6 from roughly 11:30 am to 5 pm EST each day. We are particularly interested in presentations from early career scientists, postdocs, and graduate students from diverse backgrounds.

The presentations for early career scientists, postdocs and graduate students will have a focus on exoplanet-solar system synergies. Proposed contributions can address topics related to the Science Interest Group 3 (SIG #3).

Proposed contributions can also address one of the topics outlined in the “2020 Science Gap List”:

As the ultimate users of future NASA facilities, early career scientists, postdocs and graduate students are encouraged to attend the ExoPAG meetings to:

  • Share their work with a broad audience of scientists, technologists, and program managers;
  • Learn about NASA's strategic goals and plans, and learn how to impact them through ExoPAG activities.

The ExoPAG helps NASA and ExEP in assessing and analyzing exoplanet science in support of future exoplanet missions relevant to NASA's strategic goals through meetings, organizing science interest groups (SIGs), as well as science analysis groups (SAGs).

Those who wish to propose short talks should apply now. The deadline is 3 pm PST November 30, 2020. Successful applicants will be notified by December 7.


2) Save the Dates: 2021 Sagan Exoplanet Summer Virtual Workshop: Circumstellar Disks and Young Planets (July 19-23, 2021)

https://nexsci.caltech.edu/workshop/2021/


3) ExoPAG Study Analysis Group 22 (SAG22) Task Force 3 Requests Community Input (Response Requested by Nov. 16, 2020)

"Dear Community,

The goal of Exoplanet Study Analysis Group (SAG) 22 is to identify key information for a target star archive for exoplanet science which will be used to both plan exoplanet missions and interpret the data. We are currently in the “information gathering” phase. Specifically, Task Force 3 is a subgroup (led by Ravi Kopparapu and Jacob Lustig-Yaeger) focused on defining/categorizing the different interdisciplinary use cases that we could expect such an archive to serve.

Given a diverse field of expertise in the community, we would like to request responses to some questions regarding how the community might utilize data from the proposed archive, including data from upcoming missions, and which specific observables/properties would be necessary. The questions are purposely being left open-ended right now to have a better sense of the scope of work that could be supported by this archive. During a later “synthesis” phase, we may come back to with more specifics to better refine the various science cases.

Please feel free to provide either long-form or short-form answers; a response by November 16, 2020 would be much appreciated. Please let us know if you have any questions.

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfyZdoQyUwbJ9lFBxQphrQVMyLBZ3agyyFSyU5n2fahYSrarw/viewform

Ravi Kopparapu &
Jacob Lustig-Yaeger"


4) NASA Science Mission Directorate Town Hall Meeting (Nov. 17, 2020)

NASA Science will host a community town hall meeting with Associate Administrator for Science Thomas H. Zurbuchen and his leadership team at 3 p.m. Eastern Time Tuesday, November 17, to discuss updates to NASA's science program, share current status of NASA activities, and roll-out the 2021 NASA Science Planning Guide.

Members of the science community, academia, the media, and the public are invited to participate by joining at the link below.

https://nasaevents.webex.com/nasaevents/onstage/g.php?MTID=e5a57f78267bb9bde7ef4c96995b92463

If prompted, please use event number 199 344 4841, followed by event password saPpAZ3aA34.

To ask a question, participants can go to: https://arc.cnf.io/sessions/zeg7/#!/dashboard

Users must provide their first and last name and organization and can submit their own questions or vote up questions submitted by others. The meeting leaders will try to answer as many of the submitted questions as possible.

Presentation materials for the meeting will be available for download and a recording will be available later that day at: https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/virtual-townhall-2020


5) Call for proposals for observing time on CHEOPS (AO-2) (Proposal Deadline Dec. 1, 2020)

"Dear Colleagues,

I’d like to draw your attention to the second Announcement of Opportunity (AO-2) for participation in the ESA CHEOPS Guest Observers Programme.

AO-2 solicits proposals for observations to be carried out in the period 26 March 2021 to 25 March 2022, and is open to the community worldwide.

Full details, including all tools/manuals/information needed to prepare and submit observing proposals, can be found at: https://www.cosmos.esa.int/web/cheops-guest-observers-programme/ao-2

The deadline for submission of proposals is 12:00 hrs GMT/13:00 hrs CET on 1 Dec 2020

Please send any questions to cheops-support@cosmos.esa.int

Best wishes,

Kate Isaak
ESA CHEOPS Project Scientist"


6) ROSES-20 Amendment 68: New Opportunity in ROSES: E.11 Payloads and Research Investigations on the Surface of the Moon (PRISM)

The Payloads and Research Investigations on the Surface of the Moon (PRISM) program element solicits proposals for investigations that include development and flight of science-driven suites of instruments and technology demonstration payloads that will be delivered to the lunar surface on Commercial Lunar Payload Services (CLPS). This PRISM solicitation calls for science investigations that will be delivered to the lunar surface in late Calendar Year (CY) 2023 and early CY2024 to predetermined lunar landing sites. These deliveries will go to Reiner Gamma (a lunar swirl) in Quarter 4 2023, and a Schrödinger Basin impact melt (lunar far side) in Q2 2024. Proposals must identify one of these lunar landing sites and propose an investigation uniquely achieved at that location. No other landing sites shall be proposed. Some technology development and maturation within the proposed project is allowed, but the primary review criteria for selection are the merit of the proposed science investigation and ability to deliver on schedule.

This amendment releases the text for a new program element in ROSES-2020 in the form of this program E.11 Payloads and Research Investigations on the Surface of the Moon (PRISM). Proposals to this program will be submitted by a two-step process in which the Notice of Intent is replaced by a mandatory Step-1 proposal that must be submitted by an organization Authorized Organizational Representative. Only proposers who submit a Step-1 proposal are eligible to submit a Step-2 (full) proposal. Step-1 Proposals are due December 11, 2020 and Step-2 proposals are due January 19, 2021.

On or about November 5, 2020, this Amendment to the NASA Research Announcement "Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Sciences (ROSES) 2020" (NNH20ZDA001N) will be posted on the NASA research opportunity homepage at http://solicitation.nasaprs.com/ROSES2020 and will appear on SARA's ROSES blog at: https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/sara/grant-solicitations/roses-2020/

The main point of contact for E.11 PRISM is Brad Bailey, who may be reached at HQ-PRISM@mail.nasa.gov.


7) AbSciCon Postponed to 2022

https://astrobiology.nasa.gov/news/abscicon-postponed-to-2022/

"Due to unfavorable launch conditions, AbSciCon 2021 is scrubbed but is A GO for 2022.

The Astrobiology Science Conference (AbSciCon) brings the astrobiology community together every two years to share research, collaborate, and plan for the future. The conference will now be held 15-20 May 2022 and will remain in Atlanta, GA, USA, at the Hilton Atlanta.

NASA and the American Geophysical Union decided to move the 2021 conference to these new dates to facilitate a robust gathering of scientists in Atlanta and in an online capacity. Origins and Exploration: From Stars to Cells is the theme.

If you submitted a session proposal, it will be saved for the 2022 meeting. You will have the opportunity to update your session proposal in 2021, if needed.

For more information, visit the AbSciCon website at: https://www.agu.org/abscicon"


ExoPAG News and Announcements (October 29, 2020)

  1. ExoExplorers Application Portal Open (Deadline Nov. 5, 2020)
  2. TESS Guest Investigator Cycle 4 Revised Text and Phase-1 Due Date Delay (Phase-1 proposals due Jan. 22, 2021)
  3. Coming soon: PI Launchpad 2021
  4. Habitable Worlds: ROSES-2020 and ROSES-2021
  5. "Galaxy of Horrors" and New NASA Posters Feature Cosmic Frights for Halloween!


+ more

1) ExoExplorers Application Portal Open (Deadline Nov. 5, 2020)

The ExoExplorers application portal is now open!

Applications are due by November 5th (midnight Pacific time)

We are seeking postdoc and graduate student applicants who strive for excellence in their research and also for increasing diversity, equity and inclusion in the exoplanet science community. As such, we seek applicants that contribute to exoplanet science through their understanding of the barriers facing underserved and underrepresented communities. Members of the ExoPAG Executive Committee (EC) will review and accept up to 10 people for this pilot cohort, which will run from January - June 2021.

For more information on the ExoExplorers Science Series, expectations of cohort members, and application instructions please visit the ExoEplorers website.

Sign up for future ExoExplorers announcements, including information about science webinars by cohort members.


2) TESS Guest Investigator Cycle 4 Revised Text and Phase-1 Due Date Delay (Phase-1 proposals due Jan. 22, 2021)

The Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) Guest Investigator (GI) Program solicits proposals for the acquisition and analysis of new scientific data from the TESS mission, a NASA Explorer mission that was launched in April 2018 and began science operations in July 2018. Additionally, proposals that support the acquisition and analysis of scientific data from ground-based telescopes are solicited. Such ground-based measurements must directly support the analysis and/or interpretation of TESS scientific data.

In addition to small changes throughout, this amendment makes the following substantive changes to D.6 TESS Guest Investigator Cycle 4: A new "Mini Proposal" category is available. These programs require minimal resources, up to 50 20-second cadence targets and 1,000 2-minute cadence targets per proposal may be requested. Proposals in this category are not eligible for funding. The observing sectors were updated in Section 1.1, Section 1.3 has been updated regarding postage stamp targets, source code sharing, and joint Fermi observations, and Section 2.2 has been updated regarding overlap with proposals to the Exoplanet Research Program.

Moreover, Cycle 4 also includes the following changes from the previous cycle:

  • TESS Cycle 4 observations will be collected between June 2021 and September 2022. Due to the extended length of the cycle compared to previous cycles, the total amount of funding available to U.S.-based PIs through this solicitation is anticipated to be $3.4M, of which up to $500,000 is available to support ground-based observing programs as in Cycle 3.
  • Key Project proposals are no longer solicited.

New text is in bold and deleted text is struck through. The Phase-1 due date has been delayed: Phase-1 proposals are due by 4:30 pm Eastern Time January 22, 2021 via ARK/RPS.

On or about October 23, 2020, this Amendment to the NASA Research Announcement "Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Sciences (ROSES) 2020" (NNH20ZDA001N) will be posted on the NASA research opportunity homepage at http://solicitation.nasaprs.com/ROSES2020 and will appear on SARA's ROSES blog at: https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/sara/grant-solicitations/roses-2020/

Technical questions concerning this program element may be directed to Thomas Barclay at thomas.barclay@nasa.gov and programmatic information may be obtained from Douglas Hudgins at Douglas.M.Hudgins@nasa.gov.


3) Coming soon: PI Launchpad 2021

NASA’s Science Mission Directorate, in partnership with the Heising-Simons Foundation, will host a virtual workshop tentatively planned for early Summer 2021 to explore the fundamentals of how to turn a science question into a mission concept. With this e-mail, we hope to provide advanced planning notice of the workshop for interested parties.

This 2021 version follows the successful initial Launchpad held in November of 2019 at the University of Arizona. Due to COVID-19, we are reformulating the workshop as a virtual event. The workshop is targeted towards researchers who have previously submitted research, observing, fellowship, and/or technology proposals to any organization and are thinking about developing their first flight mission proposal within the next few years. Participants will go step-by-step through the process to develop a science case, define requirements, build a team, and gain support. The workshop will provide participants with time for networking and personal reflection as they mature their mission concepts.

This workshop is not specific to any particular Announcement of Opportunity. Participation in the workshop is not a prerequisite for submitting a proposal to NASA and will not be a factor in the evaluation of future proposals. NASA intends to continue offering workshops on this topic in the future, whether in person or virtual.

Launchpad 2021 Application Process and Timeline:

A call will be posted on NSPIRES in early 2021 with an opportunity to apply to Launchpad 2021. The format of the 2021 application will be similar to the 2019 Launchpad application (please see the expired application for the 2019 Launchpad for reference) and will consist of no more than 5 questions, focused on:

  1. What science question would you like to develop into a mission concept?
  2. Views on Leadership.
  3. Role of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (DEIA) in teams.
  4. Group and power dynamics in teams.
  5. Management for effective teams.

There is no cost to attend the workshop. The workshop will be virtual and exact details are still under development. There will be some pre-work expected to be conducted on your own prior to the workshop.

As before, we are interested in broadening the pool of potential NASA space mission PI’s. People with potentially intersecting marginalized identities are strongly encouraged to apply. Anyone interested may apply with exceptions noted below.

Eligibility details: Non-US citizens currently working at a US institution will be eligible. Non-US citizens working outside of a US institution will not be eligible. US citizens working temporarily outside the US (e.g. post-doctoral fellowship) will be eligible to apply. People who have previously been space mission PIs or held other leadership roles (Deputy PI, etc.) with significant contributions during the proposal writing process will not be eligible. Technology development or demonstration concepts will not be solicited for this workshop.

Updates will be made available at https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/pi-launchpad as they are announced. Check back in early 2021 for more information.

Launchpad 2019 content now available online:

Many more people applied to attend the 2019 workshop than we were able to accommodate. In light of the community response and our inability to hold a planned in-person 2020 workshop due to COVID-19, we have placed much of the 2019 workshop content online. This content includes the workbook provided to participants, the 3-day workshop agenda, and videos of panels and presentations. Where appropriate, we have also included pdfs of all presentations.

Please find the main Launchpad page here: https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/pi-launchpad

If you have questions, please contact Prof. Erika Hamden (hamden@arizona.edu).


4) Habitable Worlds: ROSES-2020 and ROSES-2021

ROSES-20 Amendment 43: Habitable Worlds will not be solicited next year in ROSES-2021, but it is still solicited this year (Step-1 Proposal Deadline Nov. 17, 2020; Step-2 Proposal Deadline Jan. 15, 2021)


5) "Galaxy of Horrors" and New NASA Posters Feature Cosmic Frights for Halloween!

This Halloween, take a tour of some of the most terrifying and mind-blowing destinations in our galaxy ... and beyond. After a visit to these nightmare worlds, you may never want to leave Earth again! https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/alien-worlds/galaxy-of-horrors/

New NASA Posters Feature Cosmic Frights for Halloween

With Halloween just around the corner, NASA has released its latest Galaxy of Horrors posters. Presented in the style of vintage horror movie advertisements, the new posters feature a "dead" galaxy, an explosive gamma ray burst caused by colliding stellar corpses, and ever-elusive dark matter; the posters are also available in Spanish.

Free to download, the posters were produced by NASA's Exoplanet Exploration Program Office, located at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California, with the input of astrophysicists. The posters are also available in Spanish: Cementerio Galáctico, Materia Oscura, and Demonios de Rayos Gamma.

Continued at: https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/news/1663/new-nasa-posters-feature-cosmic-frights-for-halloween/


ExoPAG News and Announcements (October 5, 2020)

  1. Exoplanet Explorers Speaker Series Call for Applications (Applications due Nov. 5, 2020)
  2. Habitable Worlds 2021 (Online conference Feb. 22-26, 2021)
  3. Call for Applications: 2021 NASA Hubble Fellowship Program (Einstein, Hubble and Sagan Fellowships; Deadline Nov. 5, 2020)
  4. NASA Astrophysics Advisory Committee (APAC) Virtual Meeting (Oct. 19-21, 2020)
  5. ExoPAG SIG3 Exoplanet/Solar System Synergy Tutorial and Journal Club (Oct. 8, 2020, 2pm EDT/11am PDT)
  6. Technosignatures Virtual Seminar Series
  7. AAS237 Special Session: Atmospheric Characterization of TESS Exoplanets (Abstract deadline: Oct. 6, 2020)
  8. Habitable Worlds Dual-Anonymous Peer Review Webinar (Oct. 7, 2020)
  9. AAS237 Abstract Deadline (Oct. 13, 2020)
  10. Protostars and Planets VII (Postponed to Mar. 21-27, 2022)
+ more

1) Exoplanet Explorers Speaker Series Call for Applications (Applications due Nov. 5, 2020)

NASA's Exoplanet Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) invites postdocs and graduate students currently at US institutions to participate in the inaugural Exoplanet Explorers (ExoExplorers) Science Series. This inaugural ExoExplorers cohort, which will run a pilot program from Jan 2021-June 2021, will present half-hour monthly seminars to the larger exoplanet community on topics focusing on observation, theory, and instrumentation in support of the broad themes outlined in the “ExEP Science Gap List."

Each of the ExoExplorers will receive $1000 compensation for their talk. In addition, ExoExplorers will be expected to participate in:

  1. Weekly interactions between members of the cohort
  2. Monthly informal roundtable discussions with prominent scientists in the exoplanet and educational fields (“ExoGuides”)
  3. One to two professional development training sessions on topics to be decided by the cohort, such as proposal writing, CV building, and public speaking.

We are seeking applicants that strive for excellence in their research and also for increasing diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) in the exoplanet science community. As such, we seek applicants that contribute to exoplanet science through their understanding of the barriers facing underserved and underrepresented communities.

Members of the ExoPAG Executive Committee (EC) will review and accept up to 10 people for this pilot cohort.

A website describing the program is available at: https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/exopag/exoexplorers/

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) how you would participate in and contribute to the cohort and its efforts through the activities described above and 3) how you would leverage these experiences to both become leaders in exoplanet science and to increase diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in the broader exoplanet community. Your application will be evaluated based on how you address these three prompts. Please also include a current CV as part of your application. Your statement and CV must be PDF format. Applications are due November 5th, 2020 (midnight Pacific time).

Questions? Please see our FAQ page to view answers to previously submitted questions or to submit a question. To 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 program, call, or application content is October 30. After this date, we will only answer procedural questions about the application process.


2) Habitable Worlds 2021 (Online Conference Feb. 22-26, 2021)

In coordination with the AAS, the Nexus for Exoplanet System Science (NExSS) is pleased to announce the AAS Topical Conference:

Habitable Worlds 2021.

The goal of the workshop is to identify opportunities and obstacles to cross-disciplinary collaboration on the questions of what makes planets habitable, and life on them detectable. The culminating event will be a synchronous, online conference 22-26 February 2021.

In preparation for the meeting in February, we have planned three ice-breaking, community-wide, collaborative online activities 1-31 October 2020, designed to promote interdisciplinary communication and to set the agenda for the conference. These activities will generate input from the fields of astronomy/astrophysics, planetary sciences, and Earth sciences, and are open (after a free signup) to all who wish to participate. The activities are mostly about getting the different communities on the same page, and involve very little time commitment.

For more information on the Conference please see: https://aas.org/meetings/aastcs8/habitable

To directly sign up for the free Pre-meeting Icebreaker activities please see: http://nexss.info/community/workshops/habworlds2021

Your expertise from your discipline is needed to help shape the future study of habitability and detectability of life on exoplanets!

We look forward to seeing you!

Steve Desch, Arizona State University (Chair)
Dorian Abbot, University of Chicago
Daniel Apai, University of Arizona
Paul Byrne, North Carolina State Universityv
Shannon Curry, University of California, Berkeley
Dawn Gelino, Caltech/IPAC-NASA Exoplanet Science Institute
Hilairy Hartnett, Arizona State University
Natalie Hinkel, Southwest Research Institution
Seth Jacobsen, Michigan State University
Hannah Jang-Condell, NASA HQ
Paul Kalas, University of California, Berkeley
Stephen Kane, University of California, Riverside
Aki Roberge, NASA HQ
Cayman Unterborn, Arizona State University"


3) Call for Applications: 2021 NASA Hubble Fellowship Program (Einstein, Hubble and Sagan Fellowships; Deadline Nov. 5, 2020)

"On behalf of the NASA Astrophysics Division, the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) announces the call for applications for postdoctoral fellowships under the NASA Hubble Fellowship Program (NHFP) beginning in the fall of 2021.

The NHFP supports postdoctoral scientists performing independent research that contributes to NASA Astrophysics (see https://science.nasa.gov/astrophysics/for more information). The research may be theoretical, observational, and/or instrumental. If your application is successful and you accept our offer, you will become an Einstein, Hubble or Sagan fellow depending on the area of your research. We are continuing the legacy of those three earlier programs in this way, and through joint management of the program by STScI, in collaboration with the Chandra X-ray Center and the NASA Exoplanet Science Institute.

The NHFP is open to applicants of any nationality who have earned (or will have earned) their doctoral degree on or after January 1, 2018 in astronomy, physics or related disciplines. The duration of the Fellowship is up to three years: an initial one-year appointment, and two annual renewals contingent on satisfactory performance and availability of NASA funds. Eligibility may extend to those who received their PhD as early as January 1, 2017, if professional work was necessarily delayed by personal or family considerations. Extended eligibility must be justified in an email to nhfp@stsci.edu at least 2 weeks in advance of the application deadline.

We anticipate offering up to 24 NHFP Fellowships this year. The Fellowships are tenable at a U.S. host institution of the fellow's choice, subject to a maximum of two new fellows per host institution per year, and no more than five fellows at any single host institution, except for short periods of overlap.

The Announcement of Opportunity, which includes detailed program policies and application instructions, is available at the website: http://nhfp.stsci.edu. The application submission page will be open from September 8 until November 5, 2020.

Applicants should follow the instructions given in the Announcement and also examine the Frequently Asked Questions. Please send any further inquiries about the NHFP to nhfp@stsci.edu.

Important dates:

  • Applications are due Thursday, November 5, 2020 (7 PM EST, 4 PM PST, 24:00 UTC)
  • Letters of reference are due Thursday, November 12, 2020 (Note: the applications are due one week before the letters)
  • Offers will be made in early February 2021 and new appointments should begin on or about September 1, 2021.

NHFP Fellowships are open to English-speaking citizens of all nations. All applicants will receive consideration without regard to race, creed, color, age, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation or national origin. Women and members of minority groups are strongly encouraged to apply.

Annoucement of Opportunity: http://nhfp.stsci.edu

Questions: nhfp@stsci.edu


4) NASA Astrophysics Advisory Committee (APAC) Virtual Meeting (Oct. 19-21, 2020)

The next meeting (virtual) of The Astrophysics Advisory Committee (APAC) will be held Oct. 19-21, 2020.

The agenda will be posted on the APAC site: https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/nac/science-advisory-committees/apac

Further information is available at: https://science.nasa.gov/files/science-pink/s3fs-public/atoms/files/Published%20FRN%20APAC%20October%20Meeting.pdf


5) ExoPAG SIG3 Exoplanet/Solar System Synergy Tutorial and Journal Club (Oct. 8, 2020, 2pm EDT/11am PDT)

"Good Afternoon Everyone,

The ExoPAG Science Interest Group 3 on Exoplanet Solar System synergies is supporting and organizing Tutorial Talks aimed at introducing field newcomers to important topics or methods in planetary and exoplanetary science. The talks include a 30 minute tutorial from an expert to introduce the topic, followed by a 30 minute group discussion of a recent paper in which the topic/method features. The details of our next tutorial talk are listed below:

Date: October 8th at 11am PDT / 2pm EDT

Speaker: Elisabeth Newton, Assistant Professor of Physics & Astronomy, Dartmouth College

Title: The advantages and challenges of M dwarfs as planet hosts

Abstract: M dwarfs provide strong advantages in the search for exoplanets: as the smallest type of star, they result in the largest signals for transit and radial velocity planet detection. With the addition of the low intrinsic luminosities, they also provide the best opportunity for the detection of biosignatures on habitable planets. The newly discovered young exoplanet AU Mic b provides an example of the “M dwarf advantage.” However, it also highlights the challenges: M dwarfs are overluminous for extended periods of time when they are first forming, and they display high levels of stellar activity: strong magnetic fields, x-ray and UV flux, and flaring. These factors may be detrimental for habitability, while also posing a challenge to detection and characterization. I will discuss the advantages and challenges of M dwarfs, and discuss the recent discovery of AU Mic bs (Plavchan et al.).

Link to the Paper: https://ui.adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2020Natur.582..497P/abstract

Zoom Connection Info: Contact Daniel Larsen - dlarsen9@uw.edu

Thanks!

DANIEL LARSEN, MS
Astrobiology Program Administrator
VPL Project Administrator
UW Astronomy Department
Box 351580
Seattle, WA 98195
206-543-2604 | dlarsen9@uw.edu"


6) Technosignatures Virtual Seminar Series

From Ravi Kopparapu:

"If you are interested in attending ‘Technosignature’ virtual seminar series, please email Ravi Kopparapu (ravikumar.kopparapu@nasa.gov) to join the mailing list.

The seminars include a range of topics from Solar system to exoplanets, galactic to extra-galactic, evolution of intelligence and technology, theory and observation spanning the electromagnetic spectrum.

We plan to have these seminars nominally on Wednesday’s starting at 11AM U.S Eastern time, with a duration of 40minutes of talk, and 20 minutes of discussion. We found that an extended discussion after a talk invites new ideas and collaborations which are crucial for developing a vibrant community. These talks will be given on zoom. The current schedule and recorded talks are available at SEEC (Sellers Exoplanet Environments Collaboration). We will also be recording the talks and make them publicly available, unless a speaker requests us not to do so."


7) AAS237 Special Session: Atmospheric Characterization of TESS Exoplanets (Abstract deadline: Oct. 6, 2020)

"Please consider submitting an abstract at this winter's AAS meeting to the special session "Atmospheric Characterization of TESS Exoplanets." AAS will be entirely remote this year, so no hotel costs, and we expect to have a great turn-out for our virtual audience.

One of the greatest impacts of the TESS mission will be to dramatically increase the number of known exoplanets well-suited for detailed atmospheric characterization via HST and JWST. Already, exciting new results about the atmospheres of both giant and rocky planets have come from the first two years of TESS discoveries and data.

If you have results related to:

  • The identification of new planets in TESS data that are promising atmosphere targets
  • Characterization observations of planets observed or discovered by TESS
  • Predictions for what we can expect from future JWST observations of smaller TESS planets

Then submit your abstract to "Atmospheric Characterization of TESS Exoplanets." Note that the deadline for special session abstracts is Oct. 6, which is a week earlier than the regular abstract deadline of Oct. 13.

The session is organized under the auspices of the TESS Atmospheric Characterization Working Group.

Thomas Beatty
tgbeatty@arizona.edu"


8) Habitable Worlds Dual-Anonymous Peer Review Webinar (Oct. 7, 2020)

On October 7, 2020 at 3pm ET/12pm PT, NASA's Science Mission Directorate will host a webinar to discuss the implementation of dual-anonymous peer review for the Habitable Worlds Program (E.4 of ROSES-2020). In dual-anonymous peer review, not only are proposers unaware of the identity of reviewers, but the reviewers do not have explicit knowledge of the proposing teams and institutions during the scientific evaluation of the proposal. The webinar will: (1) discuss the motivation for switching to dual-anonymous peer review, (2) describe important changes to proposal writing to be compliant with dual-anonymous peer review, and (3) explain how dual-anonymous peer reviews work in Habitable Worlds. In advance of the webinar, questions may be submitted and upvoted on at: https://arc.cnf.io/sessions/zazz/#!/dashboard

For more information on dual-anonymous peer review, please visit: https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/dual-anonymous-peer-review


9) AAS237 Abstract Deadline (Oct. 13, 2020)

A reminder that Tuesday October 13, 2020 is the deadline for submitting abstracts for the 237th Meeting of the American Astronomical Society (AAS), which will be held (virtually) January 11-15, 2021: https://aas.org/meetings/aas237


10) Protostars and Planets VII (Postponed to Mar. 21-27, 2022)

Protostars and Planets VII (PP7), which was originally scheduled for April 2021 in Kyoto, Japan, has been postponed to March 21-27, 2022.

Current Schedule:

  • Nov. 30, 2020: Decision on Review Chapters and Talks
  • Apr. 1, 2021: Start of Registration (subject to change)
  • Sep. 1, 2021: Deadline for Manuscript Submission
  • Mar. 21, 2022: Start of PP7 meeting


ExoPAG News and Announcements (September 24, 2020)

  1. RFP for Starshade Exoplanet Data Challenge (Deadline October 16, 2020)
  2. Improvements to the NASA Goddard Exoplanet Modeling & Analysis Center (EMAC)
  3. NN-EXPLORE: Proposals Invited for CTIO/SMARTS 1.5m with CHIRON and MINERVA-Australis in Semester 2021A (Deadline September 30, 2020, 11:59pm MST) and Updates on Coronavirus COVID-19 Measures at NOIRLab. No New WIYN Proposals Solicited for 2021A.
  4. ROSES D.10 TESS Guest Investigator Cycle 4 (Deadline January 15, 2021)
+ more

1) RFP for Starshade Exoplanet Data Challenge (Deadline October 16, 2020)

"Dear Colleague,

You are invited to participate in the Starshade Exoplanet Data Challenge, as part of the Starshade Science and Industry Partnership (SIP) activities. The objective of the data challenge is to develop image-processing algorithms to detect planets and extract their spectra from synthetic images, to validate the flow down of requirements from science to key instrument performance parameters, and to quantify the required accuracy of noisy background calibration.

The Jet Propulsion Laboratory has issued Request for Proposals (RFP) to support participation in the data challenge.

Questions regarding technical aspects of the RFP should be addressed to Dr. Renyu Hu (renyu.hu@jpl.nasa.gov), and questions regarding other aspects should be addressed to Maria Jaquez (maria.a.jaquez@jpl.nasa.gov). The proposal is due on October 16, 2020.

Q&A session: Prospective proposers are encouraged to participate in a Q&A session on September 24, 10 am PT = 1 pm ET, as part of the SIP Telecon #9.

[Editor’s note: The telecon has passed - slides from this telecon can be viewed at: https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/technology/starshade/sip/]

The Exoplanet Exploration Program of the NASA Astrophysics Division charters the Starshade Science and Industry Partnership (SIP). The purpose of the Starshade SIP is to maximize the technology readiness level of starshades to enable potential future exoplanet science missions.

Best regards,

Renyu

Renyu Hu, PhD
Starshade Scientist, NASA Exoplanet Exploration Program
W: 818 354 6090, M: 818 281 9459"


2) Improvements to the NASA Goddard Exoplanet Modeling & Analysis Center (EMAC)

"Dear Colleagues,

We’d like to highlight a number of upgrades to the NASA Goddard Exoplanet Modeling and Analysis Center (EMAC) website and database: https://emac.gsfc.nasa.gov. We now have links to Discussion pages, various sorting and linking capabilities, and an RSS announcement page and feed, and we encourage you to take another look if you’ve seen it before. Additionally, we have an RSS alerts service describing the new tools listed on EMAC the previous month, and you can track updates on Twitter @ExoplanetModels.

EMAC is a community software database and repository for exoplanet-related resources and tools hosted at NASA Goddard. This project intends to bring together open-source modeling and analysis software as well as computed model outputs to create a central clearinghouse where the exoplanet community can access a wide range of useful exoplanet science resources. We encourage everyone to consider listing your open-source or web-accessible tools and model databases on the EMAC resources page. Visitors can also vote for tools they would like to see developed into a web tool or web interface under the “Vote” tab.

If you have any questions or feedback, or want to suggest a tool that we should recruit, please feel free to visit our feedback page to let us know.

Thanks,

The EMAC Science Support Team at NASA Goddard"


3) NN-EXPLORE: Proposals Invited for CTIO/SMARTS 1.5m with CHIRON and MINERVA-Australis in Semester 2021A (Deadline September 30, 2020, 11:59pm MST) and Updates on Coronavirus COVID-19 Measures at NOIRLab. No New WIYN Proposals Solicited for 2021A.

NSF's NOIRLab Call for Proposals: Semester 2021A

NOIRLab is providing regular updates on observatory science operations in Arizona, Chile, and Hawai'i at: https://noirlab.edu/public/announcements/ann20002/

WIYN: The WIYN 3.5m telescope (along with all telescopes on Kitt Peak) had been closed since mid-March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. From the NOIRLab Sept. 21, 2020 Update: "Phase 1 operations started Monday, 14 September 2020. First activities include safety inspections, road repairs, deferred mountain facility maintenance, and other initial activities to prepare to restart DESI and NEID commissioning. If the ramp-up proceeds according to plan, the WIYN 3.5-meter Telescope and DESI/Nicholas U. Mayall 4-meter Telescope are expected to resume night-time activities by mid-November." Due to this closure and its impact on Semester 2020A (1 February 2020 - 31 July 2020), as well as continuing impact on Semester 2020B (which began on 1 August 2020), WIYN is NOT soliciting new proposals for semester 2021A. Those PIs with approved NEID programs for Semester 2020A will remain in the NEID queue for Semester 2021A. At this point, there is no WIYN/NEID schedule for Semester 2020B and all 2020B proposals are being held in reserve by WIYN in order to prepare a schedule when the observatory reopens. If you have questions about WIYN/NEID please contact us (vsmith@noao.edu,Jayadev.Rajagopal@gmail.com).

CTIO/SMARTS 1.5m CHIRON: In addition to the observing time available through the nominal NSF's NOIRLab community access, the NN-EXPLORE program is providing an additional 300 hours (approximately 30 nights) to support 2021A observations utilizing the CHIRON spectrograph for exoplanet science related to the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS). Data will be acquired in queue mode so no travel support will be available to the observers under this portion of the program. Raw echellegram images and calibration files, as well as final processed 1-D extracted wavelength-calibrated spectra can be provided to the PI. For details see http://www.astro.yale.edu/smarts/1.5m.html) and http://www.astro.gsu.edu/~thenry/SMARTS/). NOIRLab Sept. 21, 2020 COVID-19 Update: see https://noirlab.edu/public/announcements/ann20002/.

MINERVA-Australis: As part of the NN-EXPLORE program, NASA entered in a partnership with the MINERVA-Australis consortium starting in 2020B. That agreement continues in Semester 2021A, with 300 hours of observing time open to NNEXPLORE proposals. MINERVA-Australis is a dedicated exoplanet observatory operated by the University of Southern Queensland (USQ) in Queensland, Australia. The facility is located at USQ's Mt. Kent Observatory, and saw first light in quarter two 2018; commissioning of the facility was completed in mid-2019. MINERVA-Australis currently consists of 5 (0.7m) PlaneWave CDK700 telescopes; these telescopes have two ports, allowing each to be used for either spectroscopic or photometric observations. A summary of the facility and its capabilities can be found in the commissioning paper by Addison et al. 2019 (https://ui.adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2019PASP..131k5003A). The photometric channel is capable of milli-magnitude precision and currently, the light from four telescopes can be combined onto one R=75,000 echelle spectrograph for radial velocity precisions of 1-10 m/s depending on the target brightness and how many telescopes are combined.

NN-EXPLORE website: https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/NNExplore/


4) ROSES D.10 TESS Guest Investigator Cycle 4 (Deadline January 15, 2021)

D.10 TESS Guest Investigator Cycle 4

Solicitation: NNH20ZDA001N-TESS

Deadline: January 15, 2021

https://nspires.nasaprs.com/external/solicitations/summary.do?solId={4B9CAAB3-D398-183A-B1F3-EF963DF415C7}


ExoPAG News and Announcements (September 16, 2020)

  1. ExoPAG 23 (Virtual): Save the Dates (January 5-6, 2021; 12pm EST-4pm EST)
  2. Input to ExEP Science Gap List (Deadline Sept. 30, 2020)
  3. NN-EXPLORE Proposals Invited for CTIO/SMARTS 1.5m with CHIRON and MINERVA-Australis in Semester 2021A (Deadline September 30, 2020, 11:59pm MST). No New WIYN Proposals Solicited for 2021A.
  4. Habitable Worlds Dual-Anonymous Peer Review Webinar (Oct. 7, 2020)
  5. Call for Applications: 2021 NASA Hubble Fellowship Program (Einstein, Hubble and Sagan Fellowships; Deadline Nov. 5, 2020)
  6. exoplanet-talks.org Online Presentation Platform for Exoplanet Science
  7. CHEOPS Discretionary Programme Now Open
  8. SPIE Astronomical Telescopes + Instrumentation: No-charge Digital Forum (Dec. 13-18, 2020)
+ more

1) ExoPAG 23 (Virtual): Save the Dates (January 5-6, 2021; 12pm EST-4pm EST)

ExoPAG 23 has been tentatively scheduled as a virtual meeting over two half-days:

Tue. Jan. 5, 2021: 12pm EST/9am PST - 4pm EST/1pm PST

Wed. Jan. 6, 2021: 12pm EST/9am PST - 4pm EST/1pm PST

These are the two days before the AAS 237 Workshop days (Thr/Fri Jan. 7-8, 2021), and the week before AAS 237 (Jan. 11-15, 2021).

Further meetings details (including agenda) will eventually be posted at: https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/exopag/exopag-meetings/


2) Input to ExEP Science Gap List (Deadline Sept. 30, 2020)

The NASA Exoplanet Exploration Program (ExEP) is seeking community input on the ExEP Science Gap List (SGL) through September 30, 2020, with the goal of providing an updated version in early 2021:

See the current version of the SGL.

The Science Gap List (SGL) tabulates program “science gaps”, which are defined as the difference between knowledge needed to define requirements for specified future NASA exoplanet missions and the current state of the art, or knowledge which is needed to enhance the science return of current and future NASA exoplanet missions. Making the gap list public signals to the broader community where focused science investigations are needed over the next 3-5 years in support of ExEP goals. The ExEP Science Gap List represents activities and investigations that will advance the goals of NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration Program, and provides brief summaries in a convenient tabular format. The ExEP Science Gap list is meant to assist proposers in describing the relevance of their work to Program goals as they respond to SMD ROSES and mission observing proposal solicitations. All ExEP approaches, activities, and decisions are guided by science priorities, and those priorities are presented and summarized in the ExEP Science Gap List.

Please contact ExEP scientists Karl Stapelfeldt (Karl.R.Stapelfeldt@jpl.nasa.gov) & Eric Mamajek (Eric.Mamajek@jpl.nasa.gov) with any input for revisions to the SGL.

In 2021, ExEP plans to update the Science Plan Appendix to take into account the Decadal Survey recommendations and NASA’s response. The Science Plan Appendix is a more comprehensive document that lays out the scientific challenges that must be addressed to advance the goals of NASA's Exoplanet Exploration Program (last version 2018).

The ExEP Exoplanet Program Science documents are available at: https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/science-overview/


3) NN-EXPLORE Proposals Invited for CTIO/SMARTS 1.5m with CHIRON and MINERVA-Australis in Semester 2021A (Deadline September 30, 2020, 11:59pm MST). No New WIYN Proposals Solicited for 2021A.

NSF's NOIRLab Call for Proposals: Semester 2021A

http://ast.noao.edu/observing/call-for-proposals-2021a

WIYN: The WIYN 3.5m telescope (along with all telescopes on Kitt Peak) has been closed since mid-March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic and, at this time, there is no scheduled date for re-opening. Due to this closure and its impact on Semester 2020A (1 February 2020 - 31 July 2020), as well as continuing impact on Semester 2020B (which began on 1 August 2020), WIYN is not soliciting new proposals for semester 2021A. Those PIs with approved NEID programs for Semester 2020A will remain in the NEID queue for Semester 2021A. At this point, there is no WIYN/NEID schedule for Semester 2020B and all 2020B proposals are being held in reserve by WIYN in order to prepare a schedule when the observatory reopens. If you have questions about WIYN/NEID please contact us (vsmith@noao.edu, Jayadev.Rajagopal@gmail.com).

CTIO/SMARTS 1.5m CHIRON: In addition to the observing time available through the nominal NSF's NOIRLab community access, the NN-EXPLORE program is providing an additional 300 hours (approximately 30 nights) to support 2021A observations utilizing the CHIRON spectrograph for exoplanet science related to the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS). Data will be acquired in queue mode so no travel support will be available to the observers under this portion of the program. Raw echellegram images and calibration files, as well as final processed 1-D extracted wavelength-calibrated spectra can be provided to the PI. For details see http://www.astro.yale.edu/smarts/1.5m.html and http://www.astro.gsu.edu/~thenry/SMARTS/).

MINERVA-Australis: As part of the NN-EXPLORE program, NASA entered in a partnership with the MINERVA-Australis consortium starting in 2020B. That agreement continues in Semester 2021A, with 300 hours of observing time open to NNEXPLORE proposals. MINERVA-Australis is a dedicated exoplanet observatory operated by the University of Southern Queensland (USQ) in Queensland, Australia. The facility is located at USQ's Mt. Kent Observatory, and saw first light in quarter two 2018; commissioning of the facility was completed in mid-2019. MINERVA-Australis currently consists of 5 (0.7m) PlaneWave CDK700 telescopes; these telescopes have two ports, allowing each to be used for either spectroscopic or photometric observations. A summary of the facility and its capabilities can be found in the commissioning paper by Addison et al. 2019 (https://ui.adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2019PASP..131k5003A). The photometric channel is capable of milli-magnitude precision and currently, the light from four telescopes can be combined onto one R=75,000 echelle spectrograph for radial velocity precisions of 1-10 m/s depending on the target brightness and how many telescopes are combined.

NN-EXPLORE website: https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/NNExplore/


4) Habitable Worlds Dual-Anonymous Peer Review Webinar (Oct. 7, 2020)

On October 7, 2020 at 3pm ET/12pm PT, NASA's Science Mission Directorate will host a webinar to discuss the implementation of dual-anonymous peer review for the Habitable Worlds Program (E.4 of ROSES-2020). In dual-anonymous peer review, not only are proposers unaware of the identity of reviewers, but the reviewers do not have explicit knowledge of the proposing teams and institutions during the scientific evaluation of the proposal.

The webinar will: (1) discuss the motivation for switching to dual-anonymous peer review, (2) describe important changes to proposal writing to be compliant with dual-anonymous peer review, and (3) explain how dual-anonymous peer reviews work in Habitable Worlds. In advance of the webinar, questions may be submitted and upvoted on at: https://arc.cnf.io/sessions/zazz/#!/dashboard

For more information on dual-anonymous peer review, please visit: https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/dual-anonymous-peer-review


5) Call for Applications: 2021 NASA Hubble Fellowship Program (Einstein, Hubble and Sagan Fellowships; Deadline Nov. 5, 2020)

"On behalf of the NASA Astrophysics Division, the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) announces the call for applications for postdoctoral fellowships under the NASA Hubble Fellowship Program (NHFP) beginning in the fall of 2021.

The NHFP supports postdoctoral scientists performing independent research that contributes to NASA Astrophysics (see https://science.nasa.gov/astrophysics/ for more information). The research may be theoretical, observational, and/or instrumental. If your application is successful and you accept our offer, you will become an Einstein, Hubble or Sagan fellow depending on the area of your research. We are continuing the legacy of those three earlier programs in this way, and through joint management of the program by STScI, in collaboration with the Chandra X-ray Center and the NASA Exoplanet Science Institute.

The NHFP is open to applicants of any nationality who have earned (or will have earned) their doctoral degree on or after January 1, 2018 in astronomy, physics or related disciplines. The duration of the Fellowship is up to three years: an initial one-year appointment, and two annual renewals contingent on satisfactory performance and availability of NASA funds. Eligibility may extend to those who received their PhD as early as January 1, 2017, if professional work was necessarily delayed by personal or family considerations. Extended eligibility must be justified in an email to nhfp@stsci.edu at least 2 weeks in advance of the application deadline.

We anticipate offering up to 24 NHFP Fellowships this year. The Fellowships are tenable at a U.S. host institution of the fellow's choice, subject to a maximum of two new fellows per host institution per year, and no more than five fellows at any single host institution, except for short periods of overlap.

The Announcement of Opportunity, which includes detailed program policies and application instructions, is available at the website: http://nhfp.stsci.edu . The application submission page will be open from September 8 until November 5, 2020.

Applicants should follow the instructions given in the Announcement and also examine the Frequently Asked Questions. Please send any further inquiries about the NHFP to nhfp@stsci.edu.

Important dates:

Applications are due Thursday, November 5, 2020 (7 PM EST, 4 PM PST, 24:00 UTC)

Letters of reference are due Thursday, November 12, 2020 (Note: the applications are due one week before the letters)

Offers will be made in early February 2021 and new appointments should begin on or about September 1, 2021.

NHFP Fellowships are open to English-speaking citizens of all nations. All applicants will receive consideration without regard to race, creed, color, age, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation or national origin. Women and members of minority groups are strongly encouraged to apply.

Annoucement of Opportunity: http://nhfp.stsci.edu

Questions: nhfp@stsci.edu "


6) exoplanet-talks.org Online Presentation Platform for Exoplanet Science

"Dear colleagues and friends,

I wish to update you on a new initiative that we are starting: an online presentation platform for exoplanet science. It is expected be operational before the end of the calendar year. Attached is the detailed case for the platform, with a short summary below. If you want to make sure you don't miss any updates on this, you can leave your name and email here (also for your comments and suggestions): https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1Gg23EJ63xjy7uKtvv5JPBSxJxnxpNidceyVkidZqyak/viewform?edit_requested=true

I hope you are all well in these strange times!

Ignas Snellen

The corona-crisis has made us think about the future of conferences and symposia. Although meetings will always play an important role in our scientific lives, it will take a while before we can all travel again and spend time with hundreds in a cramped room. Also, long-distant travel is not particularly green. In addition, the current situation makes it increasingly difficult for early career scientists to present and promote themselves - something that has always been challenging.

We are going to try something different, and set up a web-based scientific presentation platform for the field of extrasolar planets. Anybody registered can upload a presentation to the system, e.g. when they have published a paper, a thesis, or at any time. The presentation is stored in the system with a range of keywords to make the database easily searchable – no frills, no likes, no number of views. Anybody can view a presentation until the presenter removes it again from the database. Registered scientists can ask questions either publicly or privately via a discussion console – even months after a talk has been uploaded.

Although clearly not all of the important aspects of real-life conferences will be replaced by this platform, especially networking, it will have many benefits – even after the immediate Covid-19 crisis is over. Early Career Scientists will have an easily accessible way to present their work, allowing high quality talks, with potentially a long-term legacy value – and will learn the important skills of making state-of-the-art video presentations. We envisage this will become a novel path for scientists to interact with each other: Journal clubs starting paper discussions with a short video, and academic recruiters watching online presentations of candidates.

This week is the technical kick-off of the project, with an anticipated running time of about 12 weeks before going live. In addition to a local team, we have an informal international advisory committee (Jayne Birkby, Jean-Michel Désert, Debra Fischer, Kevin Heng, Laura Kreidberg, Didier Queloz and Sascha Quanz). We are particularly aware of security and (social) safety challenges. You will need to be a scientist affiliated with a recognised institute to register and be able to post a video or place comments. The public at large can only watch the videos.

We hope you will become as enthusiastic about this idea as we are, and will try to help to make it a success. Think about upcoming articles/projects you, or your team member, could give a short presentation on. Probably in a few weeks we will start pre-registration. If you want to make sure you don't miss any updates on this, you can leave your name and email here (also for your comments and suggestions): https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1Gg23EJ63xjy7uKtvv5JPBSxJxnxpNidceyVkidZqyak/viewform?edit_requested=true

Of course, for comments you could also email me directly.

Kind regards,

Ignas Snellen, also on behalf of Yamila Miguel, Aurora Kesseli, Matthew Kenworthy and Frans Snik

ps: the website exoplanet-talks.org is not yet active."


7) CHEOPS Discretionary Programme Now Open

"I would like to draw your attention to the CHEOPS discretionary programme. This provides the opportunity to request observing time on CHEOPS at any time of the year, and specifically outside the annual announcements of opportunity.

Details of the programme, including all tools/manuals/information needed to prepare and submit observing proposals, can be found at: https://www.cosmos.esa.int/web/cheops-guest-observers-programme/discretionary-programme

There are very specific criteria that a target must meet for a proposal to be eligible for time within this programme - these are given on the webpage itself, and in the programme documentation (Policies and Procedures document) which is listed on the webpage under “Documentation”. When submitting a proposal it is important to take into account that, for operational reasons, it will take at best a minimum of around 3 weeks from proposal submission to target observation.

Please send any questions to cheops-support@cosmos.esa.int

Best wishes,

Kate Isaak, ESA CHEOPS Project Scientist"


8) SPIE Astronomical Telescopes + Instrumentation: No-charge Digital Forum (Dec. 13-18, 2020)

https://spie.org/conferences-and-exhibitions/astronomical-telescopes-and-instrumentation

"Announcing: Digital Forum 2020

This has been an historic year for the Astronomical Telescopes + Instrumentation symposium. We received a record number of abstract submissions from developers of ground- and space-based telescopes, the supporting technologies, and the latest instrumentation. This is the symposium that advances astronomical engineering.

To support this vital community during an unprecedented time, SPIE is transitioning this event into a safe and accessible, no-charge Digital Forum that will run 13-18 December 2020.

This online SPIE event will include live plenary presentations, on-demand technical talks, and opportunities to connect with other participants. Experts in this community will gather to share recent results, present new concepts, and discuss ongoing and future telescope projects. The 2020 program includes a robust lineup of speakers and global participation."


ExoPAG News and Announcements (September 8, 2020)

  1. NN-EXPLORE Proposals Invited for CTIO/SMARTS 1.5m with CHIRON and MINERVA-Australis in Semester 2021A (Deadline September 30, 2020, 11:59pm MST). No New WIYN Proposals Solicited for 2021A.
  2. NASA Keck 2021A Call for Proposals (Deadline September 17, 2020, 4pm PDT)
  3. NASA Infrared Telescope Facility (IRTF) 2021A Call for Proposals (October 1, 2020, 5pm HST)
  4. Input to ExEP Science Gap List (Deadline Sept. 30, 2020)
  5. ExoPAG SIG3 Exoplanet/Solar System Synergy Tutorial Talk (Sept. 10, 2020; 2pm EDT/11am PDT)
+ more

1) NN-EXPLORE Proposals Invited for CTIO/SMARTS 1.5m with CHIRON and MINERVA-Australis in Semester 2021A (Deadline September 30, 2020, 11:59pm MST). No New WIYN Proposals Solicited for 2021A.

NN-EXPLORE website

NSF's NOIRLab Call for Proposals - Semester 2021A

WIYN: The WIYN 3.5m telescope (along with all telescopes on Kitt Peak) has been closed since mid-March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic and, at this time, there is no scheduled date for re-opening. Due to this closure and its impact on Semester 2020A (1 February 2020 - 31 July 2020), as well as continuing impact on Semester 2020B (which began on 1 August 2020), WIYN is not soliciting new proposals for semester 2021A. Those PIs with approved NEID programs for Semester 2020A will remain in the NEID queue for Semester 2021A. At this point, there is no WIYN/NEID schedule for Semester 2020B and all 2020B proposals are being held in reserve by WIYN in order to prepare a schedule when the observatory reopens. If you have questions about WIYN/NEID please contact us (vsmith@noao.edu , Jayadev.Rajagopal@gmail.com).

CTIO/SMARTS 1.5m CHIRON: In addition to the observing time available through the nominal NSF's NOIRLab community access, the NN-EXPLORE program is providing an additional 300 hours (approximately 30 nights) to support 2021A observations utilizing the CHIRON spectrograph for exoplanet science related to the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS). Data will be acquired in queue mode so no travel support will be available to the observers under this portion of the program. Raw echellegram images and calibration files, as well as final processed 1-D extracted wavelength-calibrated spectra can be provided to the PI. For details see http://www.astro.yale.edu/smarts/1.5m.html and http://www.astro.gsu.edu/~thenry/SMARTS/).

MINERVA-Australis: As part of the NN-EXPLORE program, NASA entered in a partnership with the MINERVA-Australis consortium starting in 2020B. That agreement continues in Semester 2021A, with 300 hours of observing time open to NN-EXPLORE proposals. MINERVA-Australis is a dedicated exoplanet observatory operated by the University of Southern Queensland (USQ) in Queensland, Australia. The facility is located at USQ's Mt. Kent Observatory, and saw first light in quarter two 2018; commissioning of the facility was completed in mid-2019. MINERVA-Australis currently consists of 5 (0.7m) PlaneWave CDK700 telescopes; these telescopes have two ports, allowing each to be used for either spectroscopic or photometric observations. A summary of the facility and its capabilities can be found in the commissioning paper by Addison et al. 2019 (https://ui.adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2019PASP..131k5003A). The photometric channel is capable of milli-magnitude precision and currently, the light from four telescopes can be combined onto one R=75,000 echelle spectrograph for radial velocity precisions of 1-10 m/s depending on the target brightness and how many telescopes are combined.


2) NASA Keck 2021A Call for Proposals (Deadline September 17, 2020, 4pm PDT)

The 2021A NASA Keck Call for Proposals is now available.

Mission Support and General Observing proposals to support all NASA's Science Goals and Missions are solicited. The opportunity to propose as a Principal Investigator for NASA's time on the Keck Telescopes is open to all U.S.-based astronomers (i.e. those who have their principal affiliation at a U.S. institution).

Key Dates:

September 3: deadline to request letters from NASA HQ for general mission support proposals

September 17 by 4 pm Pacific: proposal submission deadline

Please see the call website for details on highlights for 2021A, guidelines for allocation of NASA Keck time, proposals in support of NASA missions, multi-semester proposals, targets of opportunity, etc.


3) NASA Infrared Telescope Facility (IRTF) 2021A Call for Proposals (October 1, 2020, 5pm HST)

http://irtfweb.ifa.hawaii.edu/observing/callForProposals.php

Call for Proposals for the NASA Infrared Telescope Facility

DEADLINE: Thursday 01 October 2020

NASA Infrared Telescope Facility Observing Proposals: The due date for the 2021A semester (February 1, 2021 to July 31, 2021) is Thursday, October 1, 2020. See our online submission form, which is available for proposal submission from 12:00AM on September 01, 2020 until 5:00PM on October 01, 2020 HST.

Available IRTF facility instruments: http://irtfweb.ifa.hawaii.edu/instruments/

IRTF Facility Instruments:

  • SpeX, 0.7-5.3 micron medium-resolution spectrograph
  • iSHELL, 1.1-5.3 micron cross-dispersed spectrograph and imager.
  • MORIS, Andor 512 x 512 pixel CCD camera mounted at the side-facing window of SpeX

IRTF Visitor Instruments:

  • TEXES, 8-26 micron high resolution grating spectrograph
  • BASS, medium resolution 3-14 micron spectrometer 116 element, non-scanning prism system
  • HIPWAC, 7-13 micron heterodyne spectrograph R>10^6

4) Input to ExEP Science Gap List (Deadline Sept. 30, 2020)

The NASA Exoplanet Exploration Program (ExEP) is seeking community input on the ExEP Science Gap List (SGL) through September 30, 2020, with the goal of providing an updated version in early 2021:

See the current version of the SGL.

The Science Gap List (SGL) tabulates program “science gaps”, which are defined as the difference between knowledge needed to define requirements for specified future NASA exoplanet missions and the current state of the art, or knowledge which is needed to enhance the science return of current and future NASA exoplanet missions. Making the gap list public signals to the broader community where focused science investigations are needed over the next 3-5 years in support of ExEP goals. The ExEP Science Gap List represents activities and investigations that will advance the goals of NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration Program, and provides brief summaries in a convenient tabular format. The ExEP Science Gap list is meant to assist proposers in describing the relevance of their work to Program goals as they respond to SMD ROSES and mission observing proposal solicitations. All ExEP approaches, activities, and decisions are guided by science priorities, and those priorities are presented and summarized in the ExEP Science Gap List.

Please contact ExEP scientists Karl Stapelfeldt (Karl.R.Stapelfeldt@jpl.nasa.gov) & Eric Mamajek (Eric.Mamajek@jpl.nasa.gov) with any input for revisions to the SGL.

In 2021, ExEP plans to update the Science Plan Appendix to take into account the Decadal Survey recommendations and NASA’s response. The Science Plan Appendix is a more comprehensive document that lays out the scientific challenges that must be addressed to advance the goals of NASA's Exoplanet Exploration Program (last version 2018).

The ExEP Exoplanet Program Science documents are available at: https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/science-overview/


5) ExoPAG SIG3 Exoplanet/Solar System Synergy Tutorial Talk (Sept. 10, 2020; 2pm EDT/11am PDT)

From ExoPAG SIG3 co-chairs Vikki Meadows and Kathy Mandt:

"Dear ExoPAG SIG3,

Our next Tutorial Talk will be given by Prof. Nancy Chanover, who will provide an introduction to the Planetary Data System Atmospheres Node for those who might be considering using the PDS for exoplanet science.

These tutorial talks are aimed at introducing field newcomers to important topics or methods in planetary and exoplanetary science. They typically include a 30 minute tutorial from an expert to introduce the topic, followed by a 30 minute group discussion of a recent paper in which the topic/method features. The details for Nancy's talk are listed below:

Date/Time: Sept 10th at 11am PDT / 2pm EDT

Speaker: Nancy Chanover, Professor of Astronomy, New Mexico State University

Title: How to Leverage NASA’s Planetary Data System Atmospheres Node for Exoplanet Science

Abstract: The NASA Planetary Data System Atmospheres Node is charged with archiving atmospheric data from NASA’s solar system missions, as well as ground-based observations, laboratory experiments and analog field measurements conducted in support of NASA’s missions. In this presentation I will provide a brief overview of the PDS Atmospheres Node data archive and discuss its relevance to the exoplanet atmospheric science community. I will also briefly discuss nomenclature issues that might be confusing to first-time users and point to PDS-based resources to help interpret them. Finally, I will discuss a paper (Elrod et al. 2018) that illustrates the use of data archived at the PDS Atmospheres Node for understanding the role that solar activity plays in driving atmospheric escape on Mars.

Paper for Discussion: Elrod et al. (2018), GRL, https://doi.org/10.1029/2018GL077729

Thank you again to Laura Schaefer and Mark Marley for organizing the Tutorial Talk series!

Vikki + Kathy"

Contact Vikki Meadows (vsm@astro.washington.edu) or Kathy Mandt (Kathleen.Mandt@jhuapl.edu) for details.


ExoPAG News and Announcements (August 21, 2020)

  1. NASA Keck 2021A Call for Proposals (Proposal Deadline September 17, 2020)
  2. NExScI Exoplanet Talk Calendar: Continuation for Fall 2020
  3. Decadal Survey on Astronomy and Astrophysics 2020 (Astro2020) - Meeting 8 (Aug. 25, 2020)
  4. Exostar Redux - Online Reunion Conference (Aug. 26, 2020)
  5. TRAPPIST Habitable Atmosphere Intercomparison (THAI) Workshop (Sept. 14-16, 2020)
+ more

1) NASA Keck 2021A Call for Proposals (Proposal Deadline September 17, 2020)

The 2021A NASA Keck Call for Proposals is now available: https://nexsci.caltech.edu/missions/KeckSolicitation/gen-info.shtml

Mission Support and General Observing proposals to support all NASA's Science Goals and Missions are solicited. The opportunity to propose as a Principal Investigator for NASA's time on the Keck Telescopes is open to all U.S.-based astronomers (i.e. those who have their principal affiliation at a U.S. institution).

Key Dates:

  • September 3: deadline to request letters from NASA HQ for general mission support proposals
  • September 17 by 4 pm Pacific: proposal submission deadline

Please see the call website: https://nexsci.caltech.edu/missions/KeckSolicitation/gen-info.shtml for details on highlights for 2021A, guidelines for allocation of NASA Keck time, proposals in support of NASA missions, multi-semester proposals, targets of opportunity, etc.


2) NExScI Exoplanet Talk Calendar: Continuation for Fall 2020

"Hello Fellow Exoplaneteers,

As many institutions will be maintaining a partially or fully virtual environment for the start of the 2020--2021 academic year, we at the NASA Exoplanet Science Institute will continue to solicit contributions to our centralized Exoplanet Talk Calendar. This portal contains user-submitted details regarding exoplanet talks, including colloquia, seminars, and meetings, that are able to be shared and viewed live, or that have been recorded. For everyone interested in staying tuned to the exciting exoplanet science that is still happening around the globe, please check out our Public Calendar Website:

https://nexsci.caltech.edu/missions/remote_exoplanets.shtml

Calen Henderson, on behalf of the NASA Exoplanet Science Institute
chenderson@ipac.caltech.edu"


3) Decadal Survey on Astronomy and Astrophysics 2020 (Astro2020) - Meeting 8 (Aug. 25, 2020)

Meeting #8 of the Steering Committee of the Decadal Survey on Astronomy & Astrophysics 2020 is being held August 25, 2020, with open sessions between 12pm-3pm ET/9am-12pm PT.

The draft agenda with remote connection details is at: https://www.nationalacademies.org/event/08-25-2020/docs/DA98BD7AB203810398243A0DDE3FD88C606ED4866D46

To request the password, please email dwise@nas.edu (Subject line: Astro2020 Steering Committee Meeting #8 password).

The open session includes the following agency presentations:

  • 12pm ET/9am PT: National Science Foundation Update (Ralph Gaume)
  • 1pm ET/10am PT: Department of Energy Update (Kathy Turner)
  • 2pm ET/11am PT: National Aeronautics and Space Administration Update (Paul Hertz)

4) Exostar Redux - Online Reunion Conference (Aug. 26, 2020)

Exostar Redux - Online Reunion Conference
Wednesday, August 26-27, 2020 (11am EDT/8am PDT start)
Coordinators: Rebekah Dawson, Jim Fuller, Daniel Huber, Katja Poppenhaeger, and Victor Silva Aguirre

The goal of our program ”Exostar” was to foster the unique synergy between stellar astrophysics and exoplanet science. A year after its successful completion we will meet in this virtual conference to hear about selected star-planet interaction topics, present some of the key results of the program, and understand the latest discoveries in the fields of exoplanet studies and stellar evolution.

https://www.kitp.ucsb.edu/activities/exostar_oc20

Four sessions of talks on (times PDT):

Wednesday August 26, 2020:

  • 08:00AM Session 1: Accurate determination of stellar properties
  • 10:00AM Session 2: Star planet interaction and habitability

Thursday August 27, 2020:

  • 08:00AM Session 3: Characterization of exoplanets
  • 10:00AM Session 4: Evolution of Star-Planet Systems

Registration: https://ucsb.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_nskEHSMrR6aVr3ON_y_FOg

Deadline is August 27, 2020 7:50am PDT/10:50am EDT


5) TRAPPIST Habitable Atmosphere Intercomparison (THAI) Workshop (Sept. 14-16, 2020)

THAI workshop will be fully remote September 14-16, 2020: http://www.nexss.info/community/workshops/thai


ExoPAG News and Announcements (July 31, 2020)

  1. SAG 22: Investigating an Exoplanet Target Star Archive - Invitation to Join
  2. ExoPAG SIG 3 (Exoplanet/Solar System Synergies) Monthly Tutorial Talk (August 6, 2020; 2pm EDT/11am PDT)
  3. SAG 21: The Effect of Stellar Contamination on Space-based Transmission Spectroscopy - Invitation to Join (Deadline July 31, 2020)
  4. ExEP Technology Colloquium: "The Coronagraph Instrument (CGI) on the Roman Space Telescope : A Status Update" by Feng Zhao, Deputy Instrument Manager for Roman/CGI (Aug. 12, 2020; 2pm EDT/11am PDT)
  5. Community Announcement: Intention to Amend ROSES-20 via a Future Appendix “Payloads and Research Investigations on the Surface of the Moon” (PRISM)
  6. Expression of Interest (EOI): SMD call for Augmentations and Funded Extensions
+ more

1) SAG 22: Investigating an Exoplanet Target Star Archive - Invitation to Join

"Dear colleagues,

NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) has recently formed the Study Analysis Group (SAG) 22 on “Investigating an Exoplanet Target Star Archive,” co-chaired by Joshua Pepper (Lehigh U), Natalie Hinkel (SwRI), and Chris Stark (NASA Goddard).

Current and upcoming NASA missions will be intensively observing a number of stellar systems to characterize exoplanets. The selection of those stellar targets and the interpretation of the observations depends on knowing the properties of the host stars to various levels of precision. There is therefore a need for a comprehensive catalog of star and planetary system properties of possible targets for future exoplanet missions. The goal of this SAG is to identify a set of stellar properties to be included in the catalog, review the number and types of stars to be included, and consider the attributes of a living catalog that can be maintained, improved, and curated. The SAG may also identify particular types of information that are not currently in hand that should be obtained. The SAG will report its findings via one or more publications and a white paper delivered to the Agency in mid-2021. Further details about this SAG and the terms of reference can be found here: https://sites.google.com/view/sag22/home

We are seeking volunteer members from a wide range of backgrounds and disciplines. If you are interested in participating, please complete this short online form.

The SAG is open to anyone who wishes to participate, and we especially welcome junior members of the scientific community. Roles and responsibilities within the SAG will be entirely set by the interest and availability of participants.

Our first official meeting will be in mid-August. Please pass along this invitation to any internal email lists.

Leads: Joshua Pepper (Lehigh U), Natalie Hinkel (SwRI), Chris Stark (STScI) "


2) ExoPAG SIG 3 (Exoplanet/Solar System Synergies) Monthly Tutorial Talk (August 6, 2020; 2pm EDT/11am PDT)

The ExoPAG Science Interest Group on Exoplanet/Solar System Synergies has established a monthly Tutorial Talk aimed at introducing field newcomers to important topics or methods. The talks will include a 30 minute tutorial from an expert to introduce the topic followed by a 30 minute group discussion of a recent paper in which the topic/method features. Talks will meet the first Thursday of the month at 2 PM EDT/11 AM PDT.

The first Tutorial Talk will be on August 6th at 11am. The topic will be “Volatile Solubilities in Rocks”, by Laura Schaefer (Stanford), with a discussion of Kite et al. (2020) Atmosphere Origins for Exoplanet Sub-Neptunes (https://ui.adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2020ApJ...891..111K/abstract).

For connection information, please contact the co-chairs Vikki Meadows and Kathy Mandt.


3) SAG 21: The Effect of Stellar Contamination on Space-based Transmission Spectroscopy - Call to Join (Deadline July 31, 2020)

"Dear colleagues,

NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) has recently formed the Study Analysis Group (SAG) 21 on “The Effect of Stellar Contamination on Space-based Transmission Spectroscopy,” co-chaired by Dr. Nestor Espinoza (STScI) and Dr. Benjamin Rackham (MIT).

The goal of this SAG is to bring an interdisciplinary team of scientists from the stellar, heliophysics, planetary, and exoplanetary communities together in order to address both the impact of stellar contamination on transmission spectra and the constraints on stellar photospheric heterogeneity enabled by transiting exoplanets with future space-based observations (e.g., JWST and beyond). The SAG will report its findings via one or more publications and a white paper delivered to the Agency in mid-2021. Terms of reference for SAG 21.

If you are interested in participating, please join the email list.

All are welcome to join and participate at whatever level they would like! Roles and responsibilities within the SAG will be entirely set by the interest and availability of participants.

We will settle on a date and time for our first meeting in August after assessing the availability of interested participants at the end of this month.

We would be grateful if you could extend this invitation to your internal distribution lists.

All the best,

Nestor Espinoza
Assistant Astronomer
Space Telescope Science Institute

Ben Rackham
51 Pegasi b Fellow
Massachusetts Institute of Technology"


4) ExEP Technology Colloquium: "The Coronagraph Instrument (CGI) on the Roman Space Telescope : A Status Update" by Feng Zhao, Deputy Instrument Manager for Roman/CGI (Aug. 12, 2020; 2pm EDT/11am PDT)

Please save the date for the next Exoplanet Exploration Program Technology Colloquium!

“The Coronagraph Instrument (CGI) on the Roman Space Telescope : A Status Update”

Feng Zhao, Deputy Instrument Manager for Roman/CGI (JPL)

The Coronagraph Instrument (CGI) on the Roman Space Telescope will make the first demonstration of a high-contrast coronagraph technology (capable of wavefront control) on a space telescope for direct imaging of exoplanets when it launches in the mid-2020s. In developing the instrument, the CGI team has matured a number of key technologies: low-order wavefront sensing and control, deformable mirrors, electron-multiplying CCD detectors, coronagraph masks for a highly obscured pupil. The instrument is now in the final design and fabrication phase and CGI’s upcoming mission will greatly reduce risk for future NASA missions capable of imaging and characterizing Earth-like exoplanets in the habitable zone of their star, such as LUVOIR or HabEx.

Come hear Feng describe:

  • What is the status of CGI?
  • How far along are the new technologies it will demonstrate?
  • What will be the overall contrast performance of CGI?

As always, the talk will be recorded and archived so you can view it later, but I hope you can join us via the WebEx. For more info on the seminar series, see the ExEP Technology Colloquia website. The intention of these web seminars is to provide a forum for sharing key technology advances and results that enable or enhance the direct imaging and characterization of exoplanets. Topics may include recent coronagraph and starshade demonstration results, advances in detector technology, deformable mirrors, LOWFS/C, telescope stability, polarization, RV, starshade, etc.

ExEP Tech Colloquium: CGI update
Wednesday, August 12, 2020
11:00 am | Pacific Daylight Time (San Francisco, GMT-07:00) | 1 hr 30 mins


5) Community Announcement: Intention to Amend ROSES-20 via a Future Appendix “Payloads and Research Investigations on the Surface of the Moon” (PRISM)

This National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Science Mission Directorate (SMD) Community Announcement concerns the Lunar Discovery and Exploration Program’s (LDEP) intention to release a solicitation for lunar science and technology payloads within “Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Science (ROSES) 2020" (NNH20ZDA001N). NASA has not approved the issuance of a program element entitled “Payloads and Research Investigations on the Surface of the Moon” (PRISM) solicitation and this notification does not obligate NASA to issue the call and solicit proposals. Any costs incurred by prospective investigators in preparing submissions in response to this notification or the planned PRISM solicitation are incurred completely at the submitter's own risk.

The PRISM call will seek investigations that address the science goals of 1) any SMD division, e.g., Planetary Science, Earth Science, Heliophysics, Astrophysics, Biological and Physical Sciences, formerly a Division in the Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate known as Space Life and Physical Sciences Research and Applications; 2) Strategic Knowledge Gaps of the HEOMD; or 3) any technology demonstration goals of the Space Technology Mission Directorate (STMD) that advance capabilities for science, exploration, or commercial development of the Moon. PRISM science investigations must address NASA’s science objectives as described in 2018 NASA Strategic Plan, the relevant division Decadal Surveys, and/or the 2019 NASA Science Strategy of the Moon. Also of relevance are those objectives outlined in the Planetary Science Decadal (Vision and Voyages for Planetary Science in the Decade 2013-2022), the Scientific Context for Exploration of the Moon, and the Advancing Science of the Moon Specific Action Team.

PRISM will solicit development and flight of science-driven suites of instruments and technology demonstration payloads that will be flown on Commercial Lunar Payload Services (CLPS) landers. The Lunar Discovery and Exploration Program (LDEP) anticipates flying two CLPS landers to the lunar surface each year in 2021 and beyond. The PRISM solicitation will call for science investigations enabled by the provision of a suite of instruments to be delivered to predetermined lunar landing sites. Suites are defined as two or more instruments designed to work together to address a fundamental scientific question. NASA expects to select suites to be manifested on the next two CLPS deliveries expected to be delivered in late 2023 and early 2024. These deliveries will go to Reiner Gamma (a lunar swirl) in Q4 2023, and a Schrodinger Basin impact melt (lunar far side) in Q2 2024. Proposals will identify one or more of these lunar landing sites and propose an investigation uniquely achieved within that type of lunar terrain.

NASA plans to fund instrument development and flight through Principal Investigator (PI)-led lunar-surface and lunar-vicinity science investigations or technology demonstration payloads under a not-to-exceed cost cap. Proposed investigations, including all mission phases, are expected to not exceed $30M and 50 kg down-mass to the lunar surface for each delivery in total. More suites may be selected if the total cost remains below the overall PRISM cost cap ($60M total for both deliveries). Thus, lower-cost investigations and cost-efficient operations are encouraged. Additionally, each selected package may be co-manifested with other PRISM or unrelated payloads on each lander.

SMD’s remaining Lunar Surface Instrumentation and Technology Payloads (LSITP) instrument has been premanifested on the lunar far side delivery. The instrument, Lunar Surface Electromagnetics Experiment (LuSEE), is a flight-spare payload from the FIELDS experiment on the recently launched Parker Solar Probe spacecraft, and will measure the electromagnetic and electrostatic environment of the lunar surface, including surface electric potentials, magnetic fields, and electrostatic signatures of dust. LuSEE will also measure radio emissions from the Sun, Earth, and outer planets. PRISM proposals may propose suites that complement, but do not overlap, the science expected from LuSEE.

NASA recognizes and supports the benefits of having diverse and inclusive scientific, engineering, and technology communities and fully expects that such values will be reflected in the composition of all proposal teams as well as peer review panels (science, engineering, and technology), science definition teams, and mission and instrument teams.

Foreign contributions to PRISM proposals, including hardware, will be allowed on a no-exchange-of-funds basis and such that the total value of foreign contributions to the proposed investigation shall not exceed one-third of the investigation.

Because a Request for Information: Payloads and Research Investigations on the Surface of the Moon (PRISM) Solicitation: NNH20ZDA007L was released April 10, 2020 (https://nspires.nasaprs.com/external/solicitations/summary.do?method=init&solId=%7b8A4B5803-AF22-1C12-B9B1-1A0DEB015EE8%7d&path=closedPast ), SMD will not release draft text of the PRISM program element for community comment. The time frame for the solicitation is intended to be:

ROSES 2020 PRISM Release: Summer 2020 (target)
Pre-proposal Conference: 14 days after ROSES release
Proposals due: 60 days after ROSES release
Selection: 4-5 months post proposal due date

Questions may be addressed to:
Dr. Brad Bailey,
Exploration Science Strategy and Integration Office (ESSIO) Program Scientist, SMD, NASA,
Email: brad.bailey@nasa.gov ;
and/or
Dr. Sarah Noble,
Planetary Science Division Program Scientist, SMD, NASA,
Email:sarah.k.noble@nasa.gov.


6) Expression of Interest (EOI): SMD call for Augmentations and Funded Extensions

"Solicitation Number: NNH20ZDA010L
Release Date: July 29, 2020
Response Date: August 21, 2020

Dear Colleague,

At the Virtual Community Town Hall on July 9, 2020, SMD announced that it would be accepting requests for funded extensions and augmentations to existing awards to help make up for increased costs directly attributable to the COVID-19 pandemic. SMD’s priorities for funding extensions and augmentations, in the likely case that demand exceeds available funding, are in an SMD policy document, “Augmentations and Funded Extensions in Response to COVID-19.”

In order to estimate the size of this new program, SMD asks currently funded researchers who may request an extension or augmentation to submit an “Expression of Interest” (EOI) via the NASA Solicitation and Proposal Integrated Review and Evaluation System (NSPIRES). SMD asks that EOIs be submitted by August 21, 2020 as a Notice of Intent (NOI) in response to NNH20ZDA010L via NSPIRES. Download the full text of the EOI and response instructions.

Non-NSPIRES submissions will not be accepted or acknowledged. SMD will not provide any feedback on a submitted Expression of Interest. An EOI submission is not required for the submission of a proposal. An EOI’s contents do not limit the content of submissions to the “SMD Post-COVID Recovery” solicitation. NASA SMD will keep EOI contents confidential and will use responses to improve management of the augmentation and extension processes.

A forthcoming amendment adding a new program element to the Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Sciences (ROSES) – 2020, solicitation NNH20ZDA001N, is expected to be entitled “SMD Post-COVID Recovery” with requests for augmentations and funded grant extensions due to be submitted after October 1, 2020.

Thanks for your cooperation. Be well and stay safe.

Dr. Michael H. New
Deputy Associate Administrator for Research
Science Mission Directorate
National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Questions concerning general ROSES-2020 policies and procedures, including this Expression of Interest, should be emailed to sara@nasa.gov and use as the subject line “SMD call for Augmentations and Funded Extensions, Solicitation: NNH20ZDA010L”."


ExoPAG News and Announcements (July 24, 2020)

  1. SAG 21: The Effect of Stellar Contamination on Space-based Transmission Spectroscopy - Call to Join (Deadline July 31, 2020)
  2. ExEP Technology Colloquium: "The Coronagraph Instrument (CGI) on the Roman Space Telescope : A Status Update" by Feng Zhao, Deputy Instrument Manager for Roman/CGI (Aug. 12, 2020; 2pm EDT/11am PDT)
+ more

1) SAG 21: The Effect of Stellar Contamination on Space-based Transmission Spectroscopy - Call to Join (Deadline July 31, 2020)

"Dear colleagues,

NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) has recently formed the Study Analysis Group (SAG) 21 on “The Effect of Stellar Contamination on Space-based Transmission Spectroscopy,” co-chaired by Dr. Nestor Espinoza (STScI) and Dr. Benjamin Rackham (MIT).

The goal of this SAG is to bring an interdisciplinary team of scientists from the stellar, heliophysics, planetary, and exoplanetary communities together in order to address both the impact of stellar contamination on transmission spectra and the constraints on stellar photospheric heterogeneity enabled by transiting exoplanets with future space-based observations (e.g., JWST and beyond). The SAG will report its findings via one or more publications and a white paper delivered to the Agency in mid-2021. The terms of reference for SAG 21 can be found at the ExoPag website:https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/exopag/sag/#sag21.

If you are interested in participating, please join the email list by signing up here: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfLtAKqre3Po-6OtENOOzd-yfFkYedmVxM5MU-FySTzZQ5Q1A/viewform

All are welcome to join and participate at whatever level they would like! Roles and responsibilities within the SAG will be entirely set by the interest and availability of participants.

We will settle on a date and time for our first meeting in August after assessing the availability of interested participants at the end of this month.

We would be grateful if you could extend this invitation to your internal distribution lists.

All the best,

Nestor Espinoza
Assistant Astronomer
Space Telescope Science Institute

Ben Rackham
51 Pegasi b Fellow
Massachusetts Institute of Technology"


2) ExEP Technology Colloquium: "The Coronagraph Instrument (CGI) on the Roman Space Telescope : A Status Update" by Feng Zhao, Deputy Instrument Manager for Roman/CGI (Aug. 12, 2020; 2pm EDT/11am PDT)

From Brendan Crill, ExEP Deputy Program Chief Technologist:

“Please save the date for the next Exoplanet Exploration Program Technology Colloquium!

The Coronagraph Instrument (CGI) on the Roman Space Telescope : A Status Update

Feng Zhao, Deputy Instrument Manager for Roman/CGI (JPL)

The Coronagraph Instrument (CGI) on the Roman Space Telescope will make the first demonstration of a high-contrast coronagraph technology (capable of wavefront control) on a space telescope for direct imaging of exoplanets when it launches in the mid-2020s. In developing the instrument, the CGI team has matured a number of key technologies: low-order wavefront sensing and control, deformable mirrors, electron-multiplying CCD detectors, coronagraph masks for a highly obscured pupil. The instrument is now in the final design and fabrication phase and CGI’s upcoming mission will greatly reduce risk for future NASA missions capable of imaging and characterizing Earth-like exoplanets in the habitable zone of their star, such as LUVOIR or HabEx.

Come hear Feng describe:

  • What is the status of CGI?
  • How far along are the new technologies it will demonstrate?
  • What will be the overall contrast performance of CGI?

As always, the talk will be recorded and archived so you can view it later, but I hope you can join us via the WebEx. For more info on the seminar series, see the ExEP Technology Colloquia website. The intention of these web seminars is to provide a forum for sharing key technology advances and results that enable or enhance the direct imaging and characterization of exoplanets. Topics may include recent coronagraph and starshade demonstration results, advances in detector technology, deformable mirrors, LOWFS/C, telescope stability, polarization, RV, starshade, etc.

ExEP Tech Colloquium: CGI update
Wednesday, August 12, 2020
11:00 am | Pacific Daylight Time (San Francisco, GMT-07:00) | 1 hr 30 mins


ExoPAG News and Announcements (July 14, 2020)

  1. Planetary Science and Astrobiology Decadal Survey 2023-2032 Science White Papers (Deadline July 15, 2020)
  2. What’s the Weirdest Exoplanet? (Input for exoplanets.nasa.gov Website)
  3. "AbSciCon 2021" - First Announcement (May 9-14, 2021, Atlanta; Session Deadline Sept. 16, 2020)
  4. "Threats from the Surroundings" e-workshop - First Announcement (Nov. 10-12, 2020, Virtual; Abstract Deadline Sept. 15, 2020)
  5. "PLATO Extra-Solar Planets 2020 (ESP2020)" - First Announcement (Nov. 30-Dec. 3, 2020, Virtual; Registration Deadline Sept. 30, 2020)
+ more

1) Planetary Science and Astrobiology Decadal Survey 2023-2032 Science White Papers (Deadline July 15, 2020)

Planetary Science and Astrobiology Decadal Survey (2023-2032) is now accepting white paper submissions.

https://www.nationalacademies.org/our-work/planetary-science-and-astrobiology-decadal-survey-2023-2032

The community is coordinating white papers in several locations:

  • The ExoPAG EC has set up the following googledoc so that interested members of the community can share information and plans about potential white papers
  • LPI is coordinating white papers at: https://www.lpi.usra.edu/decadal_whitepaper_proposals/
  • VEXAG is coordinating Venus-related white papers
  • OPAG is coordinating white papers

2) What’s the Weirdest Exoplanet? (Input for exoplanets.nasa.gov Website)

From Kristen Walbolt (ExEP):

“Our exoplanets.nasa.gov website is working on a new feature about some of the weirdest/wondrous exoplanets we’ve discovered so far.

So, what’s your favorite?

Send the planet name and 1-2 sentences on why to Kristen.l.walbolt@jpl.nasa.gov, if you’d like yours included.”


3) "AbSciCon 2021" - First Announcement (May 9-14, 2021, Atlanta; Session Deadline Sept. 16, 2020)

"The astrobiology community, in partnership with AGU and NASA, invites you to AbSciCon 2021 (https://www.agu.org/AbSciCon), the premier conference for those focused on diverse planetary environments and the origin and evolution of life on Earth.

AbSciCon 2021 will be 9-14 May 2021 in Atlanta, GA. The theme is Origins and Exploration: From Stars to Cells.

We are honored to announce Dr. Reva Kay Williams, the nation’s first Black female theoretical astrophysicist as the plenary speaker. Her talk on the seeding of stardust will be called: From Supermassive Stars to Quasars: Production of Stardust: The Seeds of Life in the Universe.

AbSciCon needs you to submit your sessions before 16 September, 11:59 p.m. ET.

https://www.agu.org/AbSciCon/2021/Present/Sessions "


4) "Threats from the Surroundings" e-workshop - First Announcement (Nov. 10-12, 2020, Virtual; Abstract Deadline Sept. 15, 2020)

First announcement – registration is open (note: limited space for full participation)

“Threats from the surroundings: an e-workshop on the importance of environment for the evolution of protoplanetary discs and formation of planets”

On-line on November 10-12, 2020

Website: https://www.eso.org/sci/meetings/2020/tfts2020.html

Conference email: tfts2020@eso.org

Scientific Rationale:

Growing evidence indicates that protoplanetary discs (and by extension, forming planets) are significantly affected by the environment in which they form. In particular, the presence of massive stars and the dynamical history of clusters and associations impacts the evolution of discs and can lead to photoevaporation, truncation, and chemical enrichment.

We therefore need to move beyond the picture of planet-forming discs as isolated systems.

This e-workshop aims to bring together the community to share our current understanding of the different ways that the environment shapes disc evolution and planet formation, to shape the future direction of research in this regard through new ideas and collaborations.

(long version: https://www.eso.org/sci/meetings/2020/tfts2020.html)

Invited speakers:

Reiter, Megan (UK Astronomy Technology Centre), Akeson, Rachel (IPAC Caltech), Ndugu, Nelson (Mbarara University Of Science And Technology), Winter, Andrew (MPIA Heidelberg), Kim, J. Serena (University of Arizona), Coleman, Gavin (Queen Mary University of London), Lugaro, Maria (Konkoly Observatory), Guzmán, Viviana (Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile), Vazan, Allona (Hebrew University of Jerusalem/Open University of Israel)

Invited discussion leaders:

Rosotti, Giovanni (Leiden University), Pfalzner, Susanne (Max Planck für Radioastronomie, Bonn), Facchini, Stefano (ESO Garching), Mordasini, Christoph (University of Bern), Drążkowska, Joanna (USM Munich), Clarke, Cathie (IoA Cambridge)

SOC:

Manara, Carlo F. (ESO), Petr-Gotzens, Monika (ESO), Ansdell, Megan (NASA), Haworth, Thomas (Queen Mary University of London), Lichtenberg, Tim (Oxford University)

The meeting will be fully online (see Format). In order to facilitate the discussion, the number of talking participants will be limited to about 60 persons, selected by the SOC based on scientific relevance to the topic, considering all career stages and reflecting diversity.

All other participants will be able to observe and ask questions via chat.

Important Deadlines

Abstract submission: September 15, 2020

Programme release: October 13, 2020


5) PLATO Extra-Solar Planets 2020 (ESP2020) - First Announcement (Nov. 30-Dec. 3, 2020, Virtual; Registration Deadline Sept. 30, 2020)

"Dear Colleagues,

This is the first announcement of the PLATO Extra-Solar Planets 2020 (ESP2020) workshop, to be held virtually between 30th November - 3rd December 2020. (The original place was Berlin, Germany, but due to the known pandemic situation we decided that the workshop will be virtual this year.) This is the third such workshop. The first one was held in Marseille, France (2018) and the second one was in Warwick, UK (2019).

The topic of the workshop this year is "Planetary interiors and system architectures". The aims of the workshop are to discuss how PLATO may help to understand planetary interiors and give new and more precise constraints on them, and to identify which open issues of planetary system architecture could be solved by PLATO's future measurements. We will also discuss what was learned from earlier (CoRoT, Kepler/K2, TESS, and ground-based measurements) related to system architectures and how the observations are confronted by theory.

More information about PLATO ESP2019 can be found at https://platoesp.org/, including a link to the registration and abtsract submission form. The closing date for registration is Wednesday, 30th of September 2020 at 23:59pm UTC+2.

We look forward to seeing you at the workshop. If you have any questions, please contact the LOC at psmoffice@warwick.ac.uk.

Many thanks,

Szilárd Csizmadia

(On behalf of the SOC and LOC)"


ExoPAG News and Announcements (June 22, 2020)

  1. NN-EXPLORE Call for Proposals to use MINERVA-Australis (Deadline July 16, 2020)
  2. Input to ExEP Science Gap List (Deadline Sept. 30, 2020
  3. Astrophysics Advisory Committee (APAC) Meeting (June 23-24, 2020
  4. ExoPAG 22 Presentations Posted
  5. New ExEP Interactive Graphic on Exoplanet Discoveries
+ more

1) NN-EXPLORE Call for Proposals to use MINERVA-Australis (Deadline July 16, 2020)

The NASA Exoplanet Science Institute is announcing a special Call for Proposals to use the MINERVA-Australis facility as part of the NASA/NSF Exoplanet Observational Research Program (NN-EXPLORE). As part of the NN-EXPLORE program, NASA has entered into a partnership with the MINERVA-Australis consortium. Starting in 2020B, 285 hours of shared-risk observing with the facility on MINERVA-Australis are available to researchers based at US institutions. MINERVA-Australis is a dedicated exoplanet observatory operated by the University of Southern Queensland (USQ) in Queensland, Australia. The MINERVA-Australis facility is suitable for observation programs requiring precision radial velocities such as individual measurements to constrain orbits and masses, RM-effect, or Doppler tomography, precision photometric observations such as transit observations, and spectroscopic stellar characterization.

Call for Proposals: https://nexsci.caltech.edu/missions/Minerva/

Proposal Submission site: https://catcopy.ipac.caltech.edu/nnexplore/proposal.php

Proposals are due Thursday July 16, 2020 7pm EDT/4pm PDT/11pm GMT

Questions: nnexplore@ipac.caltech.edu


2) Input to ExEP Science Gap List (Deadline Sept. 30, 2020)

The NASA Exoplanet Exploration Program (ExEP) is seeking community input on the ExEP Science Gap List (SGL) through September 30, 2020, with the goal of providing an updated version in early 2021:

The current version of the SGL is posted at: https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/internal_resources/1547

The Science Gap List (SGL) tabulates program “science gaps”, which are defined as the difference between knowledge needed to define requirements for specified future NASA exoplanet missions and the current state of the art, or knowledge which is needed to enhance the science return of current and future NASA exoplanet missions. Making the gap list public signals to the broader community where focused science investigations are needed over the next 3-5 years in support of ExEP goals. The ExEP Science Gap List represents activities and investigations that will advance the goals of NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration Program, and provides brief summaries in a convenient tabular format. The ExEP Science Gap list is meant to assist proposers in describing the relevance of their work to Program goals as they respond to SMD ROSES and mission observing proposal solicitations. All ExEP approaches, activities, and decisions are guided by science priorities, and those priorities are presented and summarized in the ExEP Science Gap List.

Please contact ExEP scientists Karl Stapelfeldt (Karl.R.Stapelfeldt@jpl.nasa.gov) & Eric Mamajek (Eric.Mamajek@jpl.nasa.gov) with any input for revisions to the SGL.

In 2021, ExEP plans to update the Science Plan Appendix to take into account the Decadal Survey recommendations and NASA’s response. The Science Plan Appendix is a more comprehensive document that lays out the scientific challenges that must be addressed to advance the goals of NASA's Exoplanet Exploration Program (last version 2018).

The ExEP Exoplanet Program Science documents are available at: https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/science-overview/


3) Astrophysics Advisory Committee (APAC) Meeting (June 23-24, 2020)

The APAC will hold their next meeting

Tuesday June 23, 2020 (12pm-5pm EDT) and
Wednesday June 24, 2020 (11am-5pm EDT)

The APAC website is at: https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/nac/science-advisory-committees/apac

The agenda and WebEx access information is posted at: https://science.nasa.gov/files/science-pink/s3fs-public/atoms/files/APAC_Agenda-June-2020.pdf


4) ExoPAG 22 Presentations Posted

https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/events/307/exopag-22-virtual-meeting/

Most of the presentations are already posted, and the remaining ones will be posted as they become available.


5) New ExEP Interactive Graphic on Exoplanet Discoveries

NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration website has a new real-time interactive graphic allowing users to see a census of exoplanet discoveries by year and method (plotted as a function of orbital period and planet mass - as measured or estimated through other parameters):

https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exoplanet-discoveries


ExoPAGannounce News & Events (June 16, 2020)

  1. ExoPAG 22 (June 18-19, 2020)
  2. NASA Astrophysics Anticipated Job Openings
  3. Astrophysics Advisory Committee (APAC) Meeting (June 23-24, 2020)
  4. AAS 236 NASA & NExScI Presentations
  5. SMD Releases the New Science Plan: Science 2020-2024: A Vision for Scientific Excellence
  6. TRAPPIST Habitable Atmosphere Intercomparison (THAI) Workshop (Sept. 14-16, 2020)
  7. Planetary Science and Astrobiology Decadal Survey 2023-2032 - White Papers Deadline Extended
  8. ADAP Proposal Deadline Extended (new deadline July 16, 2020)
  9. COPAG Survey on COVID Impacts Extended
+ more

1) ExoPAG 22 (June 18-19, 2020)

ExoPAG 22 starts Thursday June 18th at 12pm EDT/9am PDT.

The agenda for ExoPAG 22 is posted at:

https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/events/307/exopag-22-virtual-meeting/

Although the meeting is virtual, we ask participants to please register (big blue button on website).

Remote participation access information will be distributed shortly before the ExoPAG meeting.

Following a suggestion made at the last ExoPAG, the ExEP team is investigating using Slido for handling questions from participants.

Speakers have been asked to submit their presentations the day prior to their talks (which will be posted as they become available and signed clearance forms are in hand). ExEP is planning on posting the presentations and recordings of the talks.

We look forward to your participation in ExoPAG this Thursday and Friday!


2) NASA Astrophysics Anticipated Job Openings

Note: This Astrophysics Program Scientist Civil Servant job opening will be available through USAJOBS June 29–July 6, 2020 due to the Federal Holiday.

The Astrophysics Division within NASA’s Science Mission Directorate (SMD) is seeking to hire multiple scientists to serve as civil servant Program Scientists at NASA Headquarters in Washington, DC. Each Program Scientist will work as part of a diverse and agile team whose core values include excellence, integrity, transparency, teamwork and a growth mindset toward stewarding the nation’s space-based astrophysics program.

Responsibilities

NASA’s Astrophysics Division is responsible for the United States’ space-based astrophysics program (https://science.nasa.gov/astrophysics). With a budget (including the James Webb Space Telescope) exceeding $1.5 billion annually, NASA leads the nation to explore the universe, determine how it began and evolved, and search for extrasolar planets.

SMD Program Scientists have broad responsibility for advancing NASA’s astrophysics portfolio; serving as the Headquarters science leads for one or more missions; developing and shaping multimillion-dollar scientific research grants programs selected through competitive peer review; and leading NASA’s preparation for implementing the recommendations of the 2020 Decadal Survey. Program Scientists have substantial influence over high-level astrophysics strategic planning, as well as leading the long-term scientific direction of missions and programs that they oversee.

Specifically, a Program Scientist within the Astrophysics Division will:

Solve problems in implementing a balanced program across the breadth of astrophysics within technological, scientific, budgetary, and programmatic constraints. Provide solutions that are strategic and tactical, and are innovative as well as implementable, in alignment with the priorities of NASA.

Orchestrate peer reviews that evaluate the scientific merit of proposals in all areas of astrophysics research across the thematic areas of the program (Physics of the Cosmos, Cosmic Origins, Exoplanet Exploration).

Collaboratively define a long-term vision for the program and work collaboratively to implement it in a fast-paced environment, while leading diverse teams using influence rather than supervisory authority.

Communicate, engage, and build consensus with multiple stakeholders, including the scientific community, external advisory committees, senior NASA leaders, and programs and projects at NASA Centers.

Manage multiple responsibilities using effective time management and organizational skills.

NASA recognizes that candidates with non-traditional career paths, or individuals who are at earlier stages of their careers may have demonstrated experience in different ways. NASA encourages applications from such individuals.

Application Process

This job announcement will open on Monday June 29 at https://www.USAJOBS.gov/. This is a fair and open competition that all U.S. Citizens and Status candidates can apply to.

This will be a Direct Hire Authority (DHA) announcement through USAJOBS, so it will only be open for 5 days. The short period that the announcement is open is due to the type of hiring authority, which streamlines the hiring process and assists with rapidly filling competitive positions. It is not a reflection of the openness of the position. Advance notice of the vacancy is being provided to allow interested scientists to prepare. In order to apply for this position, you will only need to submit your resume and answer the screening questions and supplemental information through USAJOBS.

Given the short period the announcement will be open, it is a good idea to log into USAJOBS before June 29 and create/update your username, password, resume, etc., to facilitate the timely submission of an application.

Candidates interested in being notified when this job opportunity is posted on USAJOBS and opened for five days are encouraged to sign up for a notification using the features of the USAJOBS website.

Further Information

Candidates interested in this opportunity are encouraged to contact NASA well in advance so they can make a well informed decision on submitting an application during the very short (5 day) window when the job opportunity will be open for applications. Questions about this anticipated opening for an Astrophysics Program Scientist at NASA Headquarters may be directed to Eric Smith, Chief Scientist, Astrophysics Division, eric.p.smith@nasa.gov, 202-358-2439.


3) Astrophysics Advisory Committee (APAC) Meeting (June 23-24, 2020)

"The next meeting of the Astrophysics Advisory Committee will take place virtually on June 23-24, 2020. The meeting will be available to the public telephonically and by WebEx. You must use a touch-tone phone to participate in this meeting. Any interested person may dial the USA toll free conference call number 1-877-922-4779 or toll number 1-312-470-7379, passcode 5276208, to participate in this meeting by telephone on both days. The WebEx link is https://nasaenterprise.webex.com/; the meeting number on June 23, is 905 738 400, password is Apac0620#; and the meeting number on June 24, is 904 887 045, password is Apac0620#. The agenda for the meeting includes the following topics:

  • Astrophysics Division Update
  • Updates on Specific Astrophysics Missions
  • Reports from the Program Analysis Groups
  • Reports from Specific Research & Analysis Programs

The agenda will be posted on the Astrophysics Advisory committee web page:

https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/nac/science-advisory-committees/apac "


4) AAS 236 NASA & NExScI Presentations

NASA Town Hall for AAS 236 - June 1, 2020

Paul Hertz, Director, Astrophysics Division (NASA HQ)

https://science.nasa.gov/astrophysics/documents

see "2020 June AAS NASA Town Hall presentation UPDATED"

and "2020 June AAS Town Hall presentation with bonus materials UPDATED"

NASA Exoplanet Science Institute (NExScI) Webinar for AAS 236

Dawn Gelino, Deputy Director (NExScI)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AucCx5uQHbA

NASA Exoplanet Archive Webinar for AAS 236

Jessie Christiansen, Deputy Science Lead NASA Exoplanet Archive (NExScI)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2r_XBext7m8

KOA (Keck Observatory Archive): A Public Goldmine of 26 Years of Observations

Created by Chris Gelino and the NExScI KOA team (Voiced by: Anastasia Laity)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CVKR5SEIReA


5) SMD Releases the New Science Plan: Science 2020-2024: A Vision for Scientific Excellence

Members of the science community are invited to download the Science Mission Directorate's (SMD's) newest version of its Science Plan, Science 2020-2024: A Vision for Scientific Excellence, at https://science.nasa.gov/about-us/science-strategy.

This document was developed through close collaboration with the entire SMD leadership team and NASA Center Directors and was reviewed by the NASA Advisory Committee’s Science Committee and the Space Studies Board. It lays out an ambitious program over next five years to build on current activities and drive change in high-priority areas where SMD can have the greatest impact.

SMD encourages all members of the community to read the document to learn about these priorities and the exciting work being done across the entire SMD portfolio.


6) TRAPPIST Habitable Atmosphere Intercomparison (THAI) Workshop (Sept. 14-16, 2020)

http://www.nexss.info/community/workshops/thai


7) Planetary Science and Astrobiology Decadal Survey 2023-2032 - White Papers Deadline Extended

https://www.nationalacademies.org/our-work/planetary-science-and-astrobiology-decadal-survey-2023-2032

"White Papers Deadline Extended

We recognize that we are in unforeseen and challenging times that impact the ability of community members to meet the previously defined July 4th deadline for Decadal white papers. These inputs are of crucial importance to the success of our Decadal, which depends upon the broad involvement of our community. As such, we are implementing changes to the white paper deadlines.

Science white papers – due July 15

Mission concept white papers – due August 15

All other white papers – due September 15"


8) ADAP Proposal Deadline Extended (new deadline July 16, 2020)

The Proposal Due Date for D.2 Astrophysics Data Analysis Program (ADAP) has been delayed. The New proposal due date for ADAP is July 16, 2020. In addition, the summary table of the key requirements for anonymized proposals, reproduced from the "Guidelines for Anonymous Proposals" in Section 2 has been slightly modified to indicate that not just the budget justification but also the (redacted) budget numbers should be included in the anonymized proposal.

On or about Jun 15, 2020, this Amendment to the NASA Research Announcement "Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Sciences (ROSES) 2020" (NNH20ZDA001N) will be posted on the NASA research opportunity homepage at http://solicitation.nasaprs.com/ROSES2020and will appear on SARA's ROSES blog at: https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/sara/grant-solicitations/roses-2020/

Questions concerning D.2 Astrophysics Data Analysis Program may be directed to Douglas Hudgins at: Douglas.M.Hudgins@nasa.gov.

NASA Research Announcement: D.2 Astrophysics Data Analysis

Solicitation: NNH20ZDA001N-ADAP

https://nspires.nasaprs.com/external/solicitations/summary.do?solId=%7bEC4AFCE9-78E3-7164-00DC-5D3E325B4EA1%7d&path=&method=init


9) COPAG Survey on COVID Impacts Extended

The NASA Cosmic Origins Program Analysis Group Executive Committee (COPAG EC; https://cor.gsfc.nasa.gov/copag/), is soliciting input on the impacts of COVID-19 on NASA astrophysics research, with special focus on the preparation and submission of proposals for the Astrophysics Data Analysis Program (ADAP).

On June 15 this survey was reopened in response to a request from a community member, and the deadline is now Friday, June 19, 2020. We note that the ADAP deadline has just been extended to July 16, 2020.

Please find the Survey Here: https://forms.gle/hyrxTzHi8z5UCQGP8

The goal of this 5-10 minute community-led survey is to provide analysis useful for informing programmatic strategies by the Astrophysics Division to better support researchers through this time. Results based on analysis of the survey data will only be presented in aggregate, and will preserve anonymity. The COPAG EC thanks the ExoPAG and PhysPAG Executive Committees for feedback on gathering this input from the community.

The plan is to present results from the survey to the Astrophysics Advisory Committee (https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/nac/science-advisory-committees/apac) at their next meeting scheduled for June 23-24, 2020.