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ExoPAG News and Announcements (January 5, 2023)

  1. ExoPAG 27 at AAS241 (January 7-8, 2023, Seattle and virtual)
  2. Call for Nominations to the Executive Committee of the Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) (Deadline February 3, 2023; see attached PDF letter)
  3. Progress in Technology for Exoplanet Missions: An Appendix to the NASA Exoplanet Exploration Program Technology Plan
  4. Exoplanets @ AAS241 Flyer (see attached PDF)
  5. AAS241 Splinter Session: Starlight Suppression Technologies for IR/O/UV Flagship (January 10, 2023; 9am-11am PST; hybrid)
  6. Request for Input on the Elimination of Proprietary Periods (by January 6, 2023)
  7. Ultraviolet Transient Astronomy Satellite Participating Scientists
+ more

1) ExoPAG 27 at AAS241 (January 7-8, 2023, Seattle and virtual)


Call for Nominations to the Executive Committee of the Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG) (Deadline February 3, 2023)

"
To: Astrophysics and Planetary Science Community
From: Astrophysics Division of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate, NASA Headquarters
Date: November 10, 2022
Subject: Call for Nominations to the Executive Committee of the Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG)

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 four new appointments to the ExoPAG EC, replacing four current members of the committee who have reached the end of their appointments. New appointments will start in the Spring of 2023 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,http://exoplanets.nasa.gov), 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: hannah.jang-condell@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, qualifications for service, and anticipated contributions to 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 3, 2023, with announcement of selections anticipated in April 2023. Selections will be announced by the ExoPAG mailing list (http://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exep/exopag/announcementList).

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

Sincerely,
Dr. Hannah Jang-Condell, NASA Headquarters
Deputy Exoplanet Exploration Program Scientist, ExoPAG Executive Secretary
"


3) Progress in Technology for Exoplanet Missions: An Appendix to the NASA Exoplanet Exploration Program Technology Plan

From Brendan Crill, Deputy Program Chief Technologist, NASA Exoplanet Exploration Program:

"The Exoplanet Exploration Program technology team is pleased to announce the release of a document titled “Progress in Technology for Exoplanet Missions” which is now posted on the ExEP website:

https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/internal_resources/2595/

The document provides a detailed description of the Technology Gaps tracked by ExEP, and describes ongoing efforts and near term plans to close those gaps. It is meant to be a resource for Strategic Astrophysics Technology (SAT) and APRA proposers and the larger community of scientists and technologists who are working on advancing technologies for the future Habitable Worlds Observatory."


4) Exoplanets @ AAS241 Flyer (see attached PDF)

Many thanks to Karl Stapelfeldt for preparing a 2-page flyer summarizing many of the exoplanet-related events at AAS241 in Seattle (see attached PDF).


5) AAS241 Splinter Session: Starlight Suppression Technologies for IR/O/UV Flagship (January 10, 2023; 9am-11am PST; hybrid)

Starlight Suppression Technologies for the IR/O/UV Flagship
AAS241 splinter session (hybrid; location and remote link tbd)
Jan 10, 2023; 9am – 11am
Chairs: Ruslan Belikov, Brendan Crill

Description:

NASA is about to embark on an ambitious program to develop an “IR/O/UV” (infrared/optical/ultraviolet) flagship mission to directly image ~25 potentially Earth-like planets and spectroscopically characterize them for signs of life, as recommended by the Astro2020 decadal survey. In addition, Astro2020 recommended a new approach for flagship formulation, which involves increasing the scope and depth of early, pre-phase A trades and technology maturation, as part of the new Great Observatories Maturation Program (GOMAP).

A critical capability of the IR/O/UV mission is starlight suppression. To inform future architecture trades, we will need to survey a wide range of technologies, from the relatively mature such as the ones described in the LUVOIR and HabEx reports, to the relatively new and emerging ones, which may lead to breakthrough performance. The purpose of this splinter session is to discuss the current status and future potential of different coronagraph technologies (including wavefront control), starshade technologies, and architectures.

Agenda:

0. Rus Belikov (5 mins): brief introduction / goals of session

1. Bruce Macintosh (15 mins): Decadal Survey science goals and the IR/O/UV Flagship.

2. Chris Stark (15 mins): Interdependence between mission requirements and science requirements

3. Rhonda Morgan (15 mins): Starlight suppression technologies from LUVOIR and HabEx reports

4. Bertrand Mennesson (15 mins): Advances of established starlight suppression technologies in the years since LUVOIR and HabEx.

5. Olivier Guyon (15 mins): Emerging technologies and their potential.

6. Pin Chen (10 mins): New initiatives: Coronagraph Survey, Coronagraph Roadmap, and DM Roadmap, etc.

7. Q&A and discussion (25 mins + 5 min buffer)


6) Request for Input on the Elimination of Proprietary Periods (by January 6, 2023)

One topic of discussion at the ExoPAG Business Meeting Sunday Jan. 8 will be changes to NASA's exclusive access period (EAP) policy. Specifically, NASA intends to eliminate EAPs (proprietary periods) for JWST and future missions. The ExoPAG EC is soliciting feedback from the community prior to the meeting for a summary presentation before opening the floor to discussion. Any feedback submitted will be anonymized if brought up at the ExoPAG business meeting. Please send feedback to Jason Wright (astrowright@gmail.com) by Friday January 6, 2023.


7) Ultraviolet Transient Astronomy Satellite Participating Scientists

ULTRASAT is a near-ultraviolet imaging satellite with a wide field of view and a planned 2025 launch. It is an international partnership led by Israel (Israeli Space Agency & Weizmann Institute of Science) in partnership with the United States (NASA + Vera Rubin Observatory) and Germany (DESY). A proposal call for ULTRASAT Participating Scientists from the United States has just been released as NASA ROSES 2022 amendment D.19 (https://nspires.nasaprs.com/external/solicitations/summary.do?solId=%7b063C8CB1-C733-F34C-45B9-2C13AD0CA483%7d&path=&method=init). ULTRASAT will provide high cadence observations and rapid target-of-opportunity response, providing a powerful capability for time-domain and multimessenger astrophysics (TDAMM), and will have scientific applications from solar system studies to cosmology, as described at https://www.weizmann.ac.il/ultrasat/.

All are invited to attend the hybrid splinter session, “Introducing ULTRASAT”, which will be held on January 11th 2023, 9:30-11:30 PST, in conjunction with the 241st American Astronomical Society meeting. In-person AAS participants can join us in room 401 of the Seattle Convention Center. Remote participation instructions will be posted under “Related Sessions” at https://pcos.gsfc.nasa.gov/physpag/meetings/AAS_Jan2023/.