The next Decadal Survey in Astronomy and Astrophysics will be conducted by the National Research Council (NRC) in response to a charge set by NASA and NSF, and possibly DOE. Nominally this survey will be carried out in the years 2018-2020.
One of the important tasks of the 2020 Decadal Survey will be to prioritize large missions to follow JWST (the highest priority large space mission of the 2000 Decadal Survey) and WFIRST (the highest priority large space mission of the 2010 Decadal Survey). To enable this prioritization, NASA will provide information on several candidate large mission concepts for consideration by the 2020 Decadal Survey Committee.
A well informed prioritization by the 2020 Decadal Survey Committee requires that any large mission be studied sufficiently to provide, at a minimum, the following information for the consideration of the 2020 Decadal Survey Committee:
- Science case
- Design reference mission with strawman payload
- Technology development needs
- Cost requirements assessment
After a call for nominations from the community, NASA HQ has now selected the four large missions to be studied and the membership of the Science and Technology Definition Teams (STDTs) that perform the study work. The studies and teams are: