Date: Mon, 01 Oct 2001 17:39:48 -0400
Subject: DPS Mailing #01-40: Announcements, Notes from the Chair

Greetings DPS colleagues -

       +------------------CONTENTS:-----------------------------+
       |1) NRC PRIMITIVE BODIES PANEL OPEN FORUM                |
       |2) NOTES FROM THE CHAIR - MOVING FORWARD                |
       |3) ASTROBIOLOGY WHITE PAPER FOR DECADAL STUDY           |
       |4) JOB ANNOUNCEMENT                                     |
       +--------------------------------------------------------+


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NRC PRIMITIVE BODIES PANEL OPEN FORUM - OCT 24, 2001, BOULDER, CO

In conjunction with the second meeting of the Primitive Bodies Panel of 
the Solar System Exploration Survey (decadal review) activity, there 
will be an open forum in which members of the scientific community can 
discuss and contribute ideas for deliberation by the Panel.  The open 
forum will be held in from 1:30 to 5:30 p.m., October 24, 2001, in 
Boulder, Colorado.  This event will be conducted in the main auditorium 
of the LASP Space Technology Building, located about one mile east of 
the main campus of Colorado University, and little east of 30th St.  
The auditorium seats about 50, and there is adequate nearby free 
parking.  Members of the scientific community with an interest in this 
matter are invited to contribute, either in person, or through a 
telephone link that will be audible to all persons in the auditorium.  
In particular, we hope to provide a computer projector so that a 
presenter may offer a power point presentation with telephone 
narration.

The Panel invites presentations on science themes and priorities, but 
not on specific projects or missions, because the Panel is focusing 
on science, rather than implementation.  Participants should plan to 
limit their presentations to 15 minutes.

Prospective participants who wish to make presentations should contact 
the Panel chair, Dale Cruikshank, (dcruikshank@mail.arc.nasa.gov) to 
be included in the schedule.  Details of presentation mode and subject
area should be provided.

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NOTES FROM THE CHAIR - MOVING FORWARD

Some of our colleagues have suffered personal losses in the terrorist 
attacks on the US on September 11. Some were witnesses to the attacks 
in person, many have witnessed the damage subsequently, all of us have 
shared the shock of the images and sounds from the live news coverage. 
If anyone is aware of any colleagues who was injured or lost, please 
contact me.

The subsequent disruption to our nation's activities has affected 
everyone. NASA is trying to keep missions on schedule and reconstitute 
review panels to avoid interruptions in funding programs. If anyone is 
contacted about serving on a review panel over the next month or
asked to review a proposal, I would ask that you make an extra 
effort and help the agency get back on track.

There have also been concerns that travel to the upcoming DPS 
conference might not be possible for our colleagues at JPL and the
NASA centers due to implementation of a new NASA travel directive. 
I would like to thank Dr. Ed Weiler, NASA Associate Administrator 
for Space Science, for ensuring that such will not be the case and 
that travel by our colleagues to our annual conference will be 
minimally impacted if at all.

On a personal note, we have a duty to move forward - with our work,
our plans, and our dreams. But I also believe we have a duty to 
contribute to the common good beyond our regular activities, and that 
we have special skills - languages, computer and information technology, 
analytical capabilities - which may be brought to bear in the conflict
that now exists. I encourage you to communicate with the appropriate 
authorities and agencies about contributing these skills. We can help 
make the world a safer place for our children and grandchildren.

Mark V. Sykes
DPS Chair
dpschair@aas.org

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ASTROBIOLOGY WHITE PAPER FOR DECADAL STUDY

At the request of the NRC's Committee on Origin and Evolution of Life,
the NASA Astrobiology Institute Executive Council has written a "white
paper" on the role of astrobiology in the solar system exploration
program.  It is intended as input into the NRC Solar System Decadal
Survey process.  The report discusses the relationship of astrobiology
to solar-system exploration, the astrobiological connections of active
flight missions and of the disciplines represented by the
sub-committees within the NRC study, the appropriateness of
astrobiology being one of the themes that integrates planetary science,
and some of the concerns that have been voiced within the community.  A
link to the report is available at the DPS web site devoted to the NRC
study, at:

http://www.aas.org/decadal/cgi-bin/bbs/discussion_groups.cgi

Bruce M. Jakosky
Professor of Geological Sciences
University of Colorado

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JOB ANNOUNCEMENT

Postdoc Research Scientist for Martian mesoscale meteorology, Finnish
Meteorological Institute. 
http://www.geo.fmi.fi/~siili/antares/PostDocAnnouncement.html

See also AAS Job Register: http://www.aas.org/JobRegister/aasjobs.html

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                       Melissa McGrath, on behalf of the DPS Committee
              (submissions to Al Harris: awharris@lithos.jpl.nasa.gov)