Subject: [DPS Members] DPS Mailing #07-18: NASA R&A Website, PEN, DPS registration...

September 19th 2007

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1) New NASA web site for research and analysis program news
2) Reminder: Planetary exploration newsletter (PEN)
3) DPS meeting online pre-registration deadline: Sept. 28
4) NASA IRTF observing proposal deadline
5) NASA balloon town hall meeting at DPS
6) Dawn; Request for post-launch images of the spacecraft
7) Wikipedia: A clarification
8) Upcoming meetings

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NEW NASA WEB SITE FOR RESEARCH AND ANALYSIS PROGRAM NEWS

NASA's Science Mission Directorate has a new website for research and
analysis news at http://www.science.hq.nasa.gov/research/sara.html. It
contains information on the proposal and financial process improvements
underway, a list of program officers with email and phone numbers, and
statistics on programs. You can submit questions and complaints (and
compliments) to SARA (the Senior Advisor for Research and Analysis) and you
will get a reply. You can sign up to receive news on SMD's R&A programs at
the website. The NSPIRES mailing list will only be used this once to
announce the site; after that it will continue to be used for announcing
solicitations like ROSES and Aos. So please visit the site and sign up at to
get future updates.

Thanks,
Yvonne Pendleton


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REMINDER: PLANETARY EXPLORATION NEWSLETTER (PEN)

A reminder that you can receive the latest planetary exploration news
from NASA, as well as information about upcoming meetings and other
news of general interest to community, by subscribing to the PEN, the
Planetary Exploration Newsletter.  PEN is published approximately
weekly.  PEN subscribers have been getting time sensitive information
from HQ almost a week prior to its being announced through NSPIRES.

To subscribe, go to
http://planetarynews.org/pen_subscribe.html

PEN Web site:
http://planetarynews.org


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DPS MEETING ONLINE PRE-REGISTRATION DEADLINE: SEPT. 28

A reminder that online pre-registration for the Orlando DPS meeting,
which will be held from October 7-12 2007, closes at 10pm EDT on
September 28th, at 10pm EDT.

Meeting website: http://physics.ucf.edu/DPS07/


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NASA INFRARED TELESCOPE FACILITY: OBSERVING PROPOSAL DEADLINE

Due date for the February 1 to July 31, 2008 semester is Monday,
October 1, 2007.

See http://irtfweb.ifa.hawaii.edu/observing/applicationForms.php.
Available instruments include: (1) SpeX, a 1-5 micron cross-dispersed
medium-resolution spectrograph (up to R=2,500); (2) CSHELL, a 1-5
micron high-resolution spectrograph (up to R=30,000); (3) MIRSI, a 5
to 25 micron camera and low-resolution spectrometer (R=100 to 200),
(4) NSFCAM2, a 2048 2048 pixel, 1-5 micron camera with a 0.04
arcsec/pixel scale and a circular variable filter; and (5)
PI-instruments including a low-resolution 3-14 micron spectrograph and
high-resolution spectrographs for 8-25 microns.  Information on
available instruments can be found at:
http://irtfweb.ifa.hawaii.edu/Facility/.


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NASA BALLOON TOWN HALL MEETING AT DPS

There will be a NASA Balloon Town Hall at the Orlando DPS meeting, on
Thursday night, Oct 11, from 5:30 - 6:30.

Balloon platforms offer excellent opportunities for scientific
exploration, including astrophysical and planetary observations from
above 99% of the atmosphere. Balloon flights enable PIs to be
qualified to propose for PI-led SMEX proposals. Balloons are also
serving as vehicles to test and qualify instruments for
spacecraft. Flying at near space altitudes of up to 40 km, balloon
flights can range from a few hours to several weeks in
duration. NASA's Balloon Program is setting new heights in support of
the Science Mission Directorate. Come to the town hall meeting to hear
about the latest Balloon Program capabilities for offering low-cost
Access to Space.  Hear about the record breaking Long Duration Balloon
missions and the status of the Ultra-Long Duration Balloon development
project, as well as exploration technology efforts. Come hear how
balloons give science a lift!"

David L. Pierce
NASA Balloon Program Office
Goddard Space Flight Center
Wallops Island, VA

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DAWN: REQUEST FOR POST-LAUNCH IMAGES OF THE SPACECRAFT

NASA is preparing to launch Dawn between September 26 and October 15 on an
ambitious mission to orbit both 4 Vesta and 1 Ceres, the two most massive
asteroids.

The Dawn project invites all readers with telescope time during the first
week or two after launch to try to image the spacecraft.  Other spacecraft
have been seen at ranges of several million kilometers.  (See an example at
http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/releases/98/ds1palomar.html.) The project believes
such views can be quite inspiring to the public.

If Dawn launches at its first opportunity, it should be near RA = 6h 20m and
dec = 28.5 deg within a day of launch. Launches at later times or on
subsequent days may shift this a few degrees. Up-to-date coordinates will be
available in JPL's HORIZONS system.  Go to
http://ssd.jpl.nasa.gov/horizons.cgi and change the target body to "Dawn".

UCLA Professor Christopher T. Russell is the PI for this ninth mission in
NASA's Discovery Program.  Instruments were contributed by DLR/MPS and
ASI/INAF and delivered by LANL.  JPL manages the project, and Orbital
Sciences Corporation built the spacecraft.  More information is available at
http://dawn.jpl.nasa.gov.

Please contact ctrussel@igpp.ucla.edu if you have any questions or if you
obtain some images of Dawn's early light.

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WIKIPEDIA: A CLARIFICATION

Regarding the item about Wikipedia in the last DPS newsletter, note
that the DPS does not endorse Wikipedia as a preferred source of
information on the Web.  We simply encourage members to correct any
errors that they find in Wikipedia, given its popularity.


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UPCOMING MEETINGS

1) Astrophysics 2020: Large Space Missions Beyond the Next Decade,
November 13-15 2007, Space Telescope Science Institute, Baltimore,
Maryland.

http://www.stsci.edu/institute/conference/astro2020

The goal of this workshop is to begin envisioning the astrophysics
that could be accomplished from space in the 2020 era and
beyond. Astrophysics in the 2020's will build upon the results
obtained by JWST, ALMA, LSST, GMT, TMT, and other remarkable
facilities now being planned for the coming decade.

Contributed talks and posters are welcome but the number of slots is
limited.  If you are interested in giving a talk or poster, please
register as soon as possible or contact Marc Postman
<postman@stsci.edu>.


2) SOFIA's 2020 Vision: Scientific and Technological
Opportunities 6-8 December 2007, Caltech, Pasadena, California

Updated web site and deadline information:

http://www.sofia-vision.caltech.edu/

Abstract submission deadline, travel grant request deadline, and
deadline for registration for visit to see SOFIA at Dryden, are all
September 30.


3) IAU Symposium 251: Organic Matter in Space, Hong Kong, China
February 18-22, 2008
http://www.hku.hk/science/iau251
In this symposium, we intend to bring together observational
astronomers, laboratory spectroscopists, and solar system
scientists to share their expertise in order to come up with
new ideas for the solution to the many unsolved mysteries
associated with the origin, evolution, and distribution of
organic matter in space.

4) 2008 Astrobiology Science Conference, April 15-17 in Santa Clara,
California, USA

http://abscicon.seti.org

The 2008 AbSciCon will be hosted by the SETI Institute. Abstracts are
welcome from across the spectrum of astrobiology-related research,
particularly as they relate to the major scientific themes "The
Astrophysical and Planetary Context for Life," "The Origin and
Evolution of Life," and "The Search for Life in our Solar System and
Beyond."

The revised deadline for submission of abstracts is December 3rd, 2007.
Questions regarding submission of abstracts can be addressed to
abstracts@seti.org .


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Send submissions to:
John Spencer, DPS Secretary (spencer@boulder.swri.edu)