About Cosmos X-ray Astronomy Mission: http://pcos.gsfc.nasa.gov/studies/x-ray-mission.php

Moderator: randallksmith

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First Name: Randall
Last Name: Smith


Post by randallksmith » Thu Dec 29, 2011 10:53 am

I'd like to welcome astronomers to this interactive forum, set up to discuss concepts and ideas about what the next major X-ray mission should be. I'd also like to thank the AAS for allowing the use of their website for the discussion; much appreciated!

All of the basic information about this effort is available at the NASA "Physics of the Cosmos" website at http://pcos.gsfc.nasa.gov/studies/x-ray-mission.php. The Community Science Team (CST), lead by Joel Bregman, has stated that they intend for this to be an open process to allow everyone's voice to be heard. This review will not revisit the priorities of the Astro 2010 Decadal, but instead use them along with the new funding realities to identify mission concepts that could achieve some or all of the science goals of the International X-ray Observatory at a cost that is under the Decadal's $2B stated cap. It is also important to note that the CST will not make any specific recommendations about these missions. Instead, the CST report will be used by NASA and the PCOS office to identify promising technologies and mission concepts and also to brief an as-yet unformed review panel that will act as a interim Decadal review board.

Despite the limited brief of the CST, this is actually a major opportunity, especially for younger members of the community, to have their voices be heard. New ideas, especially in areas such as combining multiple observatories or using new capabilities, would be most welcome. For example, by the time a new X-ray mission will launch ALMA, JWST, and possibly LSST will be operational. What could we learn by combining these facilities with X-ray data? What kind of data are needed?

Please send in your ideas and comments, and let the discussion begin.

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