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New Worlds, New Horizons in Astronomy and Astrophysics B Summary of Program Prioritization Panels’ Recommendations Important input to the work of Astro2010 was provided by the work of the four National Research Council-appointed Program Prioritization Panels (PPPs): Panel on Electromagnetic Observations from Space (EOS), Panel on Optical and Infrared Astronomy from the Ground (OIR), Panel on Particle Astrophysics and Gravitation (PAG), and Panel on Radio, Millimeter, and Submillimeter Astronomy from the Ground (RMS). The PPPs were charged to identify and recommend a prioritized program of federal investment in research activities in the program areas indicated by the panel names: Space-based electromagnetic observations of astrophysical phenomena; Observations of astrophysical phenomena primarily by means of optical and infrared measurements from the ground; Exploration of areas at the interface of physics and astronomy such as gravitational radiation and TeV gamma-ray astronomy, and with free-flying space missions testing fundamental gravitational physics; and Observations of astrophysical phenomena primarily by means of measurements from the ground in the radio, millimeter, and submillimeter portions of the electromagnetic spectrum.
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New Worlds, New Horizons in Astronomy and Astrophysics In formulating its conclusions, each PPP was charged to draw on several sources of information: (1) the science forefronts identified by the Astro2010 Science Frontiers Panels, (2) input from the proponents of particular research activities, and (3) independent cost and technical readiness assessments. The panels’ recommendations were integrated into a program for all of astronomy and astrophysics by the Astro2010 Committee for a Decadal Survey of Astronomy and Astrophysics. In particular, each PPP was charged to: Report on the status of existing research activities to set the context for future research activities, incorporating findings of the survey’s Infrastructure Study Groups. Preview and compare proposed research activities, including those carried forward from previous surveys that have not been given a formal construction start. State the relative importance of (1) smaller projects and generic research programs that involve competitive peer review and (2) programs that leverage public and private infrastructure investments, where appropriate. Assess and describe the best available estimates of the construction costs and lifetimes for each recommended research activity together with their full running costs (operations, science, and upgrades). Identify particular risks for each research activity that would adversely affect the projected cost, technical readiness, or schedule of the activity. Identify those factors that could change an activity’s priority and/or scope. Informed by (1) the recommendations of the Science Frontiers Panels and (2) the panel’s own research activity assessments, recommend a prioritized, balanced, and integrated research program that includes a rank ordering of research activities and a balanced technology development program. A preliminary PPP-recommended program was used to identify activities that were then subjected to an independent cost appraisal and technical evaluation (CATE). Each panel’s final recommendations to the Astro2010 survey committee included consideration of the CATE results. Each PPP provided the committee with an interim internal and confidential summary report of its recommended program in the Fall of 2009 and submitted its complete panel report thereafter. The PPP reports are included in the second volume of the decadal survey, along with the reports of the Science Frontiers Panels.1 The main results from the four PPPs are summarized in Table B.1. 1 National Research Council, Panel Reports—New Worlds, New Horizons in Astronomy and Astrophysics, The National Academies Press, Washington, D.C., 2011.
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New Worlds, New Horizons in Astronomy and Astrophysics TABLE B.1 Summary of Priority Activities as Recommended by the Program Prioritization Panels EOS Panel PAG Panel RMS Panel OIR Panel Priority Activity Cost Appraisal (category) Priority Activity Cost Appraisal (category) Priority Activity Cost Appraisal (category) Priority Activity Cost Appraisal (category) (1) WFIRST $1.5 billion (L) (1) LISA $1.5 billion (L) (1) HERA-I and HERA-II $25 million + $85 million (M) (1) GSMT ≥$1 billion (L) (2) IXO (project start) $1.0 billion (L) (2) ACTA (AGIS) $0.2 billion (L) (2) FASR (2) CCAT $100 million (M) $110 million (M) (2) LSST $460 million (L) (3) Exoplanet Mission $0.7 billion (L) (1) Pulsar Timing Array for Gravitational Wave Detection $70 million (M) ATA enhancement $44 million (M) (1) NSF medium-scale instrumentation program augmentation (OIR+PAG+RMS) $200 million (1) BLISS $0.2 billion (M) (1) NASA Explorer augmentation $1 billion (M) Enhancements to GBT, EVLA, VLBA, ALMA $120 million (2) TSIP augmentation $40 million (M) Enhancements to CARMA, EHT $25 million (2) Explorer $0.5 billion (M) (2) Technology development augmentation and ULDB R&D and augmentation $550 million NASA (M), $150 million NSF plus DOE (M) — — (2) OIR system augmentation $61 million (M) (3) R&A $0.2 billion (M) (3) Auger North $60 million (U.S. portion) (M) — — Small, unprioritized programs $100 million NOTE: Entries under each panel are in priority order within size category. Note that the RMS panel has two equal second priorities. The EOS costs are shown for the panel’s enhanced budget scenario. The tabulated costs are in FY2010 dollars and are estimates for the decade. Categories: L, large; M, medium.
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