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Committee on Astronomy and Astrophysics

A joint committee of the Space Studies Board and the Board on Physics and Astronomy.

Project Information

Committee Statement of Task

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine will appoint the Committee on Astronomy and Astrophysics (CAA) to operate as an ad-hoc committee. The overarching purpose of the committee is to support scientific progress in astronomy and astrophysics and to assist the federal government in planning programs in these fields by providing advice on the implementation of decadal survey recommendations. The CAA provides an independent, authoritative forum for identifying and discussing issues in astronomy and astrophysics between the research community, the federal government, and the interested public.

 

The CAA will issue reports that will provide guidance to federal agencies that support astronomy and astrophysics research. The CAA’s scope spans the full range of astronomy and astrophysics research, including space- and ground-based observations. The Committee's domain encompasses stellar, galactic, and extragalactic astronomy, particle astrophysics, cosmology, the search for extra-solar planets, and aspects of fundamental physics relating to astronomical objects. The CAA’s scope also includes appropriate cross-disciplinary areas and consideration of budget and programmatic aspects of the implementation of the decadal survey.

 

The Committee will build on the current decadal survey of the field, "New Worlds, New Horizons in Astronomy and Astrophysics," (NWNH) and monitor the progress of its recommended priorities for the most important scientific and technical activities in that report and recommendations in the mid-decadal review report issued in June 2016.

 

The committee will carry out its charge by undertaking the following tasks:

 

1. At each of its in-person meetings, the committee may prepare concise assessments of progress on the implementation of the decadal survey's recommended scientific and technical activities. The assessments will be based on evidence gathered by the committee at its in-person and virtual meetings. The committee’s assessment reports may include findings and conclusions on key strategies being pursued by the agencies and the status of agency actions that relate to the state of implementation. The reports may also highlight scientific discoveries and engineering and technical advances relevant to progress on the science objectives identified in NWNH and in addition will focus on one or more of the following types of issues:

 

          • The scientific impact of a change in the technical and engineering design, cost estimate, schedule, or programmatic sequencing of one or more of the survey-recommended activities;

          • The impact of a scientific advance on the technical and engineering design, schedule, or programmatic sequencing of one or more survey-recommended activities;

          • The scientific impact of a course of action at a decision point described in the survey report and recommended therein as being suitable for consultation with an independent decadal survey implementation committee;

          • The scientific impact of implementing recommendations from the mid-decadal review and other relevant Academies' reports.

 

 

2. For advisory activities assessed to require a more in-depth review than is possible through the normal operation of the CAA, the committee will assist the Academies in formulating the task and committee membership for such studies which will be designed as separate tasks.

 

Upcoming Meetings and Events

 

 March 27-29, 2018
Space Science Week 2018
National Academy of Sciences Building
2101 Constitution Ave., N.W.
Washington, DC 20418 

 

Past Meetings and Events

October 24-25, 2017
Beckman Center of the National Academies
Irvine, CA
CPS Agenda I PDF Agenda
Download presentations from the meeting

 

March 28-30, 2017
Space Science Week 2017
National Academy of Sciences Building
2101 Constitution Ave., N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20418

 March 29-31, 2016
Space Science Week
National Academy of Sciences Building
2101 Constitution Ave., N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20418
Download the Meeting Agenda
Download Presentations from the Meeting

October 31-November 1, 2016
Beckman Center of the National Academies
Irvine, CA

Download the Meeting Agenda
Download Presentations from the Meeting

March 31- April 2, 2015
NRC Space Science Week
National Academy of Sciences Building 

2101 Constitution Ave., N.W.
Washington, DC 20001
Download the Meeting Agenda
Download Presentations from the Meeting

 

November 3-4, 2014
Beckman Center of the National Academies
Irvine, CA
Download the Meeting Agenda
Download Presentations from the Meeting

NRC Space Science Week 2014
& CAA Meeting

March 3-5, 2014
Washington, DC
   Download the Meeting Agenda   
   Download Presentations from the Meeting

November 4-5, 2013
Keck Center of the National Academies
Washington, DC
   Download the Meeting Agenda
   Download Presentations from the Meeting

NRC Space Science Week 2013
& CAA Meeting
March 6-8, 2013
Washington, DC
   Download the Meeting Agenda
   Download Presentations from the Meeting

June 4-6, 2012
Keck Center of the National Academies
Room 101
Washington, DC
   Download the Meeting Agenda
   Download Presentations from the Meeting

 

Committee Membership

 

MARCIA RIEKE, University of Arizona, Co-Chair
STEVEN M. RITZ, University of California, Santa Cruz, Co-Chair
JEREMIAH K. DARLING, University of Colorado, Boulder
MEGAN DONAHUE, Michigan State University
THOMAS GREENE, NASA Ames Research Center
LEE W. HARTMANN, University of Michigan
VASSILIKI KALOGERA, Northwestern University
BRUCE MACINTOSH, Stanford University
CHRISTOPHER F. MCKEE, University of California, Berkeley
ANGELA V. OLINTO, University of Chicago
MARK M. PHILLIPS, Carnegie Institution for Science
JAMES M. STONE, Princeton University
ALEXEY VIKHLININ, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
ERIC M. WILCOTS, University of Wisconsin
A. THOMAS YOUNG, Lockheed Martin, retired


View Member Bios 

 

NRC Staff

David Lang, Senior Program Officer, Board on Physics and Astronomy
Mia Brown, Research Associate, Space Studies Board
Neeraj Gorkhaly, Associate Program Officer
Dionna Williams, Program Coordinator, SSB
Jim Lancaster, Director, BPA
Michael Moloney, Director, SSB

 

 

Past Meeting Presentations

 

October 24-25, 2017
Beckman Center of the National Academies
Irvine, CA

October 31-November 1, 2016
Beckman Center of the National Academies
Irvine, CA

March 29-31, 2016
National Academy of Sciences Building
Washington, D.C.

 

 

March 31-April 2, 2015
National Academy of Sciences Building
Washington, D.C.

 

November 3-4, 2014
Beckman Center of the National Academies
Irvine, California

March 3-5, 2014
Washington, DC

November 4-5, 2013
Washington, DC

March 6-8, 2013*
Washington, DC

*CAPS-CAA-CSSP-CESAS Plenary Session presentations will be posted on the Space Science Week page

June 4-6, 2012
Washington, DC

Related Report-writing Activities

Related report writing activities are listed below.  Complete information on past astronomy and astrophysics decadal surveys can be found on the Astronomy and Astrophysics Decadal Surveys web page.  

Sponsor

The committee is pleased to acknowledge support from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the National Science Foundation.