Mission Status Report #35 Star Date: August 3, 2000
Caption: The FUSE Mission Planning Team gathers for an informal portrait during the anniversary lunch at the Hopkins Faculty Club, June 30, 2000. (Photo courtesy of Bryce Roberts.)
(Click image above to see larger version.)
FUSE Passes the Year Mark in Good Shape
It's been over a month since my last report (sorry!), but the news is good. The FUSE satellite continues operating nominally in all regards and is obtaining science data on a wide variety of science projects for both the Principal Investigator team scientists and many of the Cycle 1 Guest Investigators selected by NASA.
Since my last report, the FUSE satellite marked its first anniversary on-orbit (June 24th). The anniversary was marked at the Maryland Science Center in Baltimore, with a live, hands-on spectroscopy demonstration in SpaceLink, the interactive portion of the MSC's space and astronomy exhibit area (which itself includes FUSE-specific exhibitry). FUSE graphics and the launch video were shown on the big projection screens, and FUSE astronomer Bill Blair was present to answer questions. The local FUSE science and operations team hosted a gala lunch at the Hopkins Faculty Club on Friday June 30th (sponsored in part by the Department of Physics and Astronomy and the Center for Astrophysical Sciences). A good time was had by all!
July 14th marked the deadline for inputs for Cycle 2 of Guest Investigator observations. The proposals received are being reviewed for technical feasibility now and the NASA-coordinated peer review will occur in September. Accepted proposals from these inputs will account for more that half of the available observing time in Cycle 2. The proposal review is scheduled for mid-September and Cycle 2 observing begins officially in December 2000.
On the science front, mid-July also found the FUSE Science Team huddled in a team meeting, hosted by the University of Colorado in Boulder. Preliminary results on MANY new science programs were shown, and plans for presentations at the International Astronomical Union meeting in August and other meetings were discussed. A special FUSE issue of the Astrophsical Journal (Letters) containing 21 FUSE papers has appeared in print (July 20, 2000 issue, volume 538). Many more are on the way!
Reported by: Bill Blair, Chief of Mission Planning