AAS 228 June 2016, San Diego

Collated on behalf of STScI by C. Christian, carolc@stsci.edu

The Space Telescope Science Institute will be at the 228th AAS meeting in San Diego, California, with an exhibit booth showcasing the missions we support for the science community, several technical presentations in instrument sessions, a wide variety of science presentations, and press releases.

Exhibit booth

Institute staff representing the Hubble, Webb, and WFIRST missions will be available at the Institute’s booth to provide information on new developments and updated status of these missions, and to describe our upcoming initiatives for user community support. Staff scientists and engineers will discuss improvements in calibration and new modes for Hubble instrumentation to support ever-more ambitious science. Attendees can obtain information on upcoming releases of user tools and software to help the community plan the first Webb observations, and the development of simulation capabilities related to the WFIRST mission.

Institute experts will demonstrate the Mikulski Archive for Space Telescopes (MAST) portal and the new Hubble spectroscopic archive as well as new software products for data analysis. A new website and modern 3-D exposure time calculator for Webb, and Point Spread Function (PSF) and image simulations for WFIRST will also be shown.

Hubble observers will be interested in more details about the successful new mid-cycle proposal process and what types of observations are appropriate for the program. Similarly, future Webb users will be very interested in the science timeline and upcoming call for proposals for the Early Release Science program. There will be new handouts on these topics available at the booth. In addition, attendees should check back often for specialized focused discussions on our large touch-panel screen and additional hands-on demonstrations from our missions.

Figure 1. This is the backdrop for the Institute’s booth, where staff representing the Hubble, Webb, and WFIRST missions will provide information on new developments and updated status of these missions. They will also describe the Institute’s upcoming initiatives for user community support.

Experts from our Office of Public Outreach will also be on hand to discuss new opportunities for scientists to become involved in E/PO initiatives, and to explain our augmented reality tool for use with hand held devices.

Observatory Technical Information: What to Watch for in Sessions

What’s new with the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS)?
Find out details on time-dependent sensitivities of the FUV detector and the effect of hot spots as well as new wavelength calibrations.

A Review of 14 Years of Observations with the Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS).
New calibrations of the repaired ACS Wide-Field Channel (WFC), having operated more time in repair mode than in its original launch configuration, allow continued high productivity with this camera. Find out the new techniques used to support prime and parallel programs.

All about the Workhorse Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3).
Now it its sixth year of operation, new WFC3 software is available to address ultraviolet/visible (UVIS) Charge Transfer Efficiency (CTE) loss due to radiation damage, and new dark calibrations improve usability. Improved photometric and flat-field calibrations accompany new astrometric solutions and PSF calibrations for the UVIS. Also, hear and discuss how infrared (IR) channel data processing and methods to address persistence assist deep imaging, and new calibrations address IR photometric performance.