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A Lesson from the James Webb Space Telescope: Early Engagement with Future Astrophysics Great Observatories Maximizes their Solar System Science

Status Report From: arXiv.org e-Print archive
Posted: Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Astrophysics facilities have been of tremendous importance for planetary science. The flagship space observatory Hubble Space Telescope has produced ground-breaking Solar System science, but when launched it did not even have the capability to track moving targets. The next astrophysics flagship mission, the James Webb Space Telescope, included Solar System scientists in its science team from the earliest days, with the result that Webb will launch with a diverse program and capabilities for Solar System exploration. The New Great Observatories, as well as future ground-based facilities, offer the opportunity for a robust suite of observations that will complement, enhance, and enable future Solar System exploration. We encourage the Planetary Science and Astrobiology Decadal Survey to overtly acknowledge the prospects for excellent Solar System science with the next generation of astrophysics facilities. We hope the Planetary Decadal will further encourage these missions to continue to formally involve Solar System scientists in the science working groups and development teams.


Heidi B. Hammel, Stefanie N. Milam

Comments: 8 pages, 2 figures, 1 table; white paper submitted to the Planetary Science and Astrobiology Decadal Survey 2023-2032

Subjects: Instrumentation and Methods for Astrophysics (astro-ph.IM); Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP)

Cite as: arXiv:2007.08618 [astro-ph.IM] (or arXiv:2007.08618v1 [astro-ph.IM] for this version)

Submission history

From: H. B. Hammel 

[v1] Thu, 16 Jul 2020 20:36:24 UTC (2,998 KB)

https://arxiv.org/abs/2007.08618


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