Upper Atmosphere Research Section Facility Workshop MIT/Haystack Observatory September 23-24, 2008
Meeting Motivation • UARS has a facilities program that supports the operation, maintenance, and limited scientific efforts associated with upper atmosphere observing instruments. • Should there be a comparable support mechanism for magnetospheric and solar observing instruments? • If so, what is the best way to accomplish this?
The Upper Atmospheric Facilities Program • Started in 1986 • Initial objectives • The incoherent scatter radar chain • Jicamarca • Arecibo • Millstone • Chatanika
Components of the UAF Program • Five incoherent scatter radar facilities • Partial funding for SuperDARN • Lidar Consortium • Miscellaneous awards including: • Facility supplements • Space Weather awards (CCMC) • Other instrumentation awards
The NSF Incoherent Scatter Radar Chain-2007 Sondrestrom (SRF) PFR 2007 AMISR-Poker Flat Millstone Hill (MH) SRF 1982 SRF 1982 MH 1962 MH 1962 Jicamarca (JRO) AO 1962 AO 1962 JRO 1963 JRO 1963 Arecibo (AO) NSF-supported ISRs--2008 The NSF Incoherent Scatter Radar Chain-2006 AMISR- Resolute Bay (RISR) Sondrestrom (SRF) Sondrestrom (SRF) RISR 2008 PFISR 2007 SRF 1982 MH 1962 AO 1962 AMISR-Poker Flat (PFISR) Millstone Hill (MH) Millstone Hill (MH) Jicamarca (JRO) JRO 1963 Jicamarca (JRO) Arecibo (AO) Arecibo (AO)
UAF Funding Breakdown Total: $11.9M
What defines a facility? • Multi-user aspects—The instrument, data, cyber-infrastructure, etc., are used by a large portion of the UARS research community. • Complexity—The facility is sufficiently complex that an interruption in support will make it difficult or more costly to reinstate. • Technical complexity • Interagency or international aspects • Multi-instrument components • NSF ownership—NSF is responsible for not just the operation of the facility, but its decommissioning if the facility reaches the end of its useable lifespan. • Cost/Risk—New or unproven technology that entails risk or where cost/benefit is not firmly established.
Additional review criteria for facilities • The quality of science enabled by the facility and quality of science conducted by facility staff • The ability to maintain and operate instrumentation as a national facility • The quality of the data provided by the facility • The effectiveness of procedures to disseminate the data to scientific users • The extent to which the data are being used for research by senior scientists and undergraduates • The effectiveness of programs to educate prospective users of facility data • The effectiveness of programs to educate students and the general public • The scientific leadership demonstrated by the facility staff
Cooperative Agreements • Allow for active NSF involvement in the operation of the facility • Include special terms and conditions • Annual budgets are not “automatic” • Cannot be used for collaborative proposals • Typically five years, but support may be contingent on mid-term management, scientific, or technical reviews
Facility Review • Facilities are reviewed every five years upon submission of renewal proposals—Reviewers receive a special request letter asking them to evaluate facilities on the basis of specific facility review criteria. • The UAF Program is reviewed every three years by a Committee of Visitors • The UAF Program has sponsored two facility-wide reviews involving an external panel and site visits to each facility—The reports from these panels were used to establish the review criteria for the facility renewal proposals.
Meeting purpose • To ensure that those interested in facility support are aware of the “special” handling facilities get from UARS • To start thinking about guidelines for “qualifying” an activity as a facility. • To provide information to potential facility operators that will help in the development of realistic budget estimates for operations. • To begin a dialog among all stakeholders that will result in a strategy to best meet the needs of the UARS science community.
Workshop Agenda September 23 Morning Session-Bob R. Chair 8:30 – 9:00 Welcome, introductions, and remarks—Bob Robinson Existing Facility Presentations (Rewards and challenges of operating facilities; best practices, budget realities, community expectations, etc) 9:00 – 9:20 Millstone--Foster 9:20 – 9:40 Arecibo--Gonzalez 9:40 – 10:10 Sondrestrom and AMISR—Kelly and Heinselman 10:10 – 10:30 Break 10:30 – 10:50 SuperDARN--Ruohoniemi 10:50 – 11:10 Jicamarca--Hysell 11:10 – 11:30 CCMC--Hesse 11:30 – 11:50 CRRL--Robinson 11:50 – 1:00 Lunch September 23 Afternoon Session-Paul B. Chair Presentations by potential new facilities 1:00 – 1:20 THEMIS Ground-Based Observatory--Mende 1:20 – 1:40 NSRO and FASR--Bastian 1:40 – 2:00 MLSO and COSMO--Tomczyk 2:00 – 2:20 Solar-C--Lin 2:20 – 2:40 Spaceship Earth--Evenson 2:40 – 3:00 Break 3:00 – 3:20 PENGUIn--Lessard 3:20 – 3:40 Murchison WFA--Lonsdale 3:40 – 4:00 GONG and SOLIS--Hill 4:00 – 4:20 Northridge Solar Observatory--Chapman 4:20 – 4:40 SMEI—Jackson 4:40 – 5:00 LISN – Cesar Valladares 5:00 – 5:30 General Discussion Group Dinner September 24 Morning Session 9:00 – 12:00 Discussion led by Paul Bellaire and Rich Behnke