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Opportunity for membership of the NewAthena science study team

The ESA Director of Science invites scientists based in ESA Member States to apply for membership of the NewAthena Science Study Team. Mandatory Letters of Intent due 21 February 2024, 12:00 (noon) CET and Deadline for receipt of Proposals 20 March 2024, 12:00 (noon) CET.

Athena was selected in 2014 as the mission to implement the science theme "The Hot and Energetic Universe". During the study and definition phases of the mission it became apparent that the complexity (and associated cost) of Athena was significantly greater than originally identified, such that the mission concept was not affordable within the ESA Science Programme. This led to a re-formulation of the mission, culminating in what is now called NewAthena. As part of the re-formulation activities, ESA appointed a Science Re-Definition Team (SRDT) to support the definition of the science objectives of NewAthena, and to provide expert advice during the study activities necessary to define the NewAthena mission concept. The SRDT have now completed their mandate, producing a report on potential science objectives for NewAthena. The NewAthena mission concept and science objectives were presented to the Science Programme Committee (SPC) at their meeting in November 2023, during which the SPC approved the start of the NewAthena study phase.

The NASST will define the science requirements of the mission and will support ESA on all aspects of the study phase related to the science return of NewAthena. ESA will appoint up to eight members to the NASST, through this AO. These members will be appointed for a period of three years, renewable, or until mission adoption, whichever comes first. With the exception of expenses incurred while travelling to in-person NASST meetings, ESA will not fund any of the selected candidates’ activities related to the present appointment. Additional members of the NASST are nominated by the instrument consortia and international partner agencies.

The AO is open to scientists based in ESA Member States. Early career scientists and historically under-represented groups in astronomy and space sciences are encouraged to apply.


Thommy Ingemann Larsen
Tlf.: +45 72 31 84 50
Email: til@ufm.dk
Uddannelses- og Forskningsstyrelsen