Volume 10, Number 50
December 4, 2016
Editor: Mark V. Sykes
Co-Editors: Karen Stockstill-Cahill, Susan Benecchi
Email: pen_editor at psi.edu
o-------------------------TABLE OF CONTENTS---------------------------o
1. OPAG Findings Posted
2. Seeking Members for the WFIRST Solar System Working Group
3. NAIF Job Opening
4. Planetary Geomorphology 'Image of the Month'
5. [NASA] Ames Seeks Space Science Division Director
6. Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Data Release 39
7. Venus Exploration Analysis Group (VEXAG) Call for Executive
8. Research Space Scientist, GS-1330-13/14
9. MEPAG Face-to-Face Forecasting Deadline December 4th
10. Working Group on Finding Signs of Past Rock-Hosted Life
11. Planetary Meeting Calendar Additions
OPAG FINDINGS POSTED
Findings from the August 2016 meeting of the NASA Outer Planets
Assessment Group have been posted at:
SEEKING MEMBERS FOR THE WFIRST SOLAR SYSTEM WORKING GROUP
NASA's Wide Field Infrared Survey Telescope (WFIRST) is NASA's next
flagship mission after JWST. WFIRST is on track for a 2025 launch and
a 6 year primary mission. This mission has two primary instruments: the
Wide Field Instrument (WFI) with a 0.25 square degree FOV and the
Coronagraph Instrument (CGI), which is designed to take images and
spectra of super-Earths. Between the two instruments, WFIRST will be
capable of imaging and grism spectroscopy over the wavelength range
0.7-2 microns as well as R~100 spectroscopy with an IFU. More details
can be found here:
We are soliciting participants for the WFIRST Solar System Working
Group to help develop science cases and provide input to the project
team on instrumentation and observatory constraints. If you are
interested please contact either of the co-leads, James (Gerbs) Bauer
(JPL - email@example.com) or Stefanie Milam (NASA/GSFC -
Stefanie.firstname.lastname@example.org) by December 30, 2016.
NAIF JOB OPENING
NASA's Navigation and Ancillary Information Facility, developers of the
"SPICE" observation geometry system used worldwide in support of
planetary missions, is looking for a permanent new staff member.
Interested persons should read the detailed announcement at:
and may apply for the job through the JPL Human Resources website,
selecting Requisition ID 2016-7626.
PLANETARY GEOMORPHOLOGY 'IMAGE OF THE MONTH'
The December image of the month is now available at the IAG's Planetary
Geomorphology web page:
This month's topic is "The Geomorphology of Potential Mars Tsunami
Deposits". Post contributed by Dr. Alexis Rodriguez, Planetary Science
Institute, Tucson AZ, USA.
You can follow IAG Planetary Geomorphology Image of the Month on
Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/PlanetaryGeomorphology) or Twitter
Susan Conway (Chair, IAG Planetary Geomorphology working group)
[NASA] AMES SEEKS SPACE SCIENCE DIVISION DIRECTOR
NASA is seeking applicants for the position of Division Chief of the
Space Science and Astrobiology Division at NASA Ames Research Center
(ARC) in Silicon Valley, California. The ARC Space Sciences and
Astrobiology Division is comprised of over 150 scientists and
engineers, including nearly 60 civil servants. The Division Chief
provides technical and administrative supervision and management for a
Division that conducts fundamental research in astrobiology, planetary
sciences, and astrophysics. He/she is responsible for the formulation,
strategy, advocacy, and direction of the key research, technology,
applied sciences, and science-enabling activities pursued by the
Division. The incumbent works with and advises the ARC Science
Directorate management on the strategic direction and implementation of
the Space Sciences and Astrobiology programs at the Center.
The vacancy announcement, AR17D0015, Supervisory Space Scientist,
AST, Space Sciences, GS-1330-15, opens on Wednesday, November 30, and
will close on Friday, December 16. The vacancy announcement may be
found at USAJobs.gov by accessing the link at:
All applications must be submitted within USAJobs.gov before the
posted deadline. For further information, a contact email is given in
the vacancy announcement at USAJobs.gov.
MARS RECONNAISSANCE ORBITER DATA RELEASE 39
The NASA Planetary Data System (PDS) is pleased to announce a new
delivery of Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) data for the following
There is no SHARAD or derived gravity data in this release. HiRISE data
is not yet available.
In general, MRO Release 39 includes data collected from February 9,
2016, to May 8, 2016.
To access the above data:
To access the latest PDS Data Releases:
All available PDS data may be found at:
For further information, see the PDS Home Page:
The PDS Team
VENUS EXPLORATION ANALYSIS GROUP (VEXAG) CALL FOR EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
VEXAG is seeking volunteers for VEXAG Executive Committee members to
replace those who have successfully completed their service to the
Venus community. The new members will start in 2017 for a term that run
for three years. Also, the VEXAG Early Career Scholars Focus Group is
looking for interested group members.
If you are interested, send your resume and a statement of how you
could contribute to VEXAG to Bob Grimm and Martha Gilmore, VEXAG Chair
and Deputy Chair (email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org) by
January 6, 2017.
VEXAG activities for the next three years are expected to be community
building with an emphasis on:
- Venus Exploration Goals, Objectives, and Strategies
- Technology Development and Laboratory Measurements
- International Collaboration
- Early Career and Young Scholar Development
- Venus Exploration Roadmaps
VEXAG is a community-based forum established in July 2005 to assess
scientific priorities and strategies for exploration of Venus. VEXAG
is currently composed of a chair and five focus groups, where the
focus groups actively solicit input from the Venus community on the
topics listed above.
More information may be found at the LPI VEXAG Web-site:
RESEARCH SPACE SCIENTIST, GS-1330-13/14
The Planetary Systems Branch (Code SST) within the Space Science and
Astrobiology Division (Code SS) of the Science Directorate (Code S) at
the NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field CA 94035, is currently
seeking interested applicants for the position of a Research Space
Scientist. The incumbent conducts scientific research and provides
expertise in the area of planetary atmospheres (theory/modeling), in
particular, the Mars atmosphere and its climate system, and/or
terrestrial-like planetary atmospheres. For further details and
applications procedures, please see the following USAJOBS.gov link:
MEPAG FACE-TO-FACE FORECASTING DEADLINE DECEMBER 4TH
The 2017 face-to-face meeting of the Mars Exploration Program Analysis
Group (MEPAG) is scheduled for February 22-23, 2017 at the Double-Tree
Hotel in Monrovia, CA.
If you usually forecast for conferences, you must forecast for this
conference by Sunday December 4th, 2016.
WORKING GROUP ON FINDING SIGNS OF PAST ROCK-HOSTED LIFE
Motivated by the suite of habitable environments available to Mars-2020
for in situ exploration and sample collection, we are convening a set
of 4 web-hosted telecons, open to the community. For those wishing to
help make a presentation and peer-reviewed publication, there will also
be an in-person gathering February 6-7 at Caltech. See:
The first talk, "Martian Environments, Facies, and Ages: Evidence for
Rock-Hosted Waters. What is the evidence for ancient Mars environmental
conditions? What is the likelihood of habitats for rock-hosted life?"
will be either 8:30am December 9 or December 19th. Pencil in (no
newsletter in between the closing of Doodle poll!) and check out the
website Wednesday 12/7 for date and dial-in information.
PLANETARY MEETING CALENDAR ADDITIONS
Posted at http://planetarynews.org/meetings.html
March 15-17, 2017
UKEXOM2017: UK Exoplanet Community Meeting
St. Andrews, Scotland
July 2-6, 2018
Cambridge, United Kingdom
[Editor Note: If there is a planetary-related meeting, conference or
workshop of which your colleagues should be aware, please send the
date, title, URL and location to pen_editor at psi.edu.]
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