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Partnerships that Matter


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2011 American Astronautical Society Robert H. Goddard Memorial Symposium--William Smith, AURA

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Partnerships that Matter

  1. 1. Partnerships that Matter March, 2011
  2. 2. “ Partnership” Definition (Wikipedia) <ul><li>A partnership is an arrangement where entities and/or individuals agree to cooperate to advance their interests </li></ul><ul><li>Partnerships can present partners with special challenges. Levels of give-and-take, areas of responsibility, lines of authority, and overarching goals of the partnership must all be negotiated. </li></ul>
  3. 3. Historical Impediments to the NASA/Science Community Partnership <ul><li>Many in the community were suspicious of competence and capabilities of NASA science counterparts </li></ul><ul><li>NASA approach (hands on) to managing science significantly differs from NSF (hands off) </li></ul><ul><li>Many viewed NASA as an engineering (not science) agency </li></ul>
  4. 4. NASA’s First Science Advocate James E. Webb “ In our pluralistic society, any major public undertaking requires a working consensus among diverse individuals, groups, and interests. A decision to do a large, complex job cannot simply be reached ‘at the top…’ ”
  5. 5. Transcript Nov. 21, 1962 <ul><li>President Kennedy: “ Do you think this program (Apollo) is the top priority of the Agency?” </li></ul>Webb: “ No sir I do not. I think it is one of the top priority programs, but I think it is very important here to recognize that…as you find how you could get beyond the Earth’s atmosphere and into space and make measurements, several scientific disciplines that are very powerful have begun to converge on this area….”
  6. 6. Initial Thinking 1965: Webb commissions a study by Norman F. Ramsey <ul><li>Science program management should be transferred to a non-profit consortium of universities ( S pace T elescopes for A stronomical R esearch, Inc.) </li></ul><ul><li>Response : “…a strong STAR with a permanent staff of highly competent astronomers could become a strong competitor with universities, observatories, and NASA Centers…such a competition is not desirable from NASA’s or an academic viewpoint.” Homer Newell </li></ul><ul><li>NASA establishes an Astronomy Missions Board instead …. relations with science community sour </li></ul>
  7. 7. NASA HQ View of an Institute 1975 “… an institute could solve two problems; one pacify the ground based community, so that they’d be all the more supportive of the Space Telescope, and two, really provide an external advocate for a good operations program…” Noel Hinners
  8. 8. Community Views <ul><li>NASA Astronomers strongly opposed central institute—favored distributed science centers </li></ul><ul><li>General community divided: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Top tier” institutions strongly favored a non-NASA institute </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Many others saw a new National Lab type institute as a further drift away from pluralism, towards “Big Science” </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. A Turning Point in 1976: NRC Report by Donald Hornig
  10. 10. Space Telescope Science Institute Established: 1981 A Partnership is born-- Other institutes follow
  11. 11. HST Science Return <ul><li>HST has produced over 9400 refereed publications, which is about 1.25 per day over the 21-year life of the mission.    </li></ul><ul><li>And the rate is increasing - nearly 2/day last year.  (719 papers in 2010)  </li></ul><ul><li>HST papers have gleaned over 340,000 citations, or an average of more than 40 citations per day. </li></ul><ul><li>HST is in demand around the world. </li></ul><ul><li>Approved HST programs have had more than 5000 unique investigators! </li></ul>
  12. 12. Science Return, Continued <ul><li>In just the last two cycles, HST has supported over 300 FTE-years worth of young researcher salary. </li></ul><ul><li>Over the life of the mission, approximately $143 million dollars has been distributed to support postdocs and graduate students. </li></ul><ul><li>Approximately 500 PhD theses have been based on Hubble data.  Hubble has been, and continues, to train the next generations of astronomers. </li></ul>
  13. 13. 2009-2010: SM4 Impact number of readers reached Hubble’s public impact in 2009 # impressions = no. of stories x circulation SM4 science released
  14. 14. A 30 Year Partnership <ul><li>Real partnership was multi-dimensional and grew over time </li></ul><ul><li>Institute and NASA worked together to enhance science return of HST and advocate its success in every possible way </li></ul><ul><li>Institute was instrumental in bringing astronomy community into the era of “Big Science” while preserving the ability to do science at all scales </li></ul>
  15. 15. Extending the Partnership: James Webb Space Telescope
  16. 16. James Webb Space Telescope <ul><li>Deployable infrared telescope with 6.5 meter diameter segmented adjustable primary mirror </li></ul><ul><li>Cryogenic temperature telescope and instruments for infrared performance </li></ul><ul><li>Launch June 2014 on an ESA-supplied Ariane 5 rocket to Sun-Earth L2 </li></ul><ul><li>5-year science mission (10-year goal) </li></ul>Birth of stars and planets First light Planets and the origins of life The assembly of galaxies
  17. 17. Hubble community maps to JWST First light The assembly of galaxies Birth of stars and planets Planets and the origins of life
  18. 18. Science and NASA From Webb to Webb, a strong partnership that matters exists between NASA and the science community, and this partnership has worked to the mutual benefit of both partners