sci19010 — Announcement
Event Announcement: "Science with the Hubble and James Webb Space Telescopes VI. Entering a golden age for UV-Optical-IR space astronomy”
24 September 2019
We are entering a golden age for astronomy. A wealth of multiwavelength and now multimessenger astrophysical observatories, from space and from the ground, are currently operating or being planned, to work in synergy and advance our collective understanding of the Universe.
The ever-versatile Hubble observatory, a result of a long-lasting collaboration between NASA and ESA, provides unmatched UV-visible capabilities. Next April, we will celebrate 30 splendid years of scientific contributions to all branches of astronomy, from the detailed observation of the Solar System, to the characterisation of exoplanet atmospheres, to the exploration of the distant Universe. In spite of its age, Hubble is going strong and we anticipate many more scientific breakthroughs ahead, as we expect the observatory to be scientifically productive well into the next decade.
At the same time, the countdown is accelerating towards the launch of the James Webb Space Telescope, planned for March 2021. Webb’s unique combination of sensitivity, near- and mid-infrared wavelength coverage and spatial resolution promises to revolutionise our view of the Universe. The Webb project is an international collaboration between NASA, ESA, and CSA. As part of its contribution to the project, ESA and its Member States provide the NIRSpec instrument, part of the MIRI instrument, the Ariane 5 launcher, and staff to support mission operations at STScI.
We can’t wait to have these two highly complementary observatories operating together. Working in synergy, they will push the boundaries of knowledge against the backdrop of a rapidly evolving astronomical landscape. In space, GAIA will soon have completed its nominal high-precision astrometric and photometric census of the Milky Way. TESS is already discovering multitudes of exoplanet candidates around the nearest stars, triggering a cascade of follow-up observations. Some of them are already planned on CHEOPS, which will be launched shortly. JWST will then do the spectroscopic follow-up. We are also only a few years away from the launch of Euclid, and its quest to derive the geometry of the Universe. On the ground, ALMA is delivering exciting results and the ELT is expected to see first light in 2025, providing follow-up to the first two cycles of JWST observations. The second half of the decade will be further enriched by a suite of major new space missions: WFIRST will probe the expansion of the Universe in the near-infrared, followed by PLATO and ARIEL, detecting and characterising exoplanets, and then ATHENA and LISA will probe the high-energy Universe.
With this context in mind, ESA, in collaboration with the Department of Astronomy of Stockholm University, will organise the conference: “Science with the Hubble and James Webb Space Telescopes VI Entering a golden age for UV-Optical-IR space astronomy” in Stockholm between 30 March and 2 April 2020.
The conference will have the following goals:
- Celebrate Hubble’s 30-year scientific legacy and showcase the observatory’s latest results across all branches of astronomy.
- Challenge the community to think about and present how best to utilise Hubble and Webb, both together and in combination with other facilities in space or on the ground.
- Look further into the future, posing the scientific questions that will shape the field of astrophysics in the next decade.
The conference will present a combination of invited talks, contributed talks, and posters.
Website and logistic information will be made available soon.
In the meantime, for any questions, please contact:
Antonella Nota (ESA/STScI) & Pierre Ferruit (ESA) — Conference co-Chairs
Antonella Nota (ESA/STScI) & Pierre Ferruit (ESA) – Conference co-Chairs
About the Announcement