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RCSA Announces Six Team Awards to 13 Scialog TDA Fellows

Research Corporation for Science Advancement announces six collaborative team awards totaling $560,000 for 13 Scialog Fellows for Scialog: Time Domain Astrophysics: Stars and Explosions.

The time domain astrophysics (TDA) conference, held in October 2015 in Tucson, Arizona, was the first of two bringing together astrophysical theorists, observers and computational scientists to identify critical lines of inquiry needed to maximally exploit synoptic optical surveys.

Scialog supports research, intensive dialog and community building to address scientific challenges of critical importance. Other program conferences have focused on improving efficiencies in solar conversion, and on the intersection of biology and physics at the molecular level.

 “The hope is to identify highly innovative, high-risk/high-reward research that would benefit the most from current optical facilities and set the stage to maximize the benefit of new facilities, such as the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) which is planned to be commissioned by 2022,” said RCSA Program Director Richard Wiener. “We expect this research to include the development of novel theoretical, observational or computational approaches and collaborations.”

(Former RCSA President John Schaefer was a key founding member in the collaboration that created the LSST, currently under construction on a mountaintop in Chile.)

Forty-nine Scialog Fellows attended the first Scialog TDA conference in October, producing 29 team proposals – more than any other Scialog, according to Wiener. The Fellows, selected as top early career researchers, were joined by 10 world-leading veteran TDA scientists as facilitators.

The six collaborative team awards are

  • Sean Couch, Michigan State; Nathan Smith, Arizona, “Nuclear Burps and Belches: Presupernova Eruptions in 3D;”
  • Leslie Hebb, Hobart and William Smith Colleges; Suvrath Mahadevan, Penn State; John Wisniewski, Oklahoma, “Transformational Technologies and Techniques for High Precision Photometric and Spectroscopic Stellar TDA;”
  • Gregg Hallinan, Caltech; Nick Law, UNC, Chapel Hill, “Monitoring Extrasolar Space Weather with the LWA and Evryscope;”
  • Jeno Sokoloski, Columbia; Nick Law, UNC, Chapel Hill, “Professional-Amateur Collaboration: Enhancing the Scientific and Societal Value of Evrysciope;”
  • Dimitrios Giannios, Purdue; Laura Chomiuk, Michigan State, “Catching the Emergence of a Supernova Years After the Gamma Ray Burst;”
  • Raffaella Margutti, NYU; Brian Metzger, Columbia; Ken Shen, Berkeley, “Bringing Novae into the Twenty-First Century.”

The second Scialog: TDA is scheduled October 13-16, 2016 at Westward Look Resort in Tucson, AZ.

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