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RCSA announces Scialog: Time Domain Astrophysics awards for 2016

Research Corporation for Science Advancement (RCSA) announces seven collaborative team awards totaling $730,000 for 16 Scialog Fellows who participated in the most recent Scialog: Time Domain Astrophysics (TDA) conference held in Tucson, Arizona.

Funding for the collaborative team awards is provided by RCSA and the Heising-Simons Foundation of Los Altos, California, which also supports groundbreaking scientific research.

The conference occurred in October 2016, 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. This was the second round of awards for Scialog: TDA; the first round, totaling $560,000 for 13 Scialog Fellows, was made following a similar conference in 2015. Other Scialog conferences have focused on improving efficiencies in solar conversion, and on the intersection of experimental biology and theoretical 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-five Scialog Fellows attended the latest Scialog: TDA conference, producing 19 teams competing for the latest round of awards. The Fellows, selected as top early career researchers, were joined by a dozen world-leading veteran TDA scientists as facilitators.

The seven collaborative team awards resulting from this year’s conference are:

-- The Shocking Reality of Dusty Cataclysms, Mansi Kasliwal, California Institute of Technology, and Jennifer Sokoloski, Columbia University;

-- Identifying the origin of the Extreme Scattering Events, Dimitrios Giannios, Purdue University, and David Kaplan, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee;

-- Precovery of Superflaring G Dwarfs for TESS using PTF and ZTF, Eric Bellm, University of Washington, and John Wisniewski, University of Oklahoma;

-- Stellar Multiplicity Meets Stellar Evolution: The APOGEE View, Carles Badenes, University of Pittsburgh, Kevin Covey, Western Washington University, and Todd Thompson, Ohio State University;

-- Down but not out: the white dwarf survivors of low-luminosity thermonuclear supernovae, Ryan Foley, University of California, Santa Cruz, and James Fuller, California Institute of Technology;

-- The Stellar MRI, Matteo Cantiello, University of California, Santa Barbara, and Jeffrey Oishi, Bates College;

 -- Supernova Light Curves Influenced by Hidden CSM Interaction, Daniel Kasen, University of California, Berkeley, Anthony Piro, Carnegie Observatories, and Nathan Smith, University of Arizona.

 The next Scialog conference, on the topic of physical cell biology, will be held in late April in Tucson.

 

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