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1 NASA Agency Overview NASA’s Vision and Fundamental Physics in Space Paul Hertz Chief Scientist, Science Mission Directorate NASA International Workshop.

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Presentation on theme: "1 NASA Agency Overview NASA’s Vision and Fundamental Physics in Space Paul Hertz Chief Scientist, Science Mission Directorate NASA International Workshop."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 NASA Agency Overview NASA’s Vision and Fundamental Physics in Space Paul Hertz Chief Scientist, Science Mission Directorate NASA International Workshop on Fundamental Physics Research in Space May 22-24, 2006

2 The NASA Mission: To pioneer the future in space exploration, scientific discovery, and aeronautics research. The Vision for Space Exploration: To advance U.S. scientific, security, and economic interests through a robust space exploration program.

3 3 NASA’s Strategic Goals* Strategic Goal 1: Fly the Shuttle as safely as possible until its retirement, not later than 2010. Strategic Goal 2: Complete the International Space Station in a manner consistent with NASA’s International Partner commitments and the needs of human exploration. Strategic Goal 3: Develop a balanced overall program of science, exploration, and aeronautics consistent with the redirection of the human spaceflight program to focus on exploration. Strategic Goal 4: Bring a new Crew Exploration Vehicle into service as soon as possible after Shuttle retirement. Strategic Goal 5: Encourage the pursuit of appropriate partnerships with the emerging commercial space sector. Strategic Goal 6: Establish a lunar return program having the maximum possible utility for later missions to Mars and other destinations. * 2006 NASA Strategic Plan

4 Science Aeronautics Research Space Operations Exploration Systems

5 The Science Mission Directorate

6 What Powered the Big Bang? What is the Dark Energy Pulling the Universe Apart? What Happens at the Edge of a Black Hole? What Happens at the Edge of a Black Hole? Where do Planets Come From? Are There Other Habitable Worlds? Where Do the Elements of Life Come From?

7 Current Missions WMAP Glimpses the Universe’s First Trillionth of a Second New Horizons is Off to Pluto MESSENGER is on its Way to Mercury Swift Uncovers the Origin of Gamma Ray Bursts Gravity Probe B Searches for Frame Dragging Hubble and Chandra observe Black Holes and Dark Energy

8 Future Missions Joint Dark Energy Mission (with DOE) Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (with ESA) Constellation-X Planck (with ESA) The Beyond Einstein Program Gamma-ray Large Area Space Telescope (with DOE)

9 9 Strategic Decisions Budget & Priorities

10 10 Science Budget Strategy To support Space Operations Mission Directorate requirements within a fixed Agency budget, reductions to previous Science planning are necessary Science gets 1.5% growth from FY06 to 07, 1% per year thereafter –$3.1B decrease from FY06 Budget runout Strategy for Adjustments –Develop an executable program based on strategic National Academy science priorities

11 11 Science Priority Strategy Priorities set through Dialog with the Science Community Strategic recommendations on science priorities via the NRC –Decadal surveys –Focused questions of a strategic nature –Review of strategic plans Tactical advice on implementation of strategic priorities via –Science committee of the NAC and subordinate groups –Workshops with science investigator community –Participation in major professional societies (AGU, AMS, AAS, etc) Technical interchange on detailed requirements and engineering trades via funded Principal Investigators and Science Teams

12 12 NASA Science Plan SMD has two upcoming strategic planning requirements –Must implement NASA Strategic Plan goals for science –2005 NASA Authorization Act requires NASA to deliver a Science Plan through 2016 to Congress in December 2006 SMD intends to meet both requirements with one document: NASA Science Plan –Will create a Science Plan developed with the community, analogous to the old Enterprise Strategic Plan architecture –Drawn from community-based Roadmaps and National Academy Decadal Surveys –SMD to engage both NASA Advisory Council (Science Committee and Science Subcommittees) and NRC Space Studies Board through this process

13 13 NASA Advisory Council (25 members) Science Committee (5 members) Science Subcommittees Executive Panel (chairs of SMD subcommittees) Astrophysics Subcommittee Heliophysics Subcommittee Planetary Science Subcommittee Earth Science Subcommittee Each Subcommittee has about 15 members Planetary Protection Subcommittee ExplorationAeronautics Audit & Finance Human Capital NASA Advisory Council

14 14 SMD-wide Challenges The Administrator has promised to maintain a robust and balanced science program. In return, SMD has to deliver an executable program portfolio that meets the science community’s and the nation’s highest priorities. Competed smaller missions, Explorer and ESSP, have reduced budgets and cost challenges, resulting in a mission solicitation and science opportunity rate slower than desired Working to improve grants processing and delivery of funds to selectees Working to define optimal technology management approaches, using the best features of the legacy Space and Earth science models

15 15 Essentials for Science Planning Science organization and planning at NASA has undergone considerable change over the past year, and there is more to come But the essentials remain the same –Science questions drive mission and technology investment –Science priorities are set through dialog with the science community –Science and technology research will be selected based on open and competitive processes –The pace of scientific progress will demand continuous technological advancement –A vast web of partnerships in science, technology, and applications are required to conduct Earth and space science


17 17 Backup

18 18 * Science Mission Directorate Planetary Science Division Astrophysics Division Heliophysics Division Earth Science Division New Frontiers Mars Exploration Discovery Solar System Research Living with a Star Solar Terrestrial Probes Explorers Earth System Science Pathfinder Earth Systematic Missions New Millennium Deep Space Mission Systems Ground Network Hubble Space Telescope Navigator James Webb Space Telescope SOFIA GLAST ISSC: Herschel/Planck Division Program Earth Science Research Universe Research Beyond Einstein Applied Sciences Heliophysics Research Other Agency Support Programs ESS Multimission Ops Cassini SMD Programs

19 19 Role of Fundamental Physics NASA uses space observatories, laboratory tests, and theoretical modeling to examine nature, expand scientists’ understanding of the contents of the universe and the physical processes that govern their behavior, and answer fundamental questions. –Cosmic Rays –Cosmology –Dark Energy –Black Holes –Gravitational Radiation –General Relativity –Etc.

20 20 Venues for Fundamental Physics International Space Station –NASA use dedicated to understanding the effects of the space environment on human performance, and testing new technologies and countermeasures for long-duration human space exploration. –International partners conducting broader research program. Satellites –Prioritized against other science opportunities within NASA’s science program. –Most concepts fall within NASA’s astrophysics division. –Solar system texts of General Relativity possible as experiments of opportunity within NASA’s planetary sciences division. Lunar Surface –Prioritized against other science opportunities within NASA’s science and exploration programs. –Possibility of leveraged opportunities enabled by human exploration program.

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