In exchange for ESA’s contributions to the Hubble mission, users from ESA member countries have guaranteed access to 15% of Hubble’s observing time over the lifetime of the mission. The time is allocated via a peer review system where a Telescope Allocation Committee (TAC) evaluates the scientific merits of the proposals received for each cycle, and makes their recommendations to the STScI Director.
The TAC met at STScI during the week of 13–18 May 2013. 137 astronomers from all over the world, 25 of whom were from ESA member states, met to evaluate and rank the 1094 proposals received this cycle, Cycle 21 (the highest number since Servicing Mission 4). Proposal pressure was extremely high, with an oversubscription of approximately 6:1.
ESA member state scientists were successful as PIs on 22.9% of the accepted proposals and obtained 17.7% of the primary orbits allocated. The total number of ESA member state investigators involved in Hubble proposals (PIs and CoIs) has risen for the fifth year in a row and now stands at almost 500, indicating the continuing strength of European scientific involvement in Hubble.
- Results of Cycle 21 proposals
- Cycle 21 review guidelines
- STScI newsletter: The evolution of the Hubble TAC process
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