ALMA North American Science Advisory Committee Telecon Phone Meeting 2007, June 1

Contact Information

  • Call date: 2007-06-01 14:00 EDT or 18:00 UT (Friday)
  • Duration: 1 hr
  • USA Number: 1-866-675-5385
  • Outside USA Number: +1 517 444 6916
  • Passcode: 8445333#
  • Leaders: Jon Williams, J. Hibbard


ANASAC Members (Attendees in RED):

  • Andrew Baker (Rutgers) (2008)
  • John Bally (U. Colorado) (2008)
  • Andrew Blain (Caltech) (2007)
  • Xiaohui Fan (U. Az.) (2007)
  • Paul Ho (CfA, Harvard) (2008)
  • Kelsey Johnson (UVa) (2009)
  • Doug Johnstone (HIA/DAO, Victoria) (2007)
  • Lee Mundy (U. Md) (2007)
  • Gorden Stacey (Cornell) (2009)
  • Jaqueline van Gorkom (Columbia) (2009)
  • Alycia Weinberger (DTM) (2009)
  • Jonathan Williams, Chair (U. Hawaii) (2008)
  • Christine Wilson (McMaster U.) (2007)
  • Mel Wright (UC Berkeley) (2008)
(Bold = Member of ASAC)

  • J. Hibbard
  • A. Wootten
  • C. Carilli
  • Brogan


1) Action Items (Hibbard)

Minutes of 27 April 2007 meeting. Approved
Open action items:

  • ACTION: Future science meetings
    • WHO: All
    • Due: June 07
    • Done: continuing
    • DISCUSSION: NRAO should assign this as charge to ANASAC. Subcommittee should look at meetings that are happening in similar timeframe, and suggest promising topic. Possible themes include:
      • extragalactic submm
      • astrochemistry/modeling
      • solar system
      • galactic/extragalactic star formation (bring groups together)

  • ACTION: Doug should contact Mark Adams about Canadian Brochure
    • WHO: Doug Johnstone
    • Due: June 07
    • Done: Doug

  • ACTION: Review membership and chair
    • WHO: Carilli, ANASAC
    • Due: face-to-face
    • Done:

  • ACTION: Get further input on NSF reaction to Grants
    • WHO: Carilli, Baker, Russell
    • Due: on-going
    • Done:

3) Update on NAASC activities (Hibbard)

  • Material submitted to both international and NAm. review panels.
  • Next two NAASC hires will be our main CSV experts, with extensive travel to Chile over the next few years. These will be advertised in the Fall.
  • Carilli & Hibbard traveled to Spitzer Science Center May 30 for a "lessons learned" on science center planning and user support. Met with Tom Soifer & Lisa Storrie-Lombardi. Suggestion was made that some science center staff might usefully serve on ANASAC.
  • DISCUSSION: Mundy thought this was bad idea. Should be a separate technical committee to advise NRAO on science center operations; not role of ANASAC. Would dilute or skew ANASAC "user" representation (inferring I guess that science center staff are not potential ALMA users?). Post-meeting addendum: reviewing the ANASAC Terms of Reference, it seems that advising NRAO on operation of Science Center is an ANASAC mandate. Deserves further discussion. Perhaps at f2f?

4) Update on ASAC (Mundy)

  • ASAC Web Page
  • ASAC Face-to-face in Tokyo May 7, 2007
  • Executive Summary:
    • DSRP II: ~20 new projects. 48 revised. Total 148. Overall, modest changes. New projects w/ACA. Recommend that Obs Tool should "cut teeth" on correllator modes using DSRP II.
    • EA ACA: as stand-alone, and with real-time correlation with main array. For latter: time-dependant observations of large solor system objects. For former, continum of debris disks; diffuse molecular clouds.
    • Molecular line databases: recommend that ALMA allow spectral line labs to apply for development funds. ARCs should continue and expand spectral line work.
    • EPO plan: important ideas and goals, but not enough detail. Needs cost benefit trade-off.
    • Future of ASAC: keep as is. Board will go from 2 to 1 meetings per year. ASAC recommends they keep at 1 telecon/mo and 2 f2f/year.
    • EA representatives: should be allowed to be vice-chairs and rotate into chairs.

5) Interim Charge -- ALMA grants program (Williams)

Interim Charge: The NAASC asks that the ANASAC reconsider the potential for a Users Grants program, in the light of the NSF response to the NAASC plan, subsequent feedback to members of the ANASAC by the NSF, and the comments of the NRAO Users committee on a grants program. We are particularly interested in:
  • (i) reconsideration of possible scenarios that are consistent with NSF policies,
  • (ii) arguments for and against a grants-with-observing-time program as opposed to a general increase in the NSF PI grants program, or a means to merge one into the other,
  • (iii) mechanisms for the User community to voice their opinions on this issue, and the role of NRAO in such mechanisms.
  • DISCUSSION: Baker previously sent around email where NSF admitted that there was no hard and fast policy on re-granting. Asked NAASC to see if they could clarify (see charge above).
  • J. van Gorkom stated her strong objection to grants-with-time programs. I won't summarize her arguments here. All acknowledge that there are strong opinions on both sides of this issue, but ANASAC consensus was that grants-with-time were overall favored (see Hibbard noted similar consensus from NRAO Users Committee (with similarly strong dissenting opinions). People can email about this, but should use

6) ALMA Workshops (Brogan)

7) ALMA Science IPT Science IPT concerns. (Wootten)

8) Date of face-to-face and next telecon

  • Date of next phone meeting will be on: July 13, 2007
  • We need to plan the next face-to-face. Please edit your constraints and preferences into
  • Possible Action items for face to face:
    • Membership and chair
    • Suggestions for future workshops
    • Splatalog
    • User grants discussion preparation: get more detailed input on NSF policies. Communicate Users committee report to ANASAC
    • Consider formal Charter for the ANASAC, formalize charge and response format, and consider a telecon cadence of once every two months.

Supplemental Material

-- JohnHibbard - 12 Jun 2007
Topic revision: r2 - 2007-06-12, JohnHibbard
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