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SOFIA at 237th AAS Meeting

The SOFIA Science Center is organizing several events at the 237th AAS meeting (online), including the special session 'Assessing the Impact of Stellar Feedback' (Tuesday January 12, from 4:10 pm to 5:40 pm Eastern); the SOFIA Town Hall; and webinars. More information here.

SOFIA Returns to Flight

SOFIA has returned to science operations with a new series of flights designed to study the chemistry of galaxies. SOFIA flights were suspended on March 19 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. With the resumption of flights out of SOFIA’s base at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center in Palmdale, California, new procedures are in place to ensure the health and safety of staff while enabling the observations of celestial targets visible from the Northern Hemisphere. SOFIA started by flying two flights beginning Aug. 17, to allow the team time to evaluate and adjust the new procedures, and now plans to return to its regular observing schedule with about four flights each week. Read the full announcement here.

Cycle 9 Calls for Proposals

The Cycle 9 proposal call is closed. The deadline for submitting proposals was September 4, 2020, 21:00 PDT (September 5, 2020, 4:00 UTC). Proposal selections will be announced in winter 2020. Detailed information about the Cycle 9 calls can be found on the Cycle 9 page.

Two Calls for Proposals are offered:

- A Call for regular programs, for which approximately 500 hours of observations will be offered and funding up to $4M is expected to be available for eligible proposers

- A Call for the SOFIA Legacy Program, which enables programs producing a rich archival dataset of significant scientific value to the astronomical community. Up to four legacy proposals will be accepted, with each allocated up to ~400 hours of observing time (~200 hours of observations per cycle). Funding is expected to be available at the level of $2M per year.

All six instruments -- EXES, FIFI-LS, FORCAST, FPI+, GREAT, and HAWC+ -- will be available during the Cycle (July 1, 2021 to September 31, 2022). SOFIA plans to offer three Southern deployments: two long deployments from July to mid-September 2021 and 2022, offering GREAT and HAWC+, and a short deployment in March 2022 offering FIFI-LS. A formal update to the Calls was released on July 24, 2020.

The HelpDesk is open to answer any question and inquiry from the community: sofia_help@sofia.usra.edu.

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