NASA has chosen Earth scientist Kate Calvin to serve in the dual roles of chief scientist and senior climate advisor, bringing new visibility to the agency’s efforts to monitor and mitigate climate change.
Aside from its highest-profile recommendations, the latest astronomy and astrophysics decadal survey recommends priorities for small and mid-scale projects, with a particular emphasis on time-domain and multi-messenger astronomy. It also calls for increased spending on technology development.
The National Academies' latest decadal survey of astronomy and astrophysics recommends federal agencies expand their efforts to address persistent demographic disparities in the field and urges astronomers to deepen their engagement with local communities.
STEM education programs across federal agencies would see budget increases under the House’s and Senate’s spending proposals for fiscal year 2022, portions of which would support diversity and inclusion initiatives proposed by the Biden administration.
New reports explore technical and policy actions to mitigate the impacts of light pollution from planned satellite megaconstellations, which threaten to severely interfere with ground-based astronomical observations and cause other environmental and cultural harms.
Among the highest priorities of the National Academies’ latest astronomy and astrophysics decadal survey are that the U.S. build a large infrared/optical/ultraviolet space telescope and advance one or preferably both of the ground-based facilities planned under the Extremely Large Telescope Program.
House and Senate proposals for NASA’s fiscal year 2022 science budget mostly track the administration’s request, providing particularly significant funding increases for the Planetary Science and Earth Science Divisions. Appropriators have sent mixed signals about the fate of the airborne SOFIA telescope, which NASA has proposed to terminate.
A federal judge has acquitted nanotechnologist Anming Hu on charges that he defrauded NASA by failing to disclose contracts with a Chinese academic institution. The judge found Department of Justice prosecutors presented unconvincing evidence of malign intent, echoing broader criticisms that many DOJ ‘China Initiative’ cases are ill-founded.
With telecommunications applications increasingly occupying radio spectrum bands close to those used for critical satellite-based weather monitoring and research, the House Science Committee is examining why federal agencies have had difficulty reconciling their spectrum-related interests.
The Biden administration is requesting budget increases for many existing STEM education programs for fiscal year 2022 and several science agencies are proposing new activities aimed at diversifying both their own workforces and the broader STEM community.