Looking Beyond WFIRST, the next large X-Ray Mission - Lynx

September 7, 2017 at 7 pm at USSRC Education Training Facility
Dr. Jessica Gaskin, NASA Marshall Spaceflight Center

Lynx is the next great X-ray observatory. Following on the heels of the Great Chandra X-ray Observatory (http://chandra.harvard.edu/), Lynx will have orders of magnitude improvement in sensitivity and will bring unprecedented spectroscopic capability to the table.

Lynx will allow astronomers to gain a fundamental understanding of the formation and evolution of galaxies, the creation and local interactions of the first black holes (black hole seeds), the evolution of the cosmic structure, and the stars that make up our universe. Lynx is currently in its concept phase and will be one of a few mission concepts presented to the 2020 Astrophysics Decadal Survey Committee for prioritization.

The Lynx concept development is led by the NASA HQ appointed Lynx Science and Technology Definition Team to develop a comprehensive science case and mission concept, with a launch in the 2030s. The Lynx Science and Technology Definition Team is supported by the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Study Office in partnership with the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory.

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About Dr. Jessica Gaskin

Dr. Gaskin currently works in the NASA MSFC Astronomy Group and is the HQ-appointed Study-Scientist for the Lynx (formerly X-Ray Surveyor) Large Mission Concept Study. Dr. Gaskin is responsible for supporting the concept development and acts as an interface between the community, HQ, Program Office, and the STDT. The majority of Dr. Gaskin’s career, over a decade, has been in the design, development, and implementation of instrumentation for high-energy astrophysics for both large- and small-scale payloads.

She is currently PI for the High Energy Replicated Optics to Explore the Sun (HEROES) payload and for the development of a miniaturized scanning electron microscope for Mars. Dr. Gaskin is Associate Editor for the Journal of Astronomical Instrumentation (JAI), World Scientific, and a member of NASA Balloon Working Group to advise HQ on the program. She actively participates on NASA review panels and enjoys supporting NASA-community service efforts. In addition, Dr. Gaskin enjoys mentoring students of every age. She has overseen numerous NASA Academy and Robotics Academy students, mentored an Undergraduate Research Instrument Program (USIP) team, and has volunteered her time as Science Olympiad and Science Fair judge. Dr. Gaskin is and has been advisor to multiple Ph.D. students and has spoken at middle schools and to large groups of students, often with a focus on women in STEM fields.


USSRC Education Training Facility

U.S. Space and Rocket Center's Education Training Facility (ETF) is located approximate at 5 Tranquility Base [Google Map] on the campus of U.S. Space and Rocket Center (USSRC). Sometime the online maps will take you to the Marriott, which share the same address. It is the brown building just after the turn to the Marriott when you are approaching USSRC. It has both the USSRC and NASA logo on the main entrance. On Google Map it is listed as "Marshall Institute Education Training Facility. HAL5's meeting takes place in the main auditorium on the first floor. Toward the back of the building when you come in. There will be signage pointing you to the auditorium.


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