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HEASARC News: Swift Cycle 7 Information

Swift Cycle 7: Proposals Due September 29, 2010

The Swift Guest Investigator (GI) Program solicits proposals for basic research relevant to the Swift gamma-ray burst mission. The Swift GI program is intended to provide the following to participating scientists:

1. Funding (U.S. PIs only) for:
- Theoretical investigations that will advance the Swift mission science return;
- Correlative GRB observations involving new or enhanced IR ground-based capabilities for investigating high redshift bursts;
- Other correlative GRB projects; and
- New Swift GRB projects.

2. Observations (and funding for U.S. PIs) for:
- non-ToO observations of non-GRB targets;
- ToO observations of non-GRBs and GRBs; and
- 'Fill-in' targets.

The deadline for submitting science proposals for the Swift Cycle 7 GI program is September 29, 2010, 4:30PM EDT.

New for Cycle 7:

- Notices of Intent (NOIs): NOIs are no longer due.

- Monitoring Programs: Monitoring programs are defined as programs requiring two or more observations (or "visits", where each "visit" is a scheduled observation of a particular target) of the same object. No more than 1,500 visits will be permitted in Cycle 7 (total for all proposal categories). No distinction is being made anymore whether these visits are short (<4 ks) or long (>4 ks).

- Time-Constrained Observations: Time-constrained observations are defined as observations that have to be performed within a certain time window. These can be ToOs or non-ToOs, either monitoring or non-monitoring observations, but not Fill-in observations. These include phase-constrained proposals, coordinated observing campaigns with ground- or space-based facilities, etc. Time-constrained observations are subject to the following limits:

    The window duration must exceed 3 hours.
    The maximum number of time-constrained observations has been increased from 300 to 500 for Cycle 7.
    Previous restrictions on the maximum number of highest- and high-priority ToOs that will be performed have been dropped for Cycle 7.

For coordinated and constrained observations, it is the proposer's responsibility to inform the Swift Science Operations Team (by sending a ToO request) of the observing time window at least one week before observations commence.

- Available Observing Time: The total available time for ToO observations has been increased from 800 ks to 1 Ms. The total available time for non-ToO observations (2 Ms) and Fill-in targets (1 Ms) have not changed compared to Cycle 6.

- Observation Length: Requested observing time is limited to between 1 ks minimum and 40 ks maximum per observation (instead of a maximum of 20 ks during previous cycles). Because Swift has no continuous viewing zones, all observations longer than 2 ks are likely to be broken into multiple visits by the Swift science planners.

- Page Limit for Proposals: Proposals for correlative GRB observations that intend to bring new or enhanced ground-based IR capabilities online have a page limit of 6 pages. Proposals in all other proposal categories have a 4 page limit. No supporting materials (e.g., CV, current and pending support, etc.) are permitted. We encourage you to use the LaTeX template or MS Word template for the scientific part of the proposal (i.e., the written text component of the proposal). The template and style files needed to compile the LaTeX file can be found on the main Swift Cycle 7 web site (http://heasarc.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/swift/proposals/swiftgi.html).

- Budget Narrative: Proposers must submit a budget narrative that explains in sufficient detail how the proposed funds will be used to achieve the goals outlined in the proposal. The budget narrative has a 1-page limit that will not count toward the above page limit.

- GRB ToOs: Cycle 7 has the added opportunity to propose for GRB ToOs that are detected with instruments other than Swift (e.g., MAXI, Fermi, etc).

- Changes to Swift GRB Operations: Cycle 7 will allow proposals that request changes or additions to current Swift strategies to detect or observe GRBs or to perform innovate Swift GRB analysis. Proposals that request changes to Swift onboard capabilities or operational procedures may require special scrutiny during the review process and may require approval by the Swift Configuration Control Board before implementation. Investigators who consider such proposals need to consult with the Swift team prior to proposal submission.

- Correlated GRB Observations: Proposals who request funding for GRB correlative observations need to clearly demonstrate in their proposal that such data will be rapidly made available to the public.

- Other Restrictions: The restriction in previous Cycles that no more than 500 ks of observing time will be allocated to GI targets in each 6-hour rang in right ascension (RA) has been dropped. The restriction in previous Cycles that no more than 20% of the accepted GI time will be awarded to time-constrained observations has been dropped.

- Release of Funds: Funds will be released to successful U.S. PIs after the start of FY12 in October 2011.

Volunteer Reviewers:

The NASA Swift Guest Investigator Program is looking for volunteer Swift Cycle 7 Peer Reviewers. A review by competent peers benefits the entire science community by ensuring that the programs carried out and the science return for Swift are of the highest quality. We would like to appeal to you to support this system and contribute to the common good by serving as a Peer Reviewer. The Review will take place at the Baltimore Inner Harbor in early December. Reviewers must have a PhD at the time of the peer review. To be considered as a Reviewer for Swift Cycle 7, please send an email with your name, affiliation, and area of expertise to peer_review@athena.gsfc.nasa.gov<mailto:peer_review@athena.gsfc.nasa.gov>.

Detailed information about the Swift Cycle 7 GI Program can be found following the links below.


If you have questions about the Swift Cycle 7 GI Program, please contact us via the Feedback Form:

Dr. Stefan Immler
Swift Guest Investigator Program Lead
A service of the High Energy Astrophysics Science Archive Research Center (HEASARC)

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