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Input Welcome for JWST’s Early Release Observations

Thursday, October 19, 2017 - 14:00

This letter is posted on behalf of the JWST Early Release Observations Committee:

Dear Colleague:

The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) Early Release Observations (ERO) will be among the first images and spectra taken during the commissioning of the observatory after its launch, now planned for the second quarter of 2019. They represent JWST’s debut to the world and are intended to have immediate and dramatic appeal for a broad audience.

The JWST ERO Committee welcomes the collective expertise of the astronomical community and invites suggestions for ERO observations. We are looking for observations that will showcase JWST’s instruments and scientific capabilities. The data will become public when the ERO products are released at the end of commissioning. Your input, while appreciated, will not be formally acknowledged, and there will be no grant funding or pre-release access to the data. However, your input will be a valued contribution to JWST’s mission!

Keep the following in mind as you make your suggestions:

  • The ERO data are not intended to fulfill the objectives of the Director's Discretionary Early Release Science Program.
  • The full suite of observations will include all instruments, so that any instrument or instrument combination may be suggested.
  • Targets visible at any time of year are welcome.
  • Your suggested target should ideally be contained in, and substantially fill, the field of view (FOV). If your target is larger than the FOV, please provide the recommended right ascension and declination within the target, or discuss the importance of mosaicking.

Ideal information includes:

  • Target name or other designation
  • Right ascension and declination (J2000)
  • An explanation of why this is a good candidate for ERO
  • Observing modes (imaging and/or spectroscopy)
  • Instrument or instruments
  • Filters and other observational details
  • Any other material that will help us evaluate your suggestion

For additional resources, please use the following links:

We appreciate your input as we plan for JWST’s Early Release Observations. Please send your ideas at your earliest convenience by email to Thank you!

— The ERO Committee

Kathryn Flanagan (STScI) – Coordination Scientist
Elena Sabbi (STScI) – Executive Secretary
Michael Balogh (Univ. of Waterloo / CSA)
Jonathan Gardner (NASA GSFC)
Hashima Hasan (NASA HQ)
Zolt Levay (STScI)
Antonella Nota (ESA/STScI)

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