Herschel Key Programs Workshop 20-23 Februay 2006


The "Herschel Key Programs Workshop", organized by the HIFI consortium, took place in the Lorentz Center from 20 to 23 February 2006. The Herschel Space Observatory, an ESA cornerstone mission, is the first space facility dedicated to the submillimetre and far-infrared wavelength range, and will be operated as a multi-user astronomical observatory that will provide observation opportunities to the entire astronomical community. The launch is scheduled for 2008. It will carry a 3.5 metre passively cooled telescope, and will perform imaging photometry and spectrometry in the far-infrared and submillimetre part of the spectrum, covering approximately the 60-670 micrometres range. The science payload consists of three instruments which will be provided by consortia led by Principal Investigators: The Heterodyne Instrument for the Far-Infrared, HIFI, whose PI is Th. de Graauw, SRON, Groningen, The Netherlands; the Photodetector Array Camera and Spectrometer, PACS, whose PI is A. Poglitsch, MPE, Garching, Germany; and the Spectral and Photometric Imaging REceiver, SPIRE, whose PI is M. Griffin, Cardiff University, UK. Because of our limited knowledge of the astronomical sky at far-infrared and sub-millimetre wavelengths, the Herschel mission is often referred to as "being its own precursor". As a consequence of this, large coherent observing programs will be an essential part of the operational program of Herschel.

The main purpose of the workshop was to provide an overview of the state of the key programs developed by the three instrument consortia and to facilitate and coordinate the interaction between the groups involved. The workshop brought together Co-Investigators from the three Herschel instruments and members of the Herschel Science Centre involved in these Key Programs. Each day featured one or two different, broad scientific themes.


20 February: Solar System - All day


20 February: Herschel GT-O KP on Debris Disks


21 February: Star formation Water


21 February Star formation Spectral Survey


22 February: Star Formation coordination: Orion-SgrB2 followed by a first meeting on a GTO program on Orion-SGrB2 mapping


23 February ISM coordination


Some 40 scientists from Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom, the United States, attended the meeting. Each day started with presentations of the relevant key programs in the different instrument teams, their observing strategies, analysis tools, and preparatory science. This was followed by detailed discussions on the coordination of the observing source lists, the spectral line lists, data rights, and joint publication policies. The workshop achieved its objectives and definitely helped in determining the future path for the preparation of the Key Program proposals. Detailed actions were assigned to follow up on the key issues.


We would like to thank the Lorentz Center staff, Dr. Martje Kruk-de Bruin and Stephanie Hessing for their professional and efficient support, and very specially for their patience with the organizers and their hospitality and readiness to discuss any aspect of the local organization. The excellent facilities and good atmosphere of the Lorentz Center clearly contributed to the success of the workshop.