Science at Gemini
|Based on this foundation,
the future of Gemini's instrumentation and the exciting science that it
enables, is now being defined. It began with the mandate by the Gemini Board
in 2001 to initiate a process that would define Gemini's science and instrumentation
plan for the next decade. The process culminated in the small resort town
of Aspen, Colorado, in June of 2003, when almost 100 scientists and Gemini
users came together to discuss future goals. The Aspen conference resulted
in the development of the formal science case and a detailed plan for future
instrumentation. At its November 2003 meeting, the Gemini Board approved
the recommendations of the Aspen conference and now the real work begins.
The scientists and Gemini users who came together in Aspen, Colorado, in June 2003 to discuss Gemini's future goals.
|Key Questions Posed at the Aspen
||The results of the so-called
"Aspen Process" can be distilled into a few basic questions (listed at left)
that Gemini intends to answer starting in the middle of this decade. These
questions can be conceptually grouped into three "Universes": Energy, Matter
boundaries and interfaces between these topics are perhaps best understood
in a piecemeal fashion, similar to the early steps in solving a jigsaw puzzle. Only through detailed
future observations will we collect enough pieces to understand the most important
links, bridges and gaps in the puzzle, and ultimately complete the picture
that represents the Universe that we live within.
The Gemini Observatory is pleased to announce that we are poised to launch a next-generation instrumentation program yielding tools that are more advanced, sensitive, and dramatically more scientifically enabling than anything built to date. This is all driven by the bold expectations of our astronomical community that, in the tradition of science, we can answer still deeper questions about our Universe.
An illustration of the major milestones involved in the Universe's evolution from the Big Bang (far left) to life on Earth (far right).
Illustration Credit: Augusto Damineli