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XMM-Newton Ninth Announcement of Opportunity (AO-9)

Due to a planned migration of the XMM-Newton SOC web portal, all SOC internet services (including ToO Alerts) will be unavailable Wednesday, 10 February from 10:00 to 13:00 (GMT).

Announcement of Opportunity

Effective 25 August, 2009, XMM-Newton observing proposals were solicited in response to the Ninth Announcement of Opportunity, AO-9.

A letter from ESA's Director of Science and Robotic Exploration, inviting you to participate in the Ninth Call for Proposals, is available in electronic form (pdf).

The Deadline for XMM-Newton AO-9 proposal submission was 9 October, 2009, 12:00 UT.

Important changes for AO-9 relative to earlier Calls

Resubmission of Large Programs

Some Large Programs approved in previous AOs may have failed to achieve the original scientific goal due to enhanced background radiation and the PI may want to request additional observing time. In this case the proposal shall be flagged as "resubmitted" and be identified as "Large Program" type, regardless of the total time requested in the current AO. See section 5.2.2 of the Policies and Procedures document.

Proposal Submission Documentation

The following AO-9 documentation is available:

Letter by the Director of Science and Robotic Exploration announcing AO-9 pdf
Policies and Procedures for the XMM-Newton AO-9 on-lineps.gzpdf
XMM-Newton Users Handbook (UHB) on-lineps.gzpdf
XMM-Newton Scientific Justification LaTeX Template
(Scientific Justification must not exceed 4 pages, 5 pages for Large and Very Large Programs)
Tex File

The XMM-Newton SOC highly recommends the use of:
  • the on-line documentation because it contains updated links to references in the text
  • the Scientific Justification LaTeX Template

AO-9 Timetable

Key milestones for AO-9 are:
Announcement of Opportunity 25 August 2009
Due date for Proposals 9 October 2009 (12:00 UT)
Final OTAC approved programme late December 2009
For approved proposals only:
Start of Phase II proposal submission 11 January 2010
Closure of Phase II proposal submission 5 February 2010
Start of AO-9 observations May 2010

Approved AO-9 observations are planned to be performed during the period May 2010 to April 2011 (approximate XMM-Newton revolutions 1903 to 2086).

Proposal Submission Procedure and Tools

XMM-Newton Proposals were submitted using the XMM-Newton Remote Proposal Submission software.

The following tools are available to assist AO-9 proposers:

Other Useful Links for Proposers

The following links are available to assist AO-9 proposers: The following external links may also be helpful:

Using the LaTeX Template File

Use of the provided LaTeX template to write the scientific justification is highly recommended. Proposers may submit their justifications either in one or two column format. Instructions to activate a specific column format are provided in the LaTeX template.

Proposal justifications MUST be submitted as one file in Portable Document Format (PDF). A PDF file can be generated from the LaTeX template in one of two ways:
  1. Use a LaTeX installation which allows you to create PDF files directly from the .tex file (e.g. pdflatex). Some installations of pdflatex do not allow you to include postscript figures. In this case you might use method 2.

  2. Use ps2pdf (preferably version 1.4) to convert a postscript file to PDF:
    > latex file.tex
    > dvips -Ppdf -G0 -o file.dvi
    > ps2pdf14 file.pdf
Please take note of the following points regarding the use of the LaTeX template provided:
  • Users must make sure that generated pdf output from the template is complete both when displayed with a viewer (acroread) and when printed on paper. LaTeX installations vary greatly and therefore it might not be possible to get all proposals to come out correctly with a single text page layout. In some cases the user will have to adjust the \topmargin=-7mm command in the template to vertically center the text.
  • The page limit of 4 pages (5 pages only for justifications of "Large Programs" and "Very Large Programs") includes everything of your to-be-submitted proposal justification. Sections 4 and 5 (on previous work and publications) have to be included within the page limit, too.
  • You are free to include color images in your proposal justification. Proposals are distributed to OTAC in electronic form. However, the scientific content of the images should still remain extractable when displayed or printed in black and white only.
  • The proposal justification can be created both in single and in two-column format. Instructions on how to switch between these two layouts are given in the LaTeX template.
  • The font size (11pt) is mandatory.
All questions regarding XMM-Newton proposal submission should be directed to the XMM-Newton Helpdesk.

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This page was last updated on 9 October, 2009.