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After a long and distinguished career at The Ohio State University, first as Chair of the Department of Astronomy and then since 2006 as Vice Provost of Graduate Studies and Dean of the Graduate School, Patrick Osmer is stepping down from university administration effective August 31 to return to his roots in the astronomy research community. We are very fortunate that Pat has agreed to join the LSST team as a senior advisor to the Corporation. 

LSSTC is in the midst of mounting a campaign to raise public and private investment in enabling science with LSST. The LSST data set will represent the ultimate in big data challenges to the science community and a paradigm shift for astronomy and physics. Preparing the science community now to face this challenge is a primary goal for LSSTC, one that will be significantly enhanced by Pat's standing in the community as a scientist and experienced academic administrator. His connections in the international astronomy community will also be invaluable to another primary goal of the LSSTC, namely raising international contributions to operations of LSST. Finally, his experience and strong connections to the astronomy community will be a tremendous asset to our engagement in initial planning with AURA, SLAC and the LSST Project for LSST operations.

LSSTC is very excited by this development and looks forward to working with Pat to realize these important goals. Welcome Pat to the LSSTC team.

The Large Synoptic Survey Telescope’s ‘Eye’ Will be Built at SLAC

August 31, 2015 Menlo Park, Calif. — The Department of Energy has approved the start of construction for a 3.2-gigapixel digital camera – the world’s largest – at the heart of the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST). Assembled at the DOE's SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, the camera will be the eye of LSST, revealing unprecedented details of the universe and helping unravel some of its greatest mysteries. The construction milestone, known as Critical Decision 3, is the last major approval decision before the acceptance of the finished camera, said LSST Director Steven Kahn: “Now we can go ahead and procure components and start building it.”

Each year, the LSSTC Enabling Science Committee will solicit proposals for LSSTC funding to support workshops, schools and other projects to prepare for the research, education and outreach opportunities with the LSST data.  The next call will be issued early in 2016.

LSST marked a major milestone on April 14, 2015, with the traditional First Stone (Primera Piedra) ceremony taking place on Cerro Pachón, Chile.  While site leveling has already begun, laying of the first stone is a Chilean tradition marking the construction start for a new astronomical observatory.  The LSST First Stone is unveiled by (L-R) US Ambassador to Chile Michael A. Hammer, Chilean President Michelle Bachelet, NSF Director France Cordova, and LSST Director Steven Kahn.

Join Charles Simonyi and Bill Gates in their support of LSST by participating in the $1M Challenge Grant before February of 2016.  These generous benefactors will match dollar for dollar donations made to LSSTC or to our member institutions in support of LSST-related work.  Simonyi and Gates have already donated $20M and $10M respectively to support fabrication of the LSST primary optics as described in this 2008 press release.  Now you can add your dollars to theirs and support the amazing science and outreach to come from the extrordinary LSST facility.

On March 5, 2015, representatives from the Institut National de Physique Nucléaire et de Physique des Particules (IN2P3), of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS), a French public scientific and technological institution, the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope Corporation (LSSTC), SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, The LSST Project Office (LSSTPO), and The National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, met in Paris, France to sign two agreements solidifying partnerships related to the construction, operations, and exploitation of the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST).

 January 10, 2015

The LSST Corporation (LSSTC) and its member institutions celebrated the completion of the LSST M1M3 telescope mirror on January 10, 2015 in Tucson, Arizona. The 8-meter monolithic primary/tertiary mirror (M1M3) was constructed and spun cast into a single piece of glass in 2008; in the more than 6 years since, the University of Arizona’s Steward Observatory Mirror Lab (SOML) meticulously polished the two separate figures. The M1M3 mirror is at the heart of the LSST telescope and the celebration marked a huge step toward making LSST a reality.

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On behalf of David MacFarlane, Board Chair

Dear Colleagues: I am pleased to inform you that Patricia Eliason, currently with the National Solar Observatory (NSO), has accepted an offer as the LSSTC Executive Officer with a start date of September 29. The Board envisions that the Executive Officer, working in close coordination with Steve Kahn, the LSST Director, will be a key part of LSSTC’s strategy of supporting science and science preparations with LSST, raising private funding to help realize our ambitions in these activities, and concluding agreements with international partners for contributions during the operational phase of LSST.


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