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September 2009:

Call for Nominations for NASA Exoplanet Eploration Program Analysis Group:

The Astrophysics Division of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate is soliciting nominations for the Executive Committee of a newly established Exoplanet Exploration Program Analysis Group (ExoPAG). The inaugural ExoPAG Chair will be Jim Kasting, a long-time member of the astrobiology community and the NAI. The ExoPAG will be responsible for soliciting and coordinating community input into the development and execution of NASA's Exoplanet Exploration Program.
The deadline for receipt of nominations is Sept. 4, 2009.
See the attachment and website for nomination requirements and procedures.

March 2009:

Help to define a lunar lander

ESA’s Directorate of Human Space Flight has released a Request for Information (RFI) for experiments and payload elements for accommodation on their first lunar lander. It is intended that these inputs shall be used to inform the early design phases of the mission in advance of a formal Announcement of Opportunity.
The mission will be a precursor to a future lunar cargo lander supporting human exploration activities and will have the following objectives, in order of priority:
1. To advance European technological capabilities for future human exploration of the Moon;
2. To characterise the lunar environment and potential in situ resources to identify their implications for future human exploration;
3. To progress in the definition of tools, interfaces and operational techniques related to surface exploration;
4. To increase our understanding of the formation, history and evolution of the Moon.

We would be very interested to learn of potential payload elements that you may be involved with or that you may be aware of. Please pass this message on to anyone you think may be interested in responding to this call.
For information on this call and for details of how to submit a response please go to http://www.esa.int/esaHS/SEMBM4CDNRF_index_0.html or see the attached files:

May 2008:

AbGradNet, a student network on astrobiology:
AbGradNet is to help astrobiology grad students and postdocs communicate with each other

The last meeting of AbGradNet was held April 13-14 2008, in Santa Clara, CA, USA, in combination with AbSciCon.
It is planned to have the next meeting of AbGradNet together with EANA'09.
European students, interested to join AbGradNet should contact Vlada Stamenkovic under Vlada.Stamenkovic@dlr.de

April 2008:

EANA has been invited to attend the NAI EXECUTIVE COUNCIL MEETING, April 14, 2008, Santa Clara Convention Center, and to give a 15 min presentation about our association. The presentation has been given by Pascale Ehrenfreund.
For more details you can download "Presentation.pdf" file

CAREX (Coordination Action for Research Activities on life in Extreme Environments) is a Coordination Action funded by the European Union Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).
This project, coordinated by the British Antarctic Survey, involves nine European Core partners and 45 European and non-European Associated partners.
EANA has an observer status at CAREX and is represented by Charles Cockell.

The two main objectives of CAREX project are:
* to strengthen the structure of the (European) community involved in life in extreme environments research by catalysing networking and interactions among it,
* to further the knowledge of life in extreme environment by developing a strategic research agenda in this field.
For more information visit the CAREX website,
or download the "CAREX_Newsletter1.pdf" file (420kB)

European Science Foundation ESF:
Call for Expressions of Interest on Humans in Outer Space - HiOS
Deadline for submission: May 31, 2008

ESA is releasing a Call for Interest for flying small external payloads on Columbus, by means of a new external platform.

Call for Interest is now closed. A total of 65 good proposals involving more than 300 scientists were received by ESA. They cover different fields such as life and physical sciences, astrophysics, earth observation, robotics and technology demonstrations. They are now used to identify the user requirements for the on-going feasibility study of the SPERO Facility. After the Ministerial Conference approval of the funding for SPERO, ESA will issue an Announcement of Opportunity for the use of the SPERO Facility with more details on the SPERO Facility interfaces to the payloads.

For any query, please email columbus-sep@esa.it

The first astrobiology facility now accommodated on the Columbus module of the International Space Station:

The European EXPOSE facility has been conceived to support astrobiology and radiation biology research in space designed and has been developed by ESA to fly on the external platforms of the International Space Station ISS. EXPOSE-E has been launch on February 7, 2008 together with the European Columbus module to the ISS, it was attached to the Columbus balcony as part of the technology platform EUTEF on February 15 by Extravehicular Activity (EVA) of the astronauts and finally activated on February 20. EXPOSE-E hosts experiments prepared by scientists from various European Research Institutes as follows:

Principal Investigator


Topic of research

G. Horneck



To determine the resistance of spacecraft isolates to outer space for planetary protection purposes

D. Tepfer

CNRS, Versailles (F)


To test plant seed as a terrestrial model for a Panspermia vehicle and as a source of universal UV screens

H. Cottin

CNRS, Orleans (F)


To study prebiotic organic chemistry on the International Space Station

P. Rettberg



To study molecular adaptation strategies of microorganisms to different space and planetary UV climate conditions

S. Onofri

Universita`degli studi della Tuscia di Viterbo (I)


To study the resistance of lichens and lithic fungi at space conditions

D-P. Häder

University of Erlangen (D)


Radiation dosimetry

The operation of EXPOSE will be managed by the German Aerospace Center, User support Center MUSC. It provides on-line data tracking of EXPOSE.

For more information see:
http://www.dlr.de/iss/ (currently in German)
http://www.go.dlr.de/musc/expose/ (currently in German)
where you can also follow the temperature history of EXPOSE under:

January 2008:

Date: January 8, 2008.
ISSOL call for nominations for the Miller award for young scientists, deadline: April 1st, 2008

Stanley L. Miller Award

In recognition to the pioneering role Stanley L. Miller played in our understanding of the origins of life and the creation or our society, ISSOL - the International Astrobiology Society shall present at each triennial meeting a Stanley L. Miller Award for outstanding contributions by a young scientist (under the age of 37) to origins of life research. The award is based on scientific merit without regard to nationality. The recipient will be honored at the awards banquet at the close of the triennial meeting. The next ISSOL meeting will be held in Florence from August 24-29, 2008 (http://www.dbag.unifi.it/issol2008/).

This is a formal call for nominations of outstanding young scientists eligible for the Stanley L. Miller Award. Nominations should be accompanied by a statement from the nominator of ~250 words describing the nominee's contributions to the field and a list of not more than ten (10) of the nominee's major publications.

Applications should be sent before April 1st, 2008 to the Miller Award Selection committee

Chair: Pascale Ehrenfreund (Email: p.ehrenfreund@chem.leidenuniv.nl ).

The Miller Award Selection Committee:

Pascale Ehrenfreund (Leiden University, Netherlands)

Jack Szostak (Harvard Medical Center, USA)

Jochen Brocks (Australian National University, Australia)

EANA Meeting in Turku 2007 - Photo Gallery - Photos by Sohan Jheeta

Wonderful conference - Good memories