A Vision for NASA in space Astronomy in the 2030s and Beyond
Once each decade since the 1960s, the US national astronomical community has undertaken a comprehensive survey of the field in order to identify the currently most compelling astrophysical problems and identifying the resources that it will take to address them. Both the National Science Foundation and NASA rely on the rankings produced by the decadal committee in determining priorities for projects, facilities, and missions. Based on recent experience, the NASA Astrophysics Division decided to fund four mission concepts studies to bring them to levels of maturity that at least one of them could be selected for a new start in the 2020s. I will discuss the most ambitious of these four mission concepts, the Large Ultraviolet Optical Infrared Surveyor (LUVOIR) which is a true successor to the Hubble Space Telescope, but with 100 to 1000 times the sensitivity. And it’s really big.