Vancouver, British Columbia — Canadian astronomers today released the Report of the Long-Range Planning Panel on Canadian Astronomy and Astrophysics in the 21st Century.
The Report, entitled "The Origins of Structure in the Universe", outlines areas critical to Canadian astronomy that need to be developed over the next fifteen years to maintain a Canadian role at the forefront of this field. It was released at CASCA 2000, the Canadian Astronomical Society’s 31st Annual Meeting, being held May 25-28 on the University of British Columbia campus. More than 100 astronomers are attending this conference.
"This Long Range Plan expresses the vision of the entire astronomical community for the future of astronomy in Canada," said Michael DeRobertis, President of the Canadian Astronomical Society (CASCA). "It has the broad-based support from astronomers in our universities and national laboratories, as well as from the amateur community."
The Report is the result of the work of the Long-Range Planning Panel, comprising five distinguished Canadian astronomers, as well as two from the United States. The panel was established by CASCA, the National Research Council (NRC) and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) in 1998.
The Panel consulted with the astronomical community nationally and internationally in order to identify areas critical to the future of astronomy in Canada and to produce the Long-Range Plan from those findings.
Some of the recommendations in their Report include:
* Canada’s participation in key international projects in the space-based   and ground-based astronomy facilities, the Next Generation Space   Telescope and the Atacama Large Millimetre Array
* enhancement of Canada’s ongoing observatory and facility commitments * increased training opportunities for new astronomers through fellowship   programs and some increase in staff at national laboratories
* establishing university laboratories for experimental astrophysics * improvement in computing for astronomical data interpretation * an enhanced public outreach program
The Report also recommends that over the next decade Canada invest $100 million in space-based programs through the Canadian Space Agency (CSA), $147 million for facilities that NRC develops for the Canadian research community, and an additional $17 million through NSERC to support the university-based research effort.
NRC is mandated to operate and manage Canada’s national astronomical research facilities and NSERC provides funding to university-based research programs in astronomy.
For further information, please contact:
Jaymie Matthews
(604) 822-2696
Robert Lamontagne
UniversitÈ de MontrÈal
(514) 343-6111 poste 3195
e-mail: lamont@ASTRO.UMontreal.CA
Jacques VallÈe
National Research Council
(250) 363-6952
[NOTE: Full report is available at (English version) (French version)]