STScI Logo

Space Telescope Science Institute
INS Mission Statement

Linda Smith, Division Head
Margaret Meixner, Deputy
Robin Auer (Robin Auer) - Administrative Supervisor

The Instruments Division (INS) is home for the scientific and engineering staff that work directly on Hubble Space Telescope, James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), and future missions. It supervises functional assignments of individual scientists to each of the three Mission Offices and is responsible for career growth and professional development of its staff, for all personnel decisions, and for establishing and developing expertise in its technical domain. INS supports Hubble observers to use the science instruments with maximum effectiveness, providing scientific and technical advice in developing observing programs and interpreting data. It calibrates and characterizes the science instruments. It facilitates the use of new science instruments by participating in their development, by capturing and transferring information about instrument operation and calibration to the Institute, and by coordinating the commissioning of all the instruments following a servicing mission. For JWST, INS staff are responsible for mastering the technical details associated with the JWST science instruments, for overseeing the work of the Operations Detector Laboratory, for establishing and maintaining good communications between STScI and the instrument development teams, and for ensuring that STScI's Science & Operations Center systems and procedures meet the needs of the users and the instrument development teams.

The Research and Instrument Analysis Branch assists Instrument Scientists and HST General Observers in the processing and analysis of scientific, calibration and engineering data. This type of support involves past, present and future HST instruments and development of the James Webb Space Telescope as well as hardware testing at STScI's Operations Detector Lab. In addition, the Data Analysts provide data processing and scientific analysis for the scientific programs of STScI staff scientists.

The Telescopes Branch maintains the Hubble focal plane model, monitors telescope focus, and supports use of the Fine Guidance Sensors (FGS) as astrometry science instruments. It also characterizes the anticipated imaging performance of JWST and its scientific capabilities. A small engineering team maintains engineering knowledge of the Hubble instruments and spacecraft, monitors health and performance of the instruments, tracks the status of their limited-life items, and maintains the calibration database system.

The ACS+WFPC2 Team is responsible for the support and utilization of the Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) and the Wide Field/Planetary Camera 2 (WFPC2).

The NICMOS Team is responsible for the support and utilization of the Near Infrared Camera and Multi-Object Spectrometer.

The COS+STIS Team is responsible for preparing for the support and utilization of the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) after its installation on HST during Servicing Mission 4 (SM4), and preparing for the repair of the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) on SM4. The team also supports archival analysis of data from the retired spectrographs.

The WFC3 Team is responsible for preparing for the support and utilization of the Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3) after its installation on HST during SM4.

The Webb Instruments Support Team (WIST) participates in the development of instruments for JWST and their supporting ground system.