HST Support

Claus Leitherer is Deputy Mission Head of the Science Mission Office. The principal objective of the Science Mission Office is enabling research, both within STScI and in the broader astronomical community. SMO maintains the internal science infrastructure for STScI research staff. SMO is also responsible for science policy issues, including supporting the Space Telescope Users Committee, the HST and JWST telescope allocation processes and policy implementation for JWST. Learn more about our organization.


HST Peer Review

Claus Leitherer's group manages the allocation of Hubble observing time, conducts the process of selecting the science program, including General Observers and Archival Researchers, and establishes science metrics to evaluate success.

We invite scientists to participate in annual cycle of the HST observations. The telescope and its instruments were built under the auspices of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the European Space Agency (ESA). Management of HST's scientific program is carried out by the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI). We anticipate allocating more than 3000 orbits in each cycle, including 1800 orbits for Small Programs, 600 orbits for Medium Programs, and 1000 orbits for Large and Treasury Programs. An additional 1000 Snapshot observations and 500 Pure-Parallel observations may be allocated. Abstracts of previously accepted programs can be found on the HST proposal catalogs webpage.

Each cycle our group assembles about 150 scientists to conduct the HST proposal review. For more information, visit our Peer Review Webpage.

Are you interested in serving on one of the panels? We are always looking for astronomers of any HST related field who would like to support this process. Send email to Claus Leitherer if you would like to serve.


Director's Discretionary Time

Up to 10% of the available HST observing time may be reserved for Director's Discretionary (DD) allocation. A DD proposal is appropriate when a truly unexpected transient phenomenon occurs or when developments since the last proposal cycle make a time-critical observation necessary.

Visit the DD page for more information if you are interested in submitting a DD proposal.


Hubble Fellowships

The Hubble Postdoctoral Fellowship Program supports outstanding postdoctoral scientists whose research is broadly related to NASA Cosmic Origins scientific goals as addressed by any of the missions in that program: the Herschel Space Observatory, Hubble Space Telescope (HST), James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA), and the Spitzer Space Telescope.

Announcement of Opportunity for the 2016 Program.

Prior to 2009, the Hubble Fellowship program was associated with the Hubble Space Telescope. The Spitzer Fellowship program funded fellows associated with the Spitzer telescope and science program. Those two programs were combined in 2009 in a single fellowship program, also entitled the Hubble Fellowship Program, but supporting fellows undertaking research associated with all missions within the Cosmic Origins theme. Click here for a list of all current and previous Hubble Fellows.

Questions? Contact Claus Leitherer