XMM-Newton-NEWS  #97,    07-Sep-2009

XMM-Newton Science Operations Centre at
ESA's European Space Astronomy Centre,
P.O. Box - Apdo. 78, 28691 Villanueva de la Cañada, Madrid, Spain

SOC Home Page: https://www.cosmos.esa.int/web/xmm-newton/
Helpdesk web interface: https://www.cosmos.esa.int/web/xmm-newton/xmm-newton-helpdesk
Helpdesk email address: xmmhelp@sciops.esa.int
News Mailing List: https://www.cosmos.esa.int/web/xmm-newton/newsletter


EPIC Principal Investigator

In XMM-Newton Newsletter #91 we had the sad duty of informing our subscribers about the untimely death of Professor Martin Turner. We are pleased to report that his duties as the Principal Investigator of the EPIC instruments on-board XMM-Newton have been transferred to Dr. Steven Sembay of The University of Leicester, UK.

Dr. Sembay joined the Leicester University X-ray and Observational Astronomy group in 1989 as a post-doctoral research astrophysicist, and became a member of the EPIC instrument team in 1997, just before the ground calibration campaign of the EPIC-MOS instruments began in earnest at the Orsay and Panter facilities. In 2001 he became the manager of the UK EPIC team at Leicester and the coordinator of the international EPIC consortium calibration and instrument health meetings which have been held on a regular basis since launch.

Let us know about XMM-Newton related Ph.D.

The XMM-Newton team is collecting information about the completion of doctorates and Ph.D. theses based on (or making use of) XMM-Newton observations since the launch of the mission.

This information is one of the measures of the scientific impact of XMM-Newton and represents an important support for the mission. Ideally, it is our intention to collect the complete list of Ph.D. works based on XMM-Newton data and this is why we need your help.

We would appreciate if you - being a candidate or supervisor of a doctorate - could let us know the following details:

Please contact us through the helpdesk at:


or sending an e-mail to xmmhelp@sciops.esa.int, with Subject: PRIVATE: Ph.D. thesis work, in case you want to flag your message as private. The message can also be flagged as private using the HelpDesk web interface. In any case, all provided information will be handled confidentially.

Conference "Chandra's First Decade of Discovery":
deadline for abstract submission and registration extended

As announced in issue #91 of the XMM-Newton Newsletter, the conference "Chandra's First Decade of Discovery" will be held on September 22-25, 2009 at the Seaport Hotel, Boston, US.

The deadline for abstract submission and for registration has been extended to Friday, 11th of September.

More information and links to the abstract submission and registration pages are available at the conference website at:


Conference Announcement: "Probing strong gravity near black holes"

The conference "Probing strong gravity near black holes" will be held on 2010 Feb 15-18 in Prague, Czech Republic.

The conference will discuss and compare different methods of studying strong gravity effects around astrophysical black holes of all masses. Both theoretical and, when available, observational points of view will be discussed in the context of present and future approaches: line and continuum spectroscopy, timing, polarimetry, imaging.

More information is available from the conference web site at:


Yours sincerely,
XMM-Newton SOC