SPICA collaboration meeting

SPICA collaboration meeting

Leiden, March 9-11, 2020

SPICA collaboration meeting

SPICA collaboration meeting

Leiden, March 9-11, 2020

Update March 10th

The presentations for this meeting are accessible through the SAFARI consortium website (https://www.sron.nl/home-safari) under

      meetings -> Minutes/Presentations -> Consortium meetings -> 202003 Collaboration Meeting Cloud

 This specific part of the website is password protected, for those that do not yet have it the user/password can be obtained from the SAFARI team.


Update March 9th

A reworked agenda has been created and, including all necessary details for remote participation,  sent around. The reworked agenda has a somewhat condensed program for the plenary sessions, but remains virtually the same for al science working group sessions on Tuesday and Wednesday morning. The B-BOP dedicated session has been taken out of the program, and the SAFARI session has also been condensed somewhat. The meeting closes with a 1 hour plenary session Wednesday starting at 11:30, there is no plenary program for Wednesday afternoon, however there are still some SAFARI splinters at that time. Please have a look at the program for more details.

Participation is open for all interested collaboration members, however please be aware that in a virtual meeting we need to be really weary of disturbances - so please mute your microphone at all times, unless your are given the floor. We will try to be as strict as possible in sticking to agenda times, please help us by not pushing the limits of your presentation or discussion time


As always, we will be discussing the overall SPICA progress and plans, SPICA science issues and operations, as well as instrument development progress. Like during the past meetings, we will do activities in parallel: science discussions in parallel to the instrument technical/progress discussions for the two European instruments. This will allow us to stay within the 3 days while still tackling all the subjects. 

This particular collaboration meeting is particularly important as it marks the freezing of all main elements of the mission, with a special focus on the science goals. To achieve this in the opening session on Monday afternoon we will devote a large block of time on presentations and plenary discussions of the main SPICA science goals as have been prepared by the science Working Groups. On Tuesday and Wednesday  Working Group sessions are planned to further develop the science goals, where relevant incorporate the comments from the plenary discussion, and to plan the next steps needed towards underpinning these goals in the Yellow Book.

Meeting Etiquette:

All zoom links can be accessed by up to 100 participants, apart from the plenary session zoom link that has been set up to allow for up to 1000 participants (note: this has not been tested, and will be put to test if/once the plenary session participation exceeds 100).

When connecting to zoom, please note the following etiquette:

  • mute your microphone on entry;
  • have the camera off if you are connecting as an individual;
  • have the camera on if you are connecting from a room system, and there are multiple people in the room;
  • virtually “raise your hand” through zoom options if you have a question (this will be monitored by the chair of each session);
  • use the zoom chat if you have problems such as not being able to hear the speaker or see the slides, etc.;
  • if there is no concern for coronavirus where you are, please share zoom connections if possible;
  • if there is concern for coronavirus where you are, please take sensible measures, e.g. leaving a distance of 2m between individuals in a (meeting) room and connect to zoom individually if not able to use a room system;
  • in a virtual meeting, it is even more important (than usual) to stick to your allocated time so everyone (including those not already connected) can rely on the schedule provided. The chair person of the session reserves the right to stop you if you go over time.

Plenary sessions – slides and re-scope

All Monday plenary speakers are requested to send their slides as soon as possible following their talks to Peter Roelfsema (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) and Shoko Jin (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.), so that these can be made available to the participants before the Science WG splinter sessions on Tuesday and Wednesday. Please also note that both Monday and Wednesday plenary sessions have been re-scoped significantly.

Summaries from parallel sessions

In order to keep the virtual meeting as effective as possible, the final plenary session on Wednesday has been significantly re-scoped. Science Working Group leads should prepare a one to three-slide summary, to be sent to Peter (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) and Shoko (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) as soon as possible after the meeting for general distribution.


As the corona crisis was continuously growing, and affecting more and more people, many of the collaboration meeting participants had decided, often following instructions from their institute management, they could not come to Leiden for the meeting. As a consequence it has been decided on Friday 6th March to cancel the face-2-face sessions, and completely convert to a virtual meeting with all participants at their home institute (or even at home), connected by web facilities (in joint ZOOM sessions).

For those that still intend to travel to the Netherlands SRON in Groningen will be host site for the meeting

The corona crisis - status as of March 9th
Still the number of corona patients is rising, also in the Netherlands, Until now Groningen appears to be less affected than the rest of the country, but it is unlikely that it will remain like that. Of course in other parts of the world the situation is much more serious, within our consortium especially Italy is paying a big toll - our hearts go out to all those suffering.
With respect to travel within/to/from the Netherlands nothing has changed.

The corona crisis - status as of March 8th

The number of corona victims in the Netherlands - as everywhere  else - is rising/ Fortunately the number of affected people hire is only of order 190, i.e. far from the numbers e.g. in Italy. For the majority of the people that are affected, the infection has been traced back to a visit to Italy by the person him/herself, or by somebody that had been in direct contact with. It should be noted that at this time most of the North of the Netherlands is (still) unaffected.

Within the Netherlands nothing has changed in terms of travel restrictions and also travel to and from the Netherlands is not restricted. The Dutch government maintain their travel advisory against traveling to parts of China and to some of the Northern regions of Italy, advising that people should only travel there when absolutely needed. Travel from those regions to the Netherlands also is not restricted, but persons coming from there are urged to be monitor themselves closely and be especially alert for flu-like symptoms.

People are strongly advised to give extra attention to hygiene, e.g. washing hands, use disinfecting gels etc. At the meeting venue extra measures have been put in place to support this - stands with sanitizing gels, explanatory placards, extra cleaning rounds etc.