FIGURE 2.3 NSF funding for astronomy. Note that funding for university observatories is grouped with that for grants, as in the 1991 Decadal Report. NOTE: Major research equipment (MRE) bars include funding for the Green Bank Telescope in 1991. The funding denoted by PHY includes support for astrophysics and astronomy programs in NSF' s Physics Division. Data on Physics Division support for astronomy and astrophysics were not available for the years prior to 1990. Funding for the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory has not been included in either the MRE or the PHY category in this figure. SOURCE: 1991 Decadal Report (1981-1985), NSF (1986-1999).

percent of the budget, with an increase to almost 11 percent in 1991 due to the one-time increment in funding for the construction of the Green Bank Telescope (GBT).

Figure 2.3, an updated version of Figure B.3 in the 1991 Decadal Report, indicates where the increases come from. Funding for major research equipment (MRE) provided large increments in funding from 1990 to 1995. The MRE funding includes VLBA ($35 million between 1990 and 1993), Gemini ($95 million between 1991 and 1995), and the GBT ($81 million in 1991). All funding levels are given in FY 1997 dollars. Also shown in Figure 2.3 is the funding for astronomy and astrophysics from NSF's Physics Division. This includes funding for theory, atomic and molecular astrophysics-related research, and submillimeter and IR astronomy from the South Pole. Further details are given in Chapter 5. Funding levels for astrophysics programs from the Physics Division were not included in the 1982 Decadal Report (National Research Council, Astronomy and Astrophysics for the 1980's, National Academy Press, Washington, D.C., 1982). Inclusion of these programs would have resulted in astronomy and astrophysics support that was higher than that shown in Figure 2.2 and Figure 2.3. However, Figure 2.3 shows that the core funding of astronomy grants and facilities operation from NSF's Division of Astronomical Sciences has been relatively flat in constant FY 1997 dollars between 1990 and 1999. During the same period, the total NSF R&D budget rose by 26 percent.



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