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6. CONCLUS IONS AND RECOMM ENDATIONS The Role of the LST In Astronomy The unique quality ofthe LST is its ability to coneentratellght from a point source raUing on a larae aperture into an image approximately 0.1 arc sec across, together with the wide spectral range over which thJs can be achieved. This ability wlll lead to dramatic improvements in the limits of observation in many fields of astronomy, including planetary, galactJc, end extragalactic studies, and part icularly in studies of the faint objects or lntertll in cosmology and In the evolution of galaxies. These improvementS are attainable only in tele.scopes opera tins outside the earth's atmosphere. The capabilities of the LST therefore represent an Improvement in astro- nomical technique, of a magnitude and importance lhat are unique in optical utronomy !>Â«~use the LST will operate beyond the atmosphere that impoaes limitations on the aeruitivity and resolution of cround~sed teleaeopea. lnmuments for the LST Every elTon should be made to ensure that the fOC21i>laee equipment of the LST fully exploill the capabilities of the telescope. This requires wkleÂ·band and narrow-band instrumentation for the ultraviolet, optical, and infrared ranges. An advisory committee, appointed by N AS and ES F, should review, before Onal selection, the deslcn or the focalÂ·plaee Instruments to ensure the ehoice of the best equipment. To enable existing and future scientific teams to make the best use of the Instrument complex, fully updated infonnation and documentation of all instruments must be available through the European Space Agency and NASA at all times. Institutional Amncemtnll for the LST A scientific organization, one form of whidl oould be a sclenoe institute, wiD be needed to cany out vital taw in the opentlon of t.he LST. If International cost-oharinc Is Involved, sueh an inslitute should have international ptrticipaÂ· lion at all k"ls. Its tasks would include planning and scheduling of obscrvinc 14
programs in conjunction with an international prosram committee, interfacing between instrumentation and guest observers, and data reduction. The sclenÂ· tific staff would have two main tasks: first, helping guest invesdptors use the LST instruments; and second, c:urying out their own ls1ronomical research. The international character of the organization should also be relevant to its locat.ion. Allocation of Observirc Time The prime consideration in the allocation of ob!erving time on the various instruments of the LST must be the scientific merit of the proposals. We recognize that other considerations, such as the material contributions that may be made to the LST project by countries other than the United States, may affect the methods by which the allocations will be made. Scientiflc Data and M.tnpower The optimal use of the LST and other space observatories involves a t~r~e flow of data. The demands that this will place on the scientific community are not yet fully understood. Similar problems have arisen in the put, but they are not in themselves surflcitnt reason for failing to procttd with the LST; neverÂ· theless, we recommend that a study be made of the problem of hand lin& the flow of data from the various modes of operation, including the proceues of data diJtribution and the requirements for manpower In data handling and scientlnc analysis. 15