Europlanet Science Congress 2020
Virtual meeting
21 September – 9 October 2020
Europlanet Science Congress 2020
Virtual meeting
21 September – 9 October 2020

Session programme


SMW – Splinter meetings & workshops


The Juno mission orbits Jupiter since 2016. Its JunoCam instrument is providing the highest resolution images of the planet ever obtained. To understand the temporal and spatial context of these images and the details of Jovian meteorology Juno relies on a global ground-support from professional and amateur astronomers. This collaboration has proven essential to the interpretation of this outstanding data. Amateur astronomers provide images that are used to plan the high-resolution observations from JunoCam and citizen scientists process many of the astonishing high-resolution images obtained by JunoCam contributing to the success of the mission.

The splinter will contain talks, questions and a short round-table at the end and is open to Juno scientists, amateur astronomers and citizen scientists collaborating with the Juno mission.

Preliminary program and confirmed speakers:

- Jupiter image processing. Christopher Go
- Recent meteorological events on Jupiter. John H. Rogers (BAA)
- The Juno mission. Glenn. S. Orton (JPL)
- JunoCam on Juno. Candice. Hansen (PSI)
- Junocam image processing. Kevin M. Gill
- The value of long-term Jupiter data. Arrate Antunano (Leicester University)

Public information:
This meeting will be a Zoom Meeting and will be recorded for public release after the meeting on an online platform. To join the live meeting use the following information.

Join Zoom Meeting:
Meeting ID: 849 2433 6526
Access code: 915045

Join by phone by finding your local number:

Convener: Ricardo Hueso
Mon, 21 Sep, 18:00–20:00 (CEST)

Why is there a geographic imbalance in Earth and space sciences? Why is almost half of Europe under-represented? The general answer has always been: lack of funding. The new virtual world could mean a solution for poorer regions but the talk on Monday (EPSC2020-948) will show that it is not the only problem.
This splinter session is a brainstorming session where we are searching for answers together.
Scientists, engineers, teachers, amateurs, policy makers especially from Eastern Europe are welcome! Europlanet is our society, let's shape it together.

Public information:
The link to the session will be available to everybody shortly before 2 pm CEST:

When you login please give your full name and the country code of your affiliation, e.g. Melinda Dosa (Wigner, HU) Thank you and welcome :)

Convener: Melinda Dósa
Wed, 23 Sep, 14:00–16:00 (CEST)

As part of the recently launched Europlanet 2024 Research Infrastructure, a new collaboration between telescopes around the world has been started for providing coordinated observations and rapid responses in support of space missions and in following-up of new events. The so-called Europlanet Telescope Network ( will thereby provide professional scientists and amateur astronomers with access to an initial set of 16 telescope facilities. Scientists and amateurs can now apply to visit those facilities (see website: The Europlanet Telescope Network further plans to support the integration of amateur astronomers into planetary sciences, since their observations can be of crucial importance for several scientific areas.

The Splinter Meeting will give an overview on the network, the involved telescope facilities, and will discuss support for amateur astronomers in Europe and beyond. The meeting is open for everyone interested in the Europlanet Telescope Network!

Public information:
Program of the meeting:
- Introduction to the Europlanet Telescope Network (Scherf, M)
- Overview of the telescope facilities (Tautvaisiene, G)
- How to apply to the Call (Snodgrass, C)
- Europlanet support to amateur astronomy campaigns on Solar System astronomy (Hueso, R)
- Telescope showcase: The Robotic Faulkes Telescope Network (Lewis, F)
- GaiaGOSA and the planned observational alert website (Podlewska-Gaca, E; Dudzinski, G)
- Discussion


The presentations of the meeting can now be found online at

Convener: Manuel Scherf
Wed, 30 Sep, 14:00–16:00 (CEST)

The Diversity Committee of the Europlanet Society, in collaboration with Women in Red and WikiDonne, are organising an Edit-a-thon during EPSC2020 to highlight diversity within the planetary science community.

During this Splinter meeting, we will present the project.

Rosie Stephenson-Goodknight (Co-founder, Women in Red), Camelia Boban (Co-founder, WikiDonne) and Jessica Wade (University of London, Wikipedia veteran) will also take part to the event.

Public information:
Maryam Zaringhalam (500 Women Scientists) will also join us for the event.

This meeting will be a Zoom Meeting and will be recorded for public release after the meeting on an online platform. To join the live meeting use the following information.

Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 886 1593 4448
Passcode: 047937

Join by phone by finding your local number:

Convener: Arianna Piccialli
Tue, 22 Sep, 18:00–20:00 (CEST)

The Planetary Environments and Habitability working group of the European Astrobiology Institute ( will hold a workshop to discuss topics related to the working group activities. The aim of this meeting is to discuss synergies and define future topics that will be addressed by this working group. The meeting is open to all group members and anyone interested to join the working group (

Public information:
The Planetary Environments and Habitability working group of the European Astrobiology Institute ( will hold a workshop to discuss topics related to the working group activities. The aim of this meeting is to discuss synergies and define future topics that will be addressed by this working group. The meeting is open to all group members and anyone interested to join the working group (

Convener: Ana-Catalina Plesa
Mon, 05 Oct, 16:00–18:00 (CEST)

Planets in a room (PIAR) is a DIY kit to build a small, lowcost spherical planet simulator and planetarium projector (
The project has been developed by the italian non-profit association Speak Science, with the collaboration of the Italian National Institute for Astrophysics (INAF) and the Roma Tre University, Dipartimento di Matematica e Fisica. It was funded by the Europlanet Outreach Funding Scheme in 2017 and selected by the Europlanet Society to be used as a tool for education and public outreach by the Europlanet Regional Hubs all around Europe. Today, it is being distributed online to be built and used by schools, science museum and research institutions. In this workshop we will present this tool, how to build and calibrate it and a selection of educational material and projects that have been developed for PIAR.

Public information:
Link to the Zoom session:

Convener: Livia Giacomini
Wed, 07 Oct, 16:00–18:00 (CEST)

Europlanet has launched a new Mentorship Platform to support early career professionals working in planetary sciences and related fields.

The Europlanet Mentorship Platform aims to help early career scientists to develop expertise, ask questions and discuss career plans with the support of more established members of the planetary community.

In this splinter meeting, we will discuss the new programme, as well as outcomes of Mentoring@EPSC scheme that has run this year and at the EPSC-DPS Joint Meeting 2019. Invited representatives of established mentoring programmes will also share their experiences.

The online splinter meeting will be open to the community and include presentations, questions and a short round-table discussion at the end.

Public information:
Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 891 0112 0338
Passcode: 957545

14:00 – 14:10 Intro, Anita Heward
14:10 – 14:25 Europlanet Mentorship platform, Edita Stonkutė
14:25 – 14:40 Supernova Foundation, Ghazal Geshnizjani
14:40 – 14:55 Mentoring@EPSC2020, Solmaz Adeli
14:55 - 15:10 United Nations Space4Women Mentor 2020, Susan Murabana
15:10 - 15:25 Challenges of Mentoring, Jane Dempster
15:25 – 15:45 Round table discussion

Convener: Edita Stonkute
Thu, 01 Oct, 14:00–16:00 (CEST)

Europlanet Early Career (EPEC) Network is the joint force of nine working groups lead by early-career researchers for early-career researchers across the Europlanet international community. At this splinter meeting, EPEC will present the various EPEC activities led by working groups which includes EPSC, EPEC Annual Week, Outreach, Diversity, Future Research, Communications, New Frontiers, Early Career Help, and Finances by their respective working group Chairs. EPEC will also proudly announce the details of next EPEC Annual Week 2021 at the end of the meeting. EPEC is committed to enable strong network between young professionals by engaging in organising various events amongst each theme of the working groups and therefore built leadership qualities in a stress-free environment. Furthermore, the EPEC community aims to bring a young voice into Europlanet Society to shape the future of planetary and space sciences and engineering.

EPEC activities:

Join EPEC Network:

Public information:
Join EPEC-EPSC2020 Slack to get connected with 150+ early careers attending virtual EPSC2020. Some of the highlights of the slack include "advertise your presentation", "job searching" etc

Link to join Slack:

Check out the EPEC General Assembly presentation slides attached to the program !!

Convener: Indhu Varatharajan
Mon, 21 Sep, 14:00–16:00 (CEST)

Attention: The meeting will be organized at a later date, sorry for the inconvenience.

In this splinter led by the Europlanet policy team, we will have an open discussion about the Europlanet Policy activities and the possible involvement of the Europlanet Regional hubs in these kinds of activities. Starting from past and present Europlanet Policy activities, including the industry/policy session at EPSC2020, we will discuss and try to identify the main actions and stakeholders to be contacted and involved on a local scale.

Convener: Livia Giacomini
Thu, 08 Oct, 16:00–18:00 (CEST)

Evaluating the scientific and socioeconomic impact of research activities is becoming increasingly important for securing future funding. This challenge is complicated by the fact that research projects can cover many different types of activities in many different geographical locations, targeted at different audiences.

Using the example of the Europlanet 2024 Research Infrastructure (RI) this workshop looks at how to develop an evaluation framework that can help pull together different strands of activity in a large-scale project. Such strands can involve different types of scientific research, as well as associated outreach and training efforts. Using as a starting point the OECD Reference Framework for Assessing the Scientific and Socio-economic Impact of Research Infrastructures, the session will orient participants to the way that framework has informed the evaluation of Europlanet 2024 RI. Participants will then be given an overview of logic models and their use in evaluation. Finally, the remainder of the workshop will be dedicated to supporting participants in starting to map out approaches to assessing their own projects, including and going beyond scientific impacts of activity.

You can pre-register for the session here (not essential), especially if you would like to take part in our evaluation “surgery” at the end of the session where we can discuss projects you may want to evaluate.

The session is led by Jen DeWitt (Europlanet 2024 RI, Independent Research and Evaluation Consultant)

12:00-12.10 – Introduction to session

12.10-12.20 – Why evaluate?

12.20-12.30 – Introduction to logic models

12.30-12.45 – Overview of OECD Reference Framework

12.45-12.55 – Europlanet 2024 RI evaluation example

12.55-13.05 – Discussion of what might also apply to other projects and how they might be evaluated

13.05-13.15 – Introduction to Europlanet Outreach Evaluation Toolkit

13.15-13.35– Surgery breakout session: What are you evaluating and what approaches might work for you?

13.35-13.45 – Discussion and session end.

Public information:
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Convener: Jennifer DeWitt | Co-convener: Anita Heward
Thu, 01 Oct, 12:00–14:00 (CEST)

More than 4000 exoplanets have been discovered so far, and this number is still growing rapidly! However, we know very little about them: What are they made of? What are the conditions there? How did they form and how did they evolve? ESA’s M4 mission, Ariel, will observe spectroscopically around 1000 exoplanets to further characterise their atmospheres and try to answer these questions.
Exoplanets is one of the few fields that amateur astronomers and the public can contribute significantly, with observations with small and medium scale telescopes. I the case of Ariel, small and medium size telescope are valuable, in order to plan the observations as efficiently as possible. To achieve this, a good knowledge of the planets’ ephemerides is needed before the launch of Ariel in 2028. While ephemerides for some planets are being refined on a per-case basis, an organised effort to collectively verify or update them when necessary does not exist.

In this session, we will present the Ariel mission and will introduce the ExoClock project, an open, integrated and interactive platform with the purpose of producing a confirmed list of ephemerides for the planets that will be observed by Ariel. The project has been developed in a manner to make the best use of all available resources: observations reported in the literature, observations from space instruments and, mainly, observations from ground-based telescopes, including both professional and amateur observatories. To facilitate inexperienced observers and at the same time achieve homogeneity in the results, we created data collection and validation protocols, educational material and easy to use interfaces, open to everyone. ExoClock was launched in September 2019 and now counts over 160 participants, mostly amateur astronomers, who’ve already observed 1200 transits for 170 exoplanets.

The session will start with Giovanna Tinetti from UCL, the Principal Investigator of the Ariel Mission, who will present the concept and the goals of the mission and will continue with Athanasia Nikolaou from Sapienza who will present the prospects of Ariel for small planets. Next, Anastasia Kokori from UCL, coordinator of the ExoClock project, will share the scope and the principals of the ExoClock Project, while Martin Crow, an active ExoClock observer form the British Astronomical Association, will share his experience from observing exoplanets and participating to ExoClock. Finally, Angelos Tsiaras from UCL, coordinator of the ExoClock project, will demonstrate how to analyse exoplanet observations with the dedicated, user-friendly tools developed for the project.

The ExoClock project website:

Educational material can be found at:

Draft Agenda:

- The Ariel mission. Giovanna Tinetti

- Planetary Perspectives of Ariel: Looking at the tree and adding the forest. Athanasia Nikolaou

- The ExoClock project: How amateurs can contribute to Ariel. Anastasia Kokori.

- Experiencing ExoClock with an active participant. Martin Crow

- Analysing exoplanet observations. Angelos Tsiaras

Public information:
This meeting will be a Zoom Meeting and will be recorded for public release after the meeting on an online platform. To join the live meeting use the following information.

Join Zoom Meeting:

Meeting ID: 853 4254 1767
Access code: 064707

Join by phone by finding your local number:

Convener: Anastasia Kokori
Mon, 28 Sep, 18:00–20:00 (CEST)

Please join us to discuss how to be an ally to those underrepresented in planetary science.

Based on similar meetings organized already in the past years from our DPS colleagues, we will meet for discussion about harassment and bias. This meeting is specifically intended to help those who identify with privileged groups (e.g., men, straight, white, able-bodied, cis-gendered) to be more aware and proactive in support of equity, diversity, and inclusion.

This allyship meeting is organized by the Europlanet Society Diversity Committee. Everyone interested in this topic is welcome to attend.

We will use the online platform Webex, which can be used either via your webbrowser ( or via the Webex App, also available on mobile phones, with:
Meeting number: 121 374 2945
Password: Ally2020

Convener: Lena Noack
Mon, 28 Sep, 18:00–20:00 (CEST)

Come and join us at the Europlanet Early Career (EPEC) social event on the 29th September, starting at 18h30! This is a great opportunity to get to know (or catch up) with your fellow early career researchers. We will start by sharing our experiences of the conference in small groups. Afterwards, we will keep the party going with some virtual games! Though our program officially ends at 19:30, the 'virtual bar' will remain open for those who wish to keep talking/playing. And don't forget, BYOB ;-) The link for the social event will be announced later.

Conveners: Joana Marques Oliveira, Hans Huybrighs
Tue, 29 Sep, 18:30–19:30 (CEST)