Today, a new leader reports to NASA HQ to take over what is known as the Science Mission Directorate, or SMD. SMD is the branch of the agency that is responsible for all things science at NASA - from heliophysics to Earth science to planetary science and astrophysics. Chandra, as well as the other "Great Observatories" missions of Hubble and Spitzer, and many, many missions belong to the astrophysics realm of SMD.
John Grunsfeld, an astrophysicist and astronaut who helped carry out repairs on the Hubble Space Telescope, will take over the SMD as of January 4th. He replaces Ed Weiler, who served NASA for over three decades in many capacities, but most recently as the head of SMD since 2008. We wish Ed well on his new endeavors, and we welcome John to this important role during this exciting time for science at the agency.
-Megan Watzke, CXC