The Swift Guest Investigator Program is an annual announcement of opportunity soliciting proposals from the community for research relevant to the Swift mission. The GI programs begin at the start of each April and last for approximately 12 months. Observing time is available for scientists at both US and non-US institutions, although only those Principal Investigators at US institutions will be eligible for funding from NASA. No funding is provided for the fill-in category.
The deadline for Cycle 9 of Swift's Guest Investigator program has now passed; proposals were due on September 26th 2012. Cycle 9 observations will begin in April 2013 and last till the end of March 2014.
Swift provides an opportunity for simultaneous optical to hard X-ray observations of targets, allowing broad-band analysis. The X-ray Telescope is specifically designed to choose the best operating mode for the X-ray flux of the object in question.
In Cycle 9, PIs interested in combining Swift and XMM-Newton data can submit a single proposal to XMM-Newton AO12. Highly ranked XMM-Newton proposals may then be awarded Swift observing time (subject to approval by the Swift project).
In this cycle, there will be up to 2 Ms available for non-ToO targets, 1 Ms for Large Programs, 1 Ms for ToOs and 1 Ms for fill-in targets. ToOs for GRBs detected with instruments other than Swift (e.g., MAXI, Fermi) are included in this time.
Requests for fill-in observations cannot be time-constrained (e.g. coordinated with ground- or space-based facilities), although both ToOs and non-ToOs may be, provided the window for the observation exceeds 3 hours. Up to 500 time-constrained observations will be accepted during this cycle (the same as in Cycle 8).
The duration of an observation is limited to between 1 and 40 ks, although several observations may be requested.