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Emily LakdawallaNovember 23, 2012

Free access to Springer journal PDFs through November 30!

It's a holiday here in the U.S. Thanksgiving was yesterday, and as I contributed my share to the production and consumption of huge quantities of tasty food with a table full of happy family, I'm not in any shape to be doing much work today. So, in a classic teacher move, on a day when I can't teach properly, I'm giving you all a project to do on your own. Springer is offering electronic access to PDFs of several of their journals for free, for one more week.

One of these in particular, Space Science Reviews, is the journal that publishes most of the articles of record that describe spacecraft instruments. As a mission prepares for launch or arrival, there will be a special issue of SSR for that mission that describes the mission in general and each individual instrument in painful detail. Do you have questions about what isotopes Curiosity's SAM can discern or whether it can measure the chirality of amino acids? Want to know the angular resolution and spectral sensitivity of New Horizons' LORRI camera? This is the journal you go to. (Volumes 170 and 140, respectively.)

I have been throwing around the idea of trying to do a seminar-style class were we pick some papers and discuss them over a Hangout. If I do that, though, people will need access to papers. If you have any interest in such a class, go download them now, while they're free. I read the fine print on Springer's website and I don't think it makes a difference whether you got it for free or not; the copy that you download belongs to you; sharing it with others violates copyright. So once they're back behind the paywall, they're back behind the paywall.

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Emily Lakdawalla

Senior Editor and Planetary Evangelist for The Planetary Society
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