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JINA: Joint Institute for Nuclear Astrophysics

The origin and fate of matter in our universe are the fundamental questions in nuclear astrophysics. The statement by Carl Sagan "we are made of star stuff" highlights and summarizes the fascination of this field. The desire and need for understanding the cosmos on the femto-scale while interpreting observations and events on the tera-scale created a momentum of intellectual fascination and challenge which has propelled the field to the forefront of physics.

The rapid growth of observational results, the tremendously expanding computational capabilities, and the new experimental and theoretical opportunities to probe and simulate the behavior of nuclei under extreme conditions now brings within reach the answers to many open questions. The rapid progress and expanding scope of the different disciplines constituting nuclear astrophysics also introduce an enormous level of complexity to the field.

The Physics Frontier Center JINA (Joint Institute for Nuclear Astrophysics) at the University of Notre Dame, Michigan State University, the University of Chicago, and Argonne National Laboratory will provide an intellectual center with the goal to enable swift communication and stimulating collaborations across field boundaries and at the same time provide a focus point in a rapidly growing and diversifying field.

JINA will foster interdisciplinary collaborations, workshops, research programs, and educational initiatives at its participating institutions as well as within the field of nuclear astrophysics at large. We invite the scientific community - astrophysicists and nuclear physicists - theorists and experimentalists - in the US and world wide to actively participate in this endeavor and to help make this project a success and a useful resource for the field of nuclear astrophysics.

At Michigan State University, JINA is supported by the Astronomy & Astrophysics group within the Department of Physics & Astronomy and the National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory (NSCL) and has its own website at http://www.jinaweb.org/.