# What's going on with NASA's Solar System Dynamics?

JPL's Horizons web interface generates the following orange announcement:

IMPORTANT: The SSD Announcement email list is now available. Major changes are coming in the near future, including possible hostname and/or URL changes. To be notified of such changes, subscribe to this email list.

But if I click that list nothing happens.

1. What are the "Major changes (that) are coming in the near future, including possible hostname and/or URL changes"? Will there be a problem accessing Horizons as usual?
2. Is this US government shut-down related, or a real change/upgrade?

• Did you click the "visit this page for more details" link? – Hobbes Oct 24 '19 at 6:58
• @Hobbes that's answered in my question, did you read it? It's possible that they've updated the link since January. If so, you could write that up as another answer and I'll accept it. – uhoh Oct 24 '19 at 8:32

Today I just received a first announcement from JPL's Jon Giorgini. It announces the first of the "Major changes... coming in the near future, including possible hostname and/or URL changes." At least the first of which I'm aware.

The message begins:

The JPL Solar System Dynamics group's "ssd.jpl.nasa.gov" server, including the Horizons ephemeris system, was moved to a new machine with a new IP address on 2019-Oct-22 at about 16:09 UTC (09:09 PDT).

SSB is run by JPL, which although they do a lot of NASA work, and are a NASA operations center, is actually run by the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), and thus are not actually government employees. At the very least, I can tell you that they have actually responded to an email I sent them earlier this week. Of course, they will not be getting the short term funding that they need, at least for any non-military contracts they do. Eventually they will have problems.

As to what is going to happen, not really sure. Maybe they will go to a better web based API? Who knows.

Lastly, the proper URL is actually https://ssd.jpl.nasa.gov/?email_list . I'm not sure why it sometimes points to the wrong one, but... I had the same problem.

• The shutdown would not be noticeably affecting JPL yet (three weeks into the shutdown as I write this), but eventually it will. Nearly all of JPL's funding comes from the government. They can coast for a while on already authorized funds, but not forever. – Mark Adler Jan 12 '19 at 15:40
• @MarkAdler Good point, will edit accordingly. – PearsonArtPhoto Jan 12 '19 at 15:49
• @MarkAdler I've received links to list.jpl.nasa.gov but all I get is list.jpl.nasa.gov’s server IP address could not be found. Do you know anything about this? Is it just not set up yet? This Major changes are coming in the near future, including possible hostname and/or URL changes. sounds so ominous... – uhoh Jan 26 '19 at 2:55
• I don't know, but I would guess that it's a temporary thing. Maybe maintenance. I just successfully subscribed to ssd-announce yesterday. – Mark Adler Jan 26 '19 at 3:10
• @MarkAdler okay thanks, I'll keep an eye on it. All good things come to those who wait, but that's not news to anyone who works on deep space missions ;-) – uhoh Jan 28 '19 at 1:44