Why is the conference offered in a hybrid format rather than fully virtual or fully in person?
We realize that many people will be unable to travel to The Woodlands, TX, due to travel restrictions, financial considerations, or safety concerns. We also recognize that the social and professional interactions at an in-person conference cannot be replicated in a virtual format. Therefore, we are excited to announce that the 53rd LPSC will be delivered in a hybrid format, which will allow the widest possible participation. Whether you join us online or in person, we can’t wait to see you!

What does it mean that LPSC 2022 is a hybrid conference?
The 53rd LPSC is being planned as a hybrid conference, with attendees having the option of registering to attend in-person in The Woodlands, TX or virtually. All registered attendees (in-person and virtual) will have access to streamed in-person content and on-demand oral sessions, iPosters, press conferences, and plenary sessions.

Both in-person and virtual registration include access to on-demand content on the virtual platform until April 11, 2022.

Do virtual attendees need to download or install any software to participate in the conference?
No, attendees just need a standard web browser and a stable internet connection to access the virtual conference website.

In what time zone is the 53rd LPSC?
All times are listed in U.S. Central Standard Time (CST). For time zone conversion, visit Worldtimebuddy.com.

Do I need to register to attend the 53rd LPSC?
Yes, whether you plan to attend in person or virtually, all attendees are required to register for the 53rd LPSC.

Where can I find information on hotel accommodations?
Hotel accommodations for the 53rd LPSC can be found here.

How do I learn more about accessibility at the 53rd LPSC or make a request?
We are committed to a healthy, safe, and inclusive conference for all attendees. We are following ADA guidelines and NASA standards. Closed captioning will be used for all plenary and special sessions (reference the Conference Schedule for more information).

Attendees are responsible for arranging any special accommodation needs when making their hotel reservations.

Will there be food available for purchase nearby or in the convention center?
We are happy to announce the arrival of food trucks to the 53rd LPSC! The Woodlands Waterway Marriott Hotel and Convention Center has a restaurant onsite and a Starbucks with grab-and-go items. There are also restaurants just outside the convention center doors. You can learn more here.

Will there be networking opportunities for attendees?
We are planning for virtual and in-person networking opportunities. The LPI will be conducting activities for planetary scientists, students and early-career scientists, and the public. First-time attendees should check out the Student and Early-Career Events here. Other networking activities will be announced as we get closer to the conference dates.

COVID-19 Protocols

What COVID-19 protocols will be in place for in-person attendees at the 53rd LPSC?
Our highest priority remains the health and safety of everyone attending the conference. We are closely monitoring news and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), and local health agencies regarding travel and large events. Please visit LPSC COVID-19 Protocols to learn more.

Why is LPSC requiring vaccinations and masking for in-person attendees?
Our highest priority for the conference remains the sharing of planetary science knowledge and information in a safe environment for our participants. The science and the guidance from health experts are clear that vaccines and masking will better protect the health of those at the conference.

We implemented a hybrid format for the 53rd LPSC so that those who are unable to attend (for any reason) could fully participate in the meeting virtually.

What is considered fully vaccinated?
The CDC considers individuals to be fully vaccinated two weeks following a second dose of mRNA vaccines (Moderna and Pfizer) or a single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. For international attendees, this guidance applies to COVID-19 vaccines authorized for emergency use by the World Health Organization (i.e., AstraZeneca/Oxford, Covishield, Sinopharm, and Sinovac) — two weeks after final dose. The full list of vaccines with final WHO EUL/PQ evaluation status is available here.

You must receive your final primary series vaccine dose by February 20 to be eligible to attend the 53rd LPSC in person.

How will I prove that I am fully vaccinated?
Before registering for the conference, attendees must register with CrowdPass and upload digital proof of full vaccination to receive an approval email that is required to register. Within 24-48 hours after receipt of the CrowdPass approval email, attendees will be able to register for the conference using the USRA Meeting Portal.

Learn more about CrowdPass and its secure, HIPAA-compliant platform here.

Will you allow exemptions to the vaccination requirement for medical and/or religious reasons?
No. If you are not able to provide vaccination proof using CrowdPass, please participate virtually as an attendee, oral presenter, and poster presenter.

Are there COVID-19 testing centers near the conference venue?
Please visit COVID-19 Protocols for testing sites near the conference venue.

If I test positive for COVID-19 during LPSC, how do I report my test result?
Attendees who receive a positive test result during LPSC are not allowed to enter the conference venue and must immediately quarantine. These attendees are encouraged to share positive test results with a USRA/LPI HR representative: lpi-covid-status@usra.edu. For contact tracing purposes, a list of close contacts without masking will be requested. All information will be considered as HR confidential.


Do I need to register to attend the 53rd LPSC?
Yes, whether you plan to attend in person or virtually, all attendees are required to register for the 53rd LPSC. All in-person attendees must provide proof of full vaccination to attend LPSC. Registration information is available here.

What if I register to attend in person and later need to switch my registration to virtual?
Requests to change registration types from in-person to virtual or vice versa will be allowed as long as that request is submitted on or before February 25. You will be refunded the difference if the cost of your new registration is less expensive and charged for the balance if your new registration is more expensive. Registration information is available here.

What is your cancellation policy?
Requests for cancellation with a full refund will be accepted through March 1. All cancellation requests must be submitted by clicking the cancel button under the action column in the registration section of the USRA Meeting Portal. Those who fail to attend and do not notify USRA prior to the March 1 deadline will forfeit their full registration fee. Registration information is available here.

No refunds will be issued after March 1, 2022.

Conference Program

When will the full conference program be available?
Authors can view their assigned method of presentation on the conference program page.

What will the schedule for 53rd LPSC look like?
A schedule overview and the comprehensive conference schedule are available here.

What special sessions will be presented during the 53rd LPSC?
The 53rd LPSC special sessions are listed on the Special Sessions page of the conference website.

Can virtual attendees fully participate in the oral and poster sessions?
Since this year’s annual conference will be offered as a hybrid format, many elements of the in-person experience will have a virtual component.

Virtual attendees can:

  • Watch all in-person sessions live and on-demand via the virtual platform
  • Ask and upvote questions during all live streamed sessions
  • View abstracts for all presentations in the online program
  • Present remotely in all oral sessions
  • View iPosters throughout the week and ask presenters questions
  • Ask and upvote questions for all presentations (in-person and virtual) via Zoom Webinar Q&A (during sessions) and participate in discussions with Slack (to continue discussions after sessions)
  • Message both in-person and other virtual attendees through Slack

How do virtual attendees watch oral sessions?
Visit the Auditorium in the virtual platform, click on “Click Here for Oral Sessions,” click on the day, and scroll down to your desired session. A “Join” button will appear in place of the countdown timer five minutes before the start of the session. Click “Join,” and you will enter the session.

How do in-person attendees who prefer to ask a question virtually submit their question during an oral session?
All attendees logged into the virtual platform should use the Zoom Webinar Q&A feature to ask questions during the oral sessions. Attendees can upvote a question by clicking the thumbs-up icon. Each live oral session will have session chairs and a moderator to monitor the Q&A and convey questions submitted by virtual attendees. The speakers will do their best to answer as many questions as possible during the allotted time.

How do I distinguish between virtual and in-person speakers in the conference program?
There is no distinction in the conference program for virtual or in-person oral presentations to ensure equal stature among all speakers. All oral sessions will include a mixture of in-person and remote presenters, all of which will be streamed live.

Will authors be able to submit PDFs of their posters to share on the conference website?
Authors selected for a poster presentation can upload an electronic file of their poster (e-poster) for reference by attendees after the conference. More details will be announced after the conference.

How do virtual attendees view the posters?
Virtual attendees will only be able to view posters uploaded into the iPoster gallery within the virtual platform. All virtual poster presenters must publish their posters to the iPoster gallery by March 2, 2022.

To view a poster in the virtual platform, click on “iPoster Gallery” in the LPSC virtual lobby.

How do attendees contact a virtual poster presenter?
There are multiple ways to contact poster presenters. The best opportunity to interact with a virtual poster presenter is during Wednesday’s evening poster session in the Gather.town virtual environment. You can search the gallery for "presentations with chat" in order to see the time in which the author will be at their poster for a text-based chat. Likewise, posters that have live presentations will have an associated video conference at the listed time. Outside those times, there is a "contact author" tab at the bottom of each iPoster so that you may send the author an email.

I have an iPoster. How do I present?
You will be able to present your iPoster virtually through the virtual platform and in a dedicated Gather.town poster hall. A dedicated poster session for iPosters will be held on Wednesday night from 6:30–8:30 p.m. U.S. Central Standard Time.

Please review this Gather.town guide

Will there be a dedicated timeslot for in-person and virtual poster sessions?
Poster viewing hours are from 6:30–8:30 p.m. daily as indicated in the schedule. In-person poster sessions will be held on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday. Wednesday’s evening poster session will exclusively feature virtual posters (iPosters), which can be viewed via the Gather.town environment. iPosters will be available to all attendees all week at any time of the day. Attendees may contact poster presenters and ask questions and leave comments using the chat feature. iPosters will be available for viewing on March 6, 2022, and for one year after the conference concludes.

How do attendees participate in the virtual poster session on Wednesday evening?
All attendees will need to log in to the virtual environment to access the iPoster gallery and the Gather.town environment.

In-person attendees are encouraged to gather in the session rooms on the second floor of the conference center on March 9 from 6:30–8:30 p.m. U.S. Central Standard Time (CST). In-person attendees should bring their devices and headphones to participate in this unique opportunity. Complimentary food and beverages will be available to LPSC in-person attendees during the virtual poster session.

How will it work for people who are attending in person but have been assigned a virtual poster?
Authors assigned a virtual poster can present their posters from the conference center or any location they choose. If presenters want to present at the conference center, please remember to bring your own devices and headphones.

Where can I find virtual backgrounds to use?
An assortment of virtual backgrounds can be found on the conference website here.

Where can I find the session recordings?
The recordings will be listed in the virtual platform on the corresponding day at the bottom of the page.

How long will the 53rd LPSC content be available for after the conference?
Recorded sessions, pre-recorded talks, and iPosters will be available for 30 days after the conference.