(as of November 2005)

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The XVIIIth Rencontres de Blois, entitled «Planetary Science: challenges and discoveries» will be held at the Château Royal de Blois, France, from Sunday, May 28th to Friday, June 2nd, 2006. The postal address of the conference when in session is:

  Rencontres de Blois
Château de Blois
41000 BLOIS, France

The picturesque old French town of Blois, famous for its XIV-XVIIth century chateau, is about 170 km (100 miles) from Paris in the beautiful region of the «Châteaux de la Loire».


1. Welcome and registration

Participants are expected to arrive on Sunday afternoon, May 28th. Registration at the conference office in the Château de Blois will start at about 15:00 on Sunday, May 28th. A welcome cocktail will be offered to the participants and their families at 19:00. It will be followed by dinner at the Château.

2. Conference schedule

The conference will start on Monday, May 29th at 9:00 and will end at 12:00 on Friday, June 2nd.

The conference room will be located at the Château Royal de Blois itself.

3. Conference facilities

The following equipment will be available : a slide projector for 5 cm x 5 cm slides, an overhead-projector for transparencies, and a video projector for computer presentations. Note that we cannot supply the computer: you must bring your own.

5. Proceedings

The proceedings will be edited and published if a sufficient number of participants send in their manuscripts by the proceedings deadline. Please note that no reminders will be sent before the deadline - we consider that participants should be responsible for keeping to schedule. Participants will receive a copy of the proceedings at no extra charge.

Deadline for submitting the manuscript: December 1st, 2006.

Instructions for submitting the manuscripts will be distributed at the conference; please be aware that we will require the manuscripts to be in the form of ASCII files (Mac or PC) using the LATEX typesetting convention. No other format or support will be accepted since we do not have the (wo)manpower to do multiple conversions.

6. Registration fee

If you wish to participate in the conference, you should register as soon as possible using the on-line registration form which is on this web site as part of a combined registration/hotel reservation form.

The deadline for registration and hotel reservation is April 15th, 2006.

The registration fee for participants will amount to 330 Euros.

Accompanying persons will be charged 150 Euros to cover the conference banquet and the excursions.

Payment of the registration fee can be made:

- by personal check in euros drawn on a French Bank only to the order of Rencontres de Blois, sent to the conference secretariat (if you wish, but prepayment of the registration fee is not obligatory) or on arrival at the conference. To avoid ruinous bank fees which are beyond our control, we will accept neither foreign currency personal cheques, nor indeed any personal cheques drawn on a non-French bank.

- by traveller's checks in euros or US dollars on arrival at the conference.

- prepayment (if you wish, but prepayment of the registration fee is not obligatory) by bank transfer (remember to add 23 Euros for bank fees if transferring from outside France) to the following account:

It will take one month for our account to be credited, so please have have your bank make the transfer made before April 20.

In any case, bring proof of the transfer and give it to the conference secretariat during registration in Blois.

Please note that as an educational organisation we unfortunately cannot accept Credit Card payment.

7. Accommodation

Hotel accommodation will be available in 3 categories :

one star (*), two stars (**) and three stars (***), all rooms having either a shower or a bath.

The price ranges per night are:

The hotel reservation should be made online via the combined registration/hotel reservation form which is available on this site. In order to simplify matters for you, the conference will pay a deposit to the hotels to guarantee reservation; however, in return for this simplification, if you choose to cancel your reservation, we ask you to do so as soon as possible and in any case not later than April 22, 2006, as otherwise the hotels will keep the deposit.

8. Meals

In order to enhance the interaction and exchange between participants, all participants are requested to have lunch and dinner together. The conference has arranged with a caterer to serve lunch and dinner in the Château Royal de Blois.

The package cost for 5 days is approximately 230 Euro and should be paid to the caterer on the conference site; since this is a specially negotiated "package" for the conference, it cannot be reduced for partial attendance.

9. Funding

Some very limited financial support will be available for young European researchers, and European researchers who cannot obtain funding from their home institutes. A suitable funding application form is available on this site; if you need funding, you should fill in this form and send a signed copy by post or fax to the address indicated; please be aware that our budget is restricted.

Citizens of other countries, especially citizens of Eastern European countries, requiring financial support should also fill in the same funding application form.

10. Social program

Various social activities are planned during the conference for participants, their families and guests : this will innclude visits of the Châteaux of Blois , and Chenonceau, the Clos Lucé (last home of Leonardo da Vinci) and a "Son et Lumiere" show at the Chateau de Blois (in English on Wednesdays only). An additional program for the accompanying persons (cost not included in the above) will be organized in collaboration with the tourist office of Blois.

11. Travel

The most convenient way to reach Blois is to arrive in Paris and take a train (SNCF) from the Austerlitz railway station to Blois. There are frequent train from Paris to Blois; the following schedule (just a few particularly convenient trains are indicated) is approximately valid; again, we will post up a more definitive schedule as soon as we have it. You are strongly advised to check with your travel agency!

Sunday, May 28th, 2006 Friday, June 2nd, 2006
Departure from


Arrival in Blois Departure from Blois Arrival in Paris Austerlitz
11 h 41 13 h 35 13 h 25 15 h 11
13 h 35 15 h 29 15 h 37 17 h 34
15 h 50 17 h 29 17 h 29 18 h 59
17 h 36 19 h 02    

For participants arriving by train, a conference bus will be waiting at the station at the following times:




Blois can also easily be reached by car. Take the exit "Blois" on the Motorway ("autoroute'') A10 connecting Paris to the Chateaux de la Loire area (about 2 hours drive). Once in Blois, follow the signs "Centre".