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Scientific Highlights

MUSE most detailed look at galaxy field

MUSE most detailed look at galaxy field

by Katrin Albaum last modified Nov 29, 2017 01:22 PM

29 November 2017. Astronomers using the MUSE instrument on ESO’s Very Large Telescope in Chile focused on the Hubble Ultra Deep Field, measuring distances and properties of 1600 very faint galaxies including 72 galaxies that have never been detected before. This resulted in the deepest spectroscopic observations ever made and 10 science papers that are being published in a special issue of Astronomy & Astrophysics.

MUSE most detailed look at galaxy field - Read More…

Light in the dark - Galaxies enriching MultiDark universe

Light in the dark - Galaxies enriching MultiDark universe

by Kristin Riebe last modified Nov 29, 2017 01:15 PM

20 November 2017. Scientists from the Leibniz Institute for Astrophysics Potsdam (AIP) have joined an international research team to create one of the largest sets of galaxies in a computer generated universe. The data are published via AIP's CosmoSim database.

Light in the dark - Galaxies enriching MultiDark universe - Read More…

Next generation astronomical survey to map the entire sky

Next generation astronomical survey to map the entire sky

by Katrin Albaum last modified Nov 17, 2017 10:44 AM

17 November 2017. The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation will award a $16 million grant for the next generation of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS-V). The grant will kickstart a groundbreaking all-sky spectroscopic survey for a next wave of discovery, anticipated to start in 2020.

Next generation astronomical survey to map the entire sky - Read More…

The LBT gets polarized: First light for the PEPSI polarimeters

The LBT gets polarized: First light for the PEPSI polarimeters

by Kristin Riebe last modified Nov 29, 2017 01:16 PM

12 October 2017. Thanks to a cleverly designed "two-in-one" instrument attached to the world's most powerful telescope, astronomers can extract more clues about the properties of distant stars or exoplanets than previously possible.

The LBT gets polarized: First light for the PEPSI polarimeters - Read More…

L'Oréal-UNESCO Fellowship for cosmologist Jenny Sorce

L'Oréal-UNESCO Fellowship for cosmologist Jenny Sorce

by Kristin Riebe last modified Nov 29, 2017 01:17 PM

10 October 2017. To produce cosmological simulations and study our local neighbourhood in the Universe: The cosmologist Dr. Jenny Sorce received a fellowship of the L'Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science programme. Sorce is a postdoctoral researcher at the astronomical observatory in Strasbourg, France, and a guest researcher at the Leibniz Institute for Astrophysics Potsdam (AIP). She was awarded a fellowship in the French national programme, which is granted annually, and will receive 20,000 euros.

L'Oréal-UNESCO Fellowship for cosmologist Jenny Sorce - Read More…

Perspectives of Astrophysics in Germany from 2017 to 2030

Perspectives of Astrophysics in Germany from 2017 to 2030

by Katrin Albaum last modified Sep 26, 2017 09:05 AM

19 September 2017. At the annual meeting of the German Astronomical Society 2017, the Council of German Observatories presented the Denkschrift 2017 “Perspectives of astrophysics in Germany 2017-2030: From the beginnings of the cosmos to clues for life on extrasolar planets“. In this publication, the Council of German Observatories (in German: Rat Deutscher Sternwarten, or RDS for short) gives an overview of the status of the field of astronomy and astrophysics, presents the main scientific questions and lays out the structures needed to further promote the field. The RDS recommends for example the participation of Germany in the construction and further development of major observatories such as the Extremely Large Telescope and other observatories by the European Southern Observatory (ESO) in Chile, the Square Kilometre Array in South Africa and Australia, and the European Solar Telescope on Tenerife. The RDS supports a strong German investment in space research, especially within the national space program.

Perspectives of Astrophysics in Germany from 2017 to 2030 - Read More…

Solar eclipse in one hundred spectra

Solar eclipse in one hundred spectra

by Katrin Albaum last modified Sep 17, 2017 08:32 AM

12 September 2017. A solar eclipse gives researchers the opportunity to observe parts of the sun that are normally invisible. With the Solar Disk Integrated Telescope (SDI) on Mount Graham in Arizona, USA, scientists of the Leibniz Institute for Astrophysics Potsdam (AIP) have remotely observed the solar eclipse on 21 August 2017. During the course of the eclipse, they obtained about one hundred spectra in two wavelength regions. The SDI feeds light into the PEPSI high-resolution spectrograph in the pier of the Large Binocular Telescope (LBT).

Solar eclipse in one hundred spectra - Read More…

Stars and galaxies with MUSE - extra clear

Stars and galaxies with MUSE - extra clear

by Kristin Riebe last modified Nov 29, 2017 01:20 PM

02 August 2017. Spectacular improvement of astronomical observations with MUSE using adaptive optics. Astronomers have been observing distant galaxies and nebulae with unprecedented quality using the MUSE instrument at the European Southern Observatory (ESO). This was made possible by commissioning of a new adaptive optics facility at the Very Large Telescope (VLT) in the Chilean Atacama desert.

Stars and galaxies with MUSE - extra clear - Read More…

X-Ray Telescope STIX Ready for Launch to the Sun

X-Ray Telescope STIX Ready for Launch to the Sun

by Kristin Riebe last modified Jul 25, 2017 08:25 AM

13 July 2017. To observe the Sun at close range and measure its activity: with launch in February 2019, as part of the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Solar Orbiter spacecraft, STIX will study solar X-ray radiation in unprecedented detail. An international team with researchers from the Leibniz Institute for Astrophysics Potsdam (AIP) has developed STIX and now completed it. The AIP is the only German institute involved in this instrument.

X-Ray Telescope STIX Ready for Launch to the Sun - Read More…

Rediscovering our Galaxy

Rediscovering our Galaxy

by Katrin Albaum last modified Jul 11, 2017 09:16 AM

7 July 2017. What do we know about our home galaxy, the Milky Way? How was the Galaxy assembled and how did it evolve from the most pristine eras to its present state? About 200 astronomers meet from Monday, 10 July 2017, till Friday, 14 July 2014, on Telegrafenberg in Potsdam at the IAU symposium “Rediscovering our Galaxy” to debate the latest research results and surveys in the field of galactic archaeology. The International Astronomical Union (IAU) supports the event, which the Leibniz Institute for Astrophysics Potsdam (AIP) is organising and hosting, with further support from the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation).

Rediscovering our Galaxy - Read More…

Supercomputer to prove theory of sunspot formation

Supercomputer to prove theory of sunspot formation

by Katrin Albaum last modified May 15, 2017 12:03 PM

15 May 2017. Where do sunspots form? Just below the Sun’s surface or deep down inside? The SPOTSIM project, that studies the origin of sunspots using magnetohydrodynamic simulations has now been awarded competed time on the MareNostrum supercomputer in Spain.

Supercomputer to prove theory of sunspot formation - Read More…

Peeking Through the Cloud’s Dusty Veil

Peeking Through the Cloud’s Dusty Veil

by Katrin Albaum last modified May 05, 2017 11:35 AM

5 May 2017. The biggest infrared image ever taken of the Small Magellanic Cloud: With the telescope VISTA, an international team of astronomers led by AIP researcher Prof. Dr. Maria-Rosa Cioni has been able to see the myriad of stars in this neighbouring galaxy much more clearly than ever before.

Peeking Through the Cloud’s Dusty Veil - Read More…

Virtual Reality meets Astrophysics

Virtual Reality meets Astrophysics

by Katrin Albaum last modified May 10, 2017 12:26 PM

6 April 2017. The Leibniz Institute for Astrophysics Potsdam (AIP) is launching a new Virtual Reality (VR) website. Offering 360 degree videos and panoramas, the new web portal vr.aip.de invites visitors to experience the cosmos and to take virtual tours through astronomical observatories. The website can be navigated either in VR mode, using a VR-headset, or via touch and click on any display. All media is based on scientific results, simulations from supercomputers, or images from telescopes and observatories.

Virtual Reality meets Astrophysics - Read More…

New professor simulates galaxy formation on the computer

New professor simulates galaxy formation on the computer

by Katrin Albaum last modified Apr 03, 2017 11:20 AM

3 April 2017. How do galaxies and galaxy clusters, which are among the largest structures in the universe, form? Do cosmic rays have an impact on galaxy and cluster formation? Prof. Dr. Christoph Pfrommer is seeking answers to these questions. Starting in April, Pfrommer is leading the research group Cosmology and Large-scale Structure at the Leibniz Institute for Astrophysics Potsdam (AIP) and doing research as a jointly appointed professor at the University of Potsdam. The astrophysicist has moved to Potsdam from the Heidelberg Institute for Theoretical Studies (HITS).

New professor simulates galaxy formation on the computer - Read More…

The Dynamic Duo: RAVE complements Gaia

The Dynamic Duo: RAVE complements Gaia

by Kerstin Mork last modified Nov 29, 2016 11:33 AM

19 September 2016. The new data release of the RAdial Velocity Experiment (RAVE) is the fifth spectroscopic release of a survey of stars in the southern celestial hemisphere. It contains radial velocities for 520 781 spectra of 457 588 unique stars that were observed over ten years. With these measurements RAVE complements the first data release of the Gaia survey published by the European Space Agency ESA last week by providing radial velocities and stellar parameters, like temperatures, gravities and metallicities of stars in our Milky Way.

The Dynamic Duo: RAVE complements Gaia - Read More…

Starving Black Hole Returns Brilliant Galaxy to the Shadows

Starving Black Hole Returns Brilliant Galaxy to the Shadows

by Kerstin Mork last modified Sep 15, 2016 04:00 PM

15 September 2016. The mystery of a rare change in the behaviour of a supermassive black hole at the centre of a distant galaxy has been solved by an international team of astronomers using ESO’s Very Large Telescope along with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope and NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory. It seems that the black hole has fallen on hard times and is no longer being fed enough fuel to make its surroundings shine.

Starving Black Hole Returns Brilliant Galaxy to the Shadows - Read More…

Gaia mission publishes first results

Gaia mission publishes first results

by Kerstin Mork last modified Sep 14, 2016 12:40 PM

14. September 2016. The European Space Agency's (ESA) mission Gaia published its first set of results on 14th of September 2016. The first data release contains parallaxes and proper motions of about two million stars. These measurements have been eagerly awaited by astronomers because they will enable them to study the Milky Way in unprecedented detail.

Gaia mission publishes first results - Read More…

ESO and AIP Sign Agreement to Build 4MOST

ESO and AIP Sign Agreement to Build 4MOST

by Kerstin Mork last modified Sep 30, 2016 01:42 PM

23 August 2016. ESO has signed an agreement with a consortium led by the Leibniz Institute for Astrophysics Potsdam (AIP) to build 4MOST, a unique, next-generation spectroscopic instrument, which will be mounted on the Visible and Infrared Survey Telescope for Astronomy (VISTA) at ESO’s Paranal Observatory in northern Chile. 4MOST, the 4-metre Multi-Object Spectroscopic Telescope, is expected to collect approximately 75 million spectra over its planned fifteen-year lifetime.

ESO and AIP Sign Agreement to Build 4MOST - Read More…

Real-time analysis for medical diagnostics

Real-time analysis for medical diagnostics

by Kerstin Mork last modified Sep 30, 2016 01:43 PM

16 August 2016. In the context of current technology transfer projects, scientists at AIP have managed to successfully apply the spectral imaging method, developed in astrophysics, to diagnostics in the field of medicine. In contrast to digital cameras, which only register a brightness value for each pixel, this method detects an entire spectrum. AIP has made a name for itself internationally with this method, referred to also as integral field spectroscopy (IFS). The method is used for instruments such as PMAS and MUSE.

Real-time analysis for medical diagnostics - Read More…

The secrets of dark energy

The secrets of dark energy

by Gabriele Schoenherr last modified Sep 01, 2016 09:29 AM

14 July 2016. Astronomers announced this week the sharpest results yet on the properties of dark energy driving the accelerated expansion of the Universe. For their studies, scientists from the Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (BOSS) programme mapped a record-breaking 1.2 million galaxies observed within the Sloan Digital Sky Survey III (SDSS-III). A collection of papers from the BOSS collaboration describing these results was submitted this week to the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. The Leibniz Institute for Astrophysics Potsdam (AIP) has actively participated with important contributions to data analysis and theoretical modelling.

The secrets of dark energy - Read More…