Science Announcements

Results of the Paranal Service Mode User Satisfaction Survey

Published: 14 Nov 2016

The User Support Department (USD) again extends its thanks to all those Principal Investigators and their Phase 2 delegates who filled in this September's on-line Paranal Service Mode User Satisfaction Survey. A total of 187 responses were received from our targeted campaign. We have contacted, where possible, those respondents who provided detailed comments. A summary report of this latest User Satisfaction Survey is now available.

Release of FEROS Science Data Products

Published: 07 Nov 2016

Pipeline processed FEROS echelle data, covering the period November 2003 to the present, are now available as Science Data Products via the Phase 3 main and spectral query forms. The data consist of extracted 1D spectra in the ESO/SDP format and tar files containing the output of the FEROS pipeline.

ESO Period 99 Proposal Submission Statistics

Published: 19 Oct 2016

The deadline for proposal submission for Period 99 (1 April – 1 October 2017) was 29 September 2016. 883 valid proposals were submitted, including 22 Large Programmes, of which one is a GTO Large Programme. The number of proposals for P99 is the lowest received in the last 7 periods. The time request also went down, while the number of proposals per PI remained constant. The number of normal proposals is slightly increased from P98, while Large and GTO proposals decreased. The time request decreased for almost all telescopes.

Getting Ready for ALMA Band 5 – Synergy with APEX/SEPIA

Published: 18 Oct 2016

ESO Workshop, Garching, Germany, 1–3 February 2017

The frequency range from 160 to 210 GHz covered by ALMA Band 5 is one of the least explored to date. This band is expected to be offered in ALMA Cycle 5, but has already been extensively used in the SEPIA instrument on APEX since 2015. Important science topics covered by Band 5 include the 183 GHz H2O line, a wide range of dense molecular gas tracers (HCN(2-1), HNC(2-1), HCO+(2-1), etc), CO(2-1) at 0.077<z<0.414, [C I] and high-J CO lines in high redshift objects, and eventually the [C II] line at z>8.

Star Formation from Cores to Clusters

Published: 17 Oct 2016

ESO Workshop, Vitacura, Santiago, Chile, 6–9 March 2017

This Workshop aims to bring together astronomers pursuing a variety of strategies in answering the question: "What constitutes a prototypical low-mass star forming region from core to cluster scales?". This question refers specifically to the formation of low-mass stars, but also involves higher-mass stars, starless cores, brown dwarfs and planet formation simultaneous with low-mass star formation, and related topics. The workshop will feature observational and theoretical/simulation studies in pursuing a comprehensive understanding of low-mass star forming regions.

GRAVITY Science Verification Completed

Published: 16 Oct 2016

The VLTI K-band beam combiner instrument GRAVITY successfully completed its second run of Science Verification (SV) in September 2016 (10–18 September). Most programmes have been completed or mostly completed (i.e., the SV team assessed that sufficient data were collected to reach the proposal goal).

Third Public Release of the Kilo-Degree Survey (KiDS) Now Available

Published: 14 Oct 2016

KiDS is one of the ESO Public Surveys carried out with OmegaCAM at the VLT Survey Telescope (VST). Once complete, 1500 square degrees will have been observed in four filters (u, g, r, i). As a weak lensing shear tomography survey, KiDS will also map the large-scale matter distribution in the Universe and constrain the equation of state of Dark Energy. Its secondary science cases include galaxy evolution and structure of the Milky Way.

New VIDEO Survey Data Release in the ELAIS-S1, CDFS and XMM-LSS Fields

Published: 30 Sep 2016

VISTA Deep Extragalactic Observations (VIDEO) is a deep near-infrared survey which targets ~12 square degrees over the ELAIS-S1, XMM-LSS, and ECDFS extragalactic fields. VIDEO belongs to the suite of six Public Surveys being conducted by the Visible and Infrared Survey Telescope for Astronomy (VISTA). This 4th Data Release includes images and catalogues for the three survey fields.

First Data Release of the LEGA-C Public Spectroscopic Survey

Published: 13 Sep 2016

The ESO Public Spectroscopic Survey Large Early Galaxy Census (LEGA-C) has released science products from the first year of observations. LEGA-C started in December 2014 and observations are planned to be completed by mid-2018, with several data releases of the VIMOS spectra and value-added products before the completion of the survey. More information on the survey design, sample selection, observing strategy and data reduction in van der Wel et al. (2016) and a Messenger article.

Release of Proxima Centauri HARPS Science Spectra

Published: 09 Sep 2016

The 1-D spectral data products from the HARPS observations for ESO programme 096.C-0082, P.I. Anglada-Escudé, from January to March 2016, are now available from the Science Archive Facility. The results on the detection of a planet candidate around Proxima Cen from the analysis of these spectra, among others, are published in G. Anglada-Escudé et al. 2016.

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