Science Announcements

Applications for ESO Studentships – First Annual Call

Published: 19 Apr 2021

The ESO research studentship programme provides an outstanding opportunity for PhD students to experience the exciting scientific environment at one of the world's leading observatories. ESO's studentship positions are open to students enrolled in a university PhD programme in astronomy or related fields. Students accepted into the programme work on their doctoral project under the formal supervision of their home university, but they come to ESO to work and study under the co-supervision of an ESO staff astronomer for a period of between one and two years.

First Commissioning of the upgraded IRLOS, the InfraRed Low-Order Wavefront Sensor for MUSE

Published: 16 Apr 2021

Between 11 and 24 March the Assembly, integration, verification and commissioning of the upgraded InfraRed Low-Order wavefront Sensor of MUSE, IRLOS, was carried out through an efficient collaboration between the local Paranal team and the remote support team in Garching. The goal of the upgrade, which uses a new SAPHIRA detector with sub-electron readout noise, is to add at least two magnitudes to the limit for the wavefront sensing while simultaneously increasing the correction rate to 500 Hz. The 500Hz SmallScale mode of the new IRLOS system is in operations with a fully automated acquisition since the beginning of Period 107 with a limiting magnitude of J=17.0 for point sources. This fainter magnitude limit is offered for P108 and proposals submitted during P107. Prior to this commissioning MUSE Narrow Field Mode could use as AO reference stars brighter than H=14.5, with the sensing done at a fixed 200Hz with field-selector scales for point-sources, SmallScale, and extended objects, LargeScale.

ESO Science Archive: 10,000,000 Processed Science Files Downloaded … and Counting!

Published: 16 Apr 2021

March 17th marked an important milestone for the ESO Science Archive with the download of the 10,000,000th processed science file by a member of the ESO community. The Science Archive is a major science resource: more than 35% of the refereed papers based on ESO data that were published in 2020 used it. Its data holdings are constantly increasing, and it currently includes more than 3,000,000 processed datasets from the La Silla Paranal and ALMA observatories, calibrated to remove instrumental and atmospheric effects. These are spectra, images, data cubes, source catalogues, flux maps and interferometric visibilities (the 10,000,000th file itself was a spectrum from the GAIA-ESO Public Survey). These data products can be browsed and downloaded via an highly interactive and intuitive web application or programmatically with Virtual Observatory protocols and tools

ALMA Cycle 7 Science Observations Status Update

Published: 15 Apr 2021

Since 17 March 2021, the 12-m Array has been used for PI science observations with more than 37 antennas. Unfortunately, it has become clear that the recent increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in Chile will have an impact on ALMA observations. Several areas in Chile are back to full lockdown and the anticipated addition of more staff to the ALMA site to conduct the change of ALMA configurations will be delayed by a minimum of 20 days.

Workshop 'The ALMA 2030 Vision: A Next Generation of Front End Receivers'

Published: 15 Apr 2021

Following the first two of three workshops intended to promote upgrades that will realize the ALMA 2030 vision, it is planned to complete the workshop trilogy with an ALMA Front-End Development Workshop, entitled “The ALMA 2030 Vision: A next generation of front-end receivers”. This workshop will be held online the week of September 27-30 (inclusive), 2021.

ALMA Cycle 7 Science Observations Have Re-started

Published: 13 Apr 2021

ALMA is very pleased to share the positive news that science observations re-started on 17 March 2021. These were the first Cycle 7 data to be acquired since the Observatory shutdown, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, in March 2020. The first newly-acquired datasets have now been calibrated and imaged, and have successfully passed the ALMA quality assurance stages.

ALMA Cycle 8 2021 Call for Proposals

Published: 13 Apr 2021

The ALMA Director, on behalf of the Joint ALMA Observatory (JAO) and the partner organizations in East Asia, Europe, and North America, is pleased to announce the ALMA Cycle 8 2021 Call for Proposals (CfP) for scientific observations to be scheduled from October 2021 to September 2022. More details can be found on the ALMA Science Portal.

2021 Release of VLT/VLTI Instrument Data Reduction Software Packages

Published: 13 Apr 2021

The annual public release of ESO VLT/VLTI instruments data reduction software packages is scheduled for end of May 2021. Please note that the new pipeline packages will be released for the following operating systems: Fedora 28 – 32CentOS 7 and macOS 10.14 – 10.15. ESO is working toward full support for macOS 11, but for the time being it is not possible to say when MacPorts binary packages for the pipelines on macOS 11 will be provided. Nevertheless, the use of MacPorts is recommended as opposed to installing from install_esoreflex script. Using MacPorts the pipelines will build and install from source in macOS 11, thus installations will take a bit longer than for those OS versions that are supported with binary packages.

Introducing the 2021 ESO Fellows

Published: 09 Apr 2021

The Offices for Science and the Astronomy Faculty are very pleased to present the 2021 ESO Fellows. Here is an introduction to the Fellows due to start in Germany and Chile later this year.

Fundamental Cosmology from the ELT and Space - 4th Azores School on Observational Cosmology

Published: 09 Apr 2021

The 4th Azores School on Observational Cosmology will take place in Angra do Heroísmo (Terceira Island, Portugal) from 6 to 12 September 2021. The school is jointly organized by CAUP/IA, ESO and University of Azores, and the topic for this edition will be 'Fundamental cosmology from the ELT and space'. Should the COVID-19 situation make an in-person school impossible in September, the school will be online.

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