Dr. Ke Wang

ESO Fellow Welcome to my home page! I am a postdoctral fellow at the European Southern Observatory (ESO) Garching Headquarters in Germany.

I study the formation of high-mass stars by observing their parent molecular clouds at high angular resolution, using submm/mm/cm interferometers including ALMA, SMA, VLA, CARMA, plus space- and ground-based single dish telescopes Herschel, IRAM 30m, GBT, APEX, CSO, and KOSMA.

I spend 25% of my working time at the European ALMA Regional Center (EU ARC) for my functional work. I enjoy serving as an astronomer on duty (AoD), contact scientist (CS), and data analyst (QA2) at the EU ARC, which means I visit the ALMA site in Chile regularly, communicate with ALMA observers about updates of their observing projects, reduce fresh ALMA data right after observations, and make data products deliverable to PIs.


Web www.eso.org/~kwang
kwang at eso.org
Telephone+49 89 3200 6575
OfficeHQ 508
Adress European Southern Observatory
Karl-Schwarzschild-Str. 2
D-85748 Garching bei München
(Note: this site is under active construction, stay tuned!)
Last updated: 2014-Nov-06

3D structure of the Snake IRDC. Use mouse to rotate and zoom. More information in this book chapter and this paper.


2014-Nov-06: ALMA long baseline commission took a revolutionary image of a young solar system HL Tau.
2014-Nov-04: My second book is formally published by Springer: "The Earliest Stages of Massive Clustered Star Formation: Fragmentation of Infrared Dark Clouds" .
2014-Nov-02: My IRAM 30m proposal is accepted (A rated)
2014-Sep-30~Oct-02: ARC all-hands meeting at Autrans, France
2014-Sep-15: My DFG priority program ISM-SPP proposal is fully approved
2014-Aug-10~20: Astronomer on Duty at ALMA OSF, Chile
2014-July-23: My series of studies on IRDCs highlighted in SMA Newsletter (issue July 2014) in article "Most In-depth View of the Initial Stages of Massive Clustered Star Formation" .
2014-July-7~11: Workshop "Mass assembly from clouds to clusters", Haus Sexten, Via Dolomiti, Italy
2014-June-24: My research highlighted at the SMA 10 years anniversary "Celebrating a Decade of Discovery" .
2014-June-20: My poster at the EPoS 2014 conference downloadable from here .
2014-June-19: My DFG priority program ISM-SPP proposal is recommended for full funding by the reviewers.
2014-Apr-17: My abstract accepted to EWASS 2014 in Symposia 10: "mm/submm astronomy in the ALMA era".
2014-Apr-09: ALMA cycle 2 results: 1 PI and 2 co-I projects approved.
2014-Apr-1~7: ALMA QA2 training in Garching
2014-Mar-30: My first internal beta release of pixSED v0
2014-Mar-20: ALMA featured in major medias: article, photos
2014-Mar-17: My DFG priority program proposal submitted
2014-Mar-14: Back from ALMA cycle 2 proposal review, results should come out around "mid-April"
2014-Feb-26: Press release! My study on IRDC G11.11-0.12 highlighted by Harvard CfA and UK Royal Astronomical Society, among many other medias word wide.
2014-Feb-15: My abstract accepted to EPoS 2014
2013-Nov-21: Back from AoD trip to ALMA OSF. I resumed cycle 1 observations out of multiple delays :-)
2013-Dec-12: Received permissions to publish my thesis in Springer, start to prepare the manuscript.
2013-Dec-05: Submitted ALMA cycle 2 proposals: PI on 1, co-I on 6 proposals.
2013-Oct-25: My project "Galactic cold interstellar filaments" phase II approved by Hi-GAL consortium.
2012-Dec-20: Received Springer Theses Prize.
2012-Aug-01: My book, Chinese translation of "Super Stars" published (I didn't like the Chinese title they forced me!)

Research Interests

Initial conditions of high-mass star formation
Infrared dark clouds, molecular filaments
submm/mm/cm interferometric observations


Lucky enough, all job positions I have held so far are independent fellowships, which allow more freedom in research.

ESO Fellow
European Southern Observatory, Garching Headquarters, Germany
(Close collaboration with Leonardo Testi)

Erasmus Mundus Lotus Post-doctoral Fellow
Kapteyn Astronomical Institute, University of Groningen, The Netherlands
(Close collaboration with Floris van der Tak)

Submillimeter Array (SMA) Pre-doctoral Fellow
Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge MA, USA
(Supervised by Qizhou Zhang)


Ph.D. in Astrophysics, Peking University, Beijing, China (highest distinction)
Thesis: "The Earliest Stages of Massive Clustered Star Formation: Fragmentation of Infrared Dark Clouds"
Supervisors: Qizhou Zhang (Harvard CfA), Yuefang Wu (Peking University)
Annual Research Review Committee: Philip C. Myers, Tirupati K. Sridharan (Harvard CfA)

B.S. in Physics, Beijing Institute of Technology, Beijing, China (highest distinction)
Thesis: "Circumstellar Habitable Zones of Solar-like Stars"
Supervisor: Xiaowei Liu (Peking University)

Tsinghua High School, Chongqing, China (highest distinction)

Journal Papers

All papers on ADS , or individually:

11. "Large scale filaments associated with Milky Way spiral arms"
Ke Wang, Leonardo Testi, Adam Ginsburg, C. Malcolm Walmsley, Sergio Molinari, and Eugenio Schisano
submitted to MNRAS

10. "Initial Fragmentation in the Infrared Dark Cloud G28.53-0.25"
Xing Lu, Qizhou Zhang, Ke Wang, and Qiusheng Gu
submitted to ApJ

9. Fragmentation of Molecular Clumps and Formation of Protocluster
Zhang, Qizhou; Wang, Ke; Lu, Xing; Jimenez-Serra, Izaskun
ApJ, in press

8. Extremely Energetic Outflow and Decelerated Expansion in W49N
Liu, Tie; Kim, Kee-Tae; Wu, Yuefang; Li, Di; Lee, Chang-Won; De Pree, Christopher G.; Qin, Sheng-Li; Wang, Ke; Tatematsu, Kenichi; Zhang, Qizhou; Mardones, Diego; Liu, Sheng-Yuan; Cho, Se-Hyung
submitted to ApJ

7. Hierarchical fragmentation and differential star formation in the Galactic 'Snake': infrared dark cloud G11.11-0.12
Wang, Ke; Zhang, Qizhou; Testi, Leonardo; van der Tak, Floris; Wu, Yuefang; Zhang, Huawei; Pillai, Thushara; Wyrowski, Friedrich; Carey, Sean; Ragan, Sarah E.; Henning, Thomas
MNRAS, 2014, 439, 3275
Press release: Harvard CfA , UK Royal Astronomical Society , other medias word wide.

6. Protostellar Outflow Heating in a Growing Massive Protocluster
Wang, Ke; Zhang, Qizhou; Wu, Yuefang; Li, Hua-bai; Zhang, Huawei
ApJ, 2012, 745, L30

5. The Origin of OB Clusters: From 10 pc to 0.1 pc
Liu, Hauyu Baobab; Quintana-Lacaci, Guillermo; Wang, Ke; Ho, Paul T. P.; Li, Zhi-Yun; Zhang, Qizhou; Zhang, Zhi-Yu
ApJ, 2012, 745, 61

4. Hierarchical Fragmentation and Jet-like Outflows in IRDC G28.34+0.06: A Growing Massive Protostar Cluster
Wang, Ke; Zhang, Qizhou; Wu, Yuefang; Zhang, Huawei
ApJ, 2011, 735, 64

3. IRDC G030.88+00.13: A Tale of Two Massive Clumps
Zhang, Qizhou; Wang, Ke
ApJ, 2011, 733, 26

2. A search for massive young stellar objects with 98 CH3OH maser sources
Liu, Tie; Wu, Yue-Fang; Wang, Ke
RAA, 2010, 10, 67

1. The relation between 13CO J = 2-1 line width in molecular clouds and bolometric luminosity of associated IRAS sources
Wang, K.; Wu, Y. F.; Ran, L.; Yu, W. T.; Miller, M.
A&A, 2009, 507, 369

Reviews and Conference Proceedings

1. Follow-up observations toward Planck cold clumps with ground-based radio telescopes
Liu, Tie; Wu, Yuefang; Mardones, Diego; Kim, Kee-Tae; Menten, Karl M.; Tatematsu, Ken; Cunningham, Maria; Juvela, Mika; Zhang, Qizhou; Goldsmith, Paul F; Liu, Sheng-Yuan; Zhang, Hua-Wei; Meng, Fanyi; Li, Di; Lo, Nadia; Guan, Xin; Yuan, Jinghua; Belloche, Arnaud; Henkel, Christian; Wyrowski, Friedrich; Garay, Guido; Ristorcelli, Isabelle; Lee, Jeong-Eun; Wang, Ke; Bronfman, Leonardo; Toth, L. Viktor; Schnee, Scott; Qin, Shengli; Akhter, Shaila
2014, APRIM proceeding

2. Most In-depth View of the Initial Stages of Massive Clustered Star Formation
Wang, Ke; Zhang, Qizhou
SMA Newsletter, issue July 2014


1. "The Earliest Stages of Massive Clustered Star Formation: Fragmentation of Infrared Dark Clouds"
Wang, Ke
Springer, 2014

2. Chinese translation of "Super Stars"
Wang, Ke
Anhui Children's Publishing House, 2012, ISBN: 9787539761626
(a popular science book for kids, original author David A. Aguilar)

Observing Experience

Summary since Feb 2009: I've visited all these telescopes and operated most of them:

Functional and Science Duties



Public Outreach

I am enthusiastic to tell the general public about the beauty of our Universe and to share fresh, exciting research results of my own. My wife, Dr. Xiaojin An is always my first listener and reader.

Spare Time

When I am not doing astronomy, I love cooking, skiing, running, and writting (basically food, sports, and sort of literature :-). From 2003 to 2008 I have run the Beijing Marathon yearly, achieved my personal record 3h32m29s in 2006. Since 2013 I started to participate in the Garchinger Runde, exploring the lovely town we live in. In winter 2013/14, I learned skiing and immediately fell in love with the Alps.

Last updated 2014-Nov-06