ESO Scientific Staff in Santiago/Chile

Find out more about the Key Research Areas:

(1) Planets and Star Formation
(3) Stellar Populations
(5) Cosmology and the Early Universe 
(2) Stellar Structure and Evolution
(4) Evolution of Galaxies and the ISM

See also the PhD Thesis Topics offered by ESO Faculty Members (Garching and Chile) and the ESO Garching Staff and Research page for scientific staff in Garching.

GAR = Garching; LS = La Silla; PAO = Paranal; SCV = Science Vitacura
For students: LEA: Local ESO Advisor; S: Supervisor; HI: Home Institute

Boffin, Henri

Cosmology and the Early Universe  ·  Faculty

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Henri Boffin is a Paranal Operations Staff Astronomer since August 2010. He obtained his PhD from the Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium, in 1993, working on explaining chemically peculiar red giants, in particular Barium stars. Since then, his research is devoted to the world of close binary stars, their formation and evolution. To this aim, he combines both observational and theoretical work, including hydrodynamical simulations. He spent 2 years as a post-doc in Kobe, Japan, working on cataclysmic variables, and another 2 years in Cardiff, Wales, UK, in the Star Formation group. In 1998, he came back to Brussels, obtaining a permanent position as Senior Researcher at the Royal Observatory of Belgium. There, he organised the first international workshop on Astro-tomography. As he is very keen to share science with society, he also graduated from the 1st promotion of “Journalist & Scientist” at the Ecole Supérieure de Journalisme de Lille, France. He has had experience in journalism and editing, and in 2003, joined ESO as Astronomer and Press Officer, dealing with communication about all telescopes and projects of ESO. He was member of the steering committee of the very successful Venus Transit 2004 Programme and of the EIRO forum Science on Stage festivals, and coordinator of the IYA 2009 Gigagalaxy Zoom project. His current scientific interests also include Am stars and binary nuclei of planetary nebulae, but more generally all interacting binary stars.

Personal home page

(PAO/SCV)

Carraro, Giovanni

Stellar Populations  ·  Faculty

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Giovanni Carraro is a support astronomer at VLT Paranal and HAWKI instrument scientist. He received his PhD in Astronomy from Padova university in 1996. He was a postdoc at SISSA/ISAS and Padova university, and later he was Andes Fellow at Yale and the universidad de Chile. Since 1999 he holds a professorship at Padova University. His scientific interests include open star clusters and Milky Way structure and evolution, Galaxy formation, and small objects in the solar system. Giovanni is the actual president of the IAU commission 37 "Star Cluster and Association", and serves as Scientific Editor of the Astrophysical Journal.

Personal home page

(PAO/SCV)

De Gregorio-Monsalvo, Itziar

Planets and Star Formation  ·  Faculty

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Itziar de Gregorio-Monsalvo is the Head of the ALMA Program Management group.  She did her PhD in the Spanish National Institute for Aerospace Technology,  using the NASA Deep Space Network antennas to set up Radio Astronomy observations and performing star formation studies at centimeter wavelengths.  She joint ESO in 2006 as an ESO ALMA fellow with duties at the APEX telescope,  the Atacama Test Facility (in Socorro, New Mexico), and the Operations  Support Facilities near San Pedro de Atacama.   She became ESO Faculty member in 2010, working as an ALMA Science Operations Astronomer. 
Her main research activities are focused in star and planetary formation, in particular: 

  • Star, planets, and brown dwarfs formation
  • Protoplanetary disks formation and evolution
  • Jets and molecular outflows
  • Astrophysical masers
  • Centimeter, Millimeter and Submillimeter Astronomy: Interferometry and Single Dish techniques

(JAO/SCV)

Ledoux, Cédric

Evolution of Galaxies and the ISM  ·  Cosmology and the Early Universe  ·  Faculty

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Cédric Ledoux is support astronomer at the Very Large Telescope. He is the instrument scientist responsible for UVES, the Ultraviolet and Visual Echelle Spectrograph. His main research interests include the properties and evolution of galaxies as revealed by QSO absorption-line systems, the study of molecules and dust in the interstellar medium of high-redshift galaxies, the distribution of the gas in and around the host galaxies of Gamma-Ray Bursts, and the detection of galaxies in emission up to the highest redshifts.

(PAO/SCV)

Gadotti, Dimitri

Evolution of Galaxies and the ISM  ·  Faculty

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Dimitri Gadotti is an ESO Staff Astronomer since April 2013. Before, he was a fellow since October 2009. He has duties on Cerro Paranal and loves to work on the mountain! Dimitri obtained his Ph.D. degree at the University of Sao Paulo, Brazil, in 2004, with a thesis on the formation and evolution of stellar bars in galaxies, using both spectroscopic and photometric data in optical and near-infrared passbands, as well as N-body simulations and analytical calculations. After his Ph.D. he spent 5 years in Europe at the Laboratoire d'Astrophysique de Marseille, France, and the Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics in Garching, Germany. His works focus on bulges of disc galaxies, barred galaxies, dwarf galaxies, supermassive black holes and AGN activity, comparing measurements of the dynamics and structure of stellar systems to theoretical models, and thus trying to understand how such systems came to be. He is author of the BUDDA code, a public available software to perform detailed structural analysis of galaxies.

His main topics are:

  • Pseudo-bulges, classical bulges and elliptical galaxies
  • Formation and evolution of stellar bars in galaxies
  • Supermassive black holes and active galactic nuclei

(PAO/SCV)

Kneissl, Ruediger

Cosmology and the Early Universe  ·  Faculty

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Rüdiger Kneissl joined ESO in 2009 as Science Operations Astronomer in the ALMA project. He received his PhD from the University of Munich and the Max-Planck-Institute for Astrophysics in 1997. During appointments at the University of Cambridge, UC Berkeley and MPI for Radio Astronomy in Bonn he worked with various radio interferometers and the APEX telescope. He has also been involved in the Planck satellite mission for many years. His main scientific interest is in

  • Cosmic Microwave Background
  • Galaxy Clusters via the Sunyaev-Zel'dovich Effect
  • High-Redshift Dusty Galaxies

(JAO/SCV)

Marconi, Gianni

Stellar Populations  ·  Evolution of Galaxies and the ISM  ·  Faculty

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Gianni Marconi is Commissioning Scientist of the ALMA Observatory (Array Group lead). He received his degree (cum Laude) in Astronomy from Bologna University in 1987. In 1991 he graduated with a PhD in Astronomy from the same university. From 1994 to 2005 he held an assistant professorship and was member of the Director Board at the Observatory of Rome.  In 1999 he became ESO staff member and joined the VLT Science Operations department. He has been the Paranal instrument scientists of VIMOS between 2002 and 2005. From 2006 to 2010 he has been the Instrumentation Operation Teams Coordinator of the La Silla Paranal Observatory. From 2010 he has been seconded to the JAO office for the commissioning of ALMA.  His main research activities focus on the fields of stellar astrophysics, star formation history and chemical evolution of galaxies, and state-of-the-art astronomical instrumentation and telescopes.

Scientific interests:

  • Globular Clusters
  • Open Clusters
  • Chemical Abundances of stars in the Local Group
  • Star Formation and Chenical Evolution History of Dwarf Galaxies in the Local Group
  • X-rays Binaries
  • Neutron Stars

(JAO/SCO)

Mehner, Andrea

Stellar Structure and Evolution  ·  Faculty

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Scientific interests:

  • Late stages of massive star evolution
  • Variable massive stars
  • Supernova impostors and progenitors

(PAO/SCV)

Mérand, Antoine

Stellar Structure and Evolution  ·  Faculty

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Antoine Mérand received his PhD in Astronomy from Paris University (France) in 2005. In 2006, he moved to the CHARA Array interferometer (operated by Georgia State University, USA) to work on instrumentation developments and to complete observation programs he started during his PhD. In 2008, he joined ESO as an operation astronomer at VLTI, as well as instrument scientist of AMBER (2008-2010) and PRIMA instrument scientist (2010-2014), and is now acting as VLTI System Scientist (since 2012). His main reasearch interests are determining distances to Cepheids pulsating stars, determination of stellar fundamental parameters and instrumentation for optical interferometry.

(PAO/SCV)

Parra, Rodrigo

Evolution of Galaxies and the ISM  ·  Faculty

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Rodrigo Parra is Support Astronomer at the APEX project. He obtained an Electrical Engineering Degree at Universidad Tecnica Federico Santa Maria and a MSc in (Microwave) Digital Communications Systems at Chalmers University in Sweden. Subsequently, he received a PhD in Radio Astronomy from the Onsala Space Observatory in 2007. In addition to his expertise in single dish mm-astronomy, he has specialized in continuum and spectral line cm and mm wave interferometric techniques, particularly VLBI. He is deeply interested in the study of possible evolutionary connections between AGN and starburst activity. One of the guiding questions of his research is whether or not the 100 parsec regions of starburst activity seen in external galaxies are scaled up versions of galactic star forming regions. If not, what makes them different? He has studied star formation and AGN activity using cm and mm wavelength VLBI observations of large samples of galaxies as well as deep cm and mm wavelength interferometry of single objects. He also actively collaborates in several research projects whose topics include Interstellar Masers (OH megamaser galaxies and Hydrogen masers), dense molecular gas in star-forming regions and theoretical models of propagation of radiation in clumpy media.

Scientific interests:

  • AGN/Starburst Activity
  • Interferometry
  • Type II Supernovae
  • Radiative Transfer Models

(APEX/SCV)

Tristram, Konrad

Evolution of Galaxies and the ISM  ·  Faculty

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Konrad Tristram is an operations staff astronomer at Paranal. He received his PhD in 2007 from the University of Heidelberg, Germany, where he started his investigation of active galactic nuclei (AGN) at highest angular resolutions. After his PhD he moved to Bonn becoming an interferometry specialist. He joined ESO in April 2014 in order to support the interferometric effort at Paranal. He continues working on the dust and gas surrounding the supermassive black holes in AGN. Driven by his science, he holds a special interest in high angular resolution imaging and spectroscopy as well as in infrared & submm interferometry. Since 2015, he is the instrument scientist of VISIR.

His research interests are:

  • active galactic nuclei
  • supermassive black holes
  • nearby active galaxies
  • very high angular resolution imaging and spectroscopy
  • optical and infrared interferometry

Personal home page

(PAO/SCV)

Asmus, Daniel

Evolution of Galaxies and the ISM  ·  Fellows

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Daniel Asmus is an ESO fellow with duties at Paranal observatory since August 2014. He is also the instrument fellow for VISIR. Daniel received his PhD in astrophysics at the university of Kiel, Germany, in 2012 in the accretion physics group of Wolfgang Duschl. Before, he was an ESO student in Chile between 2009 and 2011 working with Alain Smette. He studies nearby galaxies and their active galactic nuclei (AGN), mainly in the mid-infrared with ground-based high-angular resolution instruments like VLT/VISIR and VLTI/MIDI. Goal of these studies is to obtain a better understanding of the circumnuclear structures and processes, in particular dust emission and absorption.

Scientific interests:

  • Mid-infrared observations
  • Active galactic nuclei
  • Solar System

Personal home page

(PAO/SCV)

Villard, Eric

Planets and Star Formation  ·  Faculty

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Eric Villard is a System Astronomer on ALMA. He joined ESO in January 2010, after obtaining his PhD at Service d'Aéronomie du CNRS (near Paris) in 2008. While at Service d'Aéronomie, he also worked on the science operations of the European Venus Express mission, in particular the SPICAV instrument. His main research interest is the study of planetary atmospheres at various wavelengths. Other research interests include astrometry, the study of comets, exoplanets and galaxy evolution (bars).

  • Planetary atmospheres
  • Exoplanets

(JAO/SCO)

Guzman-Ramirez, Lizette

Stellar Structure and Evolution  ·  Fellows

guzman-ramirez_liz_80

Scientific interests:

  • Planetary Nebulae formation and evolution
  • Dust formation in evolved stars
  • PAHs formation and evolution in evolved stars

(ALMA/SCV)

Haubois, Xavier

Stellar Structure and Evolution  ·  Fellows

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Xavier Haubois is an ESO fellow with duties at Paranal Observatory since October 2014. He got his PhD in 2009 at Observatoire de Paris that was focused on infrared interferometric imaging of evolved stars and the design phase of GRAVITY. After his thesis, he obtained a post-doctoral contract at the University of São Paulo (IAG) to work on the modelling of circumstellar environments and at the University of Sydney to deepen his skills in optical interferometry. After one year of teaching and research at Observatoire de Paris in 2013, Xavier continues his works at ESO on evolved stars and to the forthcoming operation of GRAVITY.

His research interests are:

  • Evolved stars
  • The Galactic Center
  • Be stars
  • Optical Interferometry and high angular resolution imaging

(PAO/SCV)

Watson, Linda

Evolution of Galaxies and the ISM  ·  Fellows

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Linda Watson is an ESO fellow with duties at ALMA since September 2014. She earned her PhD in astronomy from the Ohio State University in 2011 and then held a postdoc position with the Submillimeter Array group at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics.
Linda's primary research interests are the following:

  • Star formation and the interstellar medium in nearby galaxies
  • Connections between atomic gas, molecular gas, and star formation in bulgeless disk galaxies and galaxies with extended ultraviolet (XUV) disks
  • Galaxy evolution, especially by secular processes

Personal home page

(ALMA/SCV)

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