Science Announcements

ESO Sets up Merged Instrumentation Programme

Published: 24 Jun 2024

Following discussions with Council and the Scientific and Technical Committee during 2023, ESO is now merging the three instrumentation programmes that are in place for its optical/infrared telescopes: The Paranal Instrumentation Programme; the ELT instrumentation project, for the ELT construction instruments; and the Armazones Instrumentation Programme, for the future ELT instrumentation.

VLT BlueMUSE Phase A Kicked-off

Published: 24 Jun 2024

BlueMUSE is an optical seeing-limited, blue-optimised, medium spectral resolution, panoramic integral-field-spectrograph, to be installed at the VLT. With a wide wavelength coverage (350 - 580 nm), an average spectral resolution of R=4000 and a field-of-view of 1arcmin², BlueMUSE will offer new and unique science opportunities in many fields of astrophysics. ESO has approved the Phase A  (conceptual design) of the project led by PI Johan Richard from the Centre de Recherche Astrophysique de Lyon (France), the laboratory leading the consortium composed of a total of 9 institutes world-wide. The expected first-light for the BlueMUSE instrument is 2031.

"Cosmic Ecosystems in Radio & Optical", ESO-SKA 2024 conference, Busselton, Australia, 9-13 December 2024

Published: 17 Jun 2024

Gas flowing into, out of, and around galaxies plays a key role in shaping how their properties evolve over cosmic time. The mechanisms driving these behaviors are poorly understood, largely because we lack detailed knowledge of fundamental gas properties across multiple scales and phases. Tackling these issues necessarily requires a multi-wavelength approach. Fortunately, the southern hemisphere hosts the most comprehensive suite of observational facilities available for tackling this topic, in the form of the ESO, ALMA, the Square Kilometer Array (SKA) precursors (MWA, ASKAP and MeerKAT), and very soon, the SKA-Mid and SKA-Low telescopes. This conference, which will take place near Busselton Australia, from 9 to 13 December 2024, is sponsored by both ESO and the SKA as it supports the joint science of both facilities that will be dominant in astronomy in the coming decade.

ESO Signs Agreement for ANDES Instrument on the ELT

Published: 10 Jun 2024

On 5 June, ESO signed an agreement with an international consortium of institutions for the design and construction of ANDES, the ArmazoNes high Dispersion Echelle Spectrograph. The ANDES instrument will be installed on ESO’s Extremely Large Telescope (ELT). It will be used to search for signs of life in exoplanets and look for the very first stars, as well as to test variations of the fundamental constants of physics and measure the acceleration of the Universe’s expansion.

Call for Letters of Intent for Public Surveys with KMOS

Published: 04 Jun 2024

Following a recommendation by the ESO Scientific and Technical Committee (STC), ESO is issuing a call for letters of intent for public surveys with KMOS. A public survey is understood to be an observing programme in which the investigators commit to produce and make publicly available, within a defined time, a fully reduced and scientifically usable data set that is likely to answer a major scientific question and be of general use and of broad interest to the astronomical community. The raw data are public immediately. These surveys are envisaged to be observing programmes with up to 200 observing nights to be allocated over six semesters with KMOS.

Upcoming Changes in the Observing Proposal Submission: Yearly Cycle and Fast Track Channel

Published: 04 Jun 2024

The Call for Proposals for the La Silla Paranal Observatory will move to a yearly cycle in 2025. To address the increased duty cycle resulting from this change, a Fast Track Channel with staggered deadlines throughout the year will be introduced simultaneously. The criteria and frequency for the Fast Track Channel are under discussion with the ESO advisory committees (Scientific and Technical Committee and Users Committee). The community will be informed regularly about the implementation of the yearly call and the Fast Track Channel through news in the upcoming Call for Proposals for Period 115, newsletter posts and direct emails to active Principal Investigators. The change follows recommendations made in a report by the Time Allocation Working Group almost a decade ago.

Second Announcement: "Hey GPT! Can you help me understand the Universe?", Online, 23-27 September 2024

Published: 31 May 2024

This is the second announcement of the conference “Hey GPT! Can you help me understand the Universe? A synoptic view of the impact of chatGPT-like technologies on the future of astronomy”. The list of invited speakers, including the title of their talks, can be found at the workshop webpage.

Registration Open: "A Decade of Discoveries with MUSE and Beyond", Garching bei München, 18-22 November 2024

Published: 31 May 2024

Going well beyond the 10th anniversary of MUSE, this workshop is a very timely opportunity to reflect on the many successes and challenges such an instrument triggered and to further shape a community-wide science perspective and effort, supported by integral-field spectroscopy. Please note that the registration and abstract submission for the ESO workshop "A decade of discoveries with MUSE and beyond" are now open.

"Galaxies at Crossroads: Outflows and IMF in the VLT/ELT/ALMA/JWST Era", Brno, Czech Republic, 16-20 September 2024

Published: 31 May 2024

ESO is excited to announce that registration and abstract submission for the ESO conference "Galaxies at Crossroads: Outflows and IMF in the VLT/ELT/ALMA/JWST Era" (GALCROSS) are now open. The conference will be held in Brno, Czech Republic, from 16-20 September 2024. The conference will explore the dynamic processes shaping galaxies, particularly gas outflows, and critically examine important factors like the Initial Mass Function (IMF), ultimately analyzing their reciprocal influence on the chemical enrichment of both stellar and gas components. This event is a unique opportunity to merge theoretical insights and observational breakthroughs, sparked by the latest data from cutting-edge astronomical instruments. The focus is on dissecting the complex interplay between galactic outflows/inflows, the Initial Mass Function (IMF), and the intricate mass-metallicity relationship, all of which are key to understanding the cosmic tapestry of galaxy formation and evolution.

The Messenger 192 is Now Available

Published: 29 Apr 2024

The latest edition of ESO's science and technology journal, The Messenger, is now available online.

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