ESO Science Newsletter November 2014
28 Nov 2014
MPG/ESO WFI image of open cluster NGC 3532

This newsletter is a summary of recent ESO Science Announcement items. Follow the links or visit ESO Science Announcements to read more.

Science Announcements

Early E-ELT Science: Spectroscopy with HARMONI

27 Nov 2014:

Oxford University Museum of Natural History, Oxford, United Kingdom, 29 June – 3 July 2015

This workshop will explore some of the first science that will emerge from the European Extremely Large Telescope (E‐ELT) in the next decade. The primary spectroscopic capability of E-ELT at first light will be provided by the HARMONI instrument, a visible and near-infrared integral field spectrograph that will be capable of working close to the diffraction limit of the telescope or in natural seeing mode.

Read more

ALMA Community Days: Cycle 3 Proposal Preparation

27 Nov 2014:

ESO Headquarters, Garching, Germany, 13–15 April 2015

The ESO ALMA Regional Centre (ARC) will organise another Community Days workshop at ESO Headquarters in order to optimally prepare the European astronomical community for ALMA Cycle 3. The call for Cycle 3 observing proposals will be released in March 2015 and the main new scientific capability will be significantly longer baselines than in previous cycles.

Read more

ALMA Status Report

27 Nov 2014:

An ALMA status report for November 2014 is available. The report ( PDF) summarizes the status and recent progress of Cycle 2 Early Science observations as of October 2014, including "Cycle 1 Transfer" projects. It includes the 12-m array configuration schedule for the rest of Cycle 2 and a summary of the number of unfinished “high priority” observations. The report also contains plans and references to ongoing work as part of the “Extension and Optimization of Capabilities (EOC)” and preparations for Cycle 3.

Read more

ALMA/Herschel Archival Workshop 2015

13 Nov 2014:

ESO Headquarters, Garching, Germany, 15–17 April 2015

All Herschel science data, and some user-provided data products, are publicly available through the Herschel Science Archive. Meanwhile, the ALMA Science Archive is being populated with observations from the first three Cycles, with more data released daily. The higher frequency ALMA bands overlap with the lower frequency Herschel bands, and, despite the huge difference in spatial resolution, Herschel sources provide ideal targets for ALMA follow-up. In order to explore the full potential of both archives, archival users need to be aware of the contents and differences.

Read more

Stellar End Products: The Low Mass - High Mass Connection

03 Nov 2014:

ESO Workshop, ESO Headquarters, Garching, Germany, 6–10 July, 2015
Mass loss from cool Asymptotic Giant Branch and Red Supergiant stars inputs large amounts of material to the ISM and is therefore an important process for understanding stellar lifecycles and galactic ecology. Significant advances in observations (e.g. VLTI, ALMA and other facilities), and theory, now provide an opportunity to revisit outstanding questions of late stellar evolution, such as the role of mass loss, magnetic fields and binarity. The aim of the meeting is to bring together observers and theorists from the low and high mass stellar communities with the goals of exploring the commonalities of evolved star mass loss.

Read more

Upcoming ESO or ESO-Related Workshops

  • Revolution in Astronomy with ALMA – The 3rd Year –
    Tokyo International Forum, Tokyo, Japan, 8–11 December 2014

    The Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) has been producing a growing number of impressive and transformational science results as the most powerful mm/submm interferometer in the world. This workshop will highlight the science results from ALMA obtained during the first three years of science operations. Science topics include all fields of astronomy: cosmology and galaxies in the distant Universe; nearby galaxies and the Galactic Centre; the interstellar medium and star formation in our own Galaxy; astrochemistry, circumstellar disks, exoplanets and the Solar System; stellar evolution and solar physics; and fundamental physics.More details are available from the conference website.

  • ESO in the 2020s
    ESO Workshop, ESO Headquarters, Garching, Germany, 19–22 January 2015

    This workshop will provide a forum for discussion of the likely astronomical landscape in the 2020s - both core science and burning topics. Flowing from these considerations, the community is invited to advise the ESO Executive with regard to future facilities. The workshop will include high-level summaries and ample time for discussion and presentation of new ideas to shape the future of ESO. Details are available from the workshop webpage or by email. The deadline for registration and contributed talks is 12 December 2014.

  • Baryons at Low Densities: the Stellar Halos around Galaxies
    ESO Workshop, ESO Headquarters, Garching, Germany, 23–27 February 2015

    Stellar halos are ubiquitous in luminous galaxies, but their low surface brightness hampers detailed study in distant galaxies. Recent surveys have however revaled low luminosity extended structures in a variety of galaxies. This workshop aims to bring together theorists and observers to discuss the results from ground- and space-based surveys of stellar halos in disk and elliptical galaxies, as well as from simulations. The properties of the Milky Way halo will also be discussed as representative of those of a halo around a spiral galaxy. More details can be found on the workshop web page; the registration deadline is 20 January 2015.

  • Ground and Space Observatories: A Joint Venture to Planetary Science
    ESO – ESA Workshop, ESO Vitacura, Santiago, Chile, 2–5 March 2015

    Exploration of the Solar System and subsequent discoveries are made with planetary missions and ground-based observatories. These two means are complementary and are sometimes strategically linked. During this workshop, the synergies between these two paths will be explored, with the aim to foster collaboration between both communities. The workshop will showcase the current and future capabilities of ALMA for planetary science, encouraging planetary scientists to use this facility. Abstract deadline is 25 November 2014, with final announcement 20 January 2015. See the workshop announcement for more details.

  • Dissecting Galaxies Near and Far
    ESO Workshop, Vitacura, Santiago, Chile, 23–27 March 2015

    Angular and spectral resolutions are fundamental limitations to our understanding of the properties of galaxies in the nearby and distant Universe. Current facilities allow the ISM and star formation to be probed in unprecedented detail from the local Universe to intermediate redshift. The aim of this workshop is to further this understanding at high spatial and spectral resolution. Synergies between current and future facilities, particularly with ALMA, and between the extragalactic and Galactic communities, will be encouraged. Further information can be found on the workshop webpage. The registration deadline is 23 January 2015.

  • Satellites and Streams in Santiago
    ESO Workshop, Vitacura, Santiago, Chile, 13–17 April 2015

    Satellite galaxies, streams and the star cluster – dwarf galaxy interface are inter-related. Galactic satellites and streams should be regarded together – satellites result from low-mass substructures while tidal streams trace the disruption of these substructures by the host's gravitational potential. Both contribute to the assembly of the host galaxy and provide a unique opportunity to test and improve our understanding of structure formation at small and large scales. This workshop aims to bring together experts from both fields to explore the bigger picture. More details can be found on the workshop webpage. The deadline for abstracts is 10 January 2015.

  • Gas, Dust and Star-Formation in Galaxies from the Local to Far Universe
    Platanias – Chania, Crete, Greece, 25–29 May, 2015

    Spitzer, Herschel and Planck have enabled important steps forward in our understanding of the nature of galaxies. While Herschel has studied, in unprecedented detail, the distribution and properties of dust and star formation in nearby galaxies, deep infrared and sub-millimetre surveys have revealed a large population of massive, gas-rich, intensely star-forming galaxies, which have no local analogues. The extrapolation of the physical processes and scaling laws from low to high redshift could provide new keys to solve this problem. In the near future ALMA will open a new era of studies of resolved high-redshift populations. This meeting will be the opportunity to exchange new findings, confronting the problems of the communities studying nearby and distant objects. The programme will be split into long and short review talks, introducing each sub-session, contributed talks and discussions. More details can be found on the workshop webpage; the deadline for abstract submission is 26 January 2015.