People and Project News


ELT MICADO Instrument Passes Preliminary Design Review

January 21, 2020

MICADO, the first dedicated imaging system for ESO’s Extremely Large Telescope (ELT), has reached an important milestone in its design review. The MICADO consortium, together with a group of external experts from around the world, met at ESO’s Garching headquarters for a week of intense examination of the instrument’s optics, mechanics, software, electronics, and budget plan to identify any areas which needed further design work. After the meeting, the MICADO team addressed all of the major concerns raised during the review and the instrument has now formally passed its preliminary design review. A more detailed design phase is now underway, leading towards the final design review and construction of the instrument’s many components.

ALMA and Rosetta map the journey of phosphorus

Phosphorus, present in our DNA and cell membranes, is an essential element for life as we know it. But how it arrived on the early Earth is something of a mystery. Astronomers including researchers of the CAS group at MPE have now traced the journey of phosphorus from star-forming regions to comets using the combined powers of ALMA and the ESA space probe Rosetta. Their research shows, for the first time, where molecules containing phosphorus form, how this element is carried in comets, and how a particular molecule may have played a crucial role in starting life on our planet.

With the start of the SRG all-sky survey, eROSITA promises most accurate maps of the X-ray sky ever

December 08, 2019

Launched from Baikonur on July 13th 2019 to the second Sun-Earth Lagrange point (L2), the Russian-German SRG mission has now started its main task. On December 8th, after an extensive program of commissioning, calibration and performance verification of its two X-ray telescopes (ART-XC and eROSITA), the satellite has begun observing the sky in continuous scanning mode. As SRG follows the revolution of Earth, and hence also of the L2 point, around the Sun, it will perform eight complete surveys of the whole sky, one every six months, for the next 4 years. Pre-launch predictions suggest that, over that time, the eROSITA instrument, conceived, designed and built at MPE, should discover approximately 100,000 clusters of galaxies, around 3 million accreting supermassive black holes and half a million active stars.

Upcoming events

Constraints on accreting giant planets with hydrogen-line observations

Feb 18, 2020 10:15 - 11:15
ESO Headquarters, Garching, Room: Fornax Room

Galaxy cluster masses and the surrounding velocity field

Feb 18, 2020 11:00 - 12:00
MPA, Room: Old Lecture Hall 401

W0830: an extremely cold, missing-link planetary-mass object

Feb 18, 2020 12:00 - 13:00
ESO Headquarters, Garching, Room: Library (room 365)

Searching for Gamma-ray Spiders

Feb 18, 2020 16:15 - 17:15
Max-Planck-Institut für Physik / MPP, (Werner-Heisenberg-Institut), Föhringer Ring 6, 80805 München , Room: Auditorium

Short-wavelenght excess emission due to gas accretion: From pre-main-sequence stars to planets

Feb 19, 2020 10:45 - 11:45
ESO Headquarters, Garching, Room: Library (room 365)

The Thermodynamic Properties in Cluster Outskirts: from X-COP to High-z SPT Clusters

Feb 21, 2020 15:00 - 16:00
ESO Headquarters, Garching, Room: ESO library (room 365)

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