Reinhard Genzel

We are honored to inform you that Reinhard Genzel, together with Andrea Ghez and Roger Penrose, receive the Nobel Prize in Physics 2020 for their research on black holes.

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The Max Planck director is honoured for his observations of the black hole in the galactic center

Reinhard Genzel receives the Nobel Prize for Physics 2020

The Max Planck director is honoured for his observations of the black hole in the galactic center

Stellar systems like our own form inside interstellar clouds of gas and dust that collapse producing young stars surrounded by protoplanetary disks. Planets form within these protoplanetary disks, leaving clear gaps. ALMA has now revealed an evolved protoplanetary disk with a large gap still being fed by the surrounding cloud via large accretion filaments. This shows that accretion of material onto the protoplanetary disk is continuing for times longer than previously thought, affecting the evolution of the future planetary system.

A planet-forming disk still fed by the mother cloud

Stellar systems like our own form inside interstellar clouds of gas and dust that collapse producing young stars surrounded by protoplanetary disks. Planets form within these protoplanetary disks, leaving clear gaps. ALMA has now revealed an evolved protoplanetary disk with a large gap still being fed by the surrounding cloud via large accretion filaments. This shows that accretion of material onto the protoplanetary disk is continuing for times longer than previously thought, affecting the evolution of the future planetary system.

ALMA shows rings around the still-growing proto-star IRS 63

Stars and Planets Grow Up Together as Siblings

ALMA shows rings around the still-growing proto-star IRS 63

Astronomers using the GRAVITY instrument have now obtained the first direct confirmation of an exoplanet discovered by radial-velocity. As the planet “β Pictoris c” is in a close orbit around its parent star, this is the first time that the faint glint of the exoplanet next to the glare of the star has been directly observed. With these observations, astronomers can obtain both the flux and dynamical masses of exoplanets, allowing them to put closer constrains on formation models for exoplanets.

First direct observation of exoplanet β Pictoris c

Astronomers using the GRAVITY instrument have now obtained the first direct confirmation of an exoplanet discovered by radial-velocity. As the planet “β Pictoris c” is in a close orbit around its parent star, this is the first time that the faint glint of the exoplanet next to the glare of the star has been directly observed. With these observations, astronomers can obtain both the flux and dynamical masses of exoplanets, allowing them to put closer constrains on formation models for exoplanets.

A team of astronomers have observed for the first time the columns of matter that build newborn stars. This detailed look inside the young stellar system, using the GRAVITY instrument built at the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics (MPE) and operated at the ESO Very Large Telescopes, revealed that the material is guided by magnetic fields and comes from the disks surrounding these stars, the same disks that eventually give rise to planets.

GRAVITY observes young star feeding from its surrounding disk

A team of astronomers have observed for the first time the columns of matter that build newborn stars. This detailed look inside the young stellar system, using the GRAVITY instrument built at the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics (MPE) and operated at the ESO Very Large Telescopes, revealed that the material is guided by magnetic fields and comes from the disks surrounding these stars, the same disks that eventually give rise to planets.

For the first time, astronomers have observed a conveyor belt from the outskirts of a star-forming dense cloud directly depositing material near a pair of young forming stars. Scientists at MPE and IRAM found that gas motions in the conveyor belt, dubbed a 'streamer', mainly obey the gravitational pull of the innermost part of the core, near the protostar pair.

A growing stellar system directly fed by the mother cloud

For the first time, astronomers have observed a conveyor belt from the outskirts of a star-forming dense cloud directly depositing material near a pair of young forming stars. Scientists at MPE and IRAM found that gas motions in the conveyor belt, dubbed a 'streamer', mainly obey the gravitational pull of the innermost part of the core, near the protostar pair.

The Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) released today a comprehensive analysis of the largest three-dimensional map of the Universe ever created, filling in the most significant gaps in our possible exploration of its history. The collaboration, including researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics, was able to obtain the most accurate measurements of the expansion history of our Universe over the widest-ever range of cosmic time.

SDSS reveals 11 billion years of the history of our expanding Universe

The Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) released today a comprehensive analysis of the largest three-dimensional map of the Universe ever created, filling in the most significant gaps in our possible exploration of its history. The collaboration, including researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics, was able to obtain the most accurate measurements of the expansion history of our Universe over the widest-ever range of cosmic time.

The eROSITA telescope has provided a new, sharp view of hot and energetic processes across the Universe.

Our deepest view of the X-ray sky

The eROSITA telescope has provided a new, sharp view of hot and energetic processes across the Universe.

People and Project News


SDSS-V makes its first observations

November 02, 2020

The Sloan Digital Sky Survey’s fifth generation collected its very first observations of the cosmos at 1:47 a.m. on October 24, 2020. As the world's first all-sky time-domain spectroscopic survey, SDSS-V will provide insight into the formation and evolution of galaxies—like like our own Milky Way—and of the supermassive black holes that lurk at their centers. The data provided by SDSS-V will be an important complement to the X-ray all-sky data from eROSITA.

Ministers Karliczek and Sibler congratulate Nobel Prize laureate Genzel

October 14, 2020

On 14 October, German Federal Minister of Research Anja Karliczek and Bavaria's Minister of Science Bernd Sibler personally congratulated MPE Director Reinhard Genzel on receiving the Nobel Prize in Physics.

Reinhard Genzel appointed to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences

October 15, 2020

Pope Francis has named the winner of the 2020 Nobel Prize in Physics Prof. Reinhard Genzel to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences. The Vatican announced this news a few days after the Nobel announcement.

Special Announcement:

A forty year journey

Special colloquium
on occasion of the Nobel Prize for Physics 2020
with Prof. Dr. Reinhard Genzel
Monday, 16 November 2020, 16:15 h

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