€15 million boost for European astronomy

Astronomers and astroparticle physicists today are celebrating a €15 million EU funding boost European telescopes with the launch of the ASTERICS project, which will help solve the Big Data challenges of European astronomy and give members of the public direct interactive access to some of the best of Europe's astronomy images and data.
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World’s largest radio telescope has a permanent home for its headquarters

SKA Organisation headquarters, Jodrell Bank, UK - At their meeting yesterday Wednesday 29 April, the Members of the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) Organisation decided that negotiations should start with the UK government to locate the permanent headquarters of the SKA project in the UK, at the University of Manchester's Jodrell Bank site. Read more

Exploding stars help to understand thunderclouds on Earth

How is lightning initiated in thunderclouds? This is difficult to answer - how do you measure electric fields inside large, dangerously charged clouds? It was discovered, more or less by coincidence, that cosmic rays provide suitable probes to measure electric fields within thunderclouds. This surprising finding is published in Physical Review Letters on April 22nd. The measurements were performed with the LOFAR radio telescope located in the Netherlands. Read more

Dusty substructure in a galaxy far far away

A team of scientists, among whom scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics (MPA) and astronomer John McKean (ASTRON/ University of Groningen), have combined high-resolution images from the ALMA telescopes with a new scheme for undoing the distorting effects of a powerful gravitational lens in order to provide the first detailed picture of a young and distant galaxy, over 11 billion light-years from Earth. The reconstructed images show that star formation is heating interstellar dust and making it glow strongly in three distinct clumps embedded in a broader distribution, suggesting that object may be a rotating disk galaxy seen nearly edge-on. Read more

Official opening ASTRON building

After a construction phase of more than two years, the ASTRON building was officially opened on Monday, March 16 by State Secretary Sander Dekker of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science. Read more

LOFAR creates radio photos of the solar eclipse

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World’s largest radio telescope takes major step towards construction

At their meeting last week at the SKA Organisation Headquarters in Manchester, UK, the SKA Board of Directors has unanimously agreed to move the world's largest radio telescope forward to its final pre-construction phase. The design of the €650M first phase of the SKA (SKA1) is now defined, consisting of two complementary world-class instruments -one in Australia, one in South Africa-, both expecting to deliver exciting and transformational science. Read more

LOFAR’s record-sharp image gives astronomers a new view of galaxy M 82

An international team of astronomers, including ASTRON scientists, used the giant radio telescope LOFAR to create the sharpest astronomical image ever taken at very long radio wavelengths. Made by observing simultaneously from four countries, the image shows the glowing centre of the galaxy Messier 82 - and many bright remnants of supernova explosions. Read more

The disappearance of the cosmic spinning top

Masses and extreme gravitational effects measured in a binary neutron star

Scientists measured the space-time warp in the gravity of a binary star and determined the mass of a neutron star -- just before it disappeared. Read more

Vanavond Live: Heel Nederland Kijkt Sterren!

Het heelal, misschien wel een van de meest tot de verbeelding sprekende thema's. Bij ASTRON hebben wij dagelijks te maken met dit thema en zijn er vele vragen die wij beantwoord willen krijgen. Buiten ASTRON is dit ook een geliefd gespreksonderwerp en daarom zendt omroep MAX vanavond om 21:25 het unieke live-event Heel Nederland Kijkt Sterren uit op NPO1. Read more

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