News: Rymd- och geovetenskaphttp://www.chalmers.se/sv/nyheterNews related to Chalmers University of TechnologyThu, 08 Jun 2017 17:09:09 +0200http://www.chalmers.se/sv/nyheterhttp://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/oso/news/Pages/Onsala-Twin-Telescopes-ready-to-observe.aspxhttp://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/oso/news/Pages/Onsala-Twin-Telescopes-ready-to-observe.aspxOnsala Twin Telescopes: ready for the world<p><b>​Two new radio telescopes have been built at Onsala Space Observatory on Sweden’s west coast, and on 18 May 2017 they will be inaugurated. The Onsala Twin Telescopes are part of an international network of radio telescopes that use astronomical techniques - and distant black holes - to make high-precision measurements of the Earth and how it moves.</b></p>​<span style="background-color:initial">The Onsala Twin Telescopes are two identical dish antennas, each 13.2 metres in diameter. They are part of an international initiative involving 20 countries, aimed at increasing our knowledge about the Earth and its movements.</span><div><br /><span style="background-color:initial"></span><div>The telescopes detect radio waves from brilliant but distant galaxies that act like fixed stars in the sky. By continually measuring the positions on the sky of bright radio galaxies, the telescopes in the network can determine their own location in space.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>John Conway is professor in observational radio astronomy at Chalmers and director of Onsala Space Observatory.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>”The sources that the telescopes measure are distant galaxies, each of which has at its centre a supermassive black hole whose surroundings shine brightly when the black hole consumes material. This is applied astronomy at its best” he says.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><img class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium/340x/ott_lundqvist_2327_72dpi_340x340.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" />The Onsala Twin Telescopes are part of a growing international network of similar telescopes. As part of the global project VGOS (VLBI Global Observing System), they have company all over the world. Measurements of this kind have been carried out over the last few decades, and Onsala’s 20-metre telescope has participated in these. But with a dedicated network of telescopes, observations can now be carried out 24 hours a day, all year round, and will be able to able to make measurements ten times as precise as is possible today.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>”With the new network we will be able to measure distances between telescopes to millimetre precision, and almost in real time”, says Rüdiger Haas, professor of space geodesy at Chalmers.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Onsala’s history of geodetic measurements is a long one. In 1968, the observatory’s iconic 25-metre radio telescope became the first in Europe to take part in geodetic VLBI (very long baseline interferometry). The observatory’s 20-metre telescope, inaugurated in 1976, boasts geodetic measurements over a longer period than any other telescope in the world.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The new telescopes and their network meet global needs, as expressed in a resolution which was adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations in February 2015. The resolution, A Global Geodetic Reference Frame for Sustainable Development, recognised for the first time the importance of coordinating geodetic measurements on a global scale. The resolution strengthened exisiting work in the UN initiative Global Geospatial Information Management (UN-GGIM) and with the Global Geodetic Reference Frame (GGRF).</div> <div><br /></div> <div><img class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium/340x/ott_lundqvist_2207_72dpi_340x340.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" />“Future research on sustainable development and on the Earth as a system will require more reliable, long-term, high-precision measurements. The Onsala Twin Telescopes are a natural continuation of our already long history of such measurements in Onsala”, says Gunnar Elgered, professor of electrical measurements and head of the Department of Earth and Space Science at Chalmers.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Similar telescopes are already in place in the United States, in Hawaii and Maryland, in Wettzell in Germany, in Yebes in Spain, on Santa Maria in the Azores, and on the Arctic Svalbard islands. New telescopes are planned for other locations, among them South Africa and Finland. Operations for the complete network of 16 or more stations are expected to start in 2020.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>A reference system with this level of precision is also needed for many applications in Earth Sciences. It will become possible, for example, to measure sea level relative to the centre of the Earth, in order to test models for climate change. Data from the network will also be able to contribute to many other exciting areas of science, for example the movement of Earth’s tectonic plates, the Earth’s changing rotation and axial tilt.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The construction and installation of the Onsala Twin Telescopes has been funded by a generous grant from the Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation and Chalmers University of Technology.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><div><div><span style="font-weight:700">Contacts:</span></div> <div> </div> <div>Robert Cumming, communicator, Onsala Space Observatory, Chalmers, tel: +46 31-772 5500 or +46 70 493 3114, robert.cumming@chalmers.se.</div> <div> </div></div> <div>Rüdiger Haas, professor of space geodesy, Chalmers, tel: +46 31 772 55 30, rudiger.haas@chalmers.se</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Gunnar Elgered, professor of electrical measurements and head of the Department of Earth and Space Science, Chalmers, tel: + 46 31 772 1610 or +46 <span style="background-color:initial">31 772 5565, gunnar.elgered@chalmers.se</span></div></div> <div><br /></div> <div><em><strong>Images:</strong></em></div> <div>High-resolution images are available at <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/onsala/albums/72157676766424773">https://www.flickr.com/photos/onsala/albums/72157676766424773​</a></div> <div><br /></div> <div><em>1 (top): The Onsala Twin Telescopes will measure the Earth’s movements using distant galaxies. This photo shows the two antennas at with Onsala Space Observatory’s 25-metre telescope, built in 1963, behind them. (Credit: Onsala Space Observatory/R. Hammargren).</em></div> <div><strong style="background-color:initial"><br /></strong></div> <div><i>2. Onsala Twin Telescopes will become operational during 2017. &quot;First light&quot; for the northern telescope (right) was achieved in early February 2017. (Credit: Onsala Space Observatory/Anna-Lena Lundqvist)</i><em><span></span><br /></em></div> <div><br /></div> <div><i style="background-color:initial">3. Changing the Onsala skyline: the new Twin Telescopes and the 25-metre telescope. (Credit: Onsala Space Observatory/Anna-Lena Lundqvist)</i><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong style="background-color:initial">More about the Onsala Twin Telescopes</strong><br /></div> <div> </div> <div>The Onsala Twin Telescopes are two dish antennas, 13.2 metres in diameter, located 75 metres apart close to the 25-metre telescope at Onsala Space Observatory, in the province of Halland, 45 km south of Gothenburg on Sweden’s west coast. The telescopes have a ring-focus design, the main reflector complemented by a 1.55-metre subreflector. They are designed to be able to observe together in many different modes. Able to move at up to 12 degrees per second in azimuth and 6 per second in elevation, they can slew extremely fast between observations and measure thousands of radio sources every day. The parabolic dishes, accurate to 0.3 mm RMS precision, allow measurements at frequencies up to 40 GHz (wavelength 0.75 cm or more).</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Each telescope has its own receiver system with feeds and receivers for radio waves of a common frequency range 3-14 GHz (wavelength 2-10 cm) and two linear polarisations. The northern telescope has a feed with a quadridge design, with four ridges, covering 3–18 GHz (1.7-10 cm) and similar in design to the feed horn Onsala Space Observatory has developed for the international Square Kilometre Array (SKA) project. The southern telescope is equipped with an Eleven feed, a design developed by Chalmers physicist Per-Simon Kildal (1951-2016), which covers 2–14 GHz (2-15 cm). Like the site’s other instruments, the Twin Telescopes have access to Onsala Space Observatory’s hydrogen maser atomic clock. The telescopes are controlled with the help of digital systems capable of speeds up to 128 gigabit per second, located in the control room next to the 20-metre telescope.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The telescopes will be inaugurated on 18 May 2017 by the County Governor of Halland, Lena Sommestad. Details of the inauguration will be provided later.</div> <div> </div> <div><strong>Links</strong></div> <div> </div> <div>23rd Working Meeting of the European VLBI Group for Geodesy and Astrometry (EVGA)</div> <div>https://www.chalmers.se/en/conference/EVGA2017/</div> <div> </div> <div>NASA’s article about the telescopes’ sister station in Hawaii, USA:</div> <div>https://www.nasa.gov/feature/goddard/2016/nasa-station-leads-way-for-improved-measurements-of-earth-orientation-shape</div> <div> </div> <div>NASA’s animated video about the history of space geodesy and how quasars help scientists measure the Earth:</div> <div>https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=59Bl8cjNg-Y</div> <div><br /></div></div>Fri, 10 Feb 2017 13:00:00 +0100http://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/gpc/news/Pages/Nominations-for-the-gothenburg-LIse-Meitner-Award-2017.aspxhttp://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/gpc/news/Pages/Nominations-for-the-gothenburg-LIse-Meitner-Award-2017.aspxCall for nominations for the Gothenburg Lise Meitner award 2017<p><b>​The Gothenburg Physics Centre (GPC) is seeking nominations for the 2017 Gothenburg Lise Meitner award.  Nominations are due on Monday, March 27, 2017.</b></p>​The Lise Meitner award honors exceptional individuals for a “<em>groundbreaking discovery in physics</em>”.  <br />In addition to their scientific accomplishments, the candidates must meet the following selection criteria:<br /><ul><li>They have distinguished themselves through public activities of popularizing science and are prepared to deliver the annual Lise Meitner Lecture (middle of September).</li> <li>Their research activity is connected to or benefit activities at GPC.<br /></li></ul> Nominations should include a motivation describing the achievements of the candidate, a short biography/CV, contact details and a local contact person. <br /><br />Nominations should be sent to any member of the of the Lise Meitner Award Committee 2017: <br /><br />Dinko Chakarov <a href="mailto:dinko.chakarov@chalmers.se">dinko.chakarov@chalmers.se</a> <br />Hans Nordman <a href="mailto:hans.nordman@chalmers.se">hans.nordman@chalmers.se</a><br />Ann-Marie Pendrill <a href="mailto:Ann-Marie.Pendrill@physics.gu.se">Ann-Marie.Pendrill@physics.gu.se</a><br />Vitaly Shumeiko <a href="mailto:vitaly.shumeiko@chalmers.se">vitaly.shumeiko@chalmers.se</a><br />Andreas Heinz (Chair) <a href="mailto:andreas.heinz@chalmers.se">andreas.heinz@chalmers.se</a><br /><a href="mailto:andreas.heinz@chalmers.se"></a><br /><a href="/en/centres/gpc/activities/lisemeitner"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />More information about Lise Meitner and the award can be found at the GPC website</a><br />We would also like to thank those of you who did make an effort to nominate a candidate in the past! In case your nomination has not been chosen, we encourage you to submit her or his name again. <br /><br />With best regards,<br /><br />The 2017 Lise Meitner CommitteeThu, 02 Feb 2017 00:00:00 +0100http://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/oso/news/Pages/Searching-water-universe-First-light-Alma-new-receivers.aspxhttp://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/oso/news/Pages/Searching-water-universe-First-light-Alma-new-receivers.aspxSearching for water in the universe: First light for Alma’s new receivers<p><b>​The Alma telescope in Chile has begun observing in a new range of the electromagnetic spectrum – thanks to technology from Chalmers. With its new receivers, Alma can for the first time detect radio waves with wavelengths from 1.4 to 1.8 millimetres, allowing astronomers to detect faint signals of water in the nearby Universe.</b></p><div><span style="background-color:initial">Alma observes radio waves from the Universe, at the low-energy end of the electromagnetic spectrum. With the newly installed Band 5 receivers, Alma has now opened its eyes to a whole new section of this radio spectrum, creating exciting new observational possibilities.</span><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium/340x/ann15059a_72dpi_340x340.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px" />“The new receivers will make it much easier to detect water, a prerequisite for life as we know it, in our Solar System and in more distant regions of our galaxy and beyond. They will also allow Alma to search for ionised carbon in the primordial Universe”, explains Leonardo Testi, European Alma Programme Scientist.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>It is Alma’s unique location, 5000 metres up on the barren Chajnantor plateau in Chile, that makes such an observation possible in the first place. As water is also present in Earth’s atmosphere, observatories in less elevated and less arid environments have much more difficulty identifying the origin of the emission coming from space. Alma’s great sensitivity and high angular resolution mean that even faint signals of water in the local Universe can now be imaged at this wavelength. A key spectral signature of water lies in this expanded range – at a wavelength of 1.64 millimetres.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The Band 5 receiver, which was developed by the <a href="/en/departments/rss/research/research-groups/Pages/Advanced-receiver-development.aspx">Group for Advanced Receiver Development (GARD)</a> at Onsala Space Observatory, Chalmers, has already been tested at the Apex telescope in the <a href="/en/centres/oso/news/Pages/apex-sepia-alma-band-5-water-space.aspx">Sepia</a> instrument. These observations were also vital to help select suitable targets for the first receiver tests with Alma.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium/340x/ann12042a_72dpi_340x340.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px" />The first production receivers were built and delivered to ALMA in the first half of 2015 by a consortium consisting of the Netherlands Research School for Astronomy (NOVA) and GARD in partnership with the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO), which contributed the local oscillator to the project. The receivers are now installed and being prepared for use by the community of astronomers.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>To test the newly installed receivers observations were made of several objects including the colliding galaxies Arp 220 (image). Other targets were a massive region of star formation close to the centre of the Milky Way, and a dusty red supergiant star approaching the supernova explosion that will end its life.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>To process the data and check its quality, astronomers, along with technical specialists from ESO and the European ALMA Regional Centre (ARC) network, gathered at the Onsala Space Observatory in Sweden, for a &quot;Band 5 Busy Week&quot; hosted by the <a href="http://www.nordic-alma.se/">Nordic ARC node</a>. The final results have just been made freely available to the astronomical community worldwide.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Team member Robert Laing at ESO is optimistic about the prospects for ALMA Band 5 observations: “It's very exciting to see these first results from ALMA Band 5 using a limited set of antennas. In the future, the high sensitivity and angular resolution of the full ALMA array will allow us to make detailed studies of water in a wide range of objects including forming and evolved stars, the interstellar medium and regions close to supermassive black holes.”</div> <div><br /></div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium/340x/ann13016a_72dpi_340x340.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px" />While the receivers have been installed at Alma and Apex, others originally from GARD are on their way to other telescope projects, among them Japan’s ASTE and the Argentinian-Brazilian project LLAMA. For Victor Belitsky, who has led work on Band 5 at Onsala Space Observatory and Chalmers, this is a proud moment.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“With “First Light” for Band 5, astronomers can begin to discover the universe in a new way. Our work has meant a remarkable and exciting journey, from the first design via fabrication in Chalmers’ clean room, integration of components with terahertz optics and cryogenic technology, to the installation of the complete system in the world’s most advanced radio telescopes”, he says.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>See also <a href="https://www.eso.org/public/news/eso1645/?lang">ESO's press release.​</a></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong style="background-color:initial"><em>Images:</em></strong><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <em> </em><div><div><em>1. (top) Alma’s new view of the colliding galaxy system Arp 220 (in red) on top of an image from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope (blue/green). In the Hubble image, most of the light from this dramatic merging galaxy pair is hidden behind dark clouds of dust. Alma’s observations in Band 5 show a completely different view. Here, Arp 220's famous double nucleus, invisible for Hubble, is by far the brightest feature in the whole galaxy complex. In this dense, double centre, the bright emission from water and other molecules revealed by the new Band 5 receivers will give astronomers new insights into star formation and other processes in this extreme environment. <a href="https://www.eso.org/public/images/eso1645a/">High resolution image at ESO.</a></em></div> <em> </em><div><em>Credit: </em><span style="background-color:initial"><em>ALMA (ESO/NAOJ/NRAO)/NASA/ESA and The Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)</em></span></div></div> <em> </em><div><br /></div> <em> </em><div><em>2. A Band 5 receiver in the lab. <a href="https://www.eso.org/public/images/ann15059a/">High-resolution image at ESO.</a></em></div> <em> </em><div><em>Credit: ALMA (ESO/NAOJ/NRAO), N. Tabilo</em><br /></div> <em> </em><div><br /></div> <em> </em><div><em>3. GARD engineer Mathias Fredrixon tests a Band 5 receiver for Alma. <a href="https://www.eso.org/public/images/ann12042a/">High-resolution image at ESO.</a></em></div> <div><em>Credit: Onsala Space Observatory/A. Pavolotsky</em></div> <div><br /></div> <div><em>4. Alma under the Magellanic Clouds. <a href="https://www.eso.org/public/images/ann13016a/">High-resolution image at ESO.</a></em></div> <div><em>Credit: ESO/C. Malin</em></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>More about the data processing and the receivers</strong></div> <div><br /></div> <div>The team working on processing the data included Tobia Carozzi, Simon Casey, Sabine König, Matthias Maercker, Iván Martí-Vidal, Sebastien Muller, Daniel Tafoya and Wouter Vlemmings (all Onsala Space Observatory and Chalmers scientists), together with Ana Lopez-Sepulcre, Lydia Moser and Anita Richards. The ESO Band 5 Science Verification team includes Elizabeth Humphreys, Tony Mroczkowski, Robert Laing, Katharina Immer, Hau-Yu (Baobab) Liu, Andy Biggs, Gianni Marconi and Leonardo Testi. The observations were performed and made possible by the ALMA Extension of Capabilities team in Chile.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Read more about the Band 5 receivers on Alma and Apex in our article “<em>Desert telescopes ready to discover water in space</em>”, <a href="/en/centres/oso/news/Pages/apex-sepia-alma-band-5-water-space.aspx">http://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/oso/news/Pages/apex-sepia-alma-band-5-water-space.aspx</a></div> <div><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>More about Alma and Onsala Space Observatory</strong></div> <div> </div> <div>The Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (Alma), an international astronomy facility, is a partnership of ESO, the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) and the National Institutes of Natural Sciences (NINS) of Japan in cooperation with the Republic of Chile. Alma is funded by ESO on behalf of its Member States, by NSF in cooperation with the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) and the National Science Council of Taiwan (NSC) and by NINS in cooperation with the Academia Sinica (AS) in Taiwan and the Korea Astronomy and Space Science Institute (KASI).</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Chalmers and Onsala Space Observatory have been involved in Alma since its inception; receivers for the telescope are one of many contributions. Onsala Space Observatory is host to the <a href="http://www.nordic-alma.se/">Nordic Alma Regional Centre</a>, which provides technical expertise to the Alma project and supports astronomers in the Nordic countries in using Alma.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Onsala Space Observatory is Sweden's national facility for radio astronomy. The observatory provides researchers with equipment for the study of the earth and the rest of the universe. In Onsala, 45 km south of Gothenburg, it operates two radio telescopes and a station in the international telescope Lofar. It also participates in several international projects. The observatory is hosted by Department of Earth and Space Sciences at Chalmers University of Technology, and is operated on behalf of the Swedish Research Council.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><div><span style="font-weight:700">Contacts</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Robert Cumming, astronomer and communications officer, Onsala Space Observatory, +46 31 772 5500, +46 70 49 33 114, robert.cumming@chalmers.se</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Victor Belitsky, professor of radio and space science, Chalmers, leader for Group for Advanced Receiver Development (GARD)  at Onsala Space Observatory and Chalmers, +46 31-772 1893, victor.belitsky@chalmers.se​</div></div> <div><br /></div>Wed, 21 Dec 2016 12:00:00 +0100http://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/oso/news/Pages/Newly-formed-star-shoots-out-powerful-whirlwind.aspxhttp://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/oso/news/Pages/Newly-formed-star-shoots-out-powerful-whirlwind.aspxNewly formed star shoots out powerful whirlwind<p><b>​Astronomers led by Per Bjerkeli, Chalmers, have used the telescope Alma to observe the early stages in the formation of a new solar system. For the first time they have seen how a powerful whirlwind is launched from a rotating disk surrounding the young star. The results are published on 15 December 2016 in Nature.</b></p><div><span style="background-color:initial">A new solar system is formed in a large cloud of gas and dust that contracts and condenses due to the force of gravity. Eventually it becomes so compact that the centre collapses into a ball of gas where the pressure heats the material, resulting in a glowing globe of gas: a star. The remains of the gas and dust cloud rotate around the newly formed star in a disc. The material in the disc starts to accumulate and form larger and larger clumps, which finally become planets.</span><br /></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div>Close to newly formed stars, called protostars, scientists have observed evidence powerful whirling winds and outflows. But before now, no one had observed how these winds are formed.   </div> <div><br /></div> <div>“Using Alma, we have observed a protostar at a very early stage. We see how the wind, like a tornado, lifts material and gas up from the rotating disc, which is in the process of forming a new solar system,” explains Per Bjerkeli, astronomer at Chalmers and the Niels Bohr Institute at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark.  </div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>Slowed down by a tornado</strong></div> <div><br /></div> <div>The telescope Alma (Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array) consists of 66 antennas which observe the universe in light with wavelength around one millimetre from the Chajnantor plateau at 5000 metres altitude in northern Chile. The observed protostar, called TMC1A, is located in the constellation Taurus (the Bull), 450 light years away. The researchers have now observed details never seen before in a system of this kind.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“During the contraction of the gas cloud, the material begins to rotate faster and faster just like a figure skater doing a pirouette spins faster by pulling their arms close to their body. In order to slow down the rotation, the energy must be carried away. This happens when the new star emits a wind. The wind is formed in the disc around the protostar and thus rotates together with it. In this way, when this rotating wind moves away from the protostar, it takes part of the rotational energy with it and the dust and gas close to the star can continue to contract,” explains Per Bjerkeli. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>How is this wind created? Up to now scientists have thought that it could originate from inside the centre of the rotating disc of gas and dust, but the new observations argue for a different origin for the wind.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“We can see that the rotating wind formed across the entire disc. Like a tornado, it lifts material up from the cloud of gas and dust. At some point the wind releases its hold on the cloud, so that the material floats freely. This has the effect that the rotation speed of the cloud is slowed and thus the new star can hold together. In the process, the material in the rotating disc of gas and dust accumulates and forms planets,” explains Jes Jørgensen, also at the Niels Bohr Institute and the Centre for Star and Planet Formation at the University of Copenhagen.  </div> <div><br /></div> <div>Future observations with Alma and other telescopes will tell us more about how planetary systems form around protostars like this one, explains Matthijs van der Wiel, astronomer at Astron, Netherlands.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“The next thing we want to find out is whether the material released from the disc is completely blown away or whether it falls back onto the disc at some point and becomes part of the planet-forming system”, he says. </div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><div><span style="font-weight:700">Contacts</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Per Bjerkeli, Department of Earth and Space Science, Chalmers University of Technology and Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen, +46 7034-13192, per.bjerkeli@chalmers.se</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Robert Cumming, communicator, Onsala Space Observatory, Chalmers University of Technology, robert.cumming@chalmers.se,  +46 31 772 5500 or 46 70 493 3114</div> <div><br /></div> <span style="background-color:initial"></span></div> <div><strong style="background-color:initial"><em>Images and video:</em></strong><br /></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><em>High-resolution images are available at </em></span><span style="background-color:initial"><em><a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/onsala/albums/72157676436740150">https://www.flickr.com/photos/onsala/albums/72157676436740150</a></em></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><em>1 (top): </em></span><span style="background-color:initial"><em>Artist’s impression of the wind emanating from the young solar system TMC1A. The rotating wind is formed in the disc surrounding the protostar.</em></span><span style="background-color:initial"><span></span><em> <strong>See an animated version of this image at </strong></em></span><span style="background-color:initial"><i><a href="https://vimeo.com/195450409/a1e477bf06"><strong>https://vimeo.com/195450409/a1e477bf06</strong></a><strong>.</strong></i></span><span style="background-color:initial"><em> (Credit: </em></span><span style="background-color:initial"><em>D. Lamm/BOID and P. Bjerkeli/Chalmers</em></span><span style="background-color:initial"><em>)</em></span></div> <div><em> </em></div> <div><em>2: ALMA’s observations of TMC1A reveal gas motions close to a protostar. Here blue colour indicates gas that is moving towards us while the red colour indicates gas moving away from us. The protoplanetary disc is shown in green. The grey spirals indicate the boundaries of the swirling outflow from the star. The observations, of emission from carbon monoxide molecules, were made with ALMA at 1.3 mm wavelength.  (Credit: ALMA/ESO/NRAO/NAOJ, P. Bjerkeli/Digitized Sky Survey/ESASky)</em></div> <div><em> </em></div> <div><em>3: The telescope ALMA (Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array) consists of 66 antennas which observe the universe in light with wavelength around one millimetre from the Chajnantor plateau at 5000 metres altitude in northern Chile. <a href="https://www.eso.org/public/images/dsc-0674-tif-cc/?lang">High-resolution image and more information at ESO.​</a></em></div> <div><em>Credit: S. Otárola/ESO</em></div> <div><br /></div> <div><em>4: Per Bjerkeli, astronomer at Chalmers and the Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen, Denmark, has together with colleagues observed the early phases in the formation of a new solar system and have observed how powerful vortices shoot out from the rotating cloud of gas and dust. (Credit: Ola Jakup Joensen, NBI).</em></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>More about the research</strong></div> <div><br /></div> <div>The research is published in a paper, “Resolved images of a protostellar outflow driven by an extended disk wind”, by P. Bjerkeli et al., in the 15 December 2016 issue of the journal Nature, <a href="http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nature20600">http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v540/n7633/full/nature20600.html</a>. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>See also <a href="http://www.nbi.ku.dk/english/news/news16/newly-formed-stars-shoot-out-powerful-whirlwinds/">press release in English from the University of Copenhagen</a>.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><strong>More about Alma and Onsala Space Observatory</strong></span><br /></div> <div> </div> <div>The Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (Alma), an international astronomy facility, is a partnership of ESO, the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) and the National Institutes of Natural Sciences (NINS) of Japan in cooperation with the Republic of Chile. Alma is funded by ESO on behalf of its Member States, by NSF in cooperation with the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) and the National Science Council of Taiwan (NSC) and by NINS in cooperation with the Academia Sinica (AS) in Taiwan and the Korea Astronomy and Space Science Institute (KASI).</div> <div><br /></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">Chalmers and Onsala Space Observatory have been involved in Alma since its inception; receivers for the telescope are one of many contributions. Onsala Space Observatory is host to the Nordic Alma Regional Centre, which provides technical expertise to the Alma project and supports astronomers in the Nordic countries in using Alma.</span><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">Onsala Space Observatory is Sweden's national facility for radio astronomy. The observatory provides researchers with equipment for the study of the earth and the rest of the universe. In Onsala, 45 km south of Gothenburg, it operates two radio telescopes and a station in the international telescope Lofar. It also participates in several international projects. The observatory is hosted by Department of Earth and Space Sciences at Chalmers University of Technology, and is operated on behalf of the Swedish Research Council.</span><br /></div>Wed, 14 Dec 2016 19:00:00 +0100http://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/oso/news/Pages/Pair-of-monster-black-holes-revealed-in-nearby-galaxy.aspxhttp://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/oso/news/Pages/Pair-of-monster-black-holes-revealed-in-nearby-galaxy.aspx​A pair of monster black holes revealed in a nearby galaxy<p><b>​The nearby spiral galaxy NGC 5252 contains not one, but two supermassive black holes. The surprise discovery, made using the radio telescope network EVN (European VLBI Network), was made by an international team of astronomers led by Jun Yang, Onsala Space Observatory, Chalmers.</b></p><div><span style="background-color:initial">A team of astronomers from China and Europe has made used extremely sharp images taken with the radio telescopes of the European VLBI Network to make a surprising discovery. The results are presented in the journal <em>Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society</em>.</span><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div>It is believed that every galaxy hosts a supermassive black hole, which is at least million times massive than the sun, in its nucleus. Since there are many galaxy clusters and interacting galaxies in the universe, galaxies with two or more supermassive black holes should be ubiquitous as well. However, it is difficult to find pairs of supermassive black holes that actively accrete mass and have a separation of less than the size of their host galaxies (about the distance between the sun and the centre of the Milky Way). Pairs of active galactic nuclei are interesting because they may provide clues on the formation and the growth of giant galaxies and monster black holes.   <span class="Apple-tab-span" style="white-space:pre"> </span></div> <div> </div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium/340x/ngc5252_evn_chandra_72dpi_340x.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px" />NGC 5252 is about 320 million light years from the Milky Way. At the centre, it has an active galactic nucleus with a supermassive black hole, recognized by its optical, radio and X-ray properties. A second very luminous X-ray source, catalogued as CXO J133815.6+043255, was found in the outskirts of NGC 5252 last year. This powerful X-ray source appears quite compact in the optical and radio images, similar to the supermassive black hole in the nucleus. To uncover its mysterious nature, an international team led by Jun Yang, Onsala Space Observatory, Chalmers, has made the highest resolution image of its radio counterpart with the observational technique of very long baseline interferometry (VLBI) provided by the European VLBI Network. </div> <div> </div> <div>&quot;Thanks to the very high resolution of the image, there's no doubt that we're seeing a compact jet&quot;, says Xiaolong Yang, a PhD student supervised by Xiang Liu at Xinjiang Astronomical Observatory, China.  </div> <div><br /></div> <div>“Most likely, the jet is associated with a supermassive black hole.” adds Xiang Liu.</div> <div> </div> <div>“This is one of the few unique dual radio-emitting supermassive black holes as far as their small separation is concerned”, comments Tao An, radio astronomer at Shanghai Astronomical Observatory, China.  </div> <div> </div> <div>It is not clear whether the two black holes in NGC 5252 will finally merge or not. However, finding more supermassive black hole pairs will definitely enable astronomers to run statistical studies of their final fate.</div> <div><span style="font-weight:700;background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><a href="http://jive.eu/pair-monster-black-holes-revealed-nearby-galaxy" style="text-decoration:underline;outline:0px"><strong><em>See also the press release from JIVE</em></strong></a><em> and from Xinjiang Astronomical Observatory </em><span style="background-color:initial"><a href="http://english.xao.cas.cn/ne/rn/201610/t20161014_168647.html"><em>in English</em></a><em> and </em><em><a href="http://www.xao.ac.cn/xwzx/kydt/201610/t20161014_4676036.html">in Chinese</a>.</em></span></div> <em> </em><div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="font-weight:700;background-color:initial">Images</span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">High-resolution images are available at </span><a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/onsala/albums/72157674004311880">https://www.flickr.com/photos/onsala/albums/72157674004311880​</a></div> <div><em style="background-color:initial"><br /></em></div> <div><a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/onsala/albums/72157674004311880"></a><em style="background-color:initial">1 (top) – Radio emission from the mysterious source CXO J133815.6+043255 in NGC 5252 shows evidence for jets from a supermassive black hole. In this extremely sharp image from the European VLBI Network, the brightest areas are shown in white, and fainter signals in red, green and blue. </em><br /></div> <div><em>Credit: EVN/JIVE/X.-L. Yang et al.</em></div> <div></div> <div><br /></div> <div><em>2 – The pair of supermassive black holes in NGC 5252 as observed by the radio telescopes of the European VLBI Network (left) and in X-rays by Chandra (right). In these images, the brightest areas are shown in white, and fainter signals in red, green and blue. </em></div> <em></em><div><em>Credit: Radio: EVN/X.-L. Yang et al.; X-ray: NASA/CXC/M. Kim et al.</em></div> <div><em><br /></em></div> <div><strong>More about the research</strong></div> <div> </div> <div>The results have been published in a paper in the journal <em>Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society</em>, “<em>NGC 5252: a pair of radio-emitting active galactic nuclei?</em>”, by X.-L. Yang, J. Yang, Z. Paragi, X. Liu, T. An, S. Bianchi, L.C. Ho, L. Cui, W. Zhao, X.-C. Wu, MNRAS Letters, doi: 10.1093/mnrasl/slw160 (<a href="http://mnrasl.oxfordjournals.org/lookup/doi/10.1093/mnrasl/slw160">http://mnrasl.oxfordjournals.org/lookup/doi/10.1093/mnrasl/slw160</a>). The article is also available at <a href="https://arxiv.org/abs/1608.02200">https://arxiv.org/abs/1608.02200</a>.</div> <div> </div> <div><strong>More about VLBI, the European VLBI Network and JIVE</strong></div> <div><br /></div> <div>VLBI is an astronomical method by which multiple radio telescopes distributed across great distances observe the same region of sky simultaneously. Data from each telescope is sent to a central &quot;correlator&quot; to produce images with higher resolution than the most powerful optical telescopes. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>The European VLBI Network (EVN; <a href="http://www.evlbi.org/">www.evlbi.org</a>) is an interferometric array of radio telescopes spread throughout Europe, Asia, South Africa and the Americas that conducts unique, high-resolution, radio astronomical observations of cosmic radio sources. Established in 1980, the EVN has grown into the most sensitive VLBI array in the world, including over 20 individual telescopes, among them some of the world's largest and most sensitive radio telescopes. The EVN is administered by the European Consortium for VLBI, which includes a total of 15 institutes, including the Joint Institute for VLBI ERIC (JIVE).</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The Joint Institute for VLBI ERIC (JIVE; <a href="http://www.jive.eu/">www.jive.eu</a>​) has as its primary mission to operate and develop the EVN data processor, a powerful supercomputer that combines the signals from radio telescopes located across the planet. Founded in 1993, JIVE is since 2015 a European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC) with five member countries: Netherlands, United Kingdom, Sweden, France and Spain.</div> <div> </div> <div><strong>Contacts</strong></div> <div> </div> <div>Robert Cumming, communicator, Onsala Space Observatory, Chalmers University of Technology, robert.cumming@chalmers.se,  +46 (0)31 772 5500</div> <div> </div> <div>Jun Yang, Onsala Space Observatory, Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, email: jun.yang@chalmers.se, tel: +46 (0)31 772 5531</div> <div><em></em></div> <em> </em><div><span style="background-color:initial"><em> </em></span><br /></div> <div><br /></div> Fri, 14 Oct 2016 08:00:00 +0200http://www.chalmers.se/en/departments/physics/news/Pages/Explore-a-new-universe-with-the-rock-star-of-science.aspxhttp://www.chalmers.se/en/departments/physics/news/Pages/Explore-a-new-universe-with-the-rock-star-of-science.aspxKrauss makes the universe rock<p><b>​He is a world known scientist, but also a rock star of science who crosses the borders between physics, art and entertainment. On the 28th of October professor Lawrence M. Krauss gave a talk in Sweden – at the conference Fysikdagarna in Gothenburg. The theme was how the discovery of gravitational waves opens a new window on the universe.</b></p><div>​The existence of gravitational waves was predicted by Albert Einstein already in 1916. But it took almost a hundred years before scientists were able to measure them.</div> <div>– There are so many cool things with gravitational waves. The technology that you can actually measure them is amazing itself. Then it’s the universe. The discovery of gravitational waves makes it possible to get evidence that there are other universes out there. You can even travel back in time – and see the universe before it became transparent – 400 000 years after the big bang, says Lawrence M. Krauss.</div> <div> </div> <div>He was the first one who tweeted about the rumour that the LIGO-group had managed to measure gravitational waves for the first time in history. Even though it was just a rumour by that time, the attention was enormous. One month later the discovery was officially released and reported about - all over the world.</div> <div> </div> <div>– I don’t regret that I tweeted about the rumour.  I was not leaking information from the LIGO-group. I would never have done that. I just wrote what I had heard from various other colleagues. I do think that the importance of social media is to allow people in public to be in direct contact with scientists.</div> <div> </div> <div>Lawrence M. Krauss is also known for his way of making science understandable in a popular way. He is travelling worldwide to give lectures and talks, he stars in tv shows, movies and has written bestselling books like A Universe from Nothing and The Physics of Star Trek. Krauss has performed with the Cleveland Orchestra and he was nominated for a Grammy award for his liner notes for a Telarc cd of music from Star Trek.</div> <div> </div> <div>How he manages to combine all these things with his research and work at School of Earth and Space Exploration and Department of Physics at Arizona State University is a mystery.  </div> <div> </div> <div>– I don’t sleep that much. Everything is important so I try to balance it, and juggle. Sometimes I don’t balance it that well. But I like being on the red carpet for a movie premiere one day and lecturing at Harvard the next day. And I like to help and to improve society. For me all this is not like work, it’s more like play. Playing with art, playing with science. I enjoy different adventures and science is a part of our culture. And if you say so, it’s kind of nice to be a rock star of science.<br />Text: Mia Halleröd Palmgren</div> <div> </div> <span><div><strong>Abstract of the talk in Gothenburg: </strong> Gravitational Waves have now been discovered by LIGO, opening up a vast new window on the Universe, as I shall describe.  If we can go further and detect gravitational waves from Inflation, this will push our empirical handle on the universe back in time by 49 orders of magnitude, and will allow us to explore issues ranging from supersymmetry to grand unification, the quantum theory of gravity, and even the possible existence of other universes.</div></span> <div><span><span style="display:inline-block"></span></span> </div> <div><a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sbsGYRArH_w"><img src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" alt="" />Check out Lawrence M. Krauss on Youtube when he gives a talk about A Universe from nothing. </a></div> <div> </div> <div><a href="http://krauss.faculty.asu.edu/biography/"><img src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" alt="" />Read more about Lawrence M. Krauss on his official webpage.</a></div>Fri, 07 Oct 2016 00:00:00 +0200http://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/gpc/news/Pages/Klaus-Blaum-received-the-Gothenburg-Lise-Meitner-award.aspxhttp://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/gpc/news/Pages/Klaus-Blaum-received-the-Gothenburg-Lise-Meitner-award.aspxKlaus Blaum received the Gothenburg Lise Meitner award<p><b>​One week before the Nobel prize in Physics is announced, The Gothenburg Physics Centre honours German professor Klaus Blaum the Gothenburg Lise Meitner award 2016.</b></p><div>​The connection might sound vague, but one of the previous winners, Stefan W. Hell, was later awarded the Nobel prize in Physics in 2014. </div> <div> </div> <div>– I walk in big footsteps, but I do not feel the pressure. I’m really happy to receive the prize and it gives a lot of inspiration to me and my group. This is an international recognition, says Klaus Blaum, Director at the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear Physics in Heidelberg. </div> <div> </div> <div>In connection with the ceremony in the Physics Center in Gothenburg he held a lecture about his research and he also had the time to visit the Lise Meitner room at Chalmers. </div> <div> </div> <div>–I think she deserved the Nobel prize for the nuclear fission. Her research is what our work is based on. We are continuing with novel techniques. We are in the same field. </div> <div> </div> <div>Klaus Blaum was awarded the prize for “the development of innovative techniques for high-precision measurements of stored radioactive ions”. To make a very difficult topic understandable he is investigating how atoms heavier than iron can be made. </div> <div> </div> <div>– The exact physical process that produces heavier elements than iron is still unknown. For example, we don’t know how gold got made, says Klaus Blaum. </div> <div> </div> <div>The Gothenburg Lize Meitner award was handed over by Pam Fredman, Vice Chancellor of the University of Gothenburg.<br /><br />Text: Mia Halleröd Palmgren<br /><span></span><span><span style="display:inline-block"></span></span><br /></div> <div> <span><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MCt69jTJ02M&amp;feature=em-upload_owner"><img src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" alt="" />See a video greeting from Klaus Blaum. </a><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MCt69jTJ02M&amp;feature=em-upload_owner"><span style="display:inline-block"></span></a></span></div> <div><a href="https://www.mpi-hd.mpg.de/blaum/"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Link to homepage of the Stored and Cooled Ions Division</a></div> <div><a href="https://www.mpi-hd.mpg.de/blaum/members/blaum.en.html"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" alt="" />Link to Curriculum Vitae of Klaus Blaum</a><br /><a href="/en/centres/gpc/activities/lisemeitner/Pages/default.aspx"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" alt="" />Read more about the Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award</a><br /><br /></div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Facts:  </h3> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Fysikcentrum/Gothenburg%20Lise%20Meitner%20Award/AP570511040_200x288.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatLeft" alt="" style="margin:5px" />Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award is awarded by the Gothenburg Physics Centre to a scientist who made a breakthrough discovery in physics. The prize was established in 2006 by the Department of Physics at University of Gothenburg and holds the honour, 3000 Euros and a work of art with an engraved plaque. In conjunction with the award ceremony the laureate holds a lecture.</div> <div> </div> <div>Lise Meitner was a researcher in Berlin from 1907 to 1938 , when she was forced to flee to Sweden , where she came to work for 20 years. As a woman she was initially not allowed in the laboratories where men worked and later she had a hard time getting a regular academic position. With these qualifications, she was still one of the leading nuclear physicists in the world. After her escape to Sweden, she was the first to understand nuclear fission when she during a stay in Kungälv Christmas in 1938 , along with her nephew Otto Frisch, could explain the results that Otto Hahn, her colleagues in Berlin, sent her. She was therefore part of the team that discovered nuclear fission. She also explained the cause for the Auger effect, but was overlooked for the Nobel Prize.</div>Thu, 29 Sep 2016 18:00:00 +0200http://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/oso/news/Pages/Earth-size-telescope-tracks-star-swallowed-by-supermassive-black-hole.aspxhttp://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/oso/news/Pages/Earth-size-telescope-tracks-star-swallowed-by-supermassive-black-hole.aspxEarth-size telescope tracks the aftermath of a star being swallowed by a supermassive black hole<p><b>​Radio astronomers have used a radio telescope network the size of the Earth to zoom in on a unique phenomenon in a distant galaxy: a jet activated by a star being consumed by a supermassive black hole. The record-sharp observations reveal a compact and surprisingly slowly-moving source of radio waves.</b></p>​<span style="background-color:initial">An international team of radio astronomers led by Jun Yang (Onsala Space Observatory, Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden) studied the new-born jet in a source known as Swift J1644+57 with the European VLBI Network (EVN), an Earth-size radio telescope array. </span><div><br /></div> <div>The results, published in a paper in the journal <em>Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society</em>, will also be presented at the <a href="http://eas.unige.ch/EWASS2016/">European Week of Astronomy and Space Science</a> in Athens, Greece, on Friday 8 July 2016.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>When a star moves close to a supermassive black hole it can be disrupted violently. About half of the gas in the star is drawn towards the black hole and forms a disc around it. During this process, large amounts of gravitational energy are converted into electromagnetic radiation, creating a bright source which is visible at many different wavelengths. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>One dramatic consequence is that some of the star’s material, stripped from the star and collected around the black hole, can be ejected in extremely narrow beams of particles at speeds approaching the speed of light. These so-called relativistic jets produce strong emission at radio wavelengths. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>The first known tidal disruption event that formed a relativistic jet was discovered in 2011 by the NASA satellite Swift. Initially identified by a bright flare in X-rays, the event was given the name Swift J1644+57. The source was traced to a distant galaxy, so far away that its light took around 3.9 billion years to reach Earth.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><img class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium/250x/tde_2panels_portrait_72dpi_250x.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" />Jun Yang and his colleagues used the technique very long baseline interferometry (VLBI) make extremely high-precision measurements of the jet from Swift J1644+57. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>“Using the EVN telescope network we were able to measure the jet’s position to a precision of 10 microarcseconds. That corresponds to the angular extent of a 2-euro coin on the Moon as seen from Earth. These are some of the sharpest measurements ever made by radio telescopes”, says Jun Yang. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>Thanks to the amazing precision possible with the network of radio telescopes, the scientists were able to search for signs of motion in the jet, despite its huge distance. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>“We looked for motion close to the light speed in the jet, so-called superluminal motion. Over our three years of observations such movement should have been clearly detectable. But our images reveal instead very compact and steady emission -- there is no apparent motion”, continues Jun Yang.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The results give important insights into what happens when a star is destroyed by a supermassive black hole, but also how newly-launched jets behave in a pristine environment. Zsolt Paragi, Head of User Support at the Joint Institute for VLBI ERIC (JIVE) in Dwingeloo, Netherlands, and member of the team, explains why the jet appears to be so compact and stationary.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>&quot;Newly-formed relativistic ejecta decelerate quickly as they interact with the interstellar medium in the galaxy. Besides, earlier studies suggest we may be seeing the jet at a very small angle. That could contribute to the apparent compactness”, he says.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium/250x/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium_S8A9863-1_25m_72dpi_250x250.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px" />The record-sharp and extremely sensitive observations would not have been possible without the full power of the many radio telescopes of different sizes which together make up the EVN, explains Tao An from the Shanghai Astronomical Observatory, P.R. China.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“While the largest radio telescopes in the network contribute to the great sensitivity, the larger field of view provided by telescopes like the 25-m radio telescopes in Sheshan and Nanshan (China), and in Onsala (Sweden) played a crucial role in the investigation, allowing us to simultaneously observe Swift J1644+57 and a faint reference source,&quot; he says.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Swift J1644+57 is one of the first tidal disruption events to be studied in detail, and it won’t be the last.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>&quot;Observations with the next generation of radio telescopes will tell us more about what actually happens when a star is eaten by a black hole - and how powerful jets form and evolve right next to black holes&quot;, explains Stefanie Komossa, astronomer at the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“In the future, new, giant radio telescopes like FAST (Five hundred meter Aperture Spherical Telescope) and SKA (Square Kilometre Array) will allow us to make even more detailed observations of these extreme and exciting events,” concludes Jun Yang.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><div><span style="font-weight:700;background-color:initial">Images</span><br /></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">High-resolution images are available on Flickr at </span><a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/onsala/albums/72157669952821722"><span style="background-color:initial">https://www.flickr.com/photos/onsala/albums/72157669952821722</span>​</a></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><em>1. (top) This artist’s impression shows the remains of a star that came too close to a supermassive black hole. Extremely sharp observations of the event Swift J1644+57 with the radio telescope network EVN (European VLBI Network) have revealed a remarkably compact jet, shown here in yellow.</em></div> <div><em>Image credit: ESA/S. Komossa/Beabudai Design (see <a href="http://www.esa.int/Our_Activities/Space_Science/Extreme_space/Giant_black_hole_rips_star_apart">more images from ESA​</a>)</em></div> <div><br /></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><em>2. Three years of extremely precise EVN measurements of the jet from Swift J1644+5734 show a very compact source with no signs of motion. Lower panel: false colour contour image of the jet (the ellipse in the lower left corner shows the size of an unresolved source). Upper panel: position measurement with dates. One microarcsecond is one 3 600 000 000th part of a degree. </em></span><br /></div> <div><em>Image credit: EVN/JIVE/J. Yang​</em></div></div> <div><em><br /></em></div> <div><em>3. </em><span style="background-color:initial"><i>The 25-metre telescope at Onsala Space Observatory is part of the radio telescope network EVN (European VLBI Network).</i></span></div> <div><i>Image credit: Onsala Space Observatory/Anna-Lena Lundqvist</i></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>More about the research</strong></div> <div><br /></div> <div>The results are published in a paper in the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, <a href="http://mnrasl.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2016/05/25/mnrasl.slw107.abstract"><em>No apparent superluminal motion in the first-known jetted tidal disruption event Swift J1644+5734</em></a>, by J. Yang, Z. Paragi, A.J. van der Horst, L.I. Gurvits, R.M. Campbell, D. Giannios, T. An &amp; S. Komossa, 2016, MNRAS Letters, <a href="http://mnrasl.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2016/05/25/mnrasl.slw107.abstract">doi:10.1093/mnrasl/slw107</a>. The paper is also available at <a href="http://arxiv.org/abs/1605.06461">http://arxiv.org/abs/1605.06461</a>.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The findings will be presented at the European Week of Astronomy and Space Science in Athens, Greece on Friday 8 July 2016, as part of the special session <a href="http://eas.unige.ch/EWASS2016/session.jsp?id=SS10">Nanoradians on the sky – VLBI across the Mediterranean and beyond</a>.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>This press release <a href="http://www.ras.org.uk/news-and-press/2885-earth-size-telescope-tracks-the-aftermath-of-a-star-being-swallowed-by-a-supermassive-black-hole">has also been published by the Royal Astronomical Society​</a>.<br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong style="background-color:initial">Contacts</strong><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Robert Cumming, communications officer, Onsala Space Observatory, Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, email: robert.cumming@chalmers.se, tel: +46 70 493 3114 or +46 (0)31 772 5500</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Jun Yang, Onsala Space Observatory, Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, email: jun.yang@chalmers.se, tel: +46 (0)31 7725531</div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>More about VLBI, the European VLBI Network and JIVE</strong></div> <div><br /></div> <div>VLBI is an astronomical method by which multiple radio telescopes distributed across great distances observe the same region of sky simultaneously. Data from each telescope is sent to a central &quot;correlator&quot; to produce images with higher resolution than the most powerful optical telescopes. </div> <div><br /></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">The European VLBI Network (EVN; <a href="http://www.evlbi.org/">www.evlbi.org</a>) is an interferometric array of radio telescopes spread throughout Europe, Asia, South Africa and the Americas that conducts unique, high-resolution, radio astronomical observations of cosmic radio sources. Established in 1980, the EVN has grown into the most sensitive VLBI array in the world, including over 20 individual telescopes, among them some of the world's largest and most sensitive radio telescopes. The EVN is administered by the European Consortium for VLBI, which includes a total of 15 institutes, including the Joint Institute for VLBI ERIC (JIVE).</span><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div>The Joint Institute for VLBI ERIC (JIVE; <a href="http://www.jive.eu/">www.jive.eu​</a>) has as its primary mission to operate and develop the EVN data processor, a powerful supercomputer that combines the signals from radio telescopes located across the planet. Founded in 1993, JIVE is since 2015 a European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC) with five member countries: Netherlands, United Kingdom, Sweden, France and Spain.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><br /><a href="http://www.ras.org.uk/news-and-press/2885-earth-size-telescope-tracks-the-aftermath-of-a-star-being-swallowed-by-a-supermassive-black-hole"></a></div> ​Wed, 06 Jul 2016 08:00:00 +0200http://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/oso/news/Pages/Alma-swirling-cool-jet-supermassive-black-hole.aspxhttp://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/oso/news/Pages/Alma-swirling-cool-jet-supermassive-black-hole.aspxAlma finds a swirling, cool jet that reveals a growing, supermassive black hole<p><b>​​A Chalmers-led team of astronomers have used the Alma telescope to make the surprising discovery of a jet of cool, dense gas in the centre of a galaxy located 70 million light years from Earth. The jet, with its unusual, swirling structure, gives new clues to a long-standing astronomical mystery – how supermassive black holes grow.</b></p><div>A team of astronomers led by Susanne Aalto, professor of radio astronomy at Chalmers, has used the Alma telescope (Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array) to observe a remarkable structure in the centre of the galaxy NGC 1377, located 70 million light years from Earth in the constellation Eridanus (the River). The results are presented in a paper published in the June 2016 issue of the journal Astronomy and Astrophysics.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“We were curious about this galaxy because of its bright, dust-enshrouded centre. What we weren’t expecting was this: a long, narrow jet streaming out from the galaxy nucleus”, says Susanne Aalto.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium/250x/ngc1377_alma_CO_72dpi_250x250.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px" />The observations with Alma reveal a jet which is 500 light years long and less than 60 light years across, travelling at speeds of at least 800 000 kilometres per hour (500 000 miles per hour).</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Most galaxies have a supermassive black hole in their centres; these black holes can have masses of between a few million to a billion solar masses. How they grew to be so massive is a long-standing mystery for scientists.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>A black hole’s presence can be seen indirectly by telescopes when matter is falling into it – a process which astronomers call “accretion”. Jets of fast-moving material are typical signatures that a black hole is growing by accreting matter. The jet in NGC 1377 reveals the presence of a supermassive black hole. But it has even more to tell us, explains Francesco Costagliola (Chalmers and <span style="background-color:initial">ORA-INAF, Italy</span><span style="background-color:initial">), co-author on the paper.</span></div> <span></span><div></div> <div><br /></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium/250x/ngc1377_jet_cartoon_en_72dpi_250x250.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px" />“The jets we usually see emerging from galaxy nuclei are very narrow tubes of hot plasma. This jet is very </span><span style="background-color:initial">different. Instead it’s extremely cool, and its light comes from dense gas composed of molecules”, he says.</span><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div>The jet has ejected molecular gas equivalent to two million times the mass of the Sun over a period of only around half a million years - a very short time in the life of a galaxy. During this short and dramatic phase in the galaxy’s evolution, its central, supermassive black hole must have grown fast.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“Black holes that cause powerful narrow jets can grow slowly by accreting hot plasma. The black hole in NGC1377, on the other hand, is on a diet of cold gas and dust, and can therefore grow – at least for now – at a much faster rate”, explains team member Jay Gallagher (University of Wisconsin-Madison). </div> <div><br /></div> <div>The motion of the gas in the jet also surprised the astronomers. The measurements with Alma are consistent with a jet that is precessing – swirling outwards like water from a garden sprinkler. </div> <div><br /></div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium/250x/ngc1377_vst_ctio_vri_72dpi_250x250.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px" />“The jet’s unusual swirling could be due to an uneven flow of gas towards the central black hole. Another possibility is that the galaxy’s centre contains two supermassive black holes in orbit around each other”, says Sebastien Muller, Chalmers, also a member of the team.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The discovery of the remarkable cool, swirling jet from the centre of this galaxy would have been impossible without Alma, concludes Susanne Aalto.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“Alma’s unique ability to detect and measure cold gas is revolutionising our understanding of galaxies and their central black holes. In NGC 1377 we’re witnessing a transient stage in a galaxy’s evolution which will help us understand the most rapid and important growth phases of supermassive black holes, and the life cycle of galaxies in the universe”, she says.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><div><span style="font-weight:700">Images</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div><em>Download full-resulotion images from Flickr: </em><a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/onsala/albums/72157670466962966" style="text-decoration:underline;outline:0px"><em>https://www.flickr.com/photos/onsala/albums/72157670466962966</em></a></div> <div><br /></div> <div><em>1. (top) Alma’s close-up view of the centre of galaxy NGC 1377 (upper left) reveals a swirling jet. In this colour-coded image, reddish gas clouds are moving away from us, bluish clouds towards us, relative to the galaxy’s centre. The Alma image shows light with wavelength around one millimetre from molecules of carbon monoxide (CO). A cartoon view (lower right) shows how these clouds are moving, this time seen from the side. The background colour image of NGC 1377 and its surroundings is a composite made from a visible light images taken at the CTIO 1.5-metre telescope by<span></span> </em><a href="http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2006ApJ...646..841R"><em>H. Roussel et al. (2006)</em></a><em> (V filter), and in filters r and i by ESO’s VLT Survey Telescope [VST] </em></div> <div><em>Image credit: CTIO/H. Roussel et al./ESO (left panel); Alma/ESO/NRAO/S. Aalto (top right panel); S. Aalto (lower right panel)</em></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><em>2. Alma’s close-up view of the centre of galaxy NGC 1377 reveals a swirling jet. In this colour-coded image, reddish gas clouds are moving away from us, bluish clouds towards us, relative to the galaxy’s centre. The image shows light with wavelength around one millimetre from molecules of carbon monoxide (CO). </em></span><br /></div> <div><em>Image credit: ALMA/ESO/NRAO/S. Aalto &amp; F. Costagliola</em></div> <div></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><div><span style="background-color:initial"><em>3. This cartoon view shows how the clouds of material that make up the jet are moving outward from the central black hole, this time seen from the side. Red colours show clouds that are moving away from us, and blue colours show clouds that are moving towards us, relative to the black hole in the galaxy’s centre. </em></span><br /></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><em>Image credit: S. Aalto</em></span></div> <span style="background-color:initial"></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><em>4. The galaxy </em></span><span style="background-color:initial"><em>NGC 1377 </em></span><span style="background-color:initial"><em>lies 70 million light years from Earth, seen here beyond stars in our own galaxy. This colour composite of NGC 1377 and its surroundings is made from visible light images taken at the CTIO 1.5-metre telescope by </em></span><a href="http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2006ApJ...646..841R" style="text-decoration:underline;outline:0px"><em>H. Roussel et al. (2006)</em></a><span style="background-color:initial"><em> (V filter), and in filters r and i by ESO’s VLT Survey Telescope [VST] </em></span></div> <div><em>Image credit: CTIO/H. Roussel et al./ESO</em></div></div> <div><em>​</em></div> <div><strong>More about the research</strong></div> <div><br /></div> <div>This research is presented in the article <em>A precessing molecular jet signaling an obscured, growing supermassive black hole in NGC 1377?</em>, published in the June 2016 issue of Astronomy and Astrophysics (<a href="http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361/201527664">http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361/201527664</a>).</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The team is composed of Susanne Aalto (Chalmers), Francesco Costagliola (Chalmers and ORA-INAF, Italy), Sebastien Muller (Chalmers), K, Sakamoto (Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics, Academia Sinica, Taipei, Taiwan), Jay S. Gallagher (Department of Astronomy, University of Wisconsin-Madison), K. Dasyra (National and Kapodistrian​ <span></span>University of Athens, Greece), K. Wada (Kagoshima University, Japan), F. Combes (Paris Observatory, France), S. Garcia-Burillo (Observatorio Astronomico Nacional (OAN)-Observatorio de Madrid, Spain), L. E. Kristensen (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, USA), S. Martin (European Southern Observatory, Joint Alma Observatory and IRAM, France), P. van der Werf (Leiden Observatory, Netherlands), A. S. Evans (University of Virginia and Virginia and National Radio Astronomy Observatory, USA) and J. Kotilainen (Finnish Centre for Astronomy with ESO (FINCA), University of Turku, Finland).</div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>More about Alma</strong></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Alma (Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array) — with its 66 gigantic 12-metre and 7-metre antennas - is an international astronomy facility located at 5000 metres altitude at Chajnantor in northern Chile. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>The Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (Alma), an international astronomy facility, is a partnership of ESO, the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) and the National Institutes of Natural Sciences (NINS) of Japan in cooperation with the Republic of Chile. Alma is funded by ESO on behalf of its Member States, by NSF in cooperation with the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) and the National Science Council of Taiwan (NSC) and by NINS in cooperation with the Academia Sinica (AS) in Taiwan and the Korea Astronomy and Space Science Institute (KASI).</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Chalmers and Onsala Space Observatory have been involved in Alma since its inception; receivers for the telescope are one of many contributions. Onsala Space Observatory is host to the Nordic Alma Regional Centre, which provides technical expertise to the Alma project and supports astronomers in the Nordic countries in using Alma.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>More about Onsala Space Observatory</strong></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Onsala Space Observatory is Sweden's national facility for radio astronomy. The observatory provides researchers with equipment for the study of the earth and the rest of the universe. In Onsala, 45 km south of Gothenburg, it operates two radio telescopes and a station in the international telescope Lofar. It also participates in several international projects. The observatory is hosted by Department of Earth and Space Sciences at Chalmers University of Technology, and is operated on behalf of the Swedish Research Council.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>Contacts</strong></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Robert Cumming, communications officer, Onsala Space Observatory, Chalmers, +46 31-772 5500, +46 70-493 31 14, robert.cumming@chalmers.se</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Susanne Aalto, professor in radio astronomy, Chalmers, +46 31 772 5506, susanne.aalto@chalmers.se</div> <div><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div><br /></div> ​Mon, 04 Jul 2016 08:00:00 +0200http://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/oso/news/Pages/Swedens-biggest-contribution-yet-to-the-worlds-largest-radio-telescope.aspxhttp://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/oso/news/Pages/Swedens-biggest-contribution-yet-to-the-worlds-largest-radio-telescope.aspxSweden’s biggest contribution yet to the world’s largest radio telescope<p><b>​​Sweden’s biggest contribution yet to the world’s biggest radio telescope, the Square Kilometre Array (SKA), has passed a major milestone. An advanced – and beautiful – feed horn developed at Chalmers University of Technology, has been delivered for testing in Canada.</b></p>​​<img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium/250x/SKA_Band1_FeedSubPeople_72dpi_250x250.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px" /><span style="background-color:initial">The sensitive feed horn – with an opening almost one metre across, and weighing almost 100 kilograms – will help astronomers to tell the history of the universe. Built at Onsala Space Observatory and now delivered for testing in Canada, it will eventually be fitted on each of the 133 dish antennas at the SKA's South African site in the first phase of deployment of the SKA. </span><div><br /><span style="background-color:initial"></span><div>Construction of the SKA is scheduled to begin only a few years from now, in both South Africa and Australia. Sweden, represented by Onsala Space Observatory at Chalmers University of Technology, has been part of the project’s design phase since 2012.</div> <div><br /></div> <span></span><img class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium/250x/band1feed_engineers_72dpi_250x250.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" /><div>The telescope's instrument in South Africa will be made up of hundreds of 15-metre dish antennas, located in the remote Karoo Desert in Northern Cape province. Currently intensive work is underway all over the world to develop and test the telescope’s components. Antennas, feed horns and receivers are all needed to register faint radio waves from the cosmos.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>SKA will be able to make measurements which will surpass all of today’s radio telescopes. Among many other projects, astronomers hope to be able to map out how the first galaxies were formed, over 13 billion years ago.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>”The feed horn is our biggest and most important contribution yet to the SKA. Each antenna will have a horn like this, and each antenna’s feed horn is one of its most important components. In it we combine nanotechnology with precision instrumentation”, says Miroslav Pantaleev, leader for the SKA technology team in Onsala. </div> <div><br /></div> <img class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium/250x/band1_horn_frilagd_72dpi_250x250.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" /><div>Each of the telescope’s dishes collects faint radio signals from space. The dish’s feed horn, combined with an advanced amplifier, then prepares the radio signal so that it can be analysed by astronomers. The horn itself is an impressive combination of mechanical engineering and radio optical design – all with the aim of being maximally sensitive but also cost-effective for mass production. It has a so-called quadridge design, with four ridges on the inside, developed by Onsala Space Observatory specifically for SKA from an earlier design by the South African company EMSS Antennas.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The feed horn has been developed for the longest wavelengths that SKA’s dish antennas will be sensitive to, between 350 and 1050 MHz (wavelengths from 30-85 cm; Band 1).</div> <div><br /></div> <div>It will now be tested on an antenna prototype built for SKA at the Canadian National Research Council's Dominion Radio Astrophysical Observatory (DRAO) facility near Penticton, British Columbia, Canada.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><img class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium/250x/lna_band1_72dpi_250x250.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" />The amplifiers for the feed horn have been specially developed for this project by the Gothenburg-based company <a href="http://www.lownoisefactory.com/">Low Noise Factory​</a> in collaboration with Onsala Space Observatory and the Gigahertz Centre at Chalmers. A paper describing the work on the amplifiers was presented on 26 May at the International Microwave Symposium 2016 in San Francisco, USA.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Joel Schleeh, engineer at Low Noise Factory, explains.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“The amplifier uses nanotechnology to amplify the radio waves with as little noise as possible. Normally, noise reduction means we have to cool the amplifier down to a few degrees above absolute zero. Instead, our bespoke amplifier is integrated directly in the feed horn, which means we can retain the telescope’s sensitivity without using any cooling at all. For SKA this could mean huge savings in energy, maintenance and investment”, he says.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>John Conway is director of Onsala Space Observatory.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>”Our delivery of this feed horn shows that Sweden is making a difference in the international SKA project. We are setting the scene for new insights about our universe, and our origins in the cosmos. At the same time we are creating new opportunities for cutting-edge technology from Sweden to reach the rest of the world”, he says.</div> <div> </div> <div><span style="font-weight:700">Images</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div><a href="https://www.flickr.com/gp/onsala/Q8S386"><em>High-resolution images are available on Flickr.​</em></a></div> <em> </em><div><br /></div> <em> </em><div><span></span><span></span><em>1 (top) An artist’s impression of the completed Phase 1 of the SKA in South Africa’s Karoo Desert. (Credit: SKA Organisation)</em><br /></div> <em> </em><div><br /></div> <div><em>2. </em><span style="background-color:initial"><em>The SKA Band 1 feed horn mounted on the DVA1 dish at the CNRC-DRAO facility near Penticton, British Columbia, Canada, seen here beneath the telescope's subreflector with Onsala Space Observatory engineers Jonas Flygare (left) and Magnus Dahlgren. </em></span><span style="background-color:initial"><em>More images from the inst</em></span><span style="background-color:initial"><em>allation are available on </em></span><a href="https://www.flickr.com/gp/onsala/Q8S386" style="text-decoration:underline;outline:0px"><em>Flickr</em></a><span style="background-color:initial"><em>.</em></span></div> <div><div><span style="background-color:initial"><em>(Credit: Onsala Space Observatory/CNRC-DRAO/J. Flygare)</em></span></div> <span style="background-color:initial"></span></div> <div><br /></div> <em> </em><div><em>3 The Band 1 feed in the electronics lab at Onsala Space Observatory. Standing behind the feed horn from the left: Joel Schleeh (Low Noise Factory) with Onsala Space Observatory engineers Magnus Dahlgren, Bhushan Billade (technical project manager) and Jens Dahlström. (Credit: SKA Organisation)  </em></div> <em> </em><div><span style="background-color:initial"><em> </em></span><span style="background-color:initial"><em> </em></span></div> <em> </em><div></div> <em> </em><div><em>4 Feed horn for SKA Band 1 in the lab. (Credit: Onsala Space Observatory/Ronny Wingdén)  </em></div> <em> </em><div><em> </em></div> <em> </em><span></span><div><em>5 ​​The amplifiers for SKA Band 1 have been specially developed for maximum performance at room temperature. Here Joel Schleeh from Low Noise Factory is holding one of the amplifiers. (Credit: SKA Organisation)  </em></div> <div><br /></div> <div><span></span></div> <div><br /></div> <div><span style="font-weight:700">More about the SKA project </span></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Read more about the SKA at<span></span> <a href="http://www.skatelescope.org/">www.skatelescope.org</a> (or in Swedish at <a href="http://sweden.skatelescope.org/">http://sweden.skatelescope.org</a>).</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The Square Kilometre Array (SKA) project is an international effort to build the world’s largest radio telescope, led by SKA Organisation. The SKA will conduct transformational science to improve our understanding of the Universe and the laws of fundamental physics, monitoring the sky in unprecedented detail and mapping it hundreds of times faster than any current facility.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The SKA is not a single telescope, but a collection of telescopes or instruments, called an array, to be spread over long distances. The SKA is to be constructed in two phases: Phase 1 (called SKA1) in South Africa and Australia; Phase 2 (called SKA2) expanding into other African countries, with the component in Australia also being expanded.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Already supported by 10 member countries – Australia, Canada, China, India, Italy, New Zealand, South Africa, Sweden, The Netherlands and the United Kingdom – SKA Organisation has brought together some of the world’s finest scientists, engineers and policy makers and more than 100 companies and research institutions across 20 countries in the design and development of the telescope. Construction of the SKA is set to start in 2018, with early science observations in 2020. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>Sweden is represented in the SKA Organisation by Onsala Space Observatory, Sweden’s national facility for radio astronomy. The observatory is hosted by the Department of Earth and Space Sciences at Chalmers University of Technology, and is operated on behalf of the Swedish Research Council.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The SKA Dish Consortium is responsible for the design and verification of the dishes that will make up SKA-mid, one of two SKA instruments. Eight countries, among them Sweden, are members of the consortium, which is led by Australia.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><span style="font-weight:700">More about the amplifiers and Swedish industry in the SKA project</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div>The amplifiers for SKA Band 1 are described in the paper ”10 K Room Temperature LNA for SKA Band 1” by Joel Schleeh (Low Noise Factory), Per-Åke Nilsson (Department of Microtechnology and Nanoscience, Chalmers), Jan Grahn (Department of Microtechnology and Nanoscience , Chalmers) and Niklas Wadefalk (Low Noise Factory). <a href="https://publications.lib.chalmers.se/publication/237723">Link to article</a></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Besides Low Noise Factory, several other Swedish companies are involved in studies for development and mass production of components for the SKA’s telescopes.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><span style="font-weight:700">Contacts</span></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Robert Cumming, communications officer, Onsala Space Observatory, Chalmers, +46 31-772 5500, +46 70-493 31 14, robert.cumming@chalmers.se</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Miroslav Pantaleev, head of electronics laboratory, Onsala Space Observatory, Chalmers, +46 31 772 5555, miroslav.pantaleev@chalmers.se</div></div> <div><br /></div> Thu, 16 Jun 2016 08:00:00 +0200http://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/gpc/news/Pages/Klaus-Blaum-receives-the-Gothenburg-Lise-Meitner-Award-2016.aspxhttp://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/gpc/news/Pages/Klaus-Blaum-receives-the-Gothenburg-Lise-Meitner-Award-2016.aspxKlaus Blaum receives the Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award 2016<p><b>​The Gothenburg Physics Centre honors professor KLAUS BLAUM, Max Planck Institute for Nuclear Physics, Heidelberg, Germany, with the 2016 Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award “for the development of innovative techniques for high-precision measurements of stored radioactive ions”.</b></p><div>​<img class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Fysikcentrum/Gothenburg%20Lise%20Meitner%20Award/Lise%20Meitner%202016/250x323px_Klaus-Blaum_med-ram.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" />Klaus Blaum works on high-precision spectroscopy, mostly mass spectroscopy of stable and radioactive ions. To this purpose ions are stored in Penning traps or storage rings under highly-controlled conditions. Such measurements are important because they provide key data for answering questions ranging from the formation of heavy nuclei in the universe and the structure of atomic nuclei to neutrino physics and the standard model of particle physics. </div> <div> </div> <div>&quot;Klaus Blaum has developed innovative techniques that have pushed the precision limit for such unique measurements&quot;, says Andreas Heinz, chairman of the award committee.</div> <div style="text-align:right"><div style="text-align:left"> </div></div> <div>Nuclear masses and charge radii, especially of radioactive nuclei, are of central interest for researchers in Gothenburg working on questions related to subatomic physics. There is a strong interest in such data from an experimental as well as from a theoretical point view. Hence, there is a significant amount of interest in the results provided by Klaus Blaum. Moreover, his activities on using low-energy storage rings to investigate radioactive ions are techniques on which also Gothenburg researchers are working. A core of the activities of Klaus Blaum is located at ISOLDE/CERN, where especially the Chalmers group is also very active. </div> <div> </div> <div>&quot;With this award we hope not only for an excellent presentation by Klaus Blaum and an interesting symposium, covering a rather wide range of topics, but also a strengthening of our common connections at CERN and at FAIR&quot;, says Andreas Heinz.</div> <div> </div> <div><a target="_blank" href="https://www.mpi-hd.mpg.de/blaum/"><img src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" alt="" />Link to homepage of the Stored and Cooled Ions Division</a></div> <div><a target="_blank" href="https://www.mpi-hd.mpg.de/blaum/members/blaum.en.html"><img src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" alt="" />Link to Curriculum Vitae of Klaus Blaum</a></div>Thu, 28 Apr 2016 11:40:00 +0200http://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/gpc/news/Pages/Call-for-nominations-for-the-Lise-Meitner-Award-2016.aspxhttp://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/gpc/news/Pages/Call-for-nominations-for-the-Lise-Meitner-Award-2016.aspxCall for nominations: Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award 2016<p><b>The Gothenburg Physics Centre is seeking nominations for the 2016 Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award.  Nominations are due on Tuesday, March 29.</b></p><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Fysikcentrum/Gothenburg%20Lise%20Meitner%20Award/AP570511040_200x288.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px" />The <span>Gothenburg <span style="display:inline-block"></span></span>Lise Meitner Award honors exceptional individuals for a <em>“groundbreaking discovery in physics”</em>.  In addition to their scientific accomplishments, the candidates must meet the following selection criteria:<br /><ul><li>They have distinguished themselves through public activities of popularizing science and are prepared to deliver the annual Lise Meitner lecture (middle of September).</li> <li>Their research activity is connected to or will benefit activities at the Gothenburg Physics Centre.<br /></li></ul> Nominations should include a motivation describing the achievements of the candidate, a short biography/CV, contact details and a local contact person. <br /><br />Nominations should be sent to Dinko Chakarov <a href="mailto:dinko.chakarov@chalmers.se">dinko.chakarov@chalmers.se</a>, chairman of the Award Committee.<br /><a href="/en/centres/gpc/activities/lisemeitner/Pages/default.aspx"><img src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" alt="" />Read more about the award and previous laureates here</a><br /><br />Mon, 22 Feb 2016 00:00:00 +0100http://www.chalmers.se/en/news/Pages/MOOC-Sensing-Planet-Earth.aspxhttp://www.chalmers.se/en/news/Pages/MOOC-Sensing-Planet-Earth.aspxFrom core to outer space<p><b>Rising sea levels, growing deserts and variations in the atmosphere. Earth observations and measurement are crucial tools for understanding climate change. In Chalmers’ upcoming MOOCs Sensing Planet Earth we will learn about the tools and methods for measuring the world we live in. Thomas Hobiger is the coordinator of the MOOCs starting in early spring 2016.</b></p><div>The next of MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) from Chalmers will be given in February and March of 2016. The subject of “Sensing Planet Earth” is how we measure the world around us: sea levels, earthquakes, changes in the atmosphere, etcetera. Several experts from Chalmers’ Department of Earth and Space Sciences will partake as instructors in the courses. </div> <div> </div> <div>Thomas Hobiger is the coordinator for “Sensing Planet Earth”. As an Associate Professor in Geodesy and Geodynamics he divides his time between Campus Chalmers Johanneberg in Gothenburg and the Onsala Space Observatory. Originally from Austria, he spent eight years as a researcher in Japan before arriving at Chalmers in 2014. One thing that intrigues him about the MOOC format, he says, is its global perspective.</div> <div>“In Earth science you simply have to be international. The Earth ignores borders. To be able to measure the different aspects of the planet we need people from around the world, with a wide variety of skills,” says Thomas Hobiger.</div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Different areas of Earth sciences</h2> <div>“Sensing Planet Earth” will run for a total of eight weeks, divided into two standalone four-week courses with a three-week break dividing them. Every week of the courses will be dedicated to the study of a specific area of Earth sciences, and include an introduction by an expert from that particular field. The courses will cover, to name a few areas, the geosphere, the biosphere and the atmosphere, to finally come to an end by drawing some conclusions about global change, climate and disaster monitoring. Participants should devote an estimated six hours per week to their studies to be able to complete the courses.</div> <div>“We will include a couple of home assignments where participants are encouraged to collect their own data. They could be asked, for example, to make weather observations or record changes in temperature, and then compare their findings with each other,” says Thomas Hobiger.</div> <div> </div> <div>By offering a course that covers the basics of the tools and methods commonly used in Earth Sciences to measure the planet, and how the data collected is interpreted, Thomas Hobiger hopes to garner interest in fields that are vital to the research of climate change and its effects. Apart from people in general with an interest in Earth Science, he says the MOOCs will be aimed at high school students and teachers.</div> <div>“Students aged between 16 and 18 should have sufficient basic knowledge of mathematics and physics to be able to keep up with the MOOCs. We want more young people to discover Earth Sciences, to make them aware of the techniques we use and how they themselves sense and measure the world around them.”</div> <div><h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Inspire teachers and influence decision makers</h2> <div>As for the teachers, Thomas Hobiger says that the MOOCs can offer them new ideas and input to bring into the classroom. The teachers can either let their students take the course as a part of a science-oriented curriculum, or pick parts to use in their own lectures.</div></div> <div> </div> <div>A third important target group that Thomas Hobiger brings up is decision makers, who in their positions are dependent on the use of earth observation data.</div> <div>“Within areas such as disaster monitoring and urban planning a plethora of data gathered from measuring and observing the earth is used all the time. People working in that sector, making important decisions that affect the environment, need some basic understanding of how this type of data is gathered and how to interpret it.” </div> <div><br /><a href="https://www.edx.org/course/sensing-planet-earth-core-outer-space-chalmersx-chm003x"><img src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" alt="" />Enroll in part one: &quot;Sensing Planet Earth – Core to Outer Space&quot;</a><br /><br /><a href="https://www.edx.org/course/sensing-planet-earth-water-ice-chalmersx-chm004x"><img src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" alt="" />Enroll in part two: &quot;Sensing Planet Earth – Water and Ice&quot;</a><br /><br /><a href="/en/education/Pages/MOOC---Massive-Open-Online-Courses.aspx"><img src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" alt="" />Learn more about ChalmersX and previous MOOCs</a><br /></div> <div> </div> <div><strong>Text:</strong> Carolina Svensson<br /><strong>Photo: </strong>Anna-Lena Lundqvist<br /></div>Mon, 23 Nov 2015 09:00:00 +0100http://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/oso/news/Pages/apex-sepia-alma-band-5-water-space.aspxhttp://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/oso/news/Pages/apex-sepia-alma-band-5-water-space.aspxDesert telescopes ready to discover water in space<p><b>​Two of the world’s highest and most advanced telescopes have started searching for water in space – and other surprises – with new eyes. New capabilities for the ALMA and APEX telescopes in Chile’s Atacama desert have been achieved thanks to advanced technology developed by Onsala Space Observatory and Chalmers.</b></p><div>At 5000 metres above sea level, the Chajnantor plateau in northern Chile is one of few places in the world where the air is dry enough to see traces of water in space. Light with a particular colour, specifically with wavelength between 1.4 and 1.9 mm (frequencies between 158 and 211 GHz) is normally blocked by water vapour in the atmosphere. <br /></div> <div><br /> </div> <div><img class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium/665x318%20Enskilda%20artikelbilder/eso1543c_72dpi_350x450.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" />From Chajnantor, detecting signs of water in space possible if you have excellent weather conditions – and the right equipment. Since early 2015, the giant telescope ALMA and its neighbour APEX, both located here, have for the first time been able to observe signals from space in these exciting new colours. These wavelengths are sometimes referred to as light, sometimes as radio waves, sometimes simply as millimetre waves. ALMA stands for Atacama Large Millimetre/Submillimetre Array and APEX for Atacama Pathfinder EXperiment.</div> <div><br /> </div> <div>This opportunity has been made possible thanks to new instrumentation developed by the scientists and engineers in the Group for Advanced Receiver Development (GARD) at Onsala Space Observatory and the Department of Earth and Space Science, Chalmers.</div> <div><br /> </div> <div>During 2015, new receivers – instruments for detecting and measuring radio waves - underwent their first field tests on ALMA. At the same time on APEX, a receiver with similar design has been tested as part of a new instrument – called SEPIA.</div> <div><br /> </div> <div>ALMA, an array of 66 antennas, 12 and 7 metres in diameter, which gives astronomers the world’s sharpest views of the universe in light with wavelength around one millimetre, much redder than our eyes can see. ALMA’s much smaller cousin APEX, with its single 12-metre antenna, is not as sharp-sighted, but complements its neighbour thanks to its ability to quickly make deep, sensitive observations of large areas of the sky.</div> <div><br /> </div> <div>The new instrument SEPIA has been mounted on APEX since early in 2015. SEPIA stands for “Swedish ESO PI receiver for APEX”, but SEPIA is also a colour with a close connection to water. We have cuttlefish of genus SEPIA to thank for the reddish-brown shade which has been used in ink since ancient times.</div> <div><br /> </div> <div><strong>Advanced tech inside</strong></div> <div><br /> </div> <div>For astronomers who want to know what the sky looks like at wavelengths as long as 1.4-1.9 mm, advanced technology is as important as dry conditions and big antennas. </div> <div><br /> </div> <div><img class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium/665x318%20Enskilda%20artikelbilder/Band5_dual_pol_2sb_mixer_72dpi_350x530.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" />In the heart of the receiver, some of the most remarkable phenomena in physics are used to register and measure faint signals from space. For this the detector needs to be cooled to extremely low temperatures. </div> <div><br /> </div> <div>The scientists and engineers at GARD are one of the few radio astronomy instrumentation groups with the facilities and experience that’s needed to meet the challenging requirements of the world’s most advanced telescopes.</div> <div><br /> </div> <div>– For us, building state-of-the-art instrumentation for telescopes like APEX and ALMA means combining different technologies in the best possible way. The challenge of solving problems in many different fields – for example microwave and millimetre-wave semiconductor and superconductor electronics, microfabrication, physical optics and cryogenics – is what makes this work exciting, says GARD scientist Alexey Pavolotsky.</div> <div><br /> </div> <div><strong>First signs of water</strong></div> <div><br /> </div> <div>During 2015, the receivers have been tested for the first time at APEX – as part of SEPIA – and at the antennas of ALMA. </div> <div><br /> </div> <div>The results of SEPIA’s first observations – many of them suggested by astronomers in Sweden - are being analysed now.  </div> <div><br /> </div> <div>For astronomers in Sweden and in the rest of the world, finding and measuring water in space is a major goal. Water’s role in life on Earth makes it an essential part of understanding our cosmic origins, but water molecules in space – for example in clouds in our galaxy where new stars are formed, and around stars that are shedding their outer layers at the end of a long and productive life – have other stories to tell.</div> <div><br /> </div> <div><img class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium/350x305/sepia_pacs_w_hya_water_72dpi_350x305.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" />Elvire De Beck, astronomer at Chalmers and Onsala Space Observatory, was one of the first to use SEPIA to see signs of water. Together with her colleagues Wouter Vlemmings (also Chalmers and Onsala Space Observatory) and Liz Humphreys (ESO) she collected measurements of the star W Hydrae (see image), an old, red giant star 300 light years away in the constellation Hydra, the Water Snake. The measurements show a strong signal at frequency 183 GHz (1.6 millimetre wavelength), a clear signal of water vapour in dense clouds close to the star.</div> <div><br /> </div> <div>– SEPIA is working really well. These data show how clearly we can detect water and other molecules around stars like this one. With SEPIA – and soon also in sharper detail with ALMA – measurements like these will be able to tell us a lot about red giants, and that tells us what happens to stars like the Sun when they grow old, Elvire De Beck explains.</div> <div><br /> </div> <div>Finding water is only part of the story. Other scientists, again many from Sweden, plan to use SEPIA to detect the signatures of other molecules, atoms and ions from both nearby stars and distant galaxies. </div> <div><br /> </div> <div><img class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Onsala%20rymdobservatorium/350x305/ann12042a_72dpi_350x305.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px" />With SEPIA in operation and ALMA’s Band 5 receivers being installed, two of the world’s best telescopes are showing their ability both to study water in space - and to make other discoveries in this new window on the universe. </div> <div><br /> </div> <div>While tests continue into late 2015 at both APEX and ALMA, scientists from all over the world can now propose observations with SEPIA, ready for further investigation with ALMA later in 2016. </div> <div><br /> </div> <div><br /> </div> <div><strong>More about the project</strong></div> <div><br /> </div> <div>Receivers for ALMA Band 5 and SEPIA were originally designed and prototyped by the Group for Advanced Receiver Development (GARD) at Onsala Space Observatory and Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden, in collaboration with the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, UK, and ESO, under the European Commission supported Framework Programme FP6 (ALMA Enhancement). After having successfully tested the prototypes, the first production-type receivers were built and delivered to ALMA in the first half of 2015 by a consortium of NOVA, the Netherlands Research School in Astronomy, and GARD. The room temperature electronics and local oscillator source was delivered by NRAO. By November 2015, 12 receivers have been delivered to ALMA, the first two of which were used for the first test observations in in mid-2015. By 2017, the remainder of the 73 receivers, including spares, will be delivered. </div> <div><br /> </div> <div><strong>Further reading</strong></div> <div><br /> </div> <div><a href="https://www.eso.org/public/sweden/eso1543/">Press release about Sepia from ESO</a></div> <div><br /> </div> <div>Previous press releases (in Swedish): <a href="/sv/nyheter/Sidor/Superteleskopet-Alma-forbattras-med-svensk-spetsteknik.aspx">Superteleskopet förbättras med svensk teknik</a> and <a href="/sv/nyheter/Sidor/Svensk-mottagare-ska-jaga-universums-vatten-i-Chile.aspx">Svensk mottagare ska jaga vatten i Chile</a></div> <div><br /> </div> <div><div><a href="/en/departments/rss/research/research-groups/Pages/Advanced-receiver-development.aspx">Group for Advanced Receiver Development (GARD) at Onsala Space Observatory and Chalmers</a><br /></div> <div><br /> </div> <div><a href="http://www.eso.org/public/teles-instr/apex/">More about APEX from ESO</a></div> <div><br /> </div> <div><a href="/en/centres/oso/radio-astronomy/apex/Pages/default.aspx">More about APEX from Onsala Space Observatory</a> (på engelska)</div> <div><br /> </div> <div><a href="http://www.eso.org/public/teles-instr/alma/">More about ALMA from ESO</a></div></div> <div><br /> </div> <div><div><strong>Contacts</strong></div> <div><br /> </div> <div>Robert Cumming, astronomer and communications officer, Onsala Space Observatory, +46 31 772 5500, +46 70 49 33 114, robert.cumming@chalmers.se</div> <div>John Conway, director, Onsala Space Observatory, +46 31 772 5500, john.conway@chalmers.se</div> <div>Victor Belitsky, professor of radio and space science, Chalmers, leader for Group for Advanced Receiver Development (GARD)  at Onsala Space Observatory and Chalmers, +46 31-772 1893, victor.belitsky@chalmers.se</div> <div></div></div> <div><br /> </div> <div><span></span><div><strong>Images</strong></div> <div><br /> </div> <div>Top image: <a href="https://www.eso.org/public/images/eso1543a/">View and download from ESO</a></div> <div><br /> </div> <div>1. SEPIA is lifted into the telescope. On a snowy day in February 2015, SEPIA is lifted up and into the APEX instrument cabin, 5000 metres up on the Chajnantor plateau in Chile. </div> <div><a href="https://www.eso.org/public/images/eso1543c/">High-resolution image at ESO</a></div> <div>Credit: A. Ermakov (Dept. of Earth and Space Sciences, Chalmers)<br /></div> <div><br /> </div> <div><div>2. Advanced components in the heart of the receivers for SEPIA and for ALMA’s Band 5. When cooled to four degrees above absolute zero, the components in this photograph use quantum effects and a niobium superconducting tunnel junction to convert the faint signal from the telescope to data that can be analysed by astronomers. </div> <div><a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/onsala/22758497091/in/album-72157658433671814/">High-resolution image on Flickr</a></div> <div>Credit: Onsala Space Observatory/E. Sundin</div> <div><br /> </div> <div>3. Signs of water around the star W Hydrae. Thanks to its new instrument SEPIA, the APEX telescope can now see light with wavelength around 1.5 mm – ideal for measuring signs of water in space. Among the first targets is the red giant star W Hydrae, around 300 light years from Earth. This spectrum from SEPIA shows clear signals of warm water vapour close to the star. With these measurements, and follow-up observations with ALMA, scientists will try to understand how red giant stars contribute to the cosmic ecosystem. </div> <div><a href="https://www.eso.org/public/images/eso1543e/">High resolution image at ESO</a></div> <div><a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/onsala/22721277536/in/album-72157658433671814/">High-resolution background image (without graph) on Flickr</a> </div></div> <div>Credit: ESA/Herschel/MESS (Mass-loss of Evolved StarS) program/N. Cox &amp; F. Kerschbaum (background); W. Vlemmings, E. De Beck and E. Humphreys (spectrum)<br /></div> <div><br /> </div> <div>4. A receiver cartridge for 1.4-1.9 mm (Band 5). Engineer Mathias Fredrixon, GARD, working on one of the first receivers made for the ALMA Band 5 project – now upgraded and part of the new instrument SEPIA on APEX. </div> <div><a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/onsala/22721279466/in/album-72157658433671814/">High-resolution image on Flickr</a></div> <div>Credit: Onsala Space Observatory/A. Pavolotsky</div> <div><br /> </div></div> <div><br /> </div>Wed, 04 Nov 2015 12:00:00 +0100http://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/gpc/news/Pages/Receiving-the-Lise-Meitner-Award-is-a-big-honor.aspxhttp://www.chalmers.se/en/centres/gpc/news/Pages/Receiving-the-Lise-Meitner-Award-is-a-big-honor.aspxReceiving the Lise Meitner Award is a big honor<p><b>Ivan Schuller, distinguished professor of Physics at University of California San Diego, is the winner of the Lise Meitner award 2015 for “creating the field of metallic superlattices and recognizing its impact on magnetism and superconductivity&quot;. Ivan Schuller will receive the prize and hold a lecture in Gothenburg, Sweden on September 17th.  When asked a couple of questions about the award and his work, he reveals that he has a fictional relation to the late Lise Meitner that goes back to before being honored with the award bearing her name.</b></p><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Centrum/Fysikcentrum/Gothenburg%20Lise%20Meitner%20Award/IvanSchuller690x330.jpg" alt="" style="height:318px;width:660px;margin:5px" /><br /><br /><strong>You have received many awards for your work previously – what does the Lise Meitner award mean to you?</strong><br /><br />- Receiving the Lise Meitner Award is a big honor and I am very happy about it. Receiving this type of recognition is very nice. But the real reward at every moment of my life is doing Physics.<br /><br />- Lise Meitner also has a special meaning to me from a human point of view, even though my technical work is not in the same area as hers. I became quite intensely interested in her a few years ago through my interests in popularizing physics to non-experts. She was a fantastic physicist, had a very interesting and intense life and is one of our heroines. So she is a very fascinating subject for a play or movie. Because of this I have been investigating her life, with the aim of writing a fictional play centered on her life.<br /><br /><strong>What are you working on now and how can your work be applied in society?</strong><br /><br />- This is a very difficult question and one that we are continuously asked. Physics and science in general is the basis of all the marvels that surround us, from communicating long distances, to looking into our bodies, to keeping us warm in the winter, to ending hunger. None of these transformative technological breakthroughs would be possible, without major revolutionary changes in basic science. The problem is that it is very difficult to connect directly major basic science developments, to possible future applications and benefits to society. Of course, applied research does advance technology on an incremental way, but transformative technology arises in very unexpected places, which nobody can predict.<br /><br />- My own work is dedicated to understanding and controlling the behavior of novel materials, which do not exist in nature. The basic science that we study is trying to understand the behavior of complex materials, so called strongly correlated nanosystems, in a variety of configurations. The aim is to produce into materials properties which do not exist naturally and which can be manipulated at will. This are what are known in the field as functional materials.<br /><br /><strong>What is, in your opinion, the most interesting question to be solved within your field?</strong><br /><br />- One very important and interesting question is to understand the difference between the way artificial solid-state system process data compared to biological systems. Clearly solid-state data manipulation systems can do marvelous things such as the intercommunication of the whole world and processing of large amounts of information such as needed for weather prediction.  On the other hand, biological brains can be creative and self-conscious and use many orders of magnitude less energy.<br /><br />- So understanding why these two systems are so different and whether we can design a new solid-state system, which manipulates data in a radically different way, is a very fascinating question. Some approaches to this have been known in the scientific literature as neuromorphic computing, memristive electronics and or quantum information processing.<br /><br /><strong>Apart from your research you also make educational movies such as When things get small, with over 222 000 views on University of California Television and nominated for five Emmy awards in 2006. Why is it important for you to reach out in this way and does it benefit you as a scientist in any way?</strong><br /><br />- Explaining science to the public is not only personally satisfying it is also an important social obligation. After all society is the one that funds our very expensive activities. In addition explaining our research in simple way has a very important scientific role. It clarifies our own ideas and expands our thoughts beyond the narrow field we work in.<br /><br /><strong>What are your expectations when coming to Sweden and Gothenburg in September?</strong><br /><br />- I definitely hope to broaden my collaboration with people from Gothenburg and perhaps other places in Sweden like in Stockholm. <br /><br />- I also hope to do some further research on the life of Lise Meitner. I hope that following in her footsteps and visiting places such as Kungälv where she did her work will be very inspiring. <br /><br /><br /><span><strong>Text:</strong> Karin Weijdegård<span style="display:inline-block"></span></span><br /><br /><br /><strong style="font-size:16px">The Lise Meitner Award</strong><br /><br />Lise Meitner was a researcher working in Berlin from 1907 to 1938, when she was forced to flee from the Nazis. She continued her work in Sweden and during a stay in Kungälv she was the first scientist to understand nuclear fission. In her honor the Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award is given to a scientist who made a breakthrough discovery in physics. <br /><br />The event is organized by the <a href="/en/centres/gpc/Pages/default.aspx">Gothenburg Physics Centre</a> and is supported by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences through the Nobel Institute of Physics and by the municipality of Kungälv.<br /><br />Ivan Schuller will receive the award and hold a lecture at the Gustaf Dalén Lecture hall at Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg, Sweden, on Thursday September 17, 3:15 PM – 17:30 PM. Everyone is welcome to take part in the event!<br /><br style="font-size:14px" /><strong style="font-size:14px">Previous Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award Laureates</strong><br /><br />2014            Ewine F. van Dishoeck<br />2013            Mildred Dresselhaus<br />2012            Werner Nahm<br />2010/11       Stefan W. Hell<br />2009            Renata Kallosh<br />2008            I. K. Yanson<br />2007            Pierre Ramond<br />2006            Robert Marc Friedman <br /><br /><span><a href="/en/centres/gpc/activities/lisemeitner/Pages/default.aspx"><span><span><span><span><span><span><span><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" alt="" /></span></span></span></span><span><span><span><span style="display:inline-block"> </span></span></span></span></span></span>Read more about Lise Meitner-priset och Ivan Schuller</span></a><br /><span><span><a href="https://physics.ucsd.edu/fac_staff/fac_profile/faculty_description.php?person_id=207"><span><span><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" alt="" /></span></span></a></span><a href="http://www.ucsd.tv/getsmall/?utm_source=apsis&amp;utm_medium=nyhetsbrev&amp;utm_content=unspecified&amp;utm_campaign=unspecified"><span><span><span> <span style="display:inline-block"></span></span>See his movie &quot;When things get small&quot;</span></span></a><span style="display:inline-block"></span></span><span style="display:inline-block"></span></span><br /><strong></strong><br />Tue, 28 Jul 2015 00:00:00 +0200