Gisela Ortiz won the prize of the International Astronomical Union (IAU) for the best 2017 astronomy thesis for Division A (Fundamental Astronomy) for her thesis „Ultra-high precision astrometry with centimeter and millimeter very long baseline interferometry“ at the Instituto de Radioastronomía y Astrofísica, Mexico.
She is now a Humboldt postdoctoral fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany.
Picture Release No. 1321 of European Southern Observatory (ESO). A dramatic new image of cosmic clouds in the constellation of Orion reveals what seems to be a fiery ribbon in the sky. The orange glow represents faint light coming from grains of cold interstellar dust, at wavelengths too long for human eyes to see. It was observed by the MPIfR-built & ESO-operated Atacama Pathfinder Experiment (APEX) in Chile.
After 3.5 years the liquid helium coolant on board of ESA's Herschel Space Observatory has finally run out. This means that the molecule hunter HIFI - one of its three instruments - has ceased to collect spectra. But the scientific heritage is impressive already. Thanks to HIFI, scientists now much better understand the cosmic cycle of gas which leads to for instance the birth of stars and planets, and the role (water) molecules play.
An international team of astronomers, including researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy and from the University of Cologne, successfully identified two titanium oxides in the extended atmosphere around a giant star. The object VY Canis Major is one of the largest stars in the known universe and close to the end of its life. The detection was made using telescope arrays in the USA and in France.