This section includes scientific and technological news from the IAC and its Observatories, as well as press releases on scientific and technological results, astronomical events, educational projects, outreach activities and institutional events.

  • HST imaging and narrow and broad components ALMA maps of ID2299. The top-left panel shows the HST-F814W imaging of the source, sampling the UV rest-frame emission from young stars. The top (bottom) rows show the CO(2-1), CO(5-4), [CI](2-1) and CO(7-6) ALMA maps of the narrow (broad) emission
    A challenge to models of star-formation truncation in massive galaxies

    An international study published in Nature Astronomy, in which the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) is a participant, suggests that the feedback winds do not have a direct impact on braking the formation of stars in massive galaxies, and attributes the process to other events such as ejection by huge tides caused when galaxies merge.

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  • Geminids on the Teide Observatory
    An eclipse, a superconjunction, and the last meteor shower of the year: Geminids 2020

    During the nights of 12th and 13th of December we will enjoy the peak of the Geminid meteor shower. This will be broadcast live from the Teide Observatory (Tenerife) and from the Roque de los Muchachos Observatory ( La Palma) via the channel, with the collaboration with the Energy Efficiency Labs (EELabs project of the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) and the Programme of Astronomical Outreach of SODEPAL and the Innovation Service of the Cabildo Insular of La Palma. During the past decade the Geminids have always bid farewell to the year by producing over 100 meteors

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  • Heavy-element abundance pattern for a P-rich star (blue stars), together with the abundances of stars representative of the s- (CH; red),  i- (CEMP-i; magenta), and r- (EMP-r; green) neutron capture processes. The P-rich stars heavy-element pattern is more similar to the CH stars or the s-process.
    A new stellar site for the formation of very heavy elements

    The recently discovered phosphorus-rich stars pose a challenge to stellar evolution and nucleosynthesis (that is, the formation of chemical elements in stellar interiors) theory, as none of the existing models can explain their extremely peculiar chemical abundances pattern. Apart from the large phosphorus (P) enhancement, such stars also show enhancement in other light (O, Mg, Si, Al) and heavy (e.g., Ce) elements. Thanks to the Spanish Service Time at the Nordic Optical Telescope, we have recently obtained high-resolution optical spectra of two optically bright phosphorus-rich stars

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  • Artist's impression of a hot star plagued by a giant magnetic spot (Credit: ESO/L. Calçada, INAF-Padua/S. Zaggia).
    A Plague of Magnetic Spots Among the Hot Stars of Globular Clusters

    For more than six decades, the quest to understand the formation of hot (about 20,000−30,000 K) extreme horizontal branch (EHB) stars in Galactic globular clusters has remained one of the most elusive in stellar evolutionary theory. Here we report on two discoveries that challenge the idea of the stable luminosity of EHB stars. The first mode of EHB variability is periodic and cannot be ascribed to either binary evolution or pulsation. Instead, we attribute it here to the presence of magnetic spots: superficial chemical inhomogeneities whose projected rotation induces the variability. The

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  • Proposed model to explain the color diversity observed on the surface of Bennu.
    Colouring asteroid Bennu

    The main objective of the NASA OSIRIS-REx mission is the collection of material from the surface of primitive asteroid (101955) Bennu, and to bring it back to the Earth. To provide general context to the results obtained from the analysis of this sample it is fundamental to carry out an extensive study of the surface of the asteroid. To do that, the spacecraft is provided, among other instruments, with an optical camera (MapCam) equipped with 4 color filters b’, v, w, and x, centered at 473, 550, 698, and 847 nm, respectively. This set-up allowed to do color studies, i.e., to analyze how the

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  • Optical instrumentation. Credit: Inés Bonet (IAC).
    The Spanish Goverment increases the budget of the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias by 9 million euros

    In the document presenting the General National Budget for 2021 approved by the Council of Ministers for 2021, the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) will receive, next year, a sum of 9 million euros from the State Plan of Investments and Reforms. This extraordinary grant, which will be spent on investments and technological infrastructure, is in addition to the annual grant from the Ministry of Science and Innovation. The IAC is thereby recognized as a powerful motor attracting external funding to the Canaries to drive technological development and create employment.

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