News

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.

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  • Tenerife South Airport
    Aena and the IAC collaborate in the renewal of the lighting of the Tenerife South Airport

    The Technical Office for the Protection of the Quality of the Sky (OTPC) of the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) is collaborating with the engineers of Aena so that the exterior lighting of the Tenerife South Airport incorporates the recommendations of the Institute, in order to preserve the astronomical quality of the Canary Observatories. Aena keeps in close touch with this department of the IAC so that the new exterior lighting of Tenerife South Airport conforms to the technical characteristics recommended to improve its efficience and reduce light pollution. Since it was

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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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  • Dark matter in two galaxies simulated on a computer. The only difference between them is the nature of dark matter. Without collisions on the left and with collisions on the right. The work suggests that dark matter in real galaxies looks more like the image on the right, less clumpy and more diffuse than the one on the left. The circle marks the end of the galaxy. Credit: Image taken from the article Brinckmann et al. (2018, Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 474, 746; https://doi.org/10.10
    Solved: the mystery of how dark matter in galaxies is distributed

    The gravitational force in the Universe under which it has evolved from a state almost uniform at the Big Bang until now, when matter is concentrated in galaxies, stars and planets, is provided by what is termed ‘dark matter’. But in spite of the essential role that this extra material plays, we know almost nothing about its nature, behaviour and composition, which is one of the basic problems of modern physics. In a recent article in Astronomy & Astrophysics Letters, scientists at the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC)/University of La Laguna (ULL) and of the National University of

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  • AU mic b light curves from TESS and Spitzer IRAC at 4.5 μm  (purple filled circles). The transit model (orange curve) includes a photometric model that accounts for the stellar activity modelled with a Gaussian Process (GP), which is subtracted from the data before plotting. The frequent flares from the stellar surface are removed with an iterative sigma-clipping.
    Discovery of a young forming planet around the nearby star AU Mic

    AU Microscopii (AU Mic) is the second closest pre-main-sequence star, at a distance of 9.79 parsecs and with an age of 22 million years. AU Mic possesses a relatively rare and spatially resolved edge-on debris disk extending from about 35 to 210 astronomical units from the star, and with clumps exhibiting non-Keplerian motion. Detection of newly formed planets around such a star is challenged by the presence of spots, plage, flares and other manifestations of magnetic ‘activity’ on the star. Here we report observations of a planet transiting AU Mic. The transiting planet, AU Mic b, has an

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  • Artist's impression of a blazar
    The Gran Telescopio Canarias finds the farthest black hole that belongs to a rare family of galaxies

    An international team of astronomers has identified one of the rarest known classes of gamma-ray emitting galaxies, called BL Lacertae, within the first 2 billion years of the age of the Universe. The team, that has used one of the largest optical telescope in the world, Gran Telescopio Canarias (GTC), located at the Observatorio del Roque de los Muchachos (Garafía, La Palma), consists of researchers from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM, Spain), DESY (Germany), University of California Riverside and Clemson University (USA). The finding is published in The Astrophysical Journal

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  • Main router of the Roque de los Muchachos Observatory (Garafía, La Palma). Credit: Jorge Goya.
    The IAC renews the data network of the Canary Observatories 

    The Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) has finished, during October, with the help of FEDER funds, the renewal of the corporate network of the Canary Observatories, which means that the connected User Institutions will be able, with the new equipment, to augment their current connection capacity from 1 Gbps to 10 Gbps.

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