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.

  • Jorge Martín Camalich (left) and Carlos Hernández Monteagudo (right), researchers at the IAC and the organisers of the present edition of the School, with Rafael Rebolo, Director of the IAC (middle).

    From 21th November till 2nd December at the Museo de la Ciencia y el Cosmos (San Cristóbal de La Laguna), and organised by the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias The 33rd edition of the Winter School of the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias will focus on the efforts of astrophysics, cosmology and particle physics to understand the mysteries of the dark universe. The XXXIII Canary Islands Winter School of Astrophysics, which is taking place between November 21st and December 2nd, was inaugurated yesterday in the Museo de la Ciencia y el Cosmos, with a welcome address by Rafael Rebolo

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  • OGS green láser

    The workshop “25 years of cooperation in optical technologies and future trends”, will take place next Monday, November 14th, at the Headquarters of the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) with scientific and engineering staff from the IAC, and from ESTEC, the European Space Technology and Research Centre of the European Space Agency (ESA). At the meeting, the two institutions will present their work on optomechanical engineering and set out the basis for further collaboration. They will discuss, among other subjects, thermal techniques and optical instrumentation developments, cryo

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  • Results of the recent 2D model of CBPs. Left: temperature. Right: Image showing how the simulation would look like if observed with the Solar Orbiter mission in the extreme ultraviolet from space. The CBP is distinguished by the hot magnetic loops that appear bright in the right panel.

    When the Sun is observed in X-ray or extreme ultraviolet wavelengths, hundreds of bright and compact structures with a rounded shape and sizes similar to that of our planet Earth can be easily distinguished in the solar corona. These structures are known as Coronal Bright Points or CBPs and they consist of sets of magnetic loops that connect areas of opposite magnetic polarity on the solar surface. These loops confine the solar plasma and in them, by mechanisms that have been debated for many years among solar physicists, the gas remains with temperatures of several million degrees, emitting

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  • Artist’s impression of an ultra-hot Jupiter transiting its star

    An international team of astronomers, in which IAC researchers participate, have discovered barium, the heaviest element ever found in an exoplanet atmosphere. It has been discovered at high altitudes in the atmosphere of the exoplanets WASP-76 b and WASP-121 b, two ultra-hot gas giants. The unexpected discovery, made possible by the ESPRESSO instrument at the European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope (ESO's VLT), raises questions about what these exotic atmospheres may look like. WASP-76 b and WASP-121 b are no ordinary exoplanets. Both are referred to as ultra-hot Jupiters as

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  • Stephan's Quintet

    Research led by the University of Oxford and with the participation of the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) has succeeded in studying, for the first time, the tiny dust molecules known as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in the nuclear region of luminous active galaxies. This work is one of the first studies to use spectroscopic data from the James Webb Space Telescope's (JWST) mid-infrared instrument (MIRI). Observing PAH molecules in the innermost regions of the galaxy is one of the best ways to study the influence of the central black hole in the evolution of the host

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  • Background is a Hubble Space Telescope image of the relic galaxy, NGC 1277 (Credits: NASA, ESA, M. Beasley, and P. Kehusmaa).  Bottom-left shows the H-band spectrum of the relic galaxy, NGC 1277, obtained with the EMIR spectrograph (middle) at Gran Telescopio Canarias (left) (Credits: pictures of GTC and EMIR are from GTC website).

    Puzzling properties of massive early-type galaxies (ETGs) emerge when studying their spectra at near-infrared (NIR) wavelengths. Massive ETGs show strong CO absorption features in their H and K band spectra that cannot be explained by state-of-the-art stellar population models. For many years, the disagreement has been attributed to the presence of intermediate-age (0.1-2 Gyr) stellar populations in these galaxies, as the NIR light of intermediate-age stellar populations is dominated by cool stars (e.g. asymptotic giant branch (AGB) stars) that show strong CO absorptions in their spectrum

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