Severo Ochoa Programme

Research News

  • Image taken by the Hubble Space Telescope of the Einstein ring GAL-CLUS-022058s, located in the constellation of Fornax. Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA, S. Jha; Acknowledgment: L. Shatz

    In December 2020 a team from the European Space Agency (ESA) published an image taken by the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) of GAL-CLUS-022058s, the biggest and one of the most complete Einstein rings discovered, situated towards the southern hemisphere constellation of Fornax. Since then, those observations have been used to develop a model of gravitational lenses which has enabled the study of the physical properties of the amplified galaxies.

    Advertised on
  • View of HH204, a Herbig-Haro object in the Orion Nebula. The left panel shows the Orion Nebula observed with the Hubble Space Telescope, picking out the area around HH204. In the right panel, we can see in detail the structure of HH204 and of its apparent companion, HH203. In this panel, the images by the Hubble Space Telescope taken during 20 years and artificially highlighted with different colours show the advance of the jets of gas through the Orion Nebula. Credit: Gabriel Pérez Díaz, SMM (IAC).

    An international team led by researchers from the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) has uncovered, with an new high degree of detail, the physical and chemical effects of the impact of a protostellar jet in the interior of the Orion Nebula. The study was made using observations with the Very Large Telescope (VLT) and 20 years of images with the Hubble Space Telescope (HST). The observations show evidence of compression and heating produced by the shock front, and the destruction of dust grains, which cause a dramatic increase in the gas phase abundance of the atoms of iron, nickel

    Advertised on
  • Artist’s impression of the Nu2 Lupi planetary system. Credit: ESA.

    The exoplanet satellite hunter CHEOPS of the European Space Agency (ESA), in which the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) is participating along with other European institutions, has unexpectedly detected a third planet passing in front of its star while it was exploring two previously known planets around the same star. This transit, according to researchers, will reveal exciting details about a strange planet “without a known equivalent”.

    Advertised on
  • Artistic impression of the super-Earth in orbit round the red dwarf star GJ-740. Credit: Gabriel Pérez Díaz, SMM (IAC).

    In recent years there has been an exhaustive study of red dwarf stars to find exoplanets in orbit around them. These stars have effective surface temperatures between 2400 and 3700 K (over 2000 degrees cooler than the Sun), and masses between 0.08 and 0.45 solar masses. In this context, a team of researchers led by Borja Toledo Padrón, a Severo Ochoa-La Caixa doctoral student at the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC), specializing in the search for planets around this type of stars, has discovered a super-Earth orbiting the star GJ 740, a red dwarf star situated some 36 light years

    Advertised on
  • Omaira González Martín

    For astronomers one of the biggest obstacles is the darkness of the Universe itself, above all the darkness caused by the gas and dust which surround active galactic nuclei, or AGN. These nuclei emit a huge quantity of energy produced by the supermassive black hole onto which matter falls at a considerable rate. The accretion processes are fundamental for the evolution of active galaxies. However these nuclei often remain hidden by the dusty structures, called tori, which surround the central black hole. Studyuing the properties of this circumnuclear dust, the accretion processes, and

    Advertised on
  • Scheme which represents the origin of phosphorus on Earth, with respect to possible stellar sources of phosphorus in our Galaxy. Credit: Gabriel Pérez Díaz, SMM (IAC).

    The journal Nature Communications today is publishing the discovery of a new type of stars, very rich in phosphorus, which could help to explain the origin of this chemical element in our Galaxy. This achievement has been made by astronomers of the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) and researchers in computer science from the Centre for Research in Information and Communication Technology (CITIC) at the University of La Coruña (Galicia).

    Advertised on