ESO Science Newsletter May 2017
18 May 2017
Four lasers from the 4LGSF on UT4

This newsletter is a summary of recent ESO Science Announcement items. Follow the links or visit ESO Science Announcements to read more.

Science Announcements

MUSE Wide Field Mode Adaptive Optics Science Verification

18 May 2017:

GALACSI is part of the Adaptive Optics Facility (AOF), and associated with the Deformable Secondary Mirror (DSM) and the 4 Laser Guide Star Facility (4LGSF). It defines an AO system developed to increase the performance of the MUSE instrument in Wide Field Mode, dubbed MUSE/AOF. Commissioning is proceeding and Science Verification is planned for August 2017, for which applications are invited.

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Release of CO(2-1) Spectra from APEX Low-redshift Legacy Survey for MOlecular Gas

17 May 2017:

The APEX Low-redshift Legacy Survey for MOlecular Gas ( ALLSMOG, PI J. Wagg) has observed the CO(2-1) line in a sample of 88 galaxies in the Local Universe (0.01 < z < 0.03). The ALLSMOG observations add information on cold molecular gas content of all sources in this sample and the spectra are available in the ALLSMOG Phase 3 release.

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The New Web-based Phase 2 Tool

16 May 2017:

A web-based replacement for the ESO Phase 2 observing preparation tool P2PP3, named p2, has been released. Starting from Period 99 (1 April 2017), p2 is being used for (designated) Visitor Mode observations at Paranal, with the exceptions of VIMOS and GRAVITY. The plan is to extend the tool to support Service Mode by the end of 2017.

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Release of MUSE Deep 3D Data Cubes

15 May 2017:

Deep 3D data cubes obtained with the Multi-Unit Spectroscopic Explorer (MUSE) in the wide field mode have been released from early data acquired in June – August 2014, plus the initial two periods of MUSE operations, P94 and P95 (October 2014 through September 2015). These deep cubes are now published via the ESO Science Archive as reduced data.The MUSE-DEEP data collection contains 209 cubes.

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GRAVITY Commissioning Data Released

14 May 2017:

The VLTI instrument GRAVITY providing phase-referenced optical interferometry was first commissioned in 2016 and commissioning continues in 2017. Selected targets have been observed to demonstrate the capabilities of the instrument, develop observing strategies and optimize the data reduction pipeline. These commissioning data have now been released and are available.

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New Release of Gaia-ESO Spectroscopic Public Survey Data

13 May 2017:

New reduced data products resulting from the Gaia-ESO (Gaia-ESO) Public Spectroscopic Survey are now available via the dedicated Phase 3 query interface at the ESO Science Archive Facility. This third data release (DR3) provides a catalogue containing photometry and derived quantities, together with the associated wavelength calibrated 1-d spectra of point-like sources obtained with FLAMES from 31 December 2011 to 19 July 2014, for 25533 unique targets. The release also contains updated versions of these spectra reduced with the Gaia-ESO iDR5 pipelines.

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The Challenge of Distributed Science Operations

12 May 2017:

ESA/ESO SCIOPS Workshop 2017 "Working together in support of science"
European Space Astronomy Centre (ESAC), Madrid, Spain, 17–20 October 2017

Science operations are becoming ever more complex and this 3rd ESA-ESO collaborative workshop will focus on the challenges that distributed science operations present to space- and ground-based projects, promoting the interchange of ideas and information between ESA, ESO and the broader community.

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Upcoming ESO or ESO-Related Workshops

  • EWASS Special Session on ALMA
    EWASS, Prague, 26–30 June 2017

    The European Week of Astronomy and Space Science (EWASS) Special Session No. 20, will be devoted to the three modes of observing with ALMA that demonstrate its unique capabilities: High-Frequency Observations (specifically in Bands 8, 9 and 10); High-Angular-Resolution Observations with baselines up to 16 km; Solar Observations. Further details on the SS20 site.

  • The Impact of Binaries on Stellar Evolution (ImBaSE2017)
    ESO Workshop, ESO Headquarters, Garching, Germany, 3–7 July 2017

    Stars are mostly found in binary and multiple systems: at least 50% of all solar-like stars have companions and that fraction approaches 100% for the most massive stars. A large fraction of these systems will interact in some way and alter the structure and evolution of the components, leading to the production of exotic objects. This workshop will examine in detail the impact of binaries on stellar evolution from observational and theoretical viewpoints. Full details on the ImBaSE2017 webpage.

  • Early Stages of Galaxy Cluster Formation (GCF2017)
    Mergers, Proto-clusters, and Star Formation in Overdense Environments
    ESO Headquarters, Garching, Germany, 17–21 July 2017

    Proto-clusters, high redshift galaxy clusters and merging clusters represent the initial stages in the formation of largest gravitationally-bound structures in the Universe. (Proto-)cluster assembly via mergers and accretion has a decisive impact on the subsequent cluster evolution. The aim of GCF2017 is to discuss cluster formation over the last ten billion years. This is truly a multi-wavelength topic and participants with expertise across the electromagnetic spectrum are encouraged. Further details can be found on the workshop webpage. The registration and poster abstract deadline is 31 May 2017.

  • The Galaxy Ecosystem. Flow of Baryons Through Galaxies
    ESO and Excellence Cluster Universe Workshop, ESO Headquarters, Garching Germany, 24–28 July 2017

    The fate of a galaxy is governed by an intricate ballet of gas flows: flow of cool gas into the system, conversion of baryons into stars and ejection of gas enriched with heavy elements. Determining what rules and mutually relates these three aspects still remains a critical and very complex problem in cosmology. The conference aims at addressing this core topic from many observational and theoretical viewpoints. Full details on the workshop webpage. The deadline for registration is 31 May 2017.

  • Cosmology and Fundamental Physics with Current and Future ESO Facilities
    3rd Azores School on Observational Cosmology; 5th Azores International Advanced School in Space Sciences; Angra do Heroísmo, Azores, Portugal, 27 August – 2 September 2017

    A range of planned ground- and space-based facilities will gather an unprecedented amount of data in observational astrophysics and cosmology, allowing open problems to be tackled, some of which require new physics. The aim of the school is to prepare the next generation of astrophysicists for this exciting quest, in the context of current and forthcoming ESO facilities, in particular the ELT. The School will feature a range of lectures and hands-on tutorials. More information and application conditions on the School website or by email. Applicants are still being accepted.

  • Reaching New Heights in Astronomy
    Celebrating ESO's achievements and perspectives from 10 years of Tim de Zeeuw as Director General
    ESO Headquarters, Garching, Germany, 28–30 August 2017

    Conference to mark the decade of Tim de Zeeuw as Director General on the occasion of his departure from ESO. The conference will feature only invited talks. Full details and registration information on the webpage. Registration deadline is 14 July 2017.