Hectic times …

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Running, I feel I am always running everywhere, trying not to miss the next step, almost at the verge of a disaster. Today, the train from Palermo to the airport broke and I almost didn’t arrive on time to catch the place. But ts departure was delayed and I was afraid I would not be able to change planes in Rome. I had to run across the terminal, to find out that the second flight was delayed. At least I know that, today, I will reach my destination: finally, home. But, in a sense, this way back home has been a kind of small Odissey, a metaphore of life.

The last six months or so have been, work-wise, to most strange in my professional career. Meetings, projects, justifications, trips, proposals, committees … one after another, without pause. Finally, it seems I have achieved, more or less, all the goals I had in mind, and most of my commitments (some of them fun) are over. So, I expect from now on to have more time for science and for my students. And I hope I will not have to go through any period like this one.


About dbarrado

Born in Madrid, Spain, David Barrado completed a degree in physics, specializing in astrophysics, at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid. At this same university he started work on a doctorate that he would go on to complete at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) in Cambridge (USA). He then spent several years as a post-doctoral researcher at a number of institutes in the United States (including as a Fulbright scholar during his time at CfA), Germany (Max-Planck Institut für Astronomie, in Heidelberg) and Spain (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid). David now works at the European Space Astronomy Center (ESAC, Madrid) as a member of the National Technical Aerospace Institute (INTA), part of the Astrobiology Center (CAB), a combined institute made up of INTA and the Center for Higher Scientific Research (CSIC). With the INTA team he led research on the MIRI, an infrared instrument that will fly with the forthcoming space telescope, the JWST. He has also been involved in the development of a number of other astronomical instruments. For two years he was head of the Stellar and Exoplanets Astrophysics Laboratory, as a member of the CAB, and later Director of the Hispano-German Astronomy Center observatory in Calar Alto for three years. His research interests focus on the properties of stars in open star clusters, as well as detecting and characterizing substellar objects and exoplanets. More generally he has specialized in studying the formation of stars and planetary systems using various observational techniques: from visible light to distant infrared, using images and spectroscopes, via both terrestrial and space telescopes. This observation work has seen him publish close to one hundred and fifty articles in prestigious scientific journals. He also combines his research with tireless outreach activities. With Spanish blog, Cuaderno de Bitacora Estelar (see http://www.madrimasd.org/blogs/astrofisica/) has a very large audience.

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