Back to the Cosmos

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At least, to “Cosmic Diaries”. First, thanks to Franck Marchis for all the hard work he has investing setting up the system again.

And back to the Cosmos, since I have starting to do Science, after a lot of time immersed in bureaucratic and more technical work (a 6.5m telescope?).

Last week we had  the Calar Alto Time Assigning Committee, which also took a lot of time (reading more than 100 proposals and try to really understand what the intent to do, and the relevance of the science in not an easy task). But this is over now.

Now, real science. At least my own, starting with the inspection of hundreds of spectra already taking for the Gaia-ESO survey. This program aims to understand the properties of stars belonging to open clusters and young stellar associations, as well as the Galaxy as a whole (galactic archaeology). Hundred of nights will be invested with the VLT during the next few years, in order to make the best out of the Gaia satellite (to be launched in Summer 2013) and the wealth of data it will deliver. So, a very exciting project! And, of course, a lot of work.

More soon.

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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