National Centre of Competence in Research PlanetS

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External Newsletter

Editorial

Editorial

Dear Reader, President Kennedy in his famous speech about the US effort to reach the Moon delivered in Houston, Texas on September 12, 1962 said “…We choose to do these things not because they are easy, but because they are hard; because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies […]

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Switzerland in Space

Switzerland in Space

From the Bernese solar-wind experiment on Apollo 11 to space research in Switzerland as a member of the European Space Agency ESA – the development up to the first long-term space research programme ‘Horizon 2000’. By Martin C.E. Huber The Bernese experiment, which Buzz Aldrin planted into the solar wind after he and astronaut colleague […]

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A prize for outstanding achievements

A prize for outstanding achievements

The astronomer Monika Lendl has won the Look! business award for the Austrian woman of the year in STEM (Science, technology, engineering & maths). Monika Lendl is member of PlanetS and works as senior researcher at The University of Geneva. This year’s Austrian woman of the year in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics, nominated […]

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“We will need large space missions”

“We will need large space missions”

Sascha Quanz was appointed the new professor of Exoplanets and Habitability at ETH Zurich on 1 June 2019. “I’m delighted that we can now move ahead with renewed vigour, also within PlanetS,” says Sascha Quanz, who is now also a member of the Executive Board of the National Centre of Competence in Research. PlanetS: You have […]

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Discover exoplanets while playing

Discover exoplanets while playing

Two years ago, the Icelandic company CCP, which markets and operates the EveOnline galactic conquest game, launched the “project discovery”, a concept of citizen science included in the game. Using the star light curves taken by the European CoRoT satellite (COnvection, ROtation et Transits), the goal was to try to discover periodic decreases in the […]

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When science meets fiction

When science meets fiction

The NCCR PlanetS has been participating to several public events since its creation. Amongst them, there is one which has been recurrent, and this year was no exception… It is not the most obvious one to go to, but over the years, it has established itself as a landmark as it has always been a […]

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Highlights of recent research results

Highlights of recent research results

Recently, PlanetS researchers published papers about stolen comets, a forbidden planet, meteorites from Vesta, and Rare-Earth metals in the atmosphere of a glowing-hot exoplanet. The video based on computer simulations demonstrates what happens if two young stars in a cluster undergo a close encounter. Each star has a belt of so-called planetesimals, the building blocks […]

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Editorial

Editorial

Dear Readers, Time flies! When you receive this edition of the Observer, PlanetS will already be nearing the end of its five year of existence! Not even a blink of an eye on astronomical timescales and yet our science and therefore our activities have evolved enormously. With improving astronomical instrumentation, the focus of attention shifts […]

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“This is a gigantic project even for ESO”

“This is a gigantic project even for ESO”

Xavier Barcons is Director General of the European Southern Observatory ESO. Last week he travelled to Switzerland for the ESO Council Meeting that took place in Bern. ESO is currently building the Extremely Large Telescope ELT. With a mirror diameter of 39 meters the ELT will be the world’s largest optical/near-infrared telescope. NCCR PlanetS: What […]

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