NEWS: 20140113: The 7th GREAT Plenary will be held 30 June-2 July 2014 in Geneva, Switzerland within the EAS European Week of Astronomy (EWASS 2014). Registration and abstract submission now open - see meeting page for details.
NEWS: 20140106: Gaia had a very successful launch and is now shortly to enter its L2 orbit. Early commissioning is going very well - see ESA Gaia Blog for more details.
NEWS: 20131210: Follow events leading up to the 19 Dec 2013 launch of Gaia on the ESA Gaia Blog
NEWS: 20131021: Details of the next set of GREAT workshops in 2014 are available - see the Science Meetings page
Get involved by:
- taking part in GREAT sponsored meetings and events, or apply for funds to support your own networking activities.
- The GREAT wiki has links to the GREAT Working Groups and discussion areas. Sign up to the working groups there.
- The Announcement mailing list archive has general email announcements
- Read the GREAT ESF Programme Proposal to find out more.
Introduction to the GREAT Research Network Programme
GREAT is a pan European science driven research infrastructure which will facilitate, through focused interaction on a European scale, the fullest exploitation of the ESA Gaia 'cornerstone' astronomy mission, enabling the European astronomy community to provide answers to the key challenges in our understanding of the Galaxy and Universe.
Gaia is scheduled for launch in September 2013. It is designed to map over one billion stars with three instruments to collect astrometric, photometric and spectroscopic data on stars in the Milky Way and in galaxies belonging to the Local Group, distant galaxies, quasars and solar system objects. Gaia builds on the expertise established in Europe through the successful ESA Hipparcos mission.
GREAT is the programme which will bring together relevant scientific expertise by promoting topical workshops, training events, exchange visits, conferences and so forth with the aim of addressing the major scientific issues that the Gaia satellite will impact upon. This movie produced by ESA provides a nice summary of how Gaia will revolutionise our knowledge of the Milky Way and wider Universe.
The ESF supported GREAT RNP will cease 31 August 2015. However, a follow-on programme (GREAT2Net) is envisaged to coincide with the mission phase of Gaia.
GREAT Network Science AreasGREAT provides support through its European Science Foundation Research Networking Programme for a wide range of community proposed events covering the key objective areas of the programme, largely focussed on gaining a deeper understanding of our Milky Way.
These key topic areas are:
• Origin, structure, and evolution of the Milky Way
• Stellar astrophysics
• Galactic Dynamics
• Galactic Archaeology
• Star Formation and evolution
• Fundamental physics and the Reference Frame
• Extrasolar planets
• Binary Stars
• The Solar system
• The IT Data Challenge from Gaia
In addition, through the lifetime of the programme, specific areas for prioritisation maybe highlighted, as reported at the GREAT plenary meetings.
GREAT Funding Providers
The GREAT ESF programme is supported by the European Science Foundation through the GREAT Research Network Programme. This programme runs Feb 2010 to Feb 2015. In addition the related GREAT ITN (Initial Training Network) programme is supported by the EC through its FP7 Marie Curie programme under grant agreement 264895.
Page revised: 13 January 2014 by NAW