Institute of Astronomy

News and Press Releases

Largest chemical map of the Milky Way unveiled

Published on 13/06/2022 

The European Space Agency’s (ESA) Gaia mission has released a new treasure trove of data about our home galaxy, including stellar DNA, asymmetric motions, strange ‘starquakes’, and other fascinating insights.

Fifth Gaia-ESO Data Release: the Catalogue with the Astrophysical Parameters for ~115,000 Stars

Published on 24/05/2022 

ESO has now released the very major results from the Gaia-ESO survey. This 10+-year effort has been co-led by Cambridge (Gerry Gilmore) and Arcetri (Sofia Randich), with substantial support from a dedicated IoA team and CASU. The Cambridge Project Office included Clare Worley, Anna Hourihane and Anais Gonneau, with additional support in IoA over the years from Jim Lewis, Sergey Kosopov, Mike Irwin, Eduardo Gonzalez Solares, Maria Bergemann, Andy Casey, Keith Hawkins, Karin Lind, Paula Jofre, Thomas Masseron, George Kordopatis, and David Murphy.

Four-Star Merry-Go-Round

Published on 12/05/2022 

A team of scientists -- including astronomers based at the Institute of Astronomy -- has discovered a rare quadruple star system.

Professor Nikku Madhusudhan awarded ERC Consolidator Grant

Published on 24/03/2022 

 

Professor Nikku Madhusudhan, Professor of Astrophysics and Exoplanetary Science at the Institute of Astronomy, has been awarded a prestigious Consolidator Grant from the European Research Council.

Planetary bodies observed in habitable zone of dead star

Published on 14/02/2022 

A ring of planetary debris studded with moon-sized structures has been observed orbiting close to a white dwarf star, hinting at a nearby planet in the “habitable zone” where water and thus life could exist, according to a new study.

White dwarfs are glowing embers of stars that have burned through all their hydrogen fuel. Nearly all stars, including the Sun, will eventually become white dwarfs, but very little is known about their planetary systems.