Calar Alto Observatory will improve its instruments with co-financing of ERDF funds


November 22nd 2017

The Monitoring Commission of the agreement signed with the "Ministerio de Economía, Industria y Competitividad" for the execution of the "MIOCA-Mejora del Instrumental del Observatorio de Calar Alto" project, was set up.

The project’s budget of 1.129.098 €, will allow consolidate the competitiveness of Calar Alto Observatory.

The Spanish-German Astronomical Center (CAHA) has the purpose of the management, maintenance, operation and scientific exploitation of the Calar Alto Observatory, making it available to the international astronomical community, as well as giving the capacity and the infrastructure needed for carrying out astronomical observation programs and developing innovative concepts concerning instrumentation. Now, CAHA faces up an improvement of its instrumentation in order to continue at the forefront of the astronomical observation.

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CARMENES instrument demonstrates its capacity for finding planets similar to Earth



October 4th 2017

CARMENES, a spectrograph that operates in both visible and infrared channels, operating at Calar Alto Observatory (Almería), study a three hundred stars sample in order to find similar to Earth planets.

The first results of its visible channel, derived from the study of seven planetary systems, show its perfect functioning.

CARMENES instrument, developed by a consortium of eleven institutions from Germany and Spain, and co-lead by the Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía (IAA-CSIC), with the participation of the Institut de Ciències de l’Espai (IEEE-CSIC) and the Centro de Astrobiología (CAB, CSIC-INTA), has been designed for searching earth like planets within the habitability zone or area that surrounds a star where the conditions allow the existence of liquid water. The first results, obtained with the Calar Alto Observatory 3.5m telescope and published today, analyze seven known planetary systems and proves its excellent performing.


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New clues on the formation process of Milky Way-like galaxies


September 12th 2017

Researchers from the Theoretical Physics and Cosmos department of Granada University (UGR, Spain) lead a study which gives new details about the formation process of the structure of our galaxy, the Milky Way.This study is based on data obtained at Calar Alto.

Granada University astronomer Isabel Pérez lead a series of observational studies which show the distribution and characteristics of the stars in barred spiral galaxies like the Milky Way, giving new insights on the formation process of this kind of galaxies.


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Polarized light from a brown dwarf: where lies the dust at play?


July 19th 2017

The brown dwarf 2MASS J04221413+1530525 shows linear polarization of its light which could be due to dust in its Jupiter-like atmosphere, or in the interstellar medium

Brown dwarfs, sometimes known as “failed stars”, fill the gap between low mass stars and giant gaseous planets. They are faint objects, difficult to study and, as such, some of their characteristics are not well known. An international team has searched for polarized light in a sample of brown dwarfs with the CAFOS instrument at Calar Alto observatory – a method which helps to know the properties of these objects –, and has found polarized light in one of them, although its poorly determined distance does not allow us to determine the exact cause of the polarization.


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