The Messenger

The Messenger is ESO’s journal for science and technology. It serves as a link between ESO and its broad astronomical community by providing information about scientific, technical, and other developments. It also delivers relevant news about astronomy and astrophysics to a broader public, including policy-makers, government officials, journalists, teachers, and amateur astronomers, as well as to interested scientists from other fields.

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Issue 187
Messenger Issue 187

The Messenger Issue 187

Highlights include:

  • McElroy, R., Singha, M. et al.: The Close AGN Reference Survey (CARS): Data Release 1 and Beyond
  • Nielsen, L., Seidel, J.: Keeping Exoplanet Science Caffeinated with ESPRESSO
  • Leibundgut, B., van den Ancker, M. et al.: Science Verification of CRIRES+
  • Stoehr, F., Manning, A. et al.: The ALMA Science Archive Reaches a Major Milestone

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Messenger Issue 191
2023Issue 191
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2023Issue 190
Messenger Issue 189
2022Issue 189
Messenger Issue 188
2022Issue 188
Messenger Issue 186
2022Issue 186
Messenger Issue 185
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Table of Content No. 187 | 2022
Astronomical Science
McElroy, R., Singha, M. et al.
The Close AGN Reference Survey (CARS): Data Release 1 and Beyond
ADS BibCode: 2022Msngr.187....3M
McElroy, R., Singha, M., Husemann, B., Davis, T., Combes, F., Scharwächter, J., Smirnova-Pinchukova, I., Pérez Torres, M., Gaspari, M., Winkel, N., Bennert, V., Krumpe, M., Urrutia, T., Neumann, J.
Accretion of matter onto the supermassive black holes that live at the heart of most galaxies is one of the most energetic processes in the Universe. These active galactic nuclei (AGN), and the energy they expel, are believed to play a critical role in how galaxies evolve. Despite this, our understanding of how the energy emitted from the active nucleus couples to the rest of the galaxy is limited. The goal of the Close AGN Reference Survey (CARS) has been to construct a dataset that is tailored to answering this question. We have observed the brightest unobscured AGN at redshifts 0.01 < z < 0.06 with the best astronomical observatories in the world, including the Multi Unit Spectroscopic Explorer (MUSE) at ESO’s Very Large Telescope, the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), the Very Large Array (VLA), the Hubble Space Telescope, and the Chandra X-ray Observatory. In this article we highlight the ongoing work of the CARS team, along with the recent data release and accompanying papers, before discussing what comes next for the survey.

Nielsen, L., Seidel, J.
Keeping Exoplanet Science Caffeinated with ESPRESSO
ADS BibCode: 2022Msngr.187....8N
Nielsen, L., Seidel, J.
The ESPRESSO spectrograph at ESO’s Very Large Telescope (VLT) has, since it began science operations in October 2018, revolutionised exoplanet science. The combination of the large VLT mirrors and the high resolution and stability of the spectrograph is enabling the detection of small, low-mass planets as well as detailed studies of the planets’ atmospheres. In this article we present a brief overview of the first results from ESPRESSO and a hopeful glimpse towards the ultimate goal of reaching the radial velocity precision of 10 cm s–1 needed to detect an Earth-like planet.

Dannerbauer, H., Carnero, A. et al.
Exploring the Universe via the Wide, Deep Near-infrared Imaging ESO Public Survey SHARKS
ADS BibCode: 2022Msngr.187...12D
Dannerbauer, H., Carnero, A., Cross, N., Gutierrez, C.
The ESO Public Survey Southern H-ATLAS Regions Ks-band Survey (SHARKS) comprises 300 square degrees of deep imaging at 2.2 microns (the Ks band) with the VISTA InfraRed CAMera (VIRCAM) at the 4-metre Visible and Infrared Survey Telescope for Astronomy (VISTA). The first data release of the survey, comprising 5% of the data, was published via the ESO database on 31 January 2022. We describe the strategy and status of the first data release and present the data products. We discuss briefly different scientific areas being explored with the SHARKS data and conclude with an outline of planned data releases.

Leibundgut, B., van den Ancker, M. et al.
Science Verification of CRIRES+
ADS BibCode: 2022Msngr.187...17L
Leibundgut, B., van den Ancker, M., Courtney-Barrer, B., Hatzes, A., Jones, M., Manara, C., Miles Páez, P., Rodler, F., Slumstrup, D., Smoker, J., Valenti, E.
Science Verification (SV) observations with CRIRES+ were obtained between 15 and 19 September 2021. The SV team performed the observations jointly on Paranal and in Garching. The weather conditions were mostly good except for the last night when thick clouds prevailed for most of the night requiring adjustments for some observations. Most of the planned SV observing programme could be accomplished. Of 57 submitted proposals, 23 observing programmes were scheduled for a total of 47 hours of observations. The allocation assumed four observing nights (of ten hours each) and included a slight oversubscription. Sixteen projects could be completed, including the eight top priority programmes. Three programmes could only be partially executed, and four runs were not observed. Some of the first science results are presented.

Stoehr, F., Manning, A. et al.
The ALMA Science Archive Reaches a Major Milestone
ADS BibCode: 2022Msngr.187...25S
Stoehr, F., Manning, A., McLay, S., Ashigatawa, K., del Prado, M., Jenkins, D., Damian, A., Wang, K., Moraghan, A., Plunkett, A., Lipnicky, A., Sanhueza, P., Calistro Rivera, G., Gaudet, S.
Science archives are cornerstones of modern astronomical facilities. In this paper we describe the version 1.0 milestone of the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array Science Archive. This version features a comprehensive query interface with rich metadata and visualisation of the spatial and spectral locations of the observations, a complete set of virtual observatory services for programmatic access, text-based similarity search, display and query for types of astronomical objects in SIMBAD and NED, browser-based remote visualisation, interactive previews with tentative line identification and extensive documentation including video and Jupyter Notebook tutorials. The development is regularly evaluated by means of user surveys and is entirely focused on providing the best possible user experience with the goal of helping to maximise the scientific productivity of the observatory.

Astronomical News
Andreani, P., de Gregorio Monsalvo, I. et al.
Early-Career Scientific Visitor Programme at ESO Chile and Garching
ADS BibCode: 2022Msngr.187...32A
Andreani, P., de Gregorio Monsalvo, I., Beccari, G., Schmidtobreick, L.

Beccari, G., Boffin, H. et al.
Report on the ESO Workshop "The Present and Future of Astronomy (ASTRO2022)"
ADS BibCode: 2022Msngr.187...33B
Beccari, G., Boffin, H., Andreani, P., de Mink, S., Freedman, W., Hill, M., Leibundgut, B., Lelli, F., Miotello, A., Sapcariu, S.
Being one of the most fascinating and ancient sciences, astronomy has always played a special role in society. In 2022 ESO organised an online conference to offer the community a platform to discuss astronomical topics of sociological and philosophical relevance in a professional atmosphere. The talks touched on several crucial aspects, moving from the methodology of science to the use of metrics, to the importance of diversity in evaluation processes, and to the link between astronomy and society.

Muller, S., Borkar, A. et al.
The MAYA 2022 Conference: Propelling ALMA Early-career Astronomers into the Spotlight
ADS BibCode: 2022Msngr.187...36M
Muller, S., Borkar, A., Immer, K., Liuzzo, E., Massardi, M., Popping, G., Sanchez-Monge, A.
The first Meeting for ALMA Young Astronomers (MAYA) organised by the European ALMA Regional Centre (ARC) network (Hatziminaoglou et al. 2015) took place online from 2 to 4 March 2022. It was a successful and inspiring event, well attended, with 40–80 participants at any one time. After two years of limited opportunities for socialising because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the event was aimed at gathering together early-career scientists, primarily graduate students and junior postdocs, and giving them the chance to present their work based on ALMA data to their peers, to interact with each other, and to build new collaborations and projects.

Escorza, A., Wevers, T.
Fellows at ESO
ADS BibCode: 2022Msngr.187...39E
Escorza, A., Wevers, T.

Héritier-Salama, C.
Engineering Fellows at ESO
ADS BibCode: 2022Msngr.187...41E
Héritier-Salama, C.