Jun 17, 2022
Scientists from the CosmoStat laboratory at CEA have produced within the international science collaboration UNIONS (Ultraviolet Near Infrared Optical Northern Survey) a reference catalogue of 100 million gravitationally lensed distant galaxies, one of the largest datasets ever created. This new collection is based on thousands of deep images of the northern sky captured by MegaCam, a large digital camera built at CEA, mounted on the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope (CFHT).
May 06, 2022
New numerical simulations probe the origin of type Ia supernovae
While type Ia supernovae are considered as highly symmetric supernovae, the explosion in a tight binary system composed of two white dwarfs revises this paradigm. An international team (Japan, Canada, France), including a researcher from the Department of Astrophysics/AIM Laboratory of CEA Paris-Saclay, publishes a study in the Astrophysical Journal that reveals that the distinctive asymmetric structures of such a supernova leave post-mortem imprints on the morphology of the ejected matter.
Feb 17, 2022
The Fermi-LAT space telescope reveals the nature of particles accelerated in this historic supernova remnant.
The explosion of a star produces a shock wave that propagates at more than 5000 km/s for centuries and it is thought that these shocks are the main source of highly energetic particles called cosmic-rays. Studying the high-energy photon emission of supernova remnants allows us to probe the nature of the accelerated particles, their energy and their composition.
Jan 14, 2022
ESA's PLATO mission has been given the green light to continue its development after a successful critical review on January 11, 2022. PLATO, or PLANetary Transits and Oscillations of stars, is the third medium-class mission in ESA's Cosmic Vision program. Its objective is to find and study a large number of planetary systems, with a focus on the properties of Earth-like planets in the habitable zone around solar-type stars.
Dec 22, 2021
DAp-AIM scientist helps uncover largest group of rogue planets yet with a panoramic camera built by CEA
Rogue planets are elusive cosmic objects that have masses comparable to the largest planets in our Solar System but do not orbit a star, instead roaming freely on their own. Not many were known until now, but a team of astronomers, using data from facilities across the world, have just discovered at least 70 new rogue planets in our galaxy just a few hundred light-years away in the Scorpion sky region.
Dec 15, 2021
New research shows that the spiral structure of the Milky Way is more clumpy then previously thought
The Milky Way is a spiral galaxy. If we could travel out of it we would probably observe a flat disk with spiral arms connected to its central core. Stuck inside the Milky Way, with no bird's eye view and limited precise distance measurement to interstellar clouds, the exact shape of the Galaxy spiral pattern is difficult to assess and remains not well known.
Dec 10, 2021
Successful of the calibration of the complete flighting model
The X-ray telescope MXT, one of the two instruments under French responsibility onboard the SVOM Chinese-French satellite payload, has just completed an important step in the project's progress, the calibration of the complete flying instrument.
Dec 01, 2021
Ultralight and super fast
In the world of extrasolar planets, "GJ 367 b" is a featherweight. With half the mass of Earth, the newly discovered planet is one of the lightest of the nearly 5,000 exoplanets known today. It takes about eight hours for the extrasolar planet to orbit its host star. With a diameter of just over 9,000 kilometers, GJ 367 b is slightly larger than Mars but smaller than Earth. This planetary system is located just under 31 light years from our planet and is therefore ideal for further studies of its properties.
Oct 12, 2021
Planets that are strongly irradiated by their host stars develop extended atmospheres that can be probed during transits. These atmospheres undergo photoevaporation which can lead to significant changes in the mass and composition of the planets if it continues for several gigayears. These planets are therefore valuable for understanding planetary evolution.
Sep 14, 2021
On June 1, 2021, the open source software solution Gammapy was selected by the CTA (Cherenkov telescope array) observatory as a high-level analysis tool (Science Tools) for the reduction and modeling of the data collected by its future network of telescopes being deployed in Chile and the Canary Islands.
Jun 09, 2021
An international team led by several researchers from LFEMI/DAp/CEA has just published a study shedding light on the formation mechanisms of interstellar grains in galaxies. This is one of the key results of the European DustPedia collaboration, which brings together some thirty people from six laboratories: the DAp at CEA-Saclay, the IAS at Orsay, the University of Ghent, the University of Cardiff, the Observatory of Florence and the Observatory of Athens.
Jun 04, 2021
On 29 August 2019, scientists from the H.E.S.S. collaboration recorded one of the brightest cosmic explosions ever observed in the Universe. This gamma-ray burst emitted the most energetic photons ever detected in this type of event. Under the direction of Irfu researchers, the observations continued for several days. The analysis of the data collected calls into question the origin of the rays produced during the explosion.
Jun 01, 2021
Valeria Pettorino was awarded with the 2020 MCAA (Marie Curie Alumni Award) for her outstanding career (CEA/IRFU, Saclay) for her work in the Euclid collaboration and her involvement in the scientific community through various activities such as mentoring, event organisation, communication and more recently science diplomacy. This award is presented by the MCAA association, which is an international network of all researchers who have received a Marie Curie Fellowship.
Jun 01, 2021
The ICAR cryomechanisms that will equip the METIS instrument on the world's largest telescope, the ELT, by 2029 have just passed the final design review by an ESO expert committee.
Resulting from a product lineage initiated in 1997 for the developments linked to the VISIR project (VLT Imager and Spectrometer for mid Indra Red), the CEA's cryomechanisms named ICAR (Indexed Cryogenic Actuator for Rotation) will equip the METIS instrument on the largest telescope in the world: the Extremely Large Telescope (ELT) by 2029.
May 28, 2021
The MXT camera for the SVOM mission has just been assembled and delivered by the CEA
An X-ray camera, intended to equip the Sino-French SVOM satellite, has just been assembled and delivered by scientists and technicians from the Institute for Research on the Fundamental Laws of the Universe (CEA/Irfu). This high-tech prototype will capture high-energy photons (X-rays) emitted during the explosion of massive stars or the fusion of dense stars. The camera, particularly compact and innovative, integrates in a very limited volume, a complete detection chain, an active thermal control and a filter wheel.
May 27, 2021
Numerical simulations trace the origin of stellar black hole mergers
Since the interferometers of the LIGO-Virgo collaboration detected gravitational waves from the merging of two black holes, black hole binaries have been among the celestial objects that most interrogate scientists.
Apr 28, 2021
An international collaboration led by a team from the Astrophysics Department/AIM Laboratory of IRFU has predicted and characterised the expected signature of internal magnetic fields in stars through their seismology - called asteroseismology.
Apr 22, 2021
An international team including researchers from the Astrophysics Department (DAp) of CEA/Irfu, working in particular at the laboratory for the Dynamics of Stars, (Exo) planets and their Environment  (LDE3), has been able to demonstrate that stars rotate faster than expected as they get older.
Feb 28, 2021
An European prize for ground-breaking contributions in stellar astrophysics
The 2021 MERAC Prize for the Best Early Career Researcher in Theoretical Astrophysics is awarded to Dr Antoine Strugarek (CEA Saclay, France) for ground- breaking contributions in stellar astrophysics, including dynamo theory, predictions of solar flares and pioneering work on star-exoplanet interactions. The prize from the MERAC foundation (Mobilization for European Research in Astrophysics and Cosmology) is awarded each year by the European Society of Astronomy (ESA).
Feb 10, 2021
Imaging planets that could potentially sustain life around nearby stars has become a possibility thanks to advances reported by an international team of astronomers in the journal Nature Communications. Using a newly developed system for mid-infrared exoplanet imaging in combination with a very long observation time, they achieved the capability of directly imaging planets about three times the size of Earth within the habitable zones of nearby stars.
Feb 03, 2021
A major contribution in International Leadership in Physics
The American Institute of Physics announced the astrophysicist Catherine Cesarsky as the recipient of the 2020 John Torrence Tate Prize for her major international role in leading major astronomical observatories and other prestigious organizations such as the International Astronomical Union. Named after the celebrated American physicist John Torrence Tate (1889-1950), the Tate medal was established in 1959 and is awarded every two years to non-U.S.
Dec 11, 2020
In the field of artificial intelligence, international competition is tough. So when researchers from CEA-Joliot and CEA-IRFU challenge start-ups and other companies specializing in AI, we cheer them on. Here’s a success story from the field of MRI reconstruction.
Dec 10, 2020
Three observatories to depict the violent collision of two clusters of galaxies
Three major observatories (Subaru, GBT and XMM-Newton) have joined their forces to observe the collision of a pair of galaxy clusters, HSC J023336-053022 (XLSSC 105), located four billion light years away.
Dec 02, 2020
For about fifteen years, the teams of the CEA's Fundamental Laws Research Institute and 3D PLUS, a company based in the Paris region, have learned to work closely together at the best international level to push the limits of high energy (2 - 1000 keV) spectro-imager performance for space applications.
Nov 13, 2020
ESA has adopted Ariel (Atmospheric Remote-sensing Infrared Exoplanet Large-survey), the 4th medium-class space mission of its Cosmic Vision program. Ariel is expected to be launched in 2029 by Ariane 6 from the Guiana Space Centre in Kourou. The French team, composed of CNES, CEA and CNRS, has taken charge of the design, production and delivery of the AIRS spectrometer. Pierre Olivier Lagage, astrophysicist at Irfu, is one of the 2 co-PI for the ARIEL consortium; the other co-PI is Jean-Philippe Beaulieu from IAP.
Jul 28, 2020
Link between magnetars and Fast radio bursts
An international campaign including ground-based and space telescopes, including the INTEGRAL satellite, discovered end of April 2020 very short pulses in both X-rays and radio waves coming from a compact object in the Galaxy, the magnetar SGR 1935+2154. The simultaneous observation of these signals is seen for the first time in this type of source and attests a connection between magnetars and Fast radio bursts, a class of radio sources whose origin is today poorly known.
Jun 04, 2020
On May 18th 2020, ESO formally closed the preliminary design review of the ELT/METIS thermal infrared instrument. Following this important milestone, the instrument enters into the final design phase (phase C) in which the its design will be frozen just before its building.
Jun 02, 2020
VLT/SPHERE observations of the star AB Aurigae pinpoint a giant planet in formation
Motivated by unusual features recently observed with the ALMA instrument in a proto-planetary disc around the star AB Aurigae, an international team of astrophysicists including a researcher from the Department of Astrophysics / Laboratory AIM of the CEA-Irfu of Paris-Saclay has just obtained a very sharp high-contrast image of a S-shasped sub-structure in the gaseous and dusty disc surrounding the star.
May 20, 2020
The fourth catalog of Fermi-LAT sources comes on line
The Fermi-LAT collaboration has published its fourth source catalog, named 4FGL. Based on eight years of data, it contains 5064 celestial objects emitting gamma rays at energies around 1 GeV, adding more than 2000 high-energy sources to the previous collection (published in 2015). More than one fourth of the objects are of unknown nature, calling for numerous follow-up studies.
Mar 13, 2020
The highest magnetic fileds of the Universe reproduced by numerical simulations
Magnetars are neutron stars endowed with the strongest magnetic fields observed in the Universe, but their origin remains controversial.


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