Signed Agreement on Hosting CTA's Northern Hemisphere Array in La Palma

On 19 September 2016, the Council of the Cherenkov Telescope Array Observatory (CTAO) concluded negotiations with the Instituto de Astrofisica de Canarias (IAC) to host CTA's northern hemisphere array at the Roque de los Muchachos Observatory in La Palma, Spain.

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Photon counting CMOS chip developed at IFAE for the ERICA project

The project ERICA (Energy Resolving Line Camera) is aimed at developing a new x-ray camera for industrial applications with energy resolution. The project includes the development of a new photon counting CMOS specifically designed for this purpose.

The design and production of this pixel chip, based on TSMC 0.25um CMOS technology, has just been successfully completed. The packaging and mounting process of the ERICA sensor (this includes solder bump deposition, flip chip, pick and place, and wire-bonding) were done in situ by the IFAE team.

The chip is specifically designed for applications such as non-destructive quality control testing or security X-ray scanners in the airports.

The future plan is to put more than one ERICA sensors to form a 100mm line X-ray camera operating in synchronize with the moving belt and X-ray source to make a small X-ray inline scanner to test and evaluation.

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T2K presents first CP violation search result

The international T2K Collaboration announced today their findings on the symmetry between neutrino and antineutrino oscillation. With nearly twice the antineutrino data in 2016 compared to their initial results using antineutrino data in 2015, T2K has performed a new analysis of all data, fitting both neutrino and antineutrino modes simultaneously. Today’s announcement was made by Konosuke Iwamoto, of the University of Rochester, who presented the results at the 38th International Conference on High Energy Physics in Chicago. T2K’s new data continue the trends observed in 2015, which is a preference for maximal disappearance of muon neutrinos, as well as a discrepancy between the electron neutrino and electron antineutrino appearance rates.

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Andreu Mas-Colell takes over the presidency of the Barcelona Institute of Science and Technology (BIST)


The board of trustees of the Barcelona Institute of Science and Technology (BIST), a joint interdisciplinary scientific initiative comprising six of the most important research centres of Catalonia, has today agreed to nominate Andreu Mas-Colell, Professor of Economics at the Universitat Pompeu Fabra, as president of the board of trustees, an unpaid post. The new president, states: ‘BIST brings together a scientific community of the first order and has enormous potential to strengthen other existing scientific initiatives. What is more, it is in an unbeatable location to attract and train scientists from around the world’.

The outgoing president, Rolf Tarrach, is standing down from the position after leading the institute’s first year of promotion and he will remain on the board of trustees, while the vice-president, Jaume Giró, director of the Caixa Foundation, will remain in post.

In addition, an agreement has been announced today with the Diputació de Barcelona for BIST to be housed on the Escola Industrial campus, as part of the Diputació’s commitment to transforming this into a research cluster. Mercè Conesa, President of the Diputació, stated that BIST’s move to the Escola Industrial ‘is one more link in the service change for technical and scientific progress that this building has historically been characterised by’, in addition to representing ‘a new impulse and scaling-up of the Escola Industrial to take on the challenges of the 21st century’.

Since its beginnings in the last quarter of 2015, The Barcelona Institute of Science and Technology has held fifth place in the European research centre rankings – excluding universities – for the number of awards for excellence received from the European Research Council (ERC). The six member centres have received 61 of these since the programme started, more than 1% of the European total. As regards the list of publications, the centres that make up BIST have published a total of 280 articles from 1st January to 15th June 2016. More than 91% of these articles have been published in the leading journals of their respective subject categories.




La Generalitat destina 19 milions d'euros a cinc grans projectes empresarials de recerca i innovació que impliquen 1.300 professionals

Són les primeres cinc Comunitats RIS3CAT impulsades per ACCIÓ, que tenen per objectiu transformar l'economia catalana sectorialment a través de nous productes i serveis innovadors

138 empreses i 64 agents del sistema de de recerca i innovació català invertiran prop de 44 milions d'euros per desenvolupar aquests projectes

Sectorialment són projectes d'aplicació digital en biotecnologia i teràpies de salut, energia sostenible i eficient, alimentació saludable i segura, mobilitat ecològica i nous dispositius de diagnosi i big data aplicades a la salut

L'IFAE participa a la comunitat RIS3CAT de nous dispositius de diagnòstic i big data aplicades a la salut (entitat coordinadora: Leitat) on hi participen entitats i empreses com idneo o Intelligent Pharma.


Enllaç a Nota de premsa d'ACCIO

Two IFAE Thesis accepted to be published by Springer




Ruben López Coto's Thesis under the title "Very high energy gamma-ray observations of pulsar wind nebulae and cataclysmic variable stars with Magic and development of trigger systems for IACTS" has been accepted to be published by Springer. He defended his work last year at IFAE and his supervisors were Òscar Blanch and Juan Cortina.

Javier Montejo's Thesis under the title 'Search for new physics in tt final states with additional heavy-flavor jets with the ATLAS detector' has also been accepted to be published by the same publishing group. Javier received the ATLAS Thesis Award in 2015 for his work which was directed by Aurelio Juste.




International Workshop on Radiation Imaging Detectors 2016

The International Workshops on Radiation Imaging Detectors are held yearly and provide an international forum for discussing current research and developments in the area of position sensitive detectors for radiation imaging, including semiconductor, gas and scintillator-based detectors. Topics include processing and characterization of detector materials, hybridization and interconnect technologies, design of counting or integrating electronics, readout and data acquisition systems, and applications in various scientific and industrial fields. The workshop will have plenary sessions with invited and contributed papers presented orally and in poster sessions. The invited talks will be chosen to review recent advances in different areas covered in the workshop.

IWORID 2016 will take place in Barcelona from Sunday July 3rd until Thursday July 7th.

The local organising committee is formed by IFAE reaserchers Mokhtar Chmeissani and Thorsten Lux, Manuel Lozano from CNM and Victor Sanchez from x-Ray Imatek.

Find more information in the iWoRiD website.

This event is supported by MINECO under the Programa Acciones de Dinamización 2015

The PAU camera is now fully commissioned and ready to be offered as a visitor instrument




The PAU Camera saw first light in June 2015 and has successfully completed two observation periods in November 2015 and April 2016, starting its Science Survey programme. Over 5000 science exposures have been taken, covering about 1.5 deg2 of the sky using the full set of 40 narrow band filters and up to 5 deg2 with a subset of them.  This area is equivalent to about 500 deg2 area with single band and single exposures taken in 9 nights of good weather. The current PAU dataset has been reduced, calibrated and matched to deeper overlapping samples in about 1 day of real time. The result is about 75000 complete PAU low resolution spectra to iAB<23mag. The data reduction resulted in over 5 Terabytes and  71 million object measurements and was performed in record time using the PIC infrastructure and a preliminary PAUcam community pipeline. The figure shows an example comparison of some PAU calibrated spectra (taken in April 2016) with public galaxy and star SDSS spectra, with no adjustments.

The PAU Survey aims to cover 100 deg2 providing spectral information in fields where deep weak gravitational lensing data are available. This will result in new spectra for several million galaxies up to iAB<23 mag. Other science studies can be done with this camera which has the capability to determining SED for all objects in a large field of view.

PAUcam can also be used for Broad Band imaging with ugrizY on 18 4Kx2K red-sensitive fully depleted CCD's of 15 μm with a ~1 deg2 FoV (with vignetting outside the central 40 arcmin diameter).

The PAUcam system has also evolved to become more user friendly and able to be operated by other astronomers from the ING community. With the commissioning of the Autoguider at the beginning of April 2016 the camera is now fully commissioned.

Detailed information on the camera performance and how to prepare for observation periods with PAUCam can be found at




España y Japón acuerdan la instalación de cuatro nuevos telescopios en la isla de La Palma

  • Los instrumentos formarán parte de la futura Red de Telescopios Cherenkov – Hemisferio Norte (CTA-Norte) en el Observatorio del Roque de los Muchachos.

La secretaria de Estado de I+D+i, Carmen Vela, ha presidido junto al viceministro de Educación, Cultura, Deporte, Ciencia y Tecnología japonés, Tsutomu Tomioka, la firma del acuerdo de colaboración para la instalación y operación de cuatro telescopios Cherenkov en el Observatorio del Roque de los Muchachos, en la isla de La Palma. El acuerdo ha sido firmado en Tokio por Rafael Rebolo, director del Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC), y Takaaki Kajita, director del Instituto de Investigación de Rayos Cósmicos de la Universidad de Tokio (ICRR, por sus siglas en inglés). Ha contado también con la presencia de dos miembros del IFAE: Manel Martínez, coordinador de CTA España, y Juan Cortina, coinvestigador principal del LST.

Los cuatro telescopios Cherenkov, de 23 metros de diámetro, denominados Large Size Telescopes (LST, por sus siglas en inglés), permitirán la observación de rayos gamma de alta energía y fenómenos asociados con la materia oscura. Estos telescopios serán los más grandes del Observatorio CTA-Norte que España acogerá en La Palma y juntos formarán la parte central de la infraestructura, alrededor de los cuales se instalarán otros 15 de 12 metros de diámetro, denominados MST.

Los telescopios LST están diseñados por investigadores y tecnólogos de universidades y centros de investigación internacionales (Japón, Italia, Francia, Alemania, Brasil, India, Suecia y Croacia) en colaboración con grupos de investigación españoles de la Universidad de Barcelona, del Instituto de Física de Altas Energías (IFAE), del Centro de Investigaciones Energéticas, Medioambientales y Tecnológicas (CIEMAT), de la Universidad Complutense de Madrid, de la Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona, del Instituto de Ciencias del Espacio de la Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona, de la Universidad de Jaén y del IAC.

Esta nueva infraestructura científica internacional multiplicará por diez la capacidad de los instrumentos actuales, lo que permitirá abordar una nueva visión del Universo, más allá de la óptica, aportando datos impredecibles y actualmente desconocidos sobre energías cósmicas, agujeros negros y supernovas. En virtud del acuerdo, el IAC instalará y participará en el desarrollo y operación de los cuatro telescopios y garantizará el derecho a uso de las instalaciones por parte de la comunidad científica, renovando su validez automáticamente durante cada año tras un periodo inicial de diez.

Javier Montejo receives the ATLAS Thesis Award

Javier Montejo, now a CERN fellow, has received the ATLAS Thesis award for his thesis done at IFAE under the supervision of Aurelio Juste. Javier is the first student at IFAE that has been awarded with this prize.

The title of his work is: "Search for new physics in ttbar final states with additional heavy-flavor jets with the ATLAS detector" and he defended it on June 2015. In a few words, Javier's dissertation presents three analyses that address the instability of the Higgs mass from different perspectives and that constitute the most sensitive searches to date in their respective channels. He has also contributed to the performance of the ATLAS hadronic calorimeter.

The ATLAS Thesis Awards started in 2010 and recognize young postdoctoral candidates who have contributed to the experiment in all areas, in the context of a PhD thesis. A committee judges candidates on their work in all areas of ATLAS. Only 5 awards are given every year among more than 100 theses.

The ATLAS Thesis Prize Awardees received their recognition during the last ATLAS Week.

Also during the ATLAS week, Silvia Fracchia, PhD student at the IFAE-ATLAS group, received a recognition for the ATLAS PhD Grant she was awarded on 2014.

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