Theory Seminar: Disambiguating the Cosmological Dark Sector

Friday, 18 March 2016 from 12:00 to 13:00 (Europe/Madrid) at IFAE ( IFAE Seminar room )

Speaker: Iggy Sawicki (Geneva U)

Our observations of dark matter and dark energy are, at least so far, based purely on their effect on their combined effect on the geometry of the universe and therefore ambiguous in a fundamental way. As we progress toward building ever more precise maps of the universe, it will become increasingly important to understand what we can measure definitely, in a model-independent manner and what we can only say on the assumption of a model. I will discuss how to construct such model-independent observables, and the fundamental limits to our knowledge that can only be broken by employing parameterisations resulting from particular models. I will discuss how to approach parametrising our ignorance in a minimal yet consistent and physical manner and ask to what extent such modelling can actually account for anomalies we are beginning to see in cosmological data.

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




International PhD Fellowship Program

Fellowships for 2016 at the Barcelona Institute of Science and Technology (BIST)

The Barcelona Institute of Science and Technology (BIST) is a multidisciplinary research institute formed by six of the top research centers in Barcelona.

The BIST community is formed by the following centers: the Centre for Genomic Regulation (CRG); the Institute of Photonic Sciences (ICFO); the Institute of Chemical Research of Catalonia (ICIQ); the Catalan Institute for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (ICN2); the High Energy Physics Institute (IFAE); and the Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona).

BIST is offering fellowships for 10 talented graduates with backgrounds in biology, chemistry, pharmacy, physics, engineering or computer sciences to pursue a PhD degree at one of the BIST centers. BIST offers an exciting international and collaborative scientific environment with a broad range of research disciplines, supported by cutting-edge core facilities. Our PhD students have access to a comprehensive offer of technical courses, personal skills training, and career development.

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.

Abril 2016: Plaza de Ingeniero Informático Técnico/Superior

El Institut de Física d'Altes Energies (IFAE) busca un Ingeniero Informático Técnico/Superior para participar principalmente en un de los proyectos en el que el IFAE colabora con una importante presencia en el diseño y fabricación del sistema de guiaje, focus y alineación del proyecto DESI.

Tuesday, 29 March 2016 12:37

HR Strategy

Written by

Human Resources Strategy

IFAE supports the Recommendation of the European Commission 2005/251/EC on the "European Charter for Researchers" and the "Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers".


A Human Resources Strategy for IFAE Rersearchers

Including an

Action Plan 2016-2019

As Submitted to the HR Excellence in Research Award

Link to document.


Wednesday, 02 March 2016 10:05


Written by

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.

Theory Seminar: Probing Gravitational Waves from First-Order Phase Transitions at eLISA

Monday, 29 February 2016 from 12:00 to 13:00 (Europe/Madrid) at IFAE ( IFAE Seminar room )

Speaker: Germano Nardini (Institute for Theoretical Physics, University of Bern)

Theory Seminar: A study of the gamma-ray Galactic center excess with the Fermi LAT Pass 8 data and limits on dark matter annihilation

Friday, 26 February 2016 from 12:00 to 13:00 (Europe/Madrid) at IFAE ( IFAE Seminar room )

Speaker: Dmitry Malyshev (University of Erlangen-Nuremberg)

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