On the way to better understand the Universe

10. October 2016

HITS is scientific partner of the ARC Centre of Excellence for All Sky Astrophysics in 3 Dimensions – led by the Australian National University

How did the Universe form matter in the first moments after the Big Bang? How did the first stars emerge and evolve into galaxies? How did the stars create the chemical elements in the Universe? These questions will form the focus of the new ARC Centre of Excellence for All Sky Astrophysics in 3 Dimensions (CAASTRO 3D). This is a 25 million Euro international project funded by the Australian Research Council (ARC), involving around 200 investigators at institutions from three continents, including astronomers, astrophysicists, engineers and computer scientists. The center is led by Prof. Lisa Kewley from the Australian National University. The 15 partners come from Australia, USA, Canada, UK, China and the Netherlands. HITS is the only German institution participating. The research groups Astroinformatics (Head: Kai Polsterer), Physics of Stellar Objects (Head: Friedrich Röpke) and Theoretical Astrophysics (head: Volker Springel) are bringing in their scientific expertise in galaxy formation, Dark Matter, Supernovae and machine learning methods to deal with big data in astronomy.

CAASTRO3D aims to answer fundamental questions in astrophysics including the origin of matter and the periodic table of elements, and the reionisation process of the Universe.

Brian Schmidt, Australian National University, Nobel prize 2011 (Photo: HITS)

I look forward to the amazing new discoveries that will help the world better understand the Universe and our place in it.

Brian Schmidt, Nobel Prize winner and Vice-Chancellor of the Australian National University

More information:

Australian National University Press Release

Video on the CAASTRO3D centre

About HITS

The Heidelberg Institute for Theoretical Studies (HITS) was established in 2010 by the physicist and SAP co-founder Klaus Tschira (1940-2015) and the Klaus Tschira Foundation as a private, non-profit research institute. HITS conducts basic research in the natural sciences, mathematics and computer science, with a focus on the processing, structuring, and analyzing of large amounts of complex data and the development of computational methods and software. The research fields range from molecular biology to astrophysics. The shareholders of HITS are the HITS-Stiftung, which is a subsidiary of the Klaus Tschira Foundation, Heidelberg University and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT). HITS also cooperates with other universities and research institutes and with industrial partners. The base funding of HITS is provided by the HITS Stiftung with funds received from the Klaus Tschira Foundation. The primary external funding agencies are the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), the German Research Foundation (DFG), and the European Union.

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