Promising scientific and technological new developments for Calar Alto

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July 21st 2020

Three ambitious legacy surveys and next generation instrumentation projects define the Calar Alto Observatory science and technology horizon for the coming decade.

The Institute of Astrophysics in Andalusia (IAA-CSIC) co-leads the two designs pre-selected for the future instrument on the 3.5-m telescope.

CARMENES will be upgraded to extend its search for potentially habitable planets.

The Science Advisory Committee of the Calar Alto Observatory, composed of internationally recognized experts in various areas of astrophysics, has selected legacy projects and proposals for next generation instrumentation that define the scientific and technological lines of the observatory in the years to come.

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Andalusian researchers work on a device to “see” coronaviruses deposited on surfaces


April 14th 2020

The Carlos III health institute, from the Spanish Research and Innovation Ministry, provides half a million euros to create a prototype allowing a quick analysis without touching surfaces contaminated by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, by combining image acquisition systems in the whole optical and terahertz (submillimetric) ranges and analyzing them with artificial intelligence.

Researchers participating in the project are from the higher technical school of engineering at Seville university, Virgen del Rocio university hospital, Seville biomedical institute, Andalusian network for the design and translation of advanced therapies, TEDAX (EOD) from the national police force, joint research center from the EU commission and technological corporation of Andalusia, and Calar Alto Observatory as well.

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Calar Alto faces the COVID-19 crisis


March 30th 2020

To cope with the COVID-19 pandemic, the largest observatory on the European mainland has taken protective and restrictive actions for its staff and visitors, adapting its working model in a responsible way. The Calar Alto team is working mostly remotely to be ready to resume its usual operations once the current preventive measures will not be needed anymore.

The Calar Alto observatory has been adapting its working conditions to the circumstances of the pandemic hitting the country (and in some cases, anticipating the actions), while insuring the health and safety of its people as well as the integrity of its systems.

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A more sustainable observatory: Calar Alto will be converted into an “energy island”


March 6th 2020

Calar Alto Observatory starts its energy transition thanks to a ERDF (European Regional Development Fund)-supported project.

Using biomass and solar energy will considerably reduce the ecological imprint of the observatory, as well as the costs associated to its energy needs.

The Calar Alto Observatory, the largest optical observatory in mainland Europe, has been, since its establishment in 1973, one of the motors of the development of Spanish astrophysics. Located in the Sierra de los Filabres (Almería), at an altitude of over two thousand and one hundred meters, the observatory faces considerable needs in energy derived from its situation in a high mountain range and its technological features. In the next months, thanks to a European Regional Development Fund (ERDF/FEDER), the observatory will partially replace its energy sources to reduce its ecological footprint.

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