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  linkMPE   linkPublic Outreach   ZeigerInternational Year of Astronomy
2009: International Year of Astronomy

IYA2009 poster

The Universe, Yours to Discover

The International Astronomical Union (IAU) launched 2009 as the International Year of Astronomy (IYA2009) under the theme, The Universe, Yours to Discover. IYA2009 marks the 400th anniversary of the first astronomical observation through a telescope by Galileo Galilei. It will be a global celebration of astronomy and its contributions to society and culture, with a strong emphasis on education, public engagement and the involvement of young people, with events at national, regional and global levels throughout the whole of 2009. UNESCO has endorsed the IYA2009 and the United Nations proclaimed the year 2009 as the International Year of Astronomy on 20 December 2007.

internal link MPE/MPA press release International Year of Astronomy 2009 (in German)

MPE and other institutes of the Garching campus participate in the activities for IYA 2009 and have initiated own projects.

internal link Cosmology Exhibition "Evolution of the Universe" in the Deutsche Museum
internal link MPE and MPA Videos
internal link Series of Articles in "Sterne und Weltraum"
internal link Open House 2009
internal link Girls' Day 2009
internal link Opening Ceremony in Berlin on January 20, 2009


Cosmology Exhibition "Evolution of the Universe" in the Deutsche Museum

A journey through time and space in our cosmos at the Deutsches Museum Munich

The international year of astronomy 2009 bids farewell in a dazzling finale: The exhibition "Evolution of the Universe", which was initiated and implemented by local area research institutes, opened on 9 December 2009 at the Deutsches Museum in Munich. During the following two years the exhibition will be openly accessible to all visitors of the Deutsches Museum. A festive opening ceremony was held in the evening hours of 8 December 2009.

From the Big Bang to the future fate of the Universe
The exhibition takes the visitor on a journey through time, starting 13.7 billion years ago and ending with a glimpse of the future fate of the Universe. Along the way, the visitor finds out how space, time, matter and the largest structures of the Universe have formed. An excursion into today's Universe explains the life cycle of stars, galaxy formation and evolution - and the role black holes play in the process.

The exhibition takes advantage of insights from astronomy, astro-, nuclear-, and particle physics to explain the evolutionary history of the Universe from different vantage points. Graphical media such as video clips and posters are used to descriptively depict the current status of modern fundamental research.

Experiments that encourage the participation of the visitor explain what we can learn from the cosmic microwave background radiation, how important dark matter is, and why there is any oxygen, iron, and gold on Earth.

The exhibition "Evolution of the Universe" was initiated and implemented by local research institutes in Munich and Garching:
exyetnal linkExzellenzcluster Universe
exyetnal linkEuropean Southern Observatory (ESO)
exyetnal linkMax-Planck-Institut für Astrophysik (MPA)
interner VerweisMax-Planck-Institut für extraterrestrische Physik (MPE)
exyetnal linkMax-Planck-Institut für Physik (MPP)

Opening hours
The exyetnal linkDeutsche Museum  opens daily from 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m.

Museumsinsel 1
80538 München
Phone: (089) 2179 1
Fax: (089) 2179 324
Automatic phone service: (089) 2179 433

Concept of the Exhibition
(Pictures: Die Werft, München)

Hands-on demonstation of gravitational lenses

Large Hadron Collider (LHC) cross section

Contact person at MPE:   link W. Collmar

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MPE and MPA Vodcasts and Videos

On January 29, 2009 our first video podcast was produced at the MPE, kick-off of a series of five to ten short films on our institute and our neighbour  exyetnal linkMPA. The topics will be our main scientific results, but also the institutes themselves with their particular corporate identity, their unique research atmosphere and, most importantly, the persons who meet here every day and collaborate with each other.

The vodcasts will be distributed via our own channel at YouTube and MünchenVideo, and we hope that they will reach many young people there who didn't come into touch with astrophysics before.

exyetnal link First MPA Vodcast (in German)

First MPE Vodcast - The Galactic Center

At the premiere Stefan Gillessen, Frank Eisenhauer and Mona Clerico (MPE) together with Jörg Lüning and presenter Sabrina Bachmann (Video München) used their best endeavours to put the black hole in the centre of our galaxy in perspective.

interner VerweisFirst Vodcast and pictures taken during the filming (in German)
1st MPE Vodcast

Second MPE Vodcast - Herschel / PACS

The second MPE video podcast introduces the Herschel Space Observatory, the Herschel instrument PACS (Photodetector Array Camera & Spectrometer), developed and built at MPE, and the PACS team. The viewer gains insight into the operations of technicians and scientists in the MPE cleanroom, laboratory and control centre, which had to be put into this project in order to make Herschel/PACS ready to study the evolution of stars. The vodcast captures the mood before launch and gives an impression of the hopes that MPE scientists connect with the largest space telescope ever built.

interner VerweisSecond MPE Vodcast (in German)

2nd MPE Vodcast

Third MPE Vodcast - Black Holes

The third MPE vodcast deals with exciting new findings about black holes. The viewer learns what is meant by "tidal disruption", why two black holes merge and how it is possible for black holes to leave their parent galaxies.
NASA and MPE computer animations visualise these events.

interner VerweisThird MPE Vodcast (in German)
3rd MPE Vodcast

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Series of Articles in "Sterne und Weltraum"

During a meeting of the public relations officers of all astronomical Max Planck Institutes at the MPE in May 2008 a joint series of articles in the periodical "Sterne und Weltraum" was decided on for the Year of Astronomy. The Max Planck Institutes for extraterrestrial Physics, Astrophysics, Astronomy, Gravitational Physics, Radio Astronomy and Solar System Research each contribute one article to the series, which afterwards is supplemented with didactic materials and used by the institutes for their public outreach work in schools.
Meanwhile the first contributions and teaching materials have been published on the platform "Wissenschaft in die Schulen!" ("Science into the schools!") for free download by interested teachers:
exyetnal link Project "Wissenschaft in die Schulen" (in German language)
exyetnal link articles on astronomy in the project (in German language)
exyetnal link Das Schwarze Loch im Zentrum der Milchstraße (in German language)
exyetnal link Gravitation, Potentialtrichter und Schwarze Löcher (in German language)
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Forschung Live

Open House 2009


On October 24, 2009 from 11 a.m. to 18 p.m.
the MPE opened its doors for the public and gave the opportunity to experience research "live". A tour through the institute lead to 14 stations where visitors could gain insight into our work. A program for kids and teenagers was offered, where cosmonautics and astronomy were imparted in a playful way.

More than 3000 persons visited the MPE!

[ Pictures and more ]
Seitenanfang Seitenanfang


Girls' Day 2009

The MPE participated in the 2009 joint MPA/MPE Girls' Day (23/04/2009) with the objective of interesting young women in astrophysics and extraterrestrial physics and of encouraging them to decide for this male-dominated career.

This event is part of an initiative on a national level which aims at giving girls insight into occupational fields which are very rarely chosen by women.

At the MPE the girls conducted an experiment with plasma crystals, studied the light with spectrographs, constructed a mechanical device, and went on a guided tour to see a lab where some of the instruments that make our exciting science possible are built.

external link Announcement (in German language)

external link Girls' Day in Germany
Girls' Day 2008
Picture taken during the Girls' Day 2009 at MPE
internal linkmore pictures

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Opening Ceremony in Berlin on January 20, 2009

The MPE was joint organiser of the grand opening of the Year of Astronomy 2009 in the Museum of Communication in Berlin and showed a model of the X-ray telescope  linkeRosita and information leaflets on the institute.

In addition the model of the satellite will be part of a following longer-term exhibition organised by ESO at the same museum. The eROSITA model will also play a major role in the "Science Express" organised by the MPG, an exhibition on wheels which will travel through more than 60 German cities in 2009.

external linkreport on the event (in German)
eRosita model
eRosita model
Ms Vongehr from MPE
in discussion with visitors

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  ToP Top of Page Last update: 2009-12-09 by linkH. Steinle
Responsible Author: VerweisM. Clerico
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