ann23001 — Announcement

A public talk on Mars missions to celebrate Women in Astronomy

the event is organised by the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics to mark the International Day of Women and Girls in Science

11 January 2023

On the occasion of the International Day of Women and Girls in Science, The Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics (MPE) is organising its annual free event "Women in Astronomy" on Thursday, 9 February 2023 at 19:00 at the ESO Supernova Planetarium & Visitor Centre. 

This year, the event will feature a presentation from Dr. Daniela Tirsch, German Aerospace Centre, on on our neighbouring planet, Mars, and the search for life there. The public talk will be delivered in the German language only. Before and after the lecture, the astronomy exhibition at the ESO Supernova will also be open to visitors, offering you the opportunity to talk to female scientists who are researching various topics in the field of astronomy. 

If you would like to attend, tickets are free, but you need to book a seat in advance at this link.

Humans have been exploring the Red Planet with space missions since the 1960s. Numerous satellites, rovers and landers have provided vast amounts of data and knowledge about Mars. Today we know: Especially in its early history, Mars was climatically not so dissimilar to Earth. Currently, it is above all the geological processes that make Earth and Mars excellent comparison objects for planetary research.

Daniela Tirsch takes you on a journey through the history of Mars research and explains why we are looking for traces of life here. She provides insights into the large amount of research data obtained and explains what plans there are for the future.

The programme starts at 18:00, with an exploration of the Living Universe exhibition. Explore, touch and use real astronomical artefacts and conduct experiments to get an idea of what it means to be an astronomer, to work in science, and to discover the mysteries of the Universe. The displays cover the topic of life in the Universe in the broadest sense. The exhibition connects visitors with topics that can seem very distant and abstract by focusing on the human–Universe connection, general astronomy, life in the Universe, and how we observe the Universe using ESO facilities. 

The lecture on Mars by Dr. Daniela Tirsch will take place from 19:00 to 20:00. After the public talk, the exhibition will remain open to visitors for another hour.

The Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics (MPE) actively promotes equal opportunities for women and girls in science. The aim is to promote the share of women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), where they are still underrepresented. 

The first “Women in Astronomy” event took place on 11 February 2019 and featured former ESO astronomer, Dr. Nadine Neumayer (MPIA Heidelberg). 

More Information

The ESO Supernova Planetarium & Visitor Centre

The ESO Supernova Planetarium & Visitor Centre is a cooperation between the European Southern Observatory (ESO) and the Heidelberg Institute for Theoretical Studies (HITS). The building is a donation from the Klaus Tschira Stiftung (KTS), a German foundation, and ESO runs the facility.

Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics

The Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics (MPE) works on various topics in modern astrophysics, using mainly experimental but also theoretical methods. Its name was chosen to reflect its research — the physics of space — but also because of its research methods.

Many observations have to be carried out above the Earth’s dense atmosphere. These are complemented by instruments at ground-based observatories whenever possible. In central workshops, in-house staff build detectors, spectrometers, cameras and telescopes, as well as complete payloads for satellites. The observations are complemented by some experiments in laboratories and theoretical work.

The direct interaction of observers and experimenters under the same roof reinforces cooperation, improves the coordination of activities and often results in the early identification of promising new research directions through the interplay of hypotheses and new observations.

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Key visual for "MPE-Vortragsreihe: Frauen in der Astronomie 2023"