PhD Defense of Maryory Loaiza Agudelo

On June 21, 2019, my student Maryory Loaiza Agudelo successfully defended her PhD thesis titled The physical properties of starburst galaxies at low redshift: Lyman Break Analogs. (from right to left: Thiago Gonçalves, Ricardo Ogando, Maryory Loaiza Agudelo, Cristina Furlanetto, Eduardo Telles and myself).


Master defense of Lieke van Son

On November 27, 2018, student Lieke van Son successfully presented the results of her MSc thesis at the University of Leiden, based on her research project titled The gaseous environments of radio-galaxies performed at the Observatório Nacional.


Seminar Dr. Isa Oliveira at IAG/USP – Timescales of Proto-Planetary Disks

On September 2, 2015, Isa Oliveira gave the astrophysics seminar at the Instituto da Geofísica e Astronomia (IAG) of the Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Summary (by Dr. Oliveira): Planets are believed to form inside protoplanetary disks. The lifetimes of these disks have strong consequences on theories for planet formation, as short-lived disks could not allow enough time for planets to form. Observations show some disks to live more than 10 Myr while others are completely dissipated at 1 Myr already. It is still unclear what originates this discrepancy. I will show recent results on disk-bearing and diskless young stars in the Serpens Molecular Cloud and discuss some implications for the study of protoplanetary disk evolution.


After-seminar dinner at brazilian/asian fusion restaurant Mestiço with colleagues Jorge Melendez, Paula Coelho, and Rodrigo Nemmen of IAG/USP. Photo credit: Jorge Melendez.

3rd Joint Rio de Janeiro Extragalactic Meeting at CBPF

On August 21 we had the third of our joint extragalactic meetings in Rio de Janeiro. Our meetings started earlier in 2015 in an attempt to enhance the interaction between the five (!) extragalactic astrophysics groups scattered around the city. The participating institutes are the Observatório Nacional (ON), the Observatório do Valongo (OV) and the Instituto Física (IF) both of the Universidade Federal de Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), and the Centro Brasileiro de Pesquisas Físicas (CBPF). The new initiative aims at meeting about once a month at one of the participating institutes to present and discuss our research in extragalactic astrophysics. The inaugural meeting took place on May 20, 2015, at the Observatório Nacional. The second joint meeting, on June 24, 2015, was hosted by the Observatório do Valongo. The third meeting, on August 21, 2015, took place at the CBPF. A photo impression of that event can be seen below. The fourth meeting will probably take place at the end of October, due to the annual meeting of the Brazilian Astronomical Society taking place in September.

CBPF_group_croppedThe 3rd Joint Extragalactic Meeting at CBPF, 21/08/2015. Top row, left to right: Rodrigo Magalhães (ON), Marco Grossi (OV/UFRJ), Maryory Agudelo (ON), Yolanda Jiménez Teja (ON), Vanessa Pacheco (CBPF), Beatriz Blanco-Siffert (IF/UFRJ), Karín Menéndez-Delmestre (OV), Miguel Quartin (IF/UFRJ), Damián Mast (CBPF), Roderik Overzier (ON), Thiago Gonçalves (OV). Bottom row, left to right: Fabio dos Anjos (CBPF), Joel Carvalho (ON), Edu Telles (ON), Murilo Marinello (ON), Cristina Fernandes (ON), Bruna Vajgel (ON), Martín Makler (CBPF), Beatriz Ramos (OV/UFRJ), João Paulo Nogueira (OV/UFRJ). [Photo credit: Martín Makler]

ps: It strikes me what a young group this is. A similar extragalactic astrophysics group photo taken at any European or US-based institution would probably include a lot more grey hair!

Dutch minister of Education, Culture and Science visits Brazil

The Dutch government has declared Brazil to be one of its “priority countries”, countries that are considered to be culturally, economically and politically important for our joint future. Besides, Holland and Brazil share some interesting common history. As part of this initiative, the “Sistema FIRJAN” together with the Dutch ministry of OCW (Education, Culture and Science) organized a workshop in Rio de Janeiro, entitled “Holanda – novas ideais, novas fronteiras”. The workshop was related to promoting the creative industries in Holland and Brazil, and included impressive contributions from the Dutch minister of OCW Jet Bussemaker, Dutch creative artist Daan Roosegaarde (from the van Gogh bicycle path) and Henk de Jong, CEO of Philips Latin America.

MISSIE_OCW_RIO_DAG3_130815_3(posing with minister Jet Bussemaker, pictured left from center, and some Dutch alumni in Brazil). Photo credit: Maarten Zeehandelaar /