Training and Outreach

Educational activities

As part of our service to the astronomical community, the German ARC node organizes lectures and workshops for ALMA users, students and other astronomer who may consider using ALMA in the future. The range of topics covered in recent years include
  • Radio Astronomy: Tools, Applications, Impacts
  • Introduction to Radio Interferometry
  • Radio Interferometry - Methods and Science
  • Introduction to ALMA
  • ALMA - current status and development
  • Polarization with ALMA
  • Proposal preparation with ALMA
  • ALMA-OT workshop
  • proposal clinic
  • AIPS tutorial
  • CASA tutorial
The Master-level course Radio Astronomy - Tools, Applications and Impact serves as a comprehensive introduction to the field of radio astronomy from cm wavelengths up to the (sub)mm regime. Besides getting an overview of classical and cutting-edge research topics, the participants are introduced to the fundamental physics giving rise to the observed signals and to the diagnostic tools that are used in radio astronomy. The powerful concepts of radio interferometry and aperture synthesis feature prominently among the discussed theoretical background. On a more practical side, the course also introduces the various components of radio telescopes and interferometers and offers hands-on guidance on observing and data reduction in the radio regime. Master students enrolled at the universities of Bonn or Cologne can take this course for credit (6 CP).

The Master-level course Radio Interferometry - Methods and Science offers hands-on training in the data reduction and analysis of interferometric data for Master students, PhD students and senior astronomers. The course starts with a brief review of the basic concepts of radio interferometry including calibration and imaging. Then the various steps necessary to create fully calibrated data cubes from interferometric raw data are discussed. Already during the lectures, the participants can practice the individual steps on their copy of an ALMA data set, using two powerful compute servers and the versatile Common Astronomy Software Applications (CASA) package. In the final sessions, the participants learn how to analyze their interferometric data and what additional considerations are required for special research topics like polarization studies. Master students enrolled at the universities of Bonn or Cologne can take this course for credit (4 CP).

During the German ALMA Community Days, ususally held about 4 weeks before an ALMA proposal deadline, the focus lies on preparing the local astronomical community for the upcoming observing cycle and on giving practical advice on proposal preparation. After a brief introduction to the basic radio astromonical concepts and terminology for non-radio astronomers and an overview of recent scientific results obtained with ALMA, ALMA's capabilities in the upcoming cycle, ALMA procedures, ALMA tools and the available help are discussed. These presentation are complemented by hands-on work in workshops for novice users as well as for advanced users. During these workshops, participants can start to prepare their own ALMA proposals with technical support from experts.

In addition, ARC node staff is happy to present talks on various aspects of ALMA on request at seminars and scientific conferences.

Outreach events of the German ARC Node

October 2018 - February 2019

Radio Astronomy Course

AIfA, Bonn

24 October 2018

ALMA Town Hall Meeting at the Radio 2018 Symposium

Jena, Germany

22-26 October 2018

ALMA-OT/CASA Imaging Tutorial

ICCUB School, Barcelona, Spain

April - July 2018

Radio Interferometry: Hands-on Data Reduction and Scientific Methods

AIfA, Bonn

05 April 2018

German ALMA Community Day

AIfA, Bonn

March - April 2018

3 ALMA proposal Training Sessions

AIfA, Bonn

October 2017 - February 2018

Radio Astronomy: Tools, Applications, Impact

AIfA, Bonn

18-22 September 2017

ALMA Booth at the annual meeting of the German Astronomical Society

Goettingen University

03 April 2017

Swiss ALMA Community Day

Bern, Switzerland

April - July 2017

Radio Interferometry: Methods and Science

AIfA, Bonn

27/28 March 2017

German ALMA Community Days

AIfA, Bonn

April - July 2016

Radio Interferometry: Methods and Science

AIfA, Bonn

6-8 April 2016

German ALMA Community Day

AIfA, Bonn

16 March 2016

XCLASS tutorial

Arcetri, Florence, Italy

02 March 2016

XCLASS tutorial

MPIA, Heidelberg

14 January 2016

XCLASS tutorial

University of Cologne

18 September 2015

ALMA Lunch Meeting at the annual meeting of the German Astronomical Society

University of Kiel

26 August 2015

XCLASS tutorial

UNAM, Morelia, Mexico

April - July 2015

Radio Interferometry - Methods and Science

AIfA, Bonn

25-27 March 2015

German ALMA Community Days

AIfA, Bonn

23 September 2014

ALMA users' meeting at the annual meeting of the German Astronomical Society

University of Bamberg

April - July 2014

Radio Interferometry - Methods and Science

AIfA, Bonn

05-06 November 2013

German ALMA Community Days

AIfA, Bonn



Public Outreach

In addition to fostering the local astronomical community, the German ARC node also reaches out to the general public by giving public talks, talking to the German press etc. Places/events visited in recent years include:

Sternwarte Erkrath
Bonner Sternenhimmel
Schnupperuni, Bonn
Westfälische Volkssternwarte und Planetarium Recklinghausen
Astronomie Stiftung Trebur
Lehrerfortbildung, Cologne
Walter-Hohmann Sternwarte Essen
Planetarium Bochum
WDR5 Leonardo