Hel.A.S. Newsletter 133 - March 2009

  1. Short News
  2. Greek Astronomers Yearbook
  3. Obituary: Constantinos Poulakos
  4. March Activities for the IYA2009
  5. Job Openings
  6. JENAM 2009
  7. Graduate Studies in Astrophysics in Crete for 2009-2010
  8. Evaluation of the Dept. of Physics of the Univ. of Crete
  9. Herschel Pre-Launch Data Processing Workshop II
  10. Summer School on Exoplanets - Alpbach 2009
  11. Fifth NAIC/NRAO Single-Dish Summer School
  12. Upcoming Astronomy Meetings in Greece
  13. About this Newsletter

We would like to congratulate Anastasia-Fiori Metallinou who has recently obtained her PhD from the Department of Physics of the University of Thessaloniki under the co-supervision of Prof. J. Seiradakis and Dr. I. Daglis (NOA/ISARS). The title of her dissertation was "Development and Recovery of Magnetic Storms in Geospace".

Dr. Dimitris Emmanoulopoulos recently moved from Landessternwarte Heidelberg (Germany) to a new postdoctoral position at the Univ. of Southampton (UK) to work on problems related to AGN variability as well as for the development of the next generation Cherenkov Telscope Array (CTA).

The latest issue of Hipparchos (Volume 2, Issue 5) is available online. It will be sent by post to all members shortly. Check your mailboxes as well as your address in the online directory of Hel.A.S. If you spot an error in your address please inform the Secretary of the Society as soon as possible.


As most of us know, the "Greek Astronomers Yearbook", edited by Prof. P. Laskarides, contains brief biographical information on most professional astronomers of greek descent of the past 50 years. An early version of the yearbook was published in 1992 and its last formal online update was in 2005, which is currently available at:


With the occasion of the 2009 International Year of Astronomy the Hellenic Astronomical Society plans to produce a new version of the Yearbook which will be distributed to all HelAS members during the 9th Hellenic Astronomical Conference.

All members of HelAS are strongly encouraged to review the current version of the yearbook and send by e-mail all corrections they have on their record (possibly including a more up-to-date picture!) to Prof. Laskarides at plaskar@phys.uoa.gr. The deadline for submitting all corrections is March 31st 2009.

Furthermore, please suggest to other greek professional astronomers who are not listed in the current PDF version of the yearbook, possibly because they have obtained their PhD recently, to provide their information in order for them to be included in the new version.


Constantinos Poulakos, a past Director of the Research Center for Astronomy and Applied Mathematics of the Academy of Athens, passed away on February 4, 2009 at the age of 72. Dr. Poulakos was born in Kozani in 1936. He received his B.Sc. in Mathematics from the University of Athens and his Ph.D. in Astronomy from the same institution in 1970. His scientific interests included the study of flare stars, as well as the effects of the sun on the earth and its atmosphere.

He is survived by his wife and two sons. Our thoughts are with them and his immediate family.


In this e-newsletter we commence a regular section which will run until the end of the year and will inform the members of the Society of all activities related to the International Year of Astronomy which are scheduled for the coming month. If you wish to have your activity included in this mailing please inform the Editor of the e-newsletter.

For March 2009 the following events are planned:

  • 4th of March - Open night at the Observatory located at the campus of the Univ. of Thessaloniki. A public talk of Prof. N. Caranicolas (Univ. of Thessaloniki) entitled "Our Galaxy and the Local Group" will be followed by observations of the night sky and the planets.
  • 6th of March - Talk of Dr. I. Daglis (ISRSR/NOA) entitled "The relation between the Sun and the Planets" at the city of Drama.
  • 12th of March - Talk of Dr. S. Krimigis (Academy of Athens) entitled "40 years from the first landing on the moon" at the Planetarium of Thessaloniki.
  • 14th of March - Talk of Prof. V. Geroyannis (Univ. of Patras) at the prefecture of the city of Mesollogi.
  • 31st of March - Open night at the Observatory located at the campus of the Univ. of Thessaloniki. A public talk by a faculty member will be followed by observations of the night sky and the planets.

More details about the events mentioned above, as well as all upcoming activities for the IYA 2009 which will take place in Greece under the auspices of Hel.A.S., are available at:



A new position at the level of "Assistant Professor" or "Lecturer" in the field of "Theoretical Astrophysics" has opened at the Department of Physics of the University of Athens (F.E.K. 1168/30-12-2008, page 9579). The application deadline is 15 March 2009. For more information contact the Secretariat of the Department Mrs Eleni Tsalka, phone: +30 210 727 6807

A position at the level of "Professor" in the field of "Space Physics" has opened at the Department of Physics of the University of Athens (F.E.K. 1192/31-12-2008, page 9776). The application deadline is 15 March 2009. For more information contact the Secretariat of the Department Mrs Eleni Tsalka, phone: +30 210 727 6807

6. JENAM 2009

The "European Week of Astronomy and Space Science" (JENAM2009) organized jointly by the European Astronomical Society (EAS) and the Royal Astronomical Society (RAS), will be held from 20 - 23 April 2009 at the University of Hertfordshire in the UK (30km north of London). There will be EAS and RAS Prize Lectures, plenary lectures, EAS Symposia, and a multitude of parallel sessions. ESA and ESO have each provided substantial contributions to the programme, emphasizing the "Joint European" aspect of the "National Astronomy Meeting". In addition OPTICON, RadioNet and ASTRONET are very much involved. Moreover, the UK Solar Physics Conference (UKSP) and MIST (Magnetosphere, Ionosphere, Solar Terrestrial) spring meeting will be celebrated as part of the "European Week of Astronomy and Space Science", resulting in an event with the broadest possible appeal. There will be ample outreach activities in this International Year of Astronomy with public lectures scheduled for each evening of the conference, plus a special "School's Day".

There will be seven EAS Symposia on the following topics: 1) The next era in radio astronomy: the pathway to SKA, 2) The standard cosmological models - successes and challenges 3) Understanding substellar populations and atmospheres: from brown dwarfs to exo-planets 4) The life cycle of dust 5) Multi-wavelength high redshift surveys 5) Three decades of gravitational lenses 6) The IYA 2009 in Europe.

Early registration is open now. After 9th March 2009 fees will increase by 25%. For more information visit:



The Department of Physics of the Univ. of Crete, in collaboration with the Foundation for Research and Technology - Hellas (FORTH) is issuing a Call for Applications for the 2009-2010 Graduate Program in "Advanced Physics". A number of graduate fellowships towards a 1-year Master's Program in "Astrophysics & Space Physics", as well as towards a 3-year PhD Program in Theoretical or Observational Astrophysics are available. The Astrophysics Group in Crete would like to encourage all interested undergraduate and Masters' students to consider the possibilities the Department of Physics and FORTH have to offer. For more information on the Astrophysics Graduate Program in Crete please check the following [PDF file]. The deadline for early application is March 15, 2009 while the final application deadline is July 15, 2009. For details about the overall program as well as application material you may visit the Crete Physics Graduate Program web page at:



At the end of November 2008, the Department of Physics of the University of Crete, was one of the first Departments of a University in Greece which was evaluated by an external committee of experts, following the new legislation governing the evaluation of greek academic institutions (A.D.I.P.) . For more information on the process and full access to all files and reports, you may visit the dedicated web page of the Department of Physics (in greek) :


The PDF file of the external evaluation report is available in english and in greek


The Herschel Science Centre, in collaboration with the Instrument Control Centres and the NASA Herschel Science Centre are organizing two data processing workshops at the European Space Astronomy Centre (ESAC) situated about 30kms North-West of Madrid (Spain). A Spectroscopy workshop, which will take place on 24-25 March 2009 and will concentrate on the spectroscopy aspects of Herschel data reduction, and Photometry/Mapping workshop will take place on 26-27 March 2009, and will address mainly the photometric aspects of Herschel data reduction as well as the generation of maps from Herschel data. The registration deadline is Wednesday 11 March 2009. Details on the Herschel/SPIRE part of the workshop can be obtained in advanced from Dr. M. Trichas. Information on the venue. logistics, and application instructions are available at:



Held annually since 1975, the Alpbach Summer School enjoys a long tradition in providing in-depth teaching on aspects of space science and space technology with the aim of advancing the training and working experience of European graduates, post-graduate students, young scientists and engineers. The 2009 Summer School Alpbach will take place on July 21 - 30, 2009 at Alpbach/Tyrol in Austria. The theme of the School is "Exoplanets: Discovering and Characterizing Earth Type Planets" and the registration deadline is March 31, 2009. The number of participants will be limited to 60 and confirmation of acceptance will be given by the end of April 2009. The purpose of the Summer School is to foster the practical application of knowledge derived from lectures, to develop organisational and team-work skills and to encourage creativity. Teams will compete to design the best project, judged by an independent jury. The teams themselves are responsible for the selection of the subject of the project and for the team structure and working methods. Two students from Greece will be selected for the workshop and their transportation and accommodation expenses as well as the registration fee will be covered by the Greek Ministry of Education. For more information visit:



NAIC (Arecibo) and NRAO (Green Bank) are organizing the fifth NAIC-NRAO school on single-dish radio astronomy. This will be held from 12-18 July 2009 at the Arecibo observatory in Puerto Rico. The objective of the school is to provide graduate students, post-docs, and experts in other fields of astronomy with both knowledge and practical experience of the techniques and applications of single-dish radio astronomy. The primary goals of the school are: a) to provide participants with a strong grounding in the fundamental elements of single-dish radio astronomy, and its relationship to other branches of observational astronomy; b) to give an overview of current and emerging capabilities with single-dish radio telescopes, the techniques used with them, and the associated instrumentation; c) to provide direct "hands-on" experience with the World's largest single-dish radio telescopes, and introduce participants to the hardware and software used in taking and reducing observations.

Both lecturers and participants are invited to contribute posters describing research conducted with single dishes. A copy of the Proceedings of the First Single Dish School, as published in the ASP Conference Series, will be provided to this year's participants as part of the registration fee. The number of participants will be limited to approximately 45 people. A registration fee of $200 will include: travel between San Juan airport and Arecibo Observatory, the welcome reception, lunches during the school, social events, the school banquet, and a copy of the proceedings. Participants will be housed either at the Observatory or in nearby hotels. They are expected to cover the cost of their travel to Puerto Rico, lodgings and other meals. However, some financial assistance is expected to be available, especially for applicants based at US institutions. For more information visit:



The following meetings will take place in Greece. Please check the corresponding web page or contact the organizers by e-mail for more information.


This Newsletter was sent to all members of Hel.A.S. who have e-mail access. The next edition of the Newsletter will be mailed around April 1st 2009. Please send your announcements (e.g. appointments/departures, job openings, research opportunities, awards, conferences in Greece) or comments before March 25, 2009. If you do not wish to receive future issues of this Newsletter or the e-mail address to which it was sent is not your preferred one, please inform the Secretary of Hel.A.S.


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