Welcome to the press center of the Excellence Cluster ORIGINS. Here you will find current press articles, as well as photographs of our research facility.
On request, we will provide you with further information on the Cluster and its fields of research as soon as possible. We will also gladly organize an interview for you with one of our scientists.
06/22/2022 After 60 years of unsuccessful searches, an international research team has discovered a neutral nucleus for the first time - the tetra-neutron. The collaboration succeeded in creating an isolated four-neutron system with low relative kinetic energy in a volume equivalent to an atomic nucleus. The researchers overcame the experimental challenge by using a new method: a radioactive neutron-rich ⁸He beam and a fast high-energy reaction with a proton.more
06/15/2022 Our Sun counts more than 400 stars and an ever-growing number of exoplanets among its immediate neighbours within ten parsecs (or 33 light-years). Now, two new Super-Earths are added to the list that are just at the edge of the solar neighbourhood and in the fourth closest stellar system. They were recently discovered by an international team of researchers, including Dr. Karan Molaverdikhani from ORIGINS PI Prof. Barbara Ercolano's research group. Life is unlikely on these two exoplanets, but they are among the best candidates for the observations by the James Webb Space…more
05/17/2022 This year, Frank Eisenhauer, ORIGINS scientist from the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics, will be awarded the Gruber Cosmology Prize for his revolutionary development of instruments that have gathered irrefutable evidence for the existence of a black hole at the center of our galaxy. The award recognizes the "unprecedented and exquisite" precision of his instruments.more
05/11/2022 The bubbling surface of massive giant stars causes their observable positions on the sky to wobble. An international team lead by astrophysicists at the ORIGINS Excellence Cluster has now performed detailed simulations of the gas motions in the atmospheric layers of these stars and compared these with high-quality data of the Perseus stellar cluster. They find that the surface structures could indeed account for a large part of the measurement uncertainty in the observations.more
02/14/2022 The international KArlsruhe TRItium Neutrino Experiment (KATRIN), located at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), has broken an important "barrier" in neutrino physics which is relevant for both particle physics and cosmology. Based on data published in the prestigious journal Nature Physics, a new upper limit of 0.8 electronvolt (eV) for the mass of the neutrino has been obtained. This first push into the sub-eV mass scale of neutrinos by a model-independent laboratory method allows KATRIN to constrain the mass of these "lightweights of the universe" with unprecedented…more
01/03/2022 In April 2017 the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) observed the super-massive black hole M87* and provided a first image of its shadow that went around the world. Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics have now reconstructed a video of the immediate surroundings of a black hole from the same underlying data. This not only confirms previous findings, it also hints at new structures and dynamics in the gas disk around the black hole.more
12/14/2021 ORIGINS scientist and Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics (MPA) Director Eiichiro Komatsu has been selected as one of the recipients of this year's Inoue Prize for Science. He is recognized for his work to study the physics of the early Universe as a researcher with remarkable achievements in the natural and fundamental sciences.more
11/19/2021 The German Physical Society (DPG) awards the Stern-Gerlach Medal, the DPG's highest award for excellent achievements in experimental physics, to ORIGINS scientist Frank Eisenhauer of the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics (MPE). Frank Eisenhauer is honoured for his "pioneering work in high-resolution infrared astronomy, which has revolutionized spectroscopic as well as astrometric studies."more
07/29/2021 The LHCb collaboration at CERN, and instrumentally our new ORIGINS Fellow Mikhail Mikhasenko, previously a Fellow at CERN, has discovered a new class of hadronic matter, double-heavy tetraquarks, labelled as Tcc+, with overwhelming statistical significance. In fact, this is the longest-living exotic particle ever observed, and the first to contain two heavy quarks and two light antiquarks.more
07/08/2021 The Excellence Cluster ORIGINS has become a founding member of the Twinkle mission. Lift-off for the new space telescope is planned for 2024. The instrument will give astrophysicists at the LMU the first reliable data on the chemical composition of the atmospheres of exoplanets – and may also shed light on the prospects for life on these worlds.more