Origin and Evolution of Stars and Planets
Stellar Interiors and Atmospheres
Task leader: M. J. P. F. G. Monteiro
One important goal of the team is to understand the details of the
structure and evolution of stars of low and intermediate masses. To
pursue this goal, the team explores a technique known as
Asteroseismology, which is based on the study of stellar oscillations.
These activities are supported by the team's participation in the
French-led mission CoRoT, launched in December 2006, in the Kepler
Asteroseismic Science Consortium for the NASA mission, Kepler, launched
in March 2009, and the participation in a consortium for the ESA mission
PLATO, currently under study.
The activities of the team are supported by the following funding projects:
Recent scientific highlights of the team:
Simultaneously, the team dedicates part of its efforts to the
determination of the global properties of stars, through the analysis
of spectroscopic and interferometric data, mostly obtained from ESO
telescopes. This component of the research is strengthen by the team's
participation in the data processing and analysis Consortium (DPAC),
established under the preparation of the GAIA mission (ESA).
Finally, the team studies the chemical composition, magnetism, rotation
and chromospheric activity of field and cluster stars, by means of
high-resolution spectroscopy and spectropolarimetry, which are key to
stellar modelling and dating of stars. Isotopic and elemental abundances
in different populations (disk, halo, bulge) using 8-10 m telescopes
(ESO, Keck, Gemini), constrain Big Bang nucleosynthesis and the
evolution of our Galaxy.