High angular resolution in astrophysics:
optical interferometry from theory to observations

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8th VLTI Summer School
Cologne, 6-13 September 2015


In the last decade, optical/infrared long-baseline interferometry has reached a new stage with the advent of multi-telescope arrays accessible to a broad community of astronomers. The Very Large Telescope Interferometer (VLTI) built in Chile and operated by the European Southern Observatory (ESO) is the best example of a fully open and operational interferometric facility. The instruments AMBER, MIDI and PIONIER have delivered so far spectacular results in many fields of astrophysics.

The next two years will see the second-generation instruments, GRAVITY and MATISSE, commissioned on the VLTI. They will operate in interferometric mode with the four Unit (8-m) or Auxiliary (1.8-m) telescopes in the near- and mid-infrared spectral ranges (K-, L-, M-, and N-bands). With the increasing number of telescopes that can be combined, interferometers are on the verge to reconstruct complex images at an unprecedented angular resolution. Interferometric techniques are useful for studies of a wide range of astrophysical objects such as young and evolved stars, and active galactic nuclei. The community has to prepare for the best possible exploitation of the second-generation instruments in a way that astronomers from a broad range of topics learn how to use interferometric data for their science.

With this objective in mind, we organize a summer school to train astronomers interested in optical interferometry. The prime objective of the school is to initiate astronomers to the use of VLTI by 1) showcasing some applications of VLTI in the field of young stellar objects, evolved stars and active galactic nuclei, 2) teaching the fundamentals of optical interferometry techniques and 3) organizing practical sessions with the software tools that will be used in this research field. The school is addressed to a wide public involved into astronomical research, including undergraduate students, PhDs, postdocs or astronomers willing to exploit long-baseline interferometry. The topics will include an introduction to the technique of long-baseline optical/infrared interferometry, and will cover the various steps of data reduction, basic modeling of interferometric data, as well as proposal writing and preparation of observing runs.

Other information

The VLTI school will take place from the 6th to the 13th of September in the city center of Cologne. Participants will be expected to pay a conference fee of 200 Euro, in which accommodation is included. Limited financial support will be available via the Fizeau Program.

Materials of previous VLTI schools, which might be useful to have a look at can be found on:

VLTI School 2013

VLTI School 2010

VLTI Schools 2006-2008


  1. -A Facebook and Google+ links are available at the top of this page.

  2. -February 4th : 1st Announcement

  3. -March, 5th : Registration opened

  4. -Link for fee payment now available under Registration

Scientific Rationale

Scientific Organizing Committee

Peter Ábrahám (Konkoly Observatory, Hungary)
Yuri Balega (SAO, Russia)
Jean-Philipe Berger (European Southern Observatory, Germany)
Gilles Duvert (Institut de Planétologie et d'Astrophysique de Grenoble, France)
Paulo Garcia (Universidade do Porto, Portugal)
Michiel Hogerheijde (Leiden Observatory, Netherlands)
Josef Hron (University of Vienna, Austria)
Stefan Kraus (University of Exeter, England)
Lucas Labadie (Chair, Universität zu Köln, Germany)
Bruno Lopez (Observatoire de la Côte d'Azur, France)
Alessandro Marconi (University of Florence, Italy)
Andrzej Niedzielski (Torun Centre for Astronomy, Poland)
Guy Perrin (Observatoire de Paris, France)
Jörg-Uwe Pott (Chair, Max Planck Institut für Astronomie, Germany)
Rainer Schödel (Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía, CSIC, Spain)
Jean Surdej (Université de Liège, Belgium)
Gerd Weigelt (Chair, Max Planck Institut für Radioastronomie, Germany)

Local Organizing Committee

Andres Cahuasqui (Universität zu Köln, Germany)

Fabio Eupen (Universität zu Köln, Germany)

Rebekka Grellmann (Universität zu Köln, Germany)

Elena Kokoulina (Universität zu Köln, Germany)

Lucas Labadie (Universität zu Köln, Germany)

Anas Maotahni (Universität zu Köln, Germany)

Balaji Muthusubramanian (Universität zu Köln, Germany)

Frank Schlöder (Universität zu Köln, Germany)

Jan Tepper (Universität zu Köln, Germany)