Astrophysics research is a strong area of research at UCD. Eight permanent academic members of staff lead research programs across topics such as the explosion of massive stars as supernovae and gamma-ray bursts, star formation and proto-stellar disks, as well as accretion powered phenomena associated with super-massive black holes. Recently, the emergence of "multi-messenger astronomy" has seen members of staff connecting optical and high-energy observations with the detection of neutrinos and gravitational waves.
Researchers use a wide variety of observational facilities, from space telescopes, through to ground based facilities at some of the worlds leading observatories. In particular, international observatories such as the European Southern Observatory, the VERITAS gamma-ray observatory as well as the LOFAR radio telescope array are used extensively by members of the school. Satellite telescopes are another area of considerable expertise, with astrophysics researchers regularly using optical telescopes including the Hubble Space Telescope, as well as the high-energy INTEGRAL, NASA Fermi and XMM satellites.
An emerging theme in astrophysics is the growth of big data, as state of the art facilities now regularly produce TB to PB of data. Using machine learning and AI techniques, researchers are able to extract scientific results from such huge datasets.
C-SPACE will promote and publicize the excellent astrophysics research in UCD to a wider national and international audience. In addition, C-SPACE aims to enable new opportunities for astrophysics through international collaboration, and facilitating interdisciplinary collaboration within UCD in areas such as instrumentation and data processing.
Perseid meteor shower as observed by UCD's Antonio Martin-Carrillo