Ongoing Projects

Total Projects 22
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xQCD - Teorías efectivas de las interacciones nucleares fuertes en condiciones extremas

The description of the experiments performed in large accelerator facilities requires a solid knowledge of the strong interaction dynamics. This is indeed unavoidable in order to solve the most important problems that high energy physics faces nowadays. These can be summarized as follows: 1) to discern the differences between the predictions of the Standard Model and experimental data (i.e. to detect new physics), 2) to quantitatively understand the strong interactions, and 3) to understand the new forms of matter that appear at finite temperature/density in accelerator facilities or in the core of compact stars. In spite of the remarkable and steady progress in lattice QCD, it is still not possible to have quantitative solutions of the theory of the strong interactions in many situations of current interest, in particular for real-time phenomena at finite temperature and density, or when disparate scales enter the problem. In the latter case, however, it is possible to obtain model independent results, due to the existence of hierarchies of widely separated scales, which one can take advantage of by using effective field theories. Typically, these hierarchies of widely separated scales appear when one studies particular kinematical regions. In this context, the motivation of this group is to impel in a resolute way the use of effective field theories of QCD in strong interaction processes. This allows us to describe in the same language different physical processes. In this project we will focus our efforts on the following physical systems: 1) systems at finite temperature, where an example of effective field theory would be the on-shell effective field theory (OSEFT) proposed by members of the group, 2) systems at finite baryon number, for which a number of effective field theories exist depending on the size of the chemical potential and on the number of active flavors, and 3) systems made up of two heavy quarks (also considering its study at finite temperature and density). The systems made up by two heavy quarks can be described with potential non-relativistic QCD (pNRQCD), a successful effective field theory that we also consider at finite temperature and density. Our emphasis is in obtaining model independent results, which could be checked against experiment.
PI and Co-PI: Manuel, C., Tolos, L.

ROAD2EARTH - The Earth-Exoearths connection: CARMENES, CHEOPS, PLATO, ARIEL

The present project sets out to follow a well-defined path, with the ultimate goal of finding and characterizing habitable Earth-like planets, and the eventual measurements of their atmospheres and search for biosignatures. The backbone of this roadmap is defined by several large instrument projects in which we are deeply involved. Firstly, CARMENES is operating since 2016. In parallel, our activities in the definition and building of CHEOPS will culminate with its launch in 2018. The CHEOPS mission will help us gain expertise and prepare ourselves for the PLATO mission, the ultimate transit search machine, which will be operating from 2024 to 2030. And ARIEL, if selected, will operate during 2025-2028. This roadmap will open up the way to large-scale, comparative planetology and will also allow us to view the Earth as a planet and compare it with others to understand dominant external factors that shape our climate over mid and long timescales.
PI and Co-PI: Ribas, I., Colomé, J.
Participants: Guàrdia, J., Herrero, E., Lafarga Magro, M., Morales, J. C., Rosich, A., Vilardell, F., Perger, M.
Funding Institution: MINECO

Magus - Unifying the neutron star diversity via observations and simulations

One year project for personnel and fungibles.
PI and Co-PI: Rea, N.
Participants: Torres, D. F., de Ona Wilhelmi, E.
Funding Institution: CSIC

TGScatt - Scientific Assessment of TDS-1 GNSS-R Scatterometric Measurements

The study seeks to establish the physical relation between GNSS-R signals and ocean wind and roughness properties using state-of-the-art modelling of the ocean roughness, ocean dielectric properties and GNSS-R scattering. Based on this physical understanding, the study defines the Level 2 scatterometric products that can be reliably extracted from GNSS-R signals and develops the physically based Geophysical Model Functions and error models. The physical framework also serves to characterise aspects of the TDS-1 GNSS-R signals that are specific to the TDS-1 mission and determines how these specificities impact the “ideal” GMFs derived from the simulator framework. This is subsequently used to consolidate the Level 1-to-Level 2 inversion algorithms for TDS-1, which are validated using a larger TDS-1 matchup dataset with a wider range of independent measurements. Finally, the study carries out preliminary impact analyses of the TDS-1 data and defines suitable Observing System Experiment (OSE) and Observation System Simulation Experiments (OSSEs) to further investigate the impact of GNSS-R wind and roughness measurements in possible future activities.
PI and Co-PI: Cardellach, E.
Participants: Cardellach, E., Fabra, F., Rius, A.
Funding Institution: ESA/ESTEC

EUCLID_ESP2015 - Dark Energy Cosmological Surveys, enabling Euclid (ESP2015)

Research in Observational Cosmology with large surveys and cosmological simulations. Participation in the PAU, DES and DESI surveys and the Euclid Mission
PI and Co-PI: Castander, F. J., Fosalba, P.
Participants: Casas, R., Serrano, S., Lloro, I., Chan, K. C., Blot, L., Hoffmann, K., Folger, M., Izard, A., Lamensans, M.
Funding Institution: MINECO
Other Institutions: coordinated project with IFAE and PIC


The striking discovery that the expansion of the Universe is accelerating has turned into one of the main mysteries in Physics today, with explanations that range from new repulsive forces, as the dark energy, or the failure of Einstein's General Relativity. On top, the overwhelming evidence that most of the counterpart to such acceleration is provided by a yet un-discovered form of matter, the dark- matter, makes the research in Cosmology very exciting and timely. The scientific community has tackled those challenges through large astronomical surveys that scan the way millions of galaxies distribute across huge volumes. Several such surveys are ongoing or will start in the near future and their common denominator is the unprecedented level of precision at which they will render the large scale structure of the Cosmos. Some will push standard probes such as galaxy clustering or weak gravitational lensing to their precision limits. Others will maximize the gain from combining probes. All will benefit from developing new ideas of studying cosmic acceleration, galaxy formation and cosmological parameters. The task ahead is nonetheless very hard as the statistical precision that the data will achieve needs to be matched by an unprecedented level of accuracy in our frameworks and models to interpret it. Our team is in a privileged position to contribute to this effort, by (1) participating with lead roles in several of the largest collaborations, the Dark Energy Survey (DES), the Physics of the Accelerating Universe Survey (PAUS), Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument (DESI) and the ESA/Euclid satellite, (2) by having a long track record in developing theory models and optimizing probes, (3) by accessing and producing some of the largest data simulations to date, a key ingredient to interpret the data. We propose to develop model improvements to the combined probes of (small and large scale) galaxy clustering that will be key to fully take advantage of next generation of overlapping galaxy surveys. The combination of probes such as 2 and 3-point correlations, redshift space distortions, galaxy environment, intrinsic alignment correlations, galaxy/cluster/halo abundance and weak gravitational lensing, hold a wealth of information which is still largely unexplored. While we have successful models to interpret these separate measurements on linear scales, we need to better exploit their combination and model their covariance, taking advantage of photometric redshift self calibration, sample variance cancellation and join marginalization over systematic and model uncertainties. On smaller scales, our understanding of galaxy clustering is still quite poor, yet it contains new information about galaxy evolution and cosmological growth. Moreover, the signal-to-noise is much larger than on linear scales, where conventional analysis are done. We propose to implement a series of new and concrete research ideas to develop a global model and analysis tools to improve these shortfalls. This will be done in the context and in collaboration with DES, PAU, DESI and Euclid to which we also need to contribute with service and infrastructure.
PI and Co-PI: Gaztañaga, E., Crocce, M.
Participants: Pujol, A., Hoffmann, K.

AYA2015-71042-P - Studies on the plasma - magnetic field interaction in extreme astrophysical settings

Pulsar; Pulsar Wind Nebula; Supernova Remants; Binaries; Magnetars; multi- frequency observations,plasma, magnetic field
PI and Co-PI: Torres, D. F., de Ona Wilhelmi, E.
Participants: Torres, D. F., de Ona Wilhelmi, E., Li, J., Martín, J., Colomé, J., Garcia-Piquer, Á., Rea, N., Castroviejo, J.
Funding Institution: MICINN


From the study of the class of meteorites called chondrites we hope to infer clues on their parent bodies. By studying their forming minerals, components and reflectance properties we also want to distinguish between the parent body and nebular processes recorded in their components. We will study the diverse degrees of thermal and shock metamorphism recorded in these materials, but also the processes of hydration occurred in their parent asteroids. By obtaining new clues we also want to identify chondrites that are coming from comets, or at least predict their main differences. Then, we will test if some of these chondrites are pieces of comets or if perhaps these materials associated with comets are too fragile to survive the fiery atmospheric passage?
PI and Co-PI: Trigo-Rodriguez, J. M.
Participants: Martinez-Jiménez, M., Moyano-Cambero, C. E., Moreno-Ibáñez, M.

LPFL3 - From LISA Pathfinder to the ESA-L3 mission: Towards Gravitational Wave Astronomy from Space

This project has three general goals: (i) To participate in the LISA Pathfinder mission operations and science exploitation. (ii) To continue our instrumental developments to reach a Technology Readiness Level 5-6 before the L3 mission adoption, scheduled by ESA before the end of the present decade. (iii) To continue our theoretical developments in two directions: By one hand, to help to define the best mission within the ESA cost envelope, the one that maximizes the science return; and on the other hand, to develop the necessary scientific tools (waveform models, data analysis tools, etc.) for the optimal exploitation of the ESA-L3 mission
PI and Co-PI: Sopuerta, C., Nofrarias, M.
Participants: Gesa, L., Gibert, F., Lloro, I., Mateos, I., Rivas, F., Santos-Oliván, D., López-Zaragoza, J. P., Oltean, M., Martin, V.
Funding Institution: MINECO

EXPLOXG3 - Stellar explosions and their scenarios at high energies: models, observations and technology

Stellar explosions are astrophysical phenomena of great importance and interest, for their impact on the dynamics and chemical evolution of galaxies. In the case of novae and thermonuclear supernovae, the exploding star is a white dwarf. These stars are the last stages of evolution of stars with masses below about 10 M_sol . Should they be isolated, their final destination is to cool and disappear, while when in compact binary systems, the accretion of matter from the companion star can destabilize the white dwarf. Since years we have been working on the characterization of novae and supernovae in X-rays and gamma-rays, with use of space missions. But in the MeV range, where nuclear transitions occur, there has been not much progress from the instrumental point of view, given the intrinsic difficulties in this energy. One of the instrumental concepts that would allow a significant advance would be an advanced Compton camera, like the one in the ASTROGAM mission proposal. Moreover, it is necessary to advance in the study of radiation detectors in the range of hard X-rays/soft gamma-rays (up to several MeV); our group is involved in this study (CdTe detectors), with wide applications in other fields (safety and medicine). As for X-rays, a possibility of significant progress would be eXTP (enhanced X-ray Timing and Polarization), a chinese mission with expected contribution from LOFT (the Large Observatory for X-ray Timing), able to study time variability with high accuracy, and also Athena+, the successor to the XMM-Newton satellite.
PI and Co-PI: Hernanz, M., Serenelli, A.
Participants: Isern, J., Henze, M., Jose Manuel Alvarez, Vincent Tatischeff, Pierre Jean, Javier Redondo, Francesco Villante, Álvarez, L., Delgado, L., Gálvez, J., Vinyoles, N., et al
Funding Institution: MINECO
Other Institutions: CSNSM (Paris), IRAP (Toulouse), CLPU (Salamanca), Univ. Zaragoza, Univ. L'Aquila & INFN-LNGS

ILTP - research project Int.Laboratory for Theor.Cosmology

PI and Co-PI: Odintsov, S. D.
Participants: Elizalde, E., M. de Laurentis,V.K. Oikonomou, A.Timoshkin
Funding Institution: TUSUR univ., Tomsk, Russia

AGORA - Advanced techniques in GNSS and other signals of Opportunity Reflectometry for Applied remote sensing - subproject IEEC/ICE-CSIC

AGORA aims to contribute developing techniques based on sources of opportunity suitable to provide frequent and global observations of the Earth surfaces (ocean, ice, land, vegetation) with enough spatial resolution to resolve mesoscale and sub-mesoscale phenomena; able to operate in all weather conditions; and cost efficient for sustained long term measurements.
PI and Co-PI: Cardellach, E.
Participants: Arco Fernandez, J. C., Fabra, F., Li, W., Oliveras, S., Padullés, R., Ribó, S., Rius, A., Tomas, S.
Funding Institution: Spanish Plan Nacional Espacio
Other Institutions: coordinated with UPC (sub-project 1)

AHEAD - Integrated Activities for the High Energy Astrophysics Domain

We propose a set of integrated Activities in the High Energy Astrophysics Domain (AHEAD) in response to the INFRAIA-2014-2015 call Research Infrastructures for High EnergyAstrophysics.
PI and Co-PI: Hernanz, M.
Participants: Isern, J.
Funding Institution: EU (H2020)
Other Institutions: In Spain: CSIC (ICMAB, ICMA, IMM-CNM, IFCA), Univ. Alacant. INAF (IT): IP of the global project. Univ. Leicester (UK), SRON (NL), MPE (Germany), CEA (F), U. Liege (B), UCD (IE), DTU (Danemark), CAMK (Poland), Greece, Czech R., Estonia, Finland...

AYA2014-57369-C3-1-P - Molecular cores, disks and jets: the effect of the magnetic field

We want to explore the effect of magnetic fields in several aspects of the star formation processes
PI and Co-PI: Girart, J. M.
Participants: Torrelles, J. M., Juárez, C., Busquet, G., Añez, N.
Funding Institution: Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad

ASTERICS - Astronomy ESFRI and Research Infrastructure Cluster

The Astronomy ESFRI and Research Infrastructure Cluster, ASTERICS, is a €15 million Research Infrastructure funded by the European Commission's Horizon 2020 framework. ASTERICS will help solve the Big Data challenges of European astronomy and give members of the public direct interactive access to some of the best of Europe's astronomy images and data.
PI and Co-PI: Michael A. Garret (ASTRON)
Participants: Colomé, J., Garcia-Piquer, Á., de Ona Wilhelmi, E., Torres, D. F.
Funding Institution: EU-H2020

NASA-ESUSPI - JPL Participation on the European ROHP-PAZ Mission

This projects constitutes official NASA participation in the ROHP-PAZ mission through the participation of four researchers of the NASA/Caltech Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL).
PI and Co-PI: Chi O. Ao (NASA/Caltech Jet Propulsion Laboratory)
Participants: Manuel de la Torre Juárez (JPL), F. Joseph Turk (JPL), Anthony J. Mannucci (JPL), Cardellach, E.
Funding Institution: NASA

GEROS - GNSS rEflectometry, Radio Occultation and Scatterometry onboard International Space Station (GEROS-ISS)

GNSS REflectometry, Radio Occultation and Scatterometry onboard International Space Station (GEROS-ISS)
PI and Co-PI: Jens Wickert
Participants: Cardellach, E., (co-chair of GEROS-ISS SAG), Rius, A., Ribó, S., Fabra, F.
Funding Institution: ESA
Other Institutions: GFZ, TUM, Astrium GmbH, DTU, DLR, ETH, OSU, ESOC/ESA