Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research

The research focus of the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research is our cosmic neighborhood: the solar system with its planets and moons, comets and asteroids as well as the sun. The aim of the scientists is to describe the processes in the solar system in models and to simulate them on the computer. In addition, instruments are being developed and built to study these bodies from space. The Institute is involved in numerous space missions.

PLATO clears decisive hurdle

The European Space Agency (ESA) has given the green light to build the flight models of the spacecraft and science payload for the PLATO mission to search for extrasolar planets. The Critical Milestone Review officially concluded on 11 January 2022. This means that the production of the hardware for the space telescope system can now commence. The Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research (MPS) in Göttingen is leading the development of the PLATO Data Center.

 

Oxygen ions in Jupiter's innermost radiation belts

Nearly 20 years after the end of NASA's Galileo mission to Jupiter, scientists led by the MPS have unlocked a new secret from the mission's data sets. For the first time, the research team was able to determine beyond doubt that the high-energy ions surrounding the gas giant as part of its inner radiation belt are primarily oxygen and sulfur ions.  Near the orbit of the moon Amalthea, which orbits Jupiter further inward, the team discovered an unexpectedly high concentration of high-energy oxygen ions.
 

ERC Starting Grant for
Pradeep Chitta

The European Research Council has awarded Dr. Lakshmi Pradeep Chitta a Starting Grant of about 1.5 million Euros. Over the next five years, the MPS scientist will have the opportunity to pursue one of the great unsolved mysteries of solar research: How does our star heat its outer atmosphere, the solar corona, to unimaginable temperatures of up to 10 million degrees Celsius?

Picture Gallery:
Preparing for the 3rd Flight of Sunrise

In the clean rooms at MPS, the balloon-borne solar observatory Sunrise III is gradually taking shape. Launch is planned for the summer of 2022. Sunrise III will look at the Sun from the stratosphere with the help of a 1-meter telescope and three scientific instruments.

Research Departments

The focus of this department is the solar interior, the solar atmosphere, the solar magnetic field, the heliosphere, and the interplanetary medium, as well as solar radiation and solar energetic particles. The balloon-mission Sunrise, a balloon-borne solar observatory, is managed by this department. The mission investigates our central star from a height of about 35 km. In addition to several other participations in space missions, the department significantly contributes to the ESA's Solar Orbiter.

This department investigates the interior, the surfaces, atmospheres, ionospheres, and magnetospheres of planets and their moons, as well as comets and asteroids. The department currently contributes or has contributed to important space missions such as the ESA's missions JUICE to the Jovian system, BepiColombo to Mercury and Rosetta to comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko as well as NASA's missions InSight to Mars and Dawn to the asteroid belt.

Helioseismology and asteroseismology are tools that use the oscillations of the Sun and stars to probe their interior structure and dynamics. This allows us to test and refine the theory of stellar structure and evolution, thereby bringing us closer to understanding solar and stellar magnetism. The department hosts the German Data Center for NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, and is preparing to host the data center of ESA's exoplanet hunting mission, PLATO.

At a Glance

On the pages of the International Office, new employees and guests will find information for their stay in Göttingen and at the institute.

PhD programme: International Max Planck Research School for Solar System Science at the University of Göttingen.

Staff directory

Canteen at the MPS
Mon - Fri 9 - 13
This week's menu

News

Seminars

S3 Seminar: Useful tools lightning talks

Jan 26, 2022 14:00 - 15:30
BigBlueButton, Room: "BigBlueButton"

S3 Seminar: Iterative Heliseismic Holography (Björn Müller)

Feb 2, 2022 14:00 - 14:30
BigBlueButton, Room: "BigBlueButton"

S3 Seminar: Activity of the Main-Belt Comet 324P/La Sagra (Maria Mastropietro)

Feb 2, 2022 14:30 - 15:00
BigBlueButton, Room: "BigBlueButton"

IMPRS Defense: Strong magnetic fields and unusual flows in sunspots (Juan Sebastian Castellanos Duran)

Feb 3, 2022 15:00 - 17:00
Max-Plack-Institut für Sonnensystemforschung, Room: Auditorium

S3 Seminar: The Acceleration Process of Solar Spicules (Rajees Uthayasegaram)

Feb 9, 2022 14:00 - 14:30
BigBlueButton, Room: "BigBlueButton"

S3 Seminar: Solar magnetograms as a proxy for irradiance at Mars (Isabela de Oliveira Martins)

Feb 9, 2022 14:30 - 15:00
BigBlueButton, Room: "BigBlueButton"

News

PLATO clears decisive hurdle

January 19, 2022

The European Space Agency (ESA) has given the green light to build the flight models of the spacecraft and science payload for the PLATO mission to search for extrasolar planets. The Critical Milestone Review officially concluded on 11 January 2022 ...

Nearly 20 years after the end of NASA's Galileo mission to Jupiter, scientists led by the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research (MPS) in Germany have unlocked a new secret from the mission's extensive data sets. For the first time, the ...

The European Research Council (ERC) has awarded Dr. Lakshmi Pradeep Chitta a Starting Grant of about 1.5 million Euros. Over the next five years, the MPS scientist will have the opportunity to pursue one of the great unsolved mysteries of solar ...

Jupiter is the largest and most massive of the eight planets in the solar system, with 80 known moons orbiting it. In addition, it is adorned by a system of several rings, although they do not reach the magnificence of Saturn's rings. Jupiter's rings ...

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