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. More info.

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. More info.


The Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research takes the current risk situation due to the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 very seriously. It is the Institute's primary objective to minimize the risk of infection for its staff and to contribute in general to minimizing the spread of the virus. Read more about current measures and restrictions here.

The MPS in times of corona: Current status

The Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research takes the current risk situation due to the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 very seriously. It is the Institute's primary objective to minimize the risk of infection for its staff and to contribute in general to minimizing the spread of the virus.
Read more about current measures and restrictions here.

In cosmic comparison, the Sun is a bore. While the brightness of some other stars with similar characteristics fluctuates strongly, the Sun’s variations are much more moderate. Scientists from MPS have now investigated how exactly sun- and starspots affect this behavior. In addition to the number and size of the spots, their distribution plays a crucial role. If groups of sunspots were to appear more frequently clumped together in so-called nests, the Sun’s brightness variations could well keep up with those of its cosmic peers.

Starspots: Revving up the Variability of Solar-like Stars

In cosmic comparison, the Sun is a bore. While the brightness of some other stars with similar characteristics fluctuates strongly, the Sun’s variations are much more moderate. Scientists from MPS have now investigated how exactly sun- and starspots affect this behavior. In addition to the number and size of the spots, their distribution plays a crucial role. If groups of sunspots were to appear more frequently clumped together in so-called nests, the Sun’s brightness variations could well keep up with those of its cosmic peers.

In the past one and a half years, the Sun has been rather dull: hardly a sunspot covered its surface, hardly a solar flare hurled radiation and particles into space. As observational data now show, for the last nine months solar activity has been slowly picking up again. This confirms predictions made by the Solar Cycle 25 Prediction Panel, an international panel of experts, in March last year. The panel, whose members include Dr. Robert Cameron from MPS in Germany, expects the Sun to be as tame in the now beginning solar cycle 25 as it has been in the previous eleven years.

Solar cycle 25 has begun

In the past one and a half years, the Sun has been rather dull: hardly a sunspot covered its surface, hardly a solar flare hurled radiation and particles into space. As observational data now show, for the last nine months solar activity has been slowly picking up again. This confirms predictions made by the Solar Cycle 25 Prediction Panel, an international panel of experts, in March last year. The panel, whose members include Dr. Robert Cameron from MPS in Germany, expects the Sun to be as tame in the now beginning solar cycle 25 as it has been in the previous eleven years.

The sensor JEI, which will from 2029 onwards study the distribution of high-energetic electrons and ions in the Jovian system on board ESA's JUICE spacecraft, has been completed. JUICE is scheduled to be launched in 2022, but JEI's journey has already begun. The sensor, which over the past three years has been developed, built, and tested at MPS, arrived at the University of Bern (Switzerland). In the department "Space Research & Planetary Sciences" of the Institute of Physics, JEI will now integrated with other sensors of the instrument package PEP.

JUICE’s JEI-sensor: First stop on the way to Jupiter

The sensor JEI, which will from 2029 onwards study the distribution of high-energetic electrons and ions in the Jovian system on board ESA's JUICE spacecraft, has been completed. JUICE is scheduled to be launched in 2022, but JEI's journey has already begun. The sensor, which over the past three years has been developed, built, and tested at MPS, arrived at the University of Bern (Switzerland). In the department "Space Research & Planetary Sciences" of the Institute of Physics, JEI will now integrated with other sensors of the instrument package PEP.

Research Departments


Sun and Heliosphere

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.

Planets and Comets

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.

Solar and Stellar Interiors

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


International Office

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

IMPRS

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

Staff at the MPS

Staff directory

Restaurant at the End of the Universe

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

News


Seminars

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News

Starspots: Revving up the Variability of Solar-like Stars

September 22, 2020

In cosmic comparison, the Sun is a bore. While the brightness of some other stars with similar characteristics fluctuates strongly, the Sun’s variations are much more moderate. Scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research (MPS) ...

Solar cycle 25 has begun

September 15, 2020

In the past one and a half years, the Sun has been rather dull: hardly a sunspot covered its surface, hardly a solar flare hurled radiation and particles into space. As observational data now show, for the last nine months solar activity has been ...

Karen Harvey Prize for Prof. Dr. Hui Tian

August 21, 2020

Prof. Dr. Hui Tian, who leads a partner group of the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research (MPS) at Peking University in China, has received this year's Karen Harvey Prize of the Solar Physics Division of the American Astronomical Society ...

JUICE’s JEI-sensor:
First stop on the way to Jupiter

August 20, 2020

The sensor JEI (Jovian Electron and Ion Sensor), which will from 2029 onwards study the distribution of high-energetic electrons and ions in the Jovian system on board ESA's JUICE (Jupiter Icy Moon Explorer) spacecraft, has been completed. JUICE is ...

Job Offers

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