Diego F. Torres
We are fascinated by space. The vast and dynamic sky, which we study at all frequency ranges, even in gravitational waves, both from ground and space, makes us wonder and dream. And we love these feelings.
We want to understand the cosmos with a space sciences perspective. We wish to excel in our research, and are interested in developing both theoretical models as well as technologies to scrutinize our subject study, being it a planet, star, a galaxy, or the whole universe. We are also interested in using space technologies to understand more about our own Earth, to model better its climate change and to develop predictive tools that could help avoid the effects of natural disasters.
This web intends to convey not only the results and aims of our research, but a bit of our own motivation to study these topics, as a way of inviting others to join us in this endeavour.
We participate at a significant level in more than a dozen missions and ground-based experiments. Among these we can quote a significant participation in missions of the importance of LISA Pathfinder & LISA for the detection of the gravitational waves (for the former, we did the essential-to-the-mission Data Management Unity and were responsible of the Data Diagnostic Subsystem), Euclid (we are responsible of instrument filter tray, and in the Ground Segment, leading the Simulations Organization Unit and the Photometric Redshift Organization Unit), and the NASA led Fermi-Gamma-ray Observatory (in the Science Team already before launch, being the only institution in Spain that is member of the collaboration running such facility). From the ground, we have made significant contributions to experiments such as the Cherenkov Telescope Array (developing its complex scheduling system), the Dark Energy Survey (contributing to the DECam CCD, electronics and Telescope guider), and are scientifically leading the CARMENES spectrograph. These are all but a few examples. This web gives further details.
The main asset (and aim) of our institute is the ability of producing cutting-edge theoretical and phenomenological modelling of what we study observationally, so that we close that virtuous circle that goes from technological development, to observations, to understanding, by participating in all three. This is not the ability of just one group of persons within the Institute of Space Sciences, this is who we are, and what we intend to be our seal of quality.
This connection translates in a high productivity, through a widely-cited collection of scientific papers. For instance, our production in 2011-2015 was systematically measured together with that of all others CSIC institutes, in "La actividad científica del CSIC a través de indicadores bibliométricos (Web of Science, 2011-2015)", IFS-CSIC, Madrid, December 2016 (available online here
). From there, we gathered that:
- We are the #1 CSIC institute in all areas of Physics in Catalunya when sorted by productivity, despite the differences in personnel numbers (p. 112).
- Our papers are quoted more than twice the worldwide average (p. 106).
- Of all CSIC institutes (more than 40) publishing in the area of Astronomy and Astrophysics, we are #3 by sheer number of papers (despite the differences in personnel with other institutes that are twice to thrice our size) (p. 180).
- 89% of our production is published in the top first quartile of the journals sorted by impact factor (p. 97).
- 88% of our papers published in the period 2011-2015 have already been cited in January 2016 (p. 97) and we are #2 institute of all 47 CSIC institutes in Physics when sorted by cites per article (p. 97).
- From the top 1% of the most cited articles in Physics and Space Sciences (87 articles) produced by CSIC in the period 2011-2015, we produced 24 (27%) (p. 873).
Come and visit us, we'll be glad to host you. And if you are a student or a young researcher interested in space sciences and wish to pursue a career in this field, consider becoming a member of our adventure.