Deutsch Français English Italiano

Coordination actions

WP4: Follow-up of the roadmap - coordination actions

Work package leader: NWO

Description of Work:

The goal of this work package is to coordinate the implementation of the new facilities that are needed to reach community’s scientific goals, while operating existing infrastructure programmes optimally in scientific as well as financial terms - not only joint facilities such as those of ESO or ESA, but also national facilities. Our objective is to take a major step forward in this process. This work package includes coordination actions on large infrastructure projects such as CTA or SKA that have no natural “home” beyond the current finite-term EC contracts; monitoring changes in the global scientific and/or technological context that may require an update or revision of the Roadmap or Science Vision; action on the Roadmap recommendations concerning the Astrophysical Software Laboratory, the Virtual Observatory or Laboratory Astrophysics; and better overall coordination of the European 8m-class telescopes.

Task 4.1 Coordination of existing facilities: European Large Telescope Strategic Review Committee (ELTSRC) for the cost-benefit optimisation of the operation of the European optical/IR 8-10m telescopes (Task leader: MICINN)

The case of existing large 8-10m class telescopes with significant European ownership will have to be addressed, in coordination with ESO and Grantecan. A European Large Telescope Strategy Review Committee (ELTSRC) will be appointed jointly and will report to the ASTRONET Board and the OPTICON Executive Committee. The review should start after the conclusion of the European Telescope Strategy Review Committee (ETSRC), and will build on the experience gained during this process. This exercise shall be done around 2014-2015, once all these new facilities are routinely active and the extremely large telescopes are closer to completion. The ELTSRC remit will be to deliver a short and medium to long-term strategy to optimize the use 8-10m class optical/infrared telescopes by the European astronomical community.

Contact: Jesus Gallego

Task 4.2 European coordination of large astronomical infrastructure projects in preparatory/design phase (Task leader: NWO)

The objective of this task is to identify what specific coordination is needed regarding the large astronomical infrastructure projects that are currently in a preparatory or design phase (e.g. CTA, SKA…) and to provide specific recommendations for their implementation. New large astronomical infrastructures will also be identified and included, if necessary.

Contact: Ronald Stark

Task 4.3 Follow-up the Roadmap (Task leader: STFC)

This task focuses on ensuring that the Roadmap remains up-to-date during the period 2011 to 2015, and planning for a full revision of the Roadmap early in the following period. This will entail consideration of any relevant significant changes to the Science Vision. Significant alterations with respect to those projects recognised as high priority in the existing Roadmap will also be taken into account, together with, for example, the outcomes of the US Decadal Survey and the continuing ESA Cosmic Visions mission selection process.

Contact: Colin Vincent

Task 4.4 Virtual Observatory (VO) and Astrophysical Software Laboratory (ASL) (Task leader: CNRS)

The Roadmap strongly supported the development of the Virtual Observatory (VO) which enables new kinds of multi-wavelength science and presents new challenges to the way that results of theoretical models are presented and compared with real data. It also allows observational data obtained by world class infrastructures to be available to countries that do not have access to these facilities, for research as well as for educational purposes. Several specific recommendations were made, among which two are directly under the control of the funding agencies: the provision of a VO-compliant archive by all new facilities (and an increasing number of existing ones), and the evolution of the VO into a self-sustained structure funded on the long term. Powerful sophisticated codes should be regarded as essential infrastructure on a par and with major observational instruments. The Roadmap thus emphasized the need of an “Astrophysical Software Laboratory” (ASL), a laboratory without walls created to coordinate and fund software developments and support, user training, postdoctoral positions within a programme of pan-European networks and to set standards. The precise nature of this laboratory, and the actions required to set it up need to be investigated in more details. ASTRONET might specifically fund proposals of Astrophysical Software Laboratory nature of multidisciplinary, multinational teams within the scheme of joint calls. This possibility will be passed over to Task 5.5.

Contact: Denis Mourard

Task 4.5 Implementation of Roadmap recommendations to organise and strengthen Laboratory Astrophysics research in Europe (Task leader: NWO)

The European astronomical community has identified Laboratory Astrophysics as high priority for all of astronomy in both the Science Vision and the Roadmap. The objective of this task is to implement the recommendations regarding Laboratory Astrophysics presented in the Infrastructure Roadmap.

Contact: Ronald Stark

This section's articles

Latest Events

New ASTRONET Board :

On 9 Dec 2016, the new ASTRONET Board has hold its first meeting at ESO headquarters, celebrating the signature of the new Memorandum of Understanding and the continuation of a success story for the coordination of national funding agencies and international organizations for Astronomy in Europe. ASTRONET is now ready for a self-sustainable organization, the first step being to complete within a few weeks the representation of many additional national agencies in Europe that have indicated their intention to join.

Picture l.t.r.:

Conny Aerts (Belgium, FWO), Denis Mourard (France, CNRS), Ronald Stark (The Netherlands, NWO), Colin Vincent (United Kingdom, STFC), Rob Ivison (ESO), Saskia Matheussen (The Netherlands, NWO), Luca Valenziano (Italy, INAF, participation by visioconf)


Astronet publishes reports :

ASTRONET publishes several reports as the ERTRC "Report on the implementation of the radio telescope review committee recommendations". Please see Menu/Resources/Document Archives/Publications/ASTRONET FP7 or click here:

Letter of Intent :

Please find the «Letter of Intent» in the Private Area (Templates)

The Next Decade :

A special session «ASTRONET 2015-2025 - The Next Decade» at EWASS 2015 was held in La Laguna on 24 June 2015.


ASTRONET was started in 2005 and supported by the EU under FP6 and FP7 to establish a permanent mechanism for the coordination of the investments in European astronomy. This initial period produced a Science Vision and a Roadmap that covers scientific topics from the solar neighborhood to the limits of the observable Universe and also engaged virtually all astronomical communities and funding agencies in Europe in this coordination.

Having completed these major steps, ASTRONET is now prepared to launch its permanent successor in order to continue the science-based strategic planning for the development of all European Astronomy. The ASTRONET LAUNCH EVENT was held at the OBSERVATOIRE DE PARIS on 17 June 2015.

Board meeting June 2015 :

The Board Meeting No. 5 was held on 17 June in Paris.

Update Science Vision :

Please find here the final, published update to the ASTRONET Science Vision:

Update Infrastructure Roadmap :

Please find here the final, published update to the ASTRONET Infrastructure Roadmap:

Overview of proposal deadlines :

ASTRONET offers here an overview of proposal deadlines concerning current and forthcoming calls for proposals issued by ASTRONET partner agencies including timescales and thematic constraints. Also listed are permanently open funding programmes of ASTRONET agencies. This overview (ASTRONET’s Task 5.4) is meant to provide information for interested transnational research groups on European wide funding opportunities in order to foster coordinated funding of transnational research projects: