Yearbook 2012

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The Sun formed about 4.6 billion years ago and is located today in a region of a low stellar density. Susanne Pfalzner and her team investigate whether the Sun formed in a similar environment or not. They find several clues that the Sun was born in close proximity of other stars that influenced the nascent planetary system. By combining theory and observation the birth environment of the Solar system can be surprisingly well characterized. more
Supermassive black holes can power fast, well-collimated jets of magnetized plasma that transport energy from the black hole – accretion disk system to distances of hundreds of thousands of light years. Many physical processes governing the jets are not well-understood including their formation, stability, magnetic field structure, and energy dissipation. Long-term monitoring of a large sample of active galactic nuclei jets using ultra-high resolution radio interferometry is bringing us closer to the answers to these questions. more
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