The 2nd ESO-Australia joint conference

By Claudia Lagos
[email protected]

Attendees at the 2nd ESO-Australia joint conference. Image credit: Aaron Robotham, ICRAR.
The 2nd ESO-Australia joint conference (ESOz-2020) from 17-21 Feb 2020 in Perth brought together 120 researchers across the world (with 57% Australia-based and 43% based abroad) to discuss the build up of baryons across multiple tracers and facilities, and start a conversation about coordination of surveys from multiple facilities in order to move towards a truly panchromatic view of baryons in the Universe.
Talks spanned a range of topics from instruments, surveys and simulations; and from the Milky-Way to nearby galaxies, all the way to the epoch of reionisation. It is clear that we are starting a new era of instruments and surveys being planned simultaneously, bringing engineers and astronomers more closely than ever before, maximizing the scientific outcome of the investment.

Most of the talks highlighted the need to study baryons and galaxies across the electromagnetic spectrum to uncover a variety of phenomena, including outflows from the Milky Way and Magellanic Clouds; intergalactic gas around galaxies unveiled through Fast Radio Bursts and other transient phenomena; accounting of baryons – stars, cold gas, neutral gas, dust, etc. – across cosmic time; among many others. From the simulation talks is was clear that galaxy formation theory is not a fundamental theory and hence focus should preferentially be on qualitative trends. The Australia-ESO community is clearly gaining momentum and this series of conferences has contributed tremendously to showcase the benefit of this Strategic Partnership as well as promoting new collaborations.


Michael Murphy is the Australian representative on the ESO Science Technical Committee. Contact: [email protected]

Caroline Foster is the Australian representative on the ESO Users Committee. Contact: [email protected]

Stuart Ryder is a Program Manager with AAL. Contact: [email protected]

Guest posts are also welcome – please submit these to [email protected]