Mystery Yellow Hypergiant HR 5171 solved

An international team of astronomers, including Alex Lobel, astrophysicist of the Royal Observatory of Belgium, have discovered the origin of mysterious blue light near the Yellow Hypergiant HR 5171A.

The light was accidentally observed in the early 1970ies by a team member, but without providing a good explanation for it. More than 40 years later the team’s research reveals the light [...]

Space Weather – Belgian wins an award

Since 2013, space weather medals are awarded at the annual European Space Weather Week conference. This year Dr. David Berghmans, a Belgian scientist at the Royal Observatory of Belgium, won the Marcel Nicolet medaille for his efforts to structure the space weather community at an international level. [...]

European Space Weather Week (ESWW)

What is the probability a solar storm will occur? – Will the solar panels of satellites in a geostationary orbit be damaged? – Can the sun cause radar blackouts disrupting air traffic?


The Belgian instrument LaRa (for Lander Radioscience) has been selected for the ExoMars Platform 2018

The European Space Agency (ESA) in collaboration with the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) has chosen the set of instruments to be put on the ExoMars platform to be launched in 2018. This platform is part of the ExoMars mission that will deliver in 2019 the ESA-built rover to the Martian surface. Among the chosen instruments is the Belgian transponder [...]

The Perseids – Watching and Listening to Falling Stars

Like every year, Earth will pass mid August through the trajectory of the dust cloud left behind comet Swift-Tuttle very likely giving us a night sky filled with bright falling stars. The moon will be in a cooperative mood and won’t shed its light, thus promising a dark night. Meteors can also be heart on radio, when transmitted radio signals [...]

Prestigious European Grant for Dr. Véronique Dehant

The European Research Council (ERC) has announced the award of its prestigious Advanced Grants to 190 senior researchers. The funding, worth in total €445 million, will enable them and their teams to pursue ground-breaking ideas. One of these researchers is Dr. Véronique Dehant of ROB, with the project RotaNut: Rotation and Nutation of a wobbly Earth.

Testing is underway on NASA’s next mission to Mars

A lander called InSight, an abbreviation for Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport, is scheduled to launch in March 2016. It will be the first mission devoted to understanding the interior structure of the Red Planet. [...]