Astronomy Doctoral Programme

Degree: PhD
University: University of Porto , Faculty: Faculdade de Cincias
City: Porto , Country: Portugal
Discipline: Natural Sciences
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  • Start Date of Studies October
  • Admission deadline June 30; September 17
  • Language English
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  • Programme Description

    Programme Description

    The main objective of this 3rd Cycle of Studies in Astronomy, offered by the Physics and Astronomy Department of the Faculty of Sciences, is to train future astronomers and researchers. The Program is open both to high quality Portuguese and foreign students who have completed a 2nd Cycle in Astronomy, Physics, Mathematics or similar fields of science. Students who have completed a 1st Cycle and have a particularly relevant CV may also be accepted in the Program. Furthermore, due to the increasingly technological component of the recent astronomy projects, we also aim at attracting students with a diversified background, namely in technology and engineering, systems and control, or informatics, amongst other areas. Astronomy offers them unique and exciting opportunities for further training.

    The Astronomy projects being developed at the European Southern Observatory (ESO), of which Portugal is a member, cover areas almost unexplored by science, such as Interferometry in the infrared with the Very Large Telescope Interferometer (VLTI) and in the sub-millimeter with the Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA). In addition, the current and future missions of the European Space Agency (ESA, of which Portugal is also a member), namely Herschel, Planck, Gaia and James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), will further add to the challenges and visibility of Astronomy.

    New domains will be open to observation. In parallel, innovative diagnostic tools and techniques are being integrated, as well as new ways of accessing and operating the facilities. The large telescopes in operation, and the ones under construction or being designed as the European-Extreme Large Telescope (E-ELT), real data collecting machines, require innovative technologies (adaptive optics for example), complex systems and techniques for the data handling, processing and analysis as well as new attitudes in the way astronomers access their own data. Further to that the use of the "Virtual Observatories" building upon various data banks and data bases, which include data from ground and space observations, also add new dimensions and opportunities.

    Consequently, the role of Astronomy as a privileged area for multidisciplinary training, across various fields of science and technology, shines out clearly. The adequate training of the future astronomers and researchers, from a wide range of backgrounds, becomes even more challenging in order to fully prepare them in those new wide fields. Further to that, it is mandatory to expose and involve those young researchers, right from the beginning of their training, to international collaboration and participation in multinational and multidisciplinary teams.


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