Research Highlights and News

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THCA Welcomes New Faculty Member Prof. Xuening Bai

Prof. Bai comes to Tsinghua from Harvard University, where he was a research associate and a lecturer at Institute for Theory and Computation, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. He was an undergraduate student at Tsinghua in the academic talent program (基础科学班) from 2003 to 2007, when he was a student member of THCA. He received his PhD in astrophysical sciences from Princeton University in 2012, where he was awarded the Charlotte E. Proctor Honorific Fellowship in 2011, an honor conferred on only the most distinguished PhD students at Princeton. He won the prestigious Hubble fellowship for which he chose the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics as the host.


THCA Professor publishes a review paper in ARA&A

On August 18, 2017, a review paper entitled Ultraluminous X-ray Sources was published in this year’s Annual Review of Astronomy and Astrophysics, written by THCA Professor Hua Feng (second author), in collaboration with Philip Kaaret (first author), and Tim Roberts. The paper reviews the observational facts of a special kind of X-ray sources in the sky, so-called ultra-luminous X-ray sources (ULXs), and how theoretical models and numerical simulations can explain the data. The link between the studies of ULXs, the early universe, and the detection of gravitational waves is also discussed. Prof. Feng’s major interests are 1) to understand the physics around compact objects, including ULXs and 2) to develop novel instrumentation for future X-ray astronomy.


2017 Summer School for Astrophysics at Tsinghua

On July 10-14, 2017, the summer school for excellent college students of astrophysics at Tsinghua University was held in the west lecture classroom of Tsinghua University. It was participated by more than 70 students from seventeen schools such as Tsinghua University, Peking University, University of Science & Technology of China, Zhejiang University and Sichuan University, etc.


Tsinghua-SRON MOU on X-ray Astronomy

Tsinghua Unversity and SRON Netherlands Institute for Space Research formally signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on collaboration in space science and technology, specifically on developing advanced X-ray imaging spectrometer, mainly for astronomical applications but the technology is expected to find broad applications in many areas including material science and medicine. SRON is a world leader in space technology, having played key roles in ESA (as well as other international) space missions. SRON is actively engaged in the discussion of the Hot Universe Baryon Surveyor (HUBS) mission concept developed in China, and in helping advance the concept internationally. The primary scientific objectives of the HUBS mission are to find the “missing matter” in the universe and to study its physical and chemical properties. The MoU stipulates that Tsinghua and SRON supports the exchange of research personnel, collaboration on detector R&D, and joint effort on advancing the HUBS concept.


The First HUBS Collaboration Meeting at Tsinghua

The first HUBS collaboration meeting was held in Tsinghua on June 28, 2017. The Hot Universe Baryon Surveyor (HUBS) X-ray satellite concept, submitted by Prof. Wei Cui of the Tsinghua Center for Astrophysics, was selected in the preliminary round of decisions by the National Space Science Center (NSSC) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences in April, and is being further developed for the next round of selections.


Hard X-ray Modulation Telescope Launched Successfully

On June 15th, 2017, the Hard X-ray Modulation Telescope (HXMT), China's first X-ray astronomical satellite, was launched successfully on the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center.