Development of Research Technology and Infrastructure

LBT_cms.jpgOwing to the size of the cosmos and the objects within, it is rarely possible to emulate cosmic conditions in terrestrial labs, let alone perform physical experiments with astrophysical objects. Ever improving observations provide the only way to verify the properties of these objects. Astrophysicists observe the sky, mostly using a small number of very large telescopes, which are placed on sites with nearly optimum atmospheric conditions such as Arizona, Chile, or in space. Astrophysics continually pushes the limits of technological feasibility. And today, powerful computer simulations allow to test astrophysical theories and interpretation of observations.

As astrophysical systems are very complex, the demands on the available computer hardware and software are extreme, and astrophysicists have always been amongst the power-users of national and international supercomputer centres.