3rd EUROCAL Management Committee Meeting

The EuroCal project Management Committee (consisting of the FORTH representative and project PI Prof. V. Charmandaris, the Max-Plank Institute for Radioastronomy representative Prof. Director J.A. Zensus, and Caltech representative Prof. A.C.S Readhead) held its second meeting in September of 2015, in Bonn, Germany. Prof. Charmandaris joined by telecon for part of the meeting, while his representative, Prof. Pavlidou of FORTH/U. Crete, was there for the entire duration of the meeting. The Committee also met with all the other EuroCal task leaders (Prof. I. Papadakis, Prof. V. Pavlidou, and Prof. K. Tassis) to discuss progress on individual EuroCal tasks and plan for the next two years of the project.

The Committee revisited its agreed-upon road map for attacking the EuroCal project tasks. As a reminder, the original road map focuses on two main themes: Active Galactic Nuclei, and Exceptionally Luminous Galaxies. Targets originally laid our were: A) transfer of knowledge; B) strengthening of existing collaborative projects and starting of new collaborative projects; C) bridging theory and observations.

As far as Active Galactic Nuclei are concerned, the Committee noted the successive conclusion of two full years of observations with novel optopolarimeter RoboPol, mounted at the 1.3m telescope of the Skinakas observatories. The 3rd year of observations was ongoing at the time of the meeting and was fast approaching its successful conclusion. The RoboPol data represent a monumental leap forward in observational optopolarimetry of AGN. At the same time, RoboPol produced an impressive amount of optopolarimetric data relevant to studies of the interstellar medium and star formation. In collaboration with the RoboPol Collaboration representatives, a roadmap for releasing the full dataset to the scientific community was discussed.

Because of the vast amount of analysis and interpretation work left to be conducted upon the conclusion of the three seasons of RoboPol observations, it was agreed that the secondment scheduling of the EUROCAL project should be re-planned so that particular weight is given to the last year of secondments. In addition to the scientific rationale discussed above, this administrative change was deemed necessary because several of the students and postdocs involved with the project (Liodakis, Tritsis, Panopoulou, Blinov, Pillai, Kaufmann, Miserlis) will be in their final year of their respective contracts in the last year of the EUROCAL project. Large secondments in that last critical year would be extremely beneficial to them, in order to forge new collaborations as they enter a new stage in their career, disseminate their work to a wider audience, and acquire new and valuable training and skills right before they will be applying for new positions. The plan would have them returning to their home institution (FORTH/U. Crete or MPIfR) by the end of the EUROCAL project, which would give them at least six months at their home institution after their return, so that the desired transfer of knowledge can occur effectively, as the seconded researchers can in turn train younger members of their home teams.

The scientific achievements of all Work Packages and Tasks were reviewed and found very satisfactory.

Project EUROCAL is supported by the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme, through an International Research Staff Exchange Scheme (IRSES) Marie Curie Action, under grant agreemen PIRSES-GA-2012-316788.