Astroparticle and Cosmology Laboratory

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
AstroParticle and Cosmology laboratory
AstroParticule et Cosmologie (APC)
Type Mixed Research Unit (UMR)
Established 2005 (2005)
Director Stavros Katsanevas
Academic staff
Administrative staff
Location Paris, France
Campus Paris Rive Gauche (location)
Affiliations Paris Diderot University, CNRS, CEA, Paris Observatory
Logo of the Astroparticle and Cosmology (APC) Laboratory.png

The Astroparticle and Cosmology (APC) laboratory in Paris was founded in January 2005[1][2] to unite scientific research teams that began to cooperate in 1999-2004 in three main areas: high-energy astrophysics, cosmology and gravitation, and neutrinos.[3] These teams included experimentalists, theorists and observers. The creation of the laboratory coincided with the establishment of Paris Diderot University on its new campus of Paris Rive Gauche in 2006. The university had previously been located on the Paris Jussieu campus. The laboratory is a "Mixed Research Unit" in French terminology, funded by Paris Diderot University, the Centre national de la recherche scientifique (represented by three of its Institutes: mainly IN2P3, but also INSU and INP), the Commissariat à l'énergie atomique et aux énergies alternatives, and the Paris Observatory.

The first director of the laboratory was Pierre Binetruy (2005-2013). Since January 2014 the director is Stavros Katsanevas.

Research activities[edit]

Cosmology and gravitation[edit]

This group, headed by Yannick Giraud-Héraud, includes three main areas of research:

  1. Experimental investigation of the cosmic microwave background, with particular emphasis on the detection of B-modes that could provide the signature of inflation. Researchers are actively involved in the Planck space mission[4] and Qubic experiment[5]
  2. Cosmological analysis of large spectroscopic and imaging surveys for the determination of constraints on the nature of dark energy. Researchers are involved in the wide-field observatories aimed at understanding the nature of dark energy: the large field Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey,[6] telescope LSST[7] and the Euclid space mission[8]
  3. The detection of gravitational waves using both ground-based (Virgo interferometer)[9] and space-based (Laser Interferometer Space Antenna and its precursor LISA Pathfinder) instruments[10]

High-energy astrophysics[edit]

Research carried out by this group, headed by Etienne Parizot, aims at understanding the violent phenomena of the universe (mostly within compact stars, neutron stars, or black holes). The group is engaged in many international projects with telescopes or instruments detecting photons, cosmic rays, or neutrinos. For the observation of

  1. X-rays, it is involved in the future space mission Astro-H[11]
  2. gamma rays, it is involved in the INTEGRAL observatory,[12] the High Energy Stereoscopic System,[13] and the Cherenkov Telescope Array[14]
  3. cosmic rays of ultra-high energy, it is involved in the Pierre Auger Observatory[15] and JEM-EUSO[16]
  4. neutrinos, it is involved in the ANTARES[17] and KM3NeT projects[18] collaborations
  5. gravitational waves, it is involved in the Virgo interferometer collaboration[9]


The research carried out by this group, headed by Antoine Kouchner, is dedicated to understanding neutrino properties is one of the laboratories' main activities. Researchers are involved in studies of the phenomenon of oscillation (Borexino, Double Chooz)[19][20] and on future projects addressing the measurement of the neutrino mass hierarchy with atmospheric neutrinos with the deep-sea water Cherenkov telescope Orca[21] and the long-baseline neutrino oscillation project Laguna-LBNO.[22]

Data science and computational astrophysics[edit]

This group (formerly named ADAMIS), headed by Radek Stompor, focuses on the use of computer science, and numerical or statistical techniques to address physics data analysis or simulation topics.


This group, headed by David Langlois, covers the research topics of the laboratory from a theoretical perspective. It also carries out work on other areas of fundamental physics.


The staff of the laboratory consists of 75 permanent researchers and over 60 engineers, technicians, and administrative personnel, plus about 125 non-permanent employees (PhD students, postdoctoral fellows, visitors). In addition, the Paris Center for Cosmological Physics directed by George Smoot is also part of the laboratory[23] and one of the three functional centres of the Astroparticle Physics European Consortium is based here.[24]

An "International Associated Laboratory" in astroparticle physics was launched in September 2007. It associates the APC laboratory with the Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology (Stanford University).[25]


The laboratory has been evaluated twice by the AERES: in 2008[26] and in 2013.[3] In the latter evaluation, the lab won excellent scores (A or A+ in all criteria).


  1. ^ "Astroparticle physics and cosmology laboratory opens in Paris". CERN Courrier. CERN. January 2005. Retrieved 14 January 2014. 
  2. ^ "A Successful Interaction". Magazine Observatoire de Paris. No. 1. Observatoire de Paris. March–May 2005. p. 7. Retrieved 13 January 2014. Created the 1st January 2005, APC is managed, other than by the Paris 7 University, by the CNRS 1, the CEA 2 and the Observatoire de Paris. 
  3. ^ a b AERES report on unit (PDF) (Report). 2013. Retrieved 14 January 2014. 
  4. ^ "The Planck Satellite website". 2009-04-03. Retrieved 2014-01-14. 
  5. ^ "[ QUBIC website ]". 2009-04-03. Retrieved 2014-01-14. 
  6. ^ "SDSS-III Institutions - SDSS-III". Retrieved 2014-01-14. 
  7. ^
  8. ^ "Euclid Consortium | A space mission to map the Dark Universe". Retrieved 2014-01-14. 
  9. ^ a b "Virgo collaboration data base". Retrieved 2014-01-14. 
  10. ^ "LISA - LISA Pathfinder - Collaboration". Retrieved 2014-01-14. 
  11. ^
  12. ^ "ESA Science & Technology: INTEGRAL reveals new facets of the Vela pulsar wind nebula". 2012-01-25. Retrieved 2014-01-14. 
  13. ^ "H.E.S.S. - The High Energy Stereoscopic System". 2013-06-04. Retrieved 2014-01-14. 
  14. ^ "Members of the CTA Consortium". 2013-11-22. Retrieved 2014-01-14. 
  15. ^ "Pierre Auger Observatory". Retrieved 2014-01-14. 
  16. ^
  17. ^ "ANTARES collaboration". Retrieved 2014-01-14. 
  18. ^ "Opens a new window on our universe". KM3NeT. 2013-12-27. Retrieved 2014-01-14. 
  19. ^ Paolo Saggese. "Borexino Experiment Official Web Site". Retrieved 2014-01-14. 
  20. ^ "Double Chooz Web Page". 2012-02-16. Retrieved 2014-01-14. 
  21. ^
  22. ^
  23. ^ "[ The PCCP website ]". Retrieved 2014-01-14. 
  24. ^
  25. ^ "Astroparticle Physics Labs Join Forces". CNRS International Magazine. No. 8. October 2007.  Check date values in: |year= / |date= mismatch (help)
  26. ^ Rapport du comité d'experts (PDF) (Report) (in French). 2008. Retrieved 14 January 2014. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 48°49′46″N 2°22′55″E / 48.8294°N 2.3819°E / 48.8294; 2.3819