MW-Gaia WG5 workshop
Breaking Barriers: Inspiring the Next Generation

Santiago de Compostela, Spain, May 23 - 25, 2022

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Molėtai observatory research cources - Breaking Barriers: Inspiring the Next Generation

Breaking Barriers: Inspiring the Next Generation

The workshop will be hybrid, and will be held May 23 - 25, 2022

The workshop “Breaking Barriers: Inspiring the Next Generation” is about bringing the astronomical community together and get inspired by the way data from the Gaia mission is used in the different areas of astronomy.

The main purpose of the meeting is the development and implementation of the following plans:

  • Framework of Research Coordination Action
  • Training Plan
  • Impact and Inclusion Plan
  • Dissemination Plan

This includes tasks such as: impact of future advances on our understanding of the Milky Way, effective implementation of inclusion policies (such as geography, gender, age), outreach and advertising activities, and training tasks for future generations of astrometry experts.

The Gaia astrometric mission has recorded more than a billion stars in our Milky Way and neighbouring galaxies. It measures stellar positions, parallaxes and movements as well as physical properties with an unprecedented level of accuracy. Gaia has already published three catalogues, the most complete ever produced in our Galaxy, and the scientific exploitation by the international community is published at a rate of 3-4 articles per day. It is currently one of the most important astronomical research projects in the world. A true revolution in astronomy.

The meeting is part of the project “Revealing the Milky Way with Gaia” (MW-Gaia) funded by a COST (European Cooperation in Science and Technology) Union action.    

MW-Gaia’s main purpose is to provide a better understanding of the Galaxy, its stars and planets, to enhance the potential of the community in its scientific exploitation of the observations of more than a billion stars with the European Space Agency's Gaia satellite, and to enhance the development of the next steps in astrometry and space astrometry missions.    
The meeting is especially aimed at WG5 members of the project, who will discuss the current state of their work and discuss the future decisions to be taken. Participants are mainly expected from countries that are part of the COST MW-Gaia Action, but the workshop is open to scientists from all over the world, an international participation that we want to encourage. Researchers who are in the early stages of their careers and those from underrepresented countries will play a key role. The presence of some of the leads of the MW Gaia project, scientists of recognized international prestige, is also expected; as well as high-level astronomers as guest speakers.
In order to enable participation by people who might be unable to attend physically due to travel or time zone constraints or through a wish to reduce the carbon footprint of the event, the meeting will happen in hybrid format.

Invited 30 min (25+5)
Contributed 15 min (12+3)

Very limited financial support is available for Early Carrier researchers and researchers from ITC  countries coming to the event with the talk (abstract should be submitted during registration). 

Link to Registration.

Sessions (e-poster presentations and open discussions will be included in the programme):


Key Dates

  • Abstract submission deadlines for contributed talks March 25
  • Abstract submission deadline for e-posters April 29
  • Registration deadline for grant requests participants March 18
  • Registration deadline for on site participants March 31
  • Registration deadline for online participants May 23


Invited Speakers

  • Luis Aguilar, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Mexico
  • Sonia Anton, University of Coimbra, Portugal
  • Gisella Clementini, INAF Osservatorio Astronomico di Bologna, Italy
  • Jacky Faherty, American Museum of Natural Histor, USA
  • Despina Hatzidimitriou, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece
  • Paula Jofre, Universidad Diego Portales, Chile
  • Stefan Jordan, Zentrum für Astronomie Heidelberg, Germany
  • Sandor Kruk, Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics, Germany
  • Alessandro Sozzetti, Osservatorio Astrofisico di Torino, Italy
  • Sara Vitali, Universidad Diego Portales, Chile


Scientific Organizing Committee

  • Corinne Charbonnel, University of Geneva, Switzerland
  • Francesca Figueras, University of Barcelona, Spain
  • Carme Jordi. University of Barcelona, Spain
  • Josefina F. Ling, University of de Santiago de Compostela, Spain
  • Šarūnas Mikolaitis (chair), Vilnius University, Lithuania
  • Elsa Moreira, Institute of Astrophysics and Space Sciences, Portugal
  • Tineke Roegiers, HE Space Operations B.V. for ESA, Netherlands
  • Carolina von Essen,    Stellar Astrophysics Centre, Aarhus University,  Denmark
  • Ivanka Stateva, Institute of Astronomy and NAO, BAS, Bulgaria


Local Organizing Committee

  • Pedro Campo Díaz, University of de Santiago de Compostela, Spain
  • Carlos Dafonte, University of Coruña, Spain
  • Josefina F. Ling (chair), University of de Santiago de Compostela, Spain
  • Minia Manteiga, University of Coruña, Spain
  • Ana Ulla, University of Vigo, Spain
  • Carlos Viscasillas Vázquez, Vilnius University, Lithuania
Poster should be submitted in PDF format.
It can be one large poster (portrait or landscape) or several slides prepared with presentation program and then saved as a PDF.
E-Posters should be submitted to This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

Molėtai observatory research cources - Venue

The workshop will take place at Santiago de Compostela, a lively university town with some 100 000 inhabitants in Galicia (north west of Spain). The University of Santiago de Compostela was founded in 1495 and with more than 500 years of history maintains one of the most important academic traditions in Europe

The meeting will be held at the Faculty of Optics and Optometry, located in the South Campus (Campus Vida) of the University.


Address: Monte da Condesa Building, s/n, Campus Vida, 15782, Santiago de Compostela

This area lies within walking distance of the city centre and a range of comfortable hotels. Accommodation at Campus Housing sited in the Campus is also possible.

Santiago de Compostela is better known as the destination of the Way of Saint James , one of the oldest pilgrimage routes in Europe. The end of the Way is the cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, a magnificent building built between the XI and XIII centuries, and where the tradition claims that the tomb of the apostle Saint James the Great is located.

The Jacobean holy year (Xacobeo) is a celebration that takes place in Santiago de Compostela in the years in which July 25, the feast of the Apostle Santiago (St. James), falls on a Sunday. This happened for the last time in 2021, and due to the special circumstances of the covid-19 pandemic, it was extended to 2022.

Several routes coming from different parts of Europe converge in Santiago, and nowadays hundreds of thousands of people walk the Way of Saint James each year, many for religious purposes, and others to enjoy the beautiful landscape or to meet many people from different backgrounds.

The Ramón María Aller Astronomical Observatory of the University of Santiago de Compostela was built in 1943 when Dr. Ramón María Aller Ulloa joined the University as a professor. Ramón María Aller had started the astronomical research in Galicia from his own observatory, located at his house in the town of Lalín. Although he made contributions in many areas of Mathematics and Astronomy, his preferred field of research was binary stars .
In the University, Ramón María Aller started an academic group with a prolific scientific production, both in Astronomy and Mathematics. The Durán Loriga Theoretical and Mathematical Astronomy section, which was the seed of the later Faculty of Mathematics , was created within the Observatory in 1945. Following his steps, nowadays the Observatory is an international reference center in the study of binary stars, and José Ángel Docobo and Josefina F. Ling oversee the edition of the Information Circular of the Commision G1 (Binary and Multiple Star Systems) of the IAU.




There are 20 rooms reserved for participants in the workshop in the Eurostars Gran Hotel Santiago. The price is 74 euros/night (single) and 83 euros/night (double), breakfast included. The reservations must be confirmed before April 22, and they can be canceled until 7 days before the check-in. To confirm the reservation write to: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it (a valid credit card is needed).

It must be indicated in the reservation that you are participant in the "Gaia WG5 Workshop (USC)"

There are also several rooms reserved in the University of Santiago de Compostela service of dormitories. We have available 13 single and 7 double rooms. The prices are 33 euros/night (individual) and 53 euros/night (double). In order to apply for the reservation write to This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it indicating: name and surname, ID number (passport or ID card), e-mail and billing address. The rooms are in the following dormitories:

  Molėtai observatory research cources - Map

Molėtai observatory research cources - Programme

*Titles may be modified

Session 1Time (CEST)Chair:
Šarūnas Mikolaitis
Welcome & Introduction to the workshop. Advances in our understanding of the Milky Way: WG1, WG2
Vicente Pérez Muñuzuri
Maria Jesus Giraldez Fernandez
Nicholas A Walton
Welcome talks [SLIDES]
Invited talk14:30-15:00Despina HatzidimitriouMilky Way & Gaia: WG1 activities
 15:00-15:15Danielle de Brito SilvaThe accreted Galaxy: An overview of TESS metal-poor accreted stars candidates
Invited talk15:15-15:45Gisella ClementiniMilky Way & Gaia: WG2 activities
 15:45-16:00Saniya KhanGaia, stellar models, and asteroseismology
Invited talk16:00-16:30Sara VitaliUnveil the Sagittarius dwarf galaxy with the Pristine survey
 16:30-16:45Carlos ViscasillasExploiting the abundances of neutron capture elements from the latest Gaia-ESO Survey (GES) data release. [SLIDES]
Session 2Time (CEST)Chair:
Ana Ulla
Advances in our understanding of the Milky Way: WG3, WG4
Invited talk17:00-17:30Alessandro SozzettiMilky Way & Gaia: WG3 activities
 17:30-17:45Barbara SoaresThe Chemical link between stars and their rocky planets
 17:45-18:00Fernando Tinaut-RuanoExploring near-UV region for primitive asteroids using ground-based observations and Gaia
Invited talk18:00-18:30Sonia AntonMilky Way & Gaia: WG4 activities
 18:30-18:45William BeordoGravitational Astrometry & Fundamental Physics to test the dynamical evolution of our Galaxy and its place in cosmology
 18:45-19:00Marta GonzálezGalactic hierarchy of clustered stellar formation
 19:00-19:15Javier OlivaresThe dynamical interaction of the Coma Berenices open cluster and the GroupX moving group
 19:30Visit to the observatory and group photo
Session 3Time (CEST)Chair:
Minia Manteiga
MW Gaia inclusiveness and equal opportunities. Gender Balance
Invited talk10:00-10:30 Alessandra ZanazziAn astronomy exhibition, inclusive also for blind and visually impaired people and other INAF inclusive activities
 10:30-10:45Edita StonkuteMentorship platform for early career researchers
Invited talk10:45-11:15Paula JofreInclusiveness and equal opportunities. Gender Balance
 11:15-11:30Josefina F. Ling“AstronomAs” A journey through the Universe by hand of hundreds of women
Session 4Time (CEST)Chair:
Luis Aguilar
Poster Session
Session 5Time (CEST)Chair:
Elsa Moreira
24/05/22TuesdayPresenterReaching out to the public with Gaia
Invited talk16:00-16:30Stefan JordanReaching out to the public with Gaia
 16:30-16:45Tineke RoegiersOutreach and community resources for Gaia
 16:45-17:00Pedro P. CampoAstronomical outreach in the Ramón María Aller Astronomical Observatory
 17:00-17:15Marusa ZerjalA website dedicated to the nearby young open clusters as seen by Gaia
Public talk18:30-19:30Carme JordiLos secretos de la Vía Láctea [POSTER]
 21:00Workshop dinner 
Session 6Time (CEST)Chair:
Josefina F. Ling
5/25/2022WednesdayPresenterCitizen science and amateur input
Invited talk9:30-10:00Sandor KrukFrom galaxies to asteroids: Citizen science as an efficient tool to explore large datasets
 10:00-10:15Elsa MoreiraCoAstro: @an Astronomy Condo-a new possible path for GAIA's dissemination strategy
 10:15-10:30Victor TilveLight pollution data from Galicia (Spain): measurements from the Earth
 10:30-10:45Eduard MasanaModelling the natural sky brightness with Gaia data
Session 7Time (CEST)Chair:
Carme Jordi
25/05/22WednesdayPresenterBringing Milky Way to schools and universities
Invited talk11:15-11:45Jackie FahertyVisualizing the Gaia enabled Milky Way for Science and Education
 11:45:-12:00Rosa M. RosNASE, Astronomy for everybody
 12:00-12:15Ederlinda ViñualesNASE: Using Demonstrators for Easier Training of Future Teachers
 12:15-12:30Hristo StoevEAAE’s Catch a Star Competition: helping teachers and students
Invited talk12:30-13:00
Luis Aguilar The next generation of astrometry experts
Session 8Time (CEST)Chair:
Šarūnas Mikolaitis
5/25/2022WednesdayPresenterDebate session.
 14:00-16:00 Conclusions
 Tourist guided visit to Pazo do Faramello


Time (CEST) Chair: Luis Aguilar Poster session
24/05/22 Tuesday Presenter Title
12:00 Tineke Roegiers Female contribution to the Gaia DPAC consortium[POSTER]
Minia Manteiga Two STEMBACH projects based on Gaia data: introducing Big Data Astronomy in Spanish High Schools[POSTER]
Antoaneta Avramova-Boncheva Extracurricular activities for school students with special interest in astronomy[POSTER]
Tòfol Tobal Star Analyser Spectroscopic Data Base. OAG-SVO Pro-Am project [POSTER]
Antoaneta Antonova STELLAR :an EU twinning project on LOFAR data analysis and knowledge transfer [POSTER]
Judith Ardèvol Guillamón Disseminating the rotation curve of our Galaxy and its implication on the Dark Matter content[POSTER]
Cecilia Doporto Regueira
Carlos Viscasillas Vázquez
The Museum of Lalin "Ramon Maria Aller Ulloa", the first astronomical observatory in Galicia [POSTER]

Molėtai observatory research cources - Participants

List regularly updated


Emilio J.AlfaroSpainOn-site
JudithArdèvol GuillamónSpainOn-site
DavidArnotUnited KingdomOnline
Pedro PabloCampoSpainOn-site
Roberto AlexanderCerviño CortinezSpainOnline
MacarenaCespedesCosta RicaOnline
Ilídio AndréCostaPortugalOnline
Daniellede Brito SilvaBrazilOnline
Juliade LeonSpainOnline
CeciliaDoporto RegueiraSpainOn-site
OscarGarcia MontillaSpainOnline
Jose ManuelGiron DiazSpainOnline
ConsueloGonzález ÁvilaChileOnline
JoanHidalgo OrtegaSpainOnline
RamónIglesias MarzoaSpainOn-site
TaehyunJungSouth KoreaOnline
Josefina F.LingSpainOn-site
MarioLopez RodríguezSpainOnline
RobertoMartínez MartínezSpainOnline
PaulaPancorbo PabóSpainOnline
FranciscoReyes AndrésSpainOnline
TinekeRoegiersThe NetherlandsOn-site
Rosa MariaRosSpainOn-site
JudithSantos TorresSpainOnline
MartaTorreiro MartínezSpainOn-site
EderlindaViñuales GavínSpainOn-site
CarlosViscasillas VázquezLithuaniaOn-site
NicholasWaltonUnited KingdomOnline




Molėtai observatory research cources - Online material
Online material



Public talk:


 Group photos:






Useful links: