Dr Asaf Pe'er awarded ERC grant

ERC funding supports ground-breaking astrophysics research at UCC

UCC researcher Asaf Pe’er has been awarded a prestigious European Research Council (ERC) Consolidator Grants of €2 million to pursue ground breaking research in theoretical astrophysics. He has received this funding for an ambitious study of the Origin and Magnetization of astronomical Jets (O.M.J.) which aims to understand the key processes involved in the formation of astronomical jets, which are seen in very many different astronomical objects. Dr Pe’er will lead a team of seven researchers (postdocs and PhD students) to develop unique radiative transfer algorithms to add on top of existing general-relativistic magneto-hydrodynamic models to provide testable predictions at all wavelengths, thereby bridging a crucial gap in the field and providing a deeper insight into the physical processes involved in the formation and properties of jets in different objects than has been achieved to date.

Dr Pe’er is delighted to receive this prestigious award. His success builds upon his decade-long expertise in writing and implementing unique radiative transfer codes as well his fruitful experience in collaborating with both theoreticians and observers in the research areas relevant to the project. It also stems from the careful preparations that went into the development of his proposal. He built the O.M.J. project upon a previous unsuccessful application to the ERC. Using the feedback from reviewers and consulting with colleagues ranging from senior researchers to his PhD students as well as the Research Office in UCC, he spent almost a year planning his novel proposal. He now looks forward to establishing his new research team and getting started on this exciting project.

Professor Anita Maguire, Vice-President for Research and Innovation, congratulated Dr Pe’er on his prestigious award. ‘I am delighted to see the excellence of Dr Pe’er’s research recognised at a European level by the ERC, and welcome, in particular, the opportunities that this award will offer him to expand his research team and further develop the international impact of his work.’

The ERC supports excellent investigators and their research teams to pursue ground-breaking, high-gain/ high-risk research as part of the Excellent Science pillar of Horizon2020. The Consolidator Grants are open to researchers of any nationality with 7-12 years of experience since completion of PhD, with a scientific track record showing great promise and an excellent research project. More information can be found here. If you are interested in applying, please contact Nóirín Uí Bhreithiúnaigh in UCC’s Research Support Services.

The ERC awarded grants worth €630 million under the 2017 Consolidator call. With 2,538 proposals submitted, the call is highly competitive and has a success rate of 13%. The grantees will carry out their projects at universities and research centres in 22 different countries across Europe. The grants will create an estimated 2,000 jobs for postdocs, PhD students and other staff working in the grantees' research teams. Further information about funded projects can be found here.

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