Austria will become the centre of the Universe in August this year, when more than 3000 astronomers from more than 88 countries gather in Vienna for the XXX General Assembly of the International Astronomical Union (IAU). The meeting will take place from 20 to 31 August 2018 and will feature thousands of scientific presentations, numerous policy discussions and several exciting media events. The IAU offers complimentary press registration to bona fide working journalists and public information officers.
The IAU General Assembly is held every three years and invites astronomers from around the world to come together to advance the astronomical sciences through international collaboration. Participants of the General Assembly in Vienna will address key topics in contemporary astronomy and assess the latest scientific progress in a number of specialised areas.
With seven symposia extending over several days, 15 multi-session focus meetings, nine IAU Division meetings, dozens of IAU Commission meetings, and daily general poster sessions, the XXX General Assembly’s scientific programme will be the broadest in the union’s history. A detailed programme is here. Journalists and public information officers are invited to sign up for the IAU General Assembly via the pre-registration form. A press office will be in operation all weekdays.
The XXX General Assembly will be hosted in the Austria Center Vienna and will be the first General Assembly to be held in Austria. It is being organised by the University of Vienna, the Austrian Academy of Sciences, and the Austrian Society for Astronomy and Astrophysics. Austria has a long tradition in astronomy, and several historically significant astronomers were based there. Nowadays, astronomy teaching and research take place not just in Vienna, but also at the University of Graz, the Space Research Institute of the Austrian Academy of Sciences and the University of Innsbruck.
In 2019 the IAU will celebrate 100 years from its foundation: the XXX General Assembly will also be used as a showcase of the initiatives that the Union is proposing worldwide to mark its important milestone. The Symposium “Under one sky” and the travelling display “100 years of Astronomy” will be an anticipation of next year celebrations.
The year 2018 also marks Austria’s 10th anniversary as a European Southern Observatory (ESO) Member State. This relationship has spawned an unprecedented range of collaborations, consortia memberships, and development of expertise in astronomical data processing and instrumentation. Austrian researchers are now heavily involved in the development of current and future ESO instrumentation. Austria has also been a European Space Agency (ESA) Member State since ESA was founded in 1975. Since then it has made significant contributions to past, present and future space missions.
Vienna also hosts the UN Office for Outer Space Affairs and the Committee for the Pacific Use of Outer Space (COPUOS). The IAU participates as an observer in the activities of COPUOS, particularly in those related to the detection and monitoring of potentially dangerous Near Earth Objects and for the protection of dark and quiet skies. Next year IAU and COPUOS will jointly organize an International Conference on the latter theme.
Full Name: XXX General Assembly of the International Astronomical Union
Date: 20–31 August 2018
Austria Center Vienna
Purpose: In August 2018, astronomers from all around the globe will gather for two weeks for the IAU General Assembly in Vienna, to discuss and evaluate their most recent discoveries and observations, to make decisions on fundamental issues facing astronomy, and to organise international cooperation. Over the course of the conference, General Assembly participants will also have an opportunity to experience a wide range of cultural activities in Austria and surrounding countries.
Participants: The IAU XXX General Assembly is expected to bring more than 3000 astronomers from around the world to Vienna, to present and discuss the latest scientific breakthroughs and discoveries in the rapidly evolving scientific field of astronomy.
National host: University of Vienna
Travel and lodging information: The conference organisers have secured a special offer with Lufthansa for flights to the General Assembly and have pre-selected hotels for the benefit of its participants. These rooms will be allocated to participants free of any handling fee.
Please complete the pre-registration form. Once you have been approved by the IAU Press Officer, you will receive the official registration form to complete.
The IAU is the international astronomical organisation that brings together more than 10 000 professional astronomers from almost 100 countries. Its mission is to promote and safeguard the science of astronomy in all its aspects through international cooperation. The IAU also serves as the internationally recognised authority for assigning designations to celestial bodies and the surface features on them. Founded in 1919, the IAU is the world's largest professional body for astronomers.
Lars Lindberg Christensen
IAU Press Officer
Garching bei München, Germany
Tel: +49 89 320 06 761
Cell: +49 173 38 72 621
Dr. Thomas Posch
Dept. of Astrophysics — Vienna University
Tel: +43 1 4277 538 00
Cell: +43 0664 817 54 20
Dept. of Astrophysics — Vienna University
Tel: +43 1 4277 538 41