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Europhysics News, Vol. 46 / 4 – July-August 2015

Rosetta’s journey to Comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko
p. 19, Hans Balsiger and Gerhard Schwehm

Published online: 20 August 2015


On 6 August 2014, the big day had finally come: ESA’s Rosetta mission went into an orbit around comet 67P/ Churyumov-Gerasimenko to start its science mission. More than ten years after the launch on 2 March 2004 and cruise of more than more than 6 billion km, the science phase started, for which a large number of scientists had worked since the mid-nineties of the last century.

How many gold atoms make gold metal?
p. 23, Sami Malola and Hannu Häkkinen

Published online: 20 August 2015


It is well known that a piece of gold is an excellent metal: it conducts heat and electricity, it is malleable to work out for jewellery or thin coatings, and it has the characteristic golden colour. How do these everyday properties – familiar from our macroscopic world – change when a nanometre-size chunk of gold contains only 100, 200 or 300 atoms?

Light – cosmic messages from the past
p. 27, Michael C. Wiescher and K. Langanke

Published online: 20 August 2015


The universe is filled with electromagnetic radiation, and visible light covers only a small section of its spectrum. The dominant sources of light are stars, with the energy originating from nuclear fusion processes in their interior. The question of energy generation in our sun and in other stars is the main focus of nuclear astrophysics.

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The First African Light Source Conference and Workshop

The First African Light Source Conference will take place from 15-20 November 2015 at the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility [ESRF] in Grenoble, France. It is the first in a series of conferences that will be held in Africa in the future.

The conference will review the status of the African User Base at international light sources with presentations of the African research at Light Sources.