Science & Technology

The institute is renowned world-wide for its research and development. This important part of IRAM's activity is undertaken by several groups and laboratories who's findings and production are made available to the world's astronomical community.

The institute's astronomers cover all fields of modern astronomy at millimeter wavelengths: from young stellar objects to cosmology, evolved stars, galaxies, chemistry and planetary science. During the last 30 years they were not only involved in the discovery of a large number of interstellar molecules but also in the detection of molecular gas in galaxies at cosmological distances and the observation of comets, proto-stars, circumstellar disks, stars, quasars, galaxies and other cosmic phenomena.

The institute's expertise in the concept and design of parabolae and their control systems, the design and production of ultra-sensitive super conducting detectors and complex receiver systems, the high-speed digital electronics and advanced data reduction software make the institute a world leader in radio astronomy research and development.

The result of these activities are often translated into the production and delivery of radio astronomical equipment the world over. Partnerships with national and international space research organisations include ESA, NASA and CNES. IRAM also is a major partner in the international ALMA project, the giant radio observatory under construction in the Chilean desert.