[A view of Gressoney and Monte Rosa on the background]
Welcome to the homepage of the

Monte Rosa GAIA 2002
International Conference on

"GAIA spectroscopy, science and technology"

to be held in Gressoney St. Jean (Valle d'Aosta, Italy, close to the border with both France and Switzerland, see map) on coming Sept 9-12, 2002 at the Residenza del Sole Congress Center, from where the view on Gressoney and Monte Rosa on the background (the second highest mountain in the Alps, peaking at 4633 m) is similar to the winter image on left.

GAIA has been selected as a coming ESA Cornerstone mission and it is designed to obtain extremely precise astrometry (in the micro-arcsec regime), multi-band photometry and medium/high resolution spectroscopy for a large sample of stars. The goals as depicted in the mission Concept and Technology Study call for astrometry and broad band photometry to be collected for all stars down to V~20 mag over the entire sky (a billion stars), with brighter magnitude limits for spectroscopy and intermediate band photometry. Each target star should be measured around a hundred times during the five year mission life-time, in a fashion similar to the highly successful Hipparcos operational mode. An useful introduction to GAIA is the paper by Perryman et al. 2001 A&A 369, 339.

GAIA spectroscopy will be obtained over the 8480-8750 Ang wavelength range, centered on the near-IR CaII triplet and the head of the Paschen series, where also abundant FeI, SiI, MgI, NI and TiI lines cluster. The spectral resolution, not set yet, should be around 10,000-20,000.

The conference is aimed to bring together the large GAIA community and interested outside scientists to review science and technical issues of its spectroscopy, with an eye on the rest of the mission too.

The Conference SOC is composed by F.Castelli, C.Chiosi, M.Cropper, M.Gai, G.Gilmore, D.Katz, M.G.Lattanzi, L.Lindegren, F.Mignard, O.Pace, M.A.C.Perryman, C.Turon, T.Zwitter and U.Munari (Chair). A preliminary list of confirmed speakers includes also A.Henden, E.Milone, V.Vansevicius, Y.Pavlenko, G.Bono, R.Wilson, M.W.Feast, P.Hauschildt and B.Plez.

[alpine fauna: chamois] The Conference's goals include:
and among the topics considered there will be:

The Conference's Proceedings will be published by ASP (Astron.Soc.Pacific) in its Conference Series

The Conference will be held in a full-optional, 4-stars Congress Center. Rooms have been reserved until June 15 in other charming, full-optional, mountain-style hotels at short walking distance (anyway, a bus shuttle service will be offered through the period of the Conference). Click here to know how to book the hotel, pay the registration fee, coordinate you arrival/departure (bus transportation from the Milan Malpensa door-to-door with the Congress Center), and click here for the scientific registration and submission of title and abstract of your contribution(s). [Monte Rosa and its southern glaciers]

The most important dates and deadlines are:
* May 15 for early registration
* June 15 for late registration
* July 15 for printing of abstract book
* November 8 for submitting the contributions to the Proceedings (a really strict deadline)

A preliminary scientific program will be prepared by SOC after registrations will be completed.

A booklet with the abstract of scheduled talks and posters will be sent to press by July 15 and distributed at the Conference. Its content will be uploaded to ADS abstract service .

[hiking toward Cima Regina Margherita] The breath-taking beauty of the Alps and the old-fashioned and charming atmosphere of the Gressoney valley will suggest many partecipants to enjoy some outdoor activities during the period of the Conference. Prolonged launch breaks will allow relaxing and sunny walks both in the grassy meadows and woods surrounding the Congress Center, or toward the nearby Castle, the Village and its lake, or one of the many falls of both sides of the valley.

For those arriving on Saturday, a hike will be organized to Cima Regina Margherita (2356 m) on Sunday (weather permitting) to enjoy a superb 360o view of the facing Monte Rosa and surrounding Alps. A chair-lift will take the partecipants to ~2000 m altitude, thus limiting to 350 m the height to hike (on an easy path in the open). Bring with you gym or trekking shoes, a summer hat and a small rucksack if you want to take part. The hike will be an easy one (lasting a few hours), however be aware that the Conference organization will not assume any responsability connected with this or other excursions or any other outdoor activity in which you will take part during the period of the Conference.

[A view of Fenis medieval castle] The afternoon of Wednesday will be dedicated to a guided tour of Aosta, main town of the region, and its surroundings with their renowned medieval castles. Aosta still preserves many testimonies of is past history, like the large roman theatre, the arch and the massive defensive walls. A social dinner in a typical restaurant will conclude the tour before returning by bus to the Congress Center.

Some of the pictures used in this page are © art work of photographer Davide Camisasca. His gallery, downtown Gressoney, is surely worth a visit.