The first


on the Future of Gamma-Ray Astronomy

Heidelberg, Germany
25 June - 3 July, 2024

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We are pleased to announce the first MPIK - CDY school focussing on the future of gamma-ray astronomy to be held at MPIK in Heidelberg, Germany, 25 June to 3 July, 2024. Our view of the universe at gamma-ray (~MeV-PeV) energies has seen tremendous growth in the last 20 or so years with the arrival of powerful space-based instruments like Fermi and ground-based instruments such as Imaging Atmospheric Cherenkov Telescopes (IACTs) and wide-field of view Water Cherenkov detector arrays. The very high energy window opened by these instruments allows us to discover and probe extreme physical conditions and processes in new ways. The Universe we have already seen using these instruments is rich and varied, and in some ways more extreme than we anticipated. The best is yet to come, however, with dramatic improvements in sensitivity expected over the next few years as next-generation instruments come online. The goal of the MPIK-CDY school is to provide scientists entering the field with the background knowledge needed to fully exploit these future opportunities.

Heidelberg Castle - Copyright Christian Foehr

This one week school will cover topics in VHE-UHE astrophysics including instrumentation and detection techniques. Pedagogical style lectures will be delivered by experts in the field and each topic will include an overview talk on the status of the field accompanied by in-depth seminars and hands-on sessions with the gamma-ray analysis toolkit gammapy. The school will cover the basic physical processes most relevant to very high-energy sources and review our current understanding of what these sources are and how they operate. The school will also discuss gamma-ray astronomy’s place in the upcoming landscape of multi-messenger and time domain astronomy where, for example, increasingly powerful neutrino and gravitational wave detectors will provide complementary information on extreme sources. The school is appropriate for graduate students as well as early-career researchers in the fields of particle astrophysics, high-energy astrophysics and cosmology.

The school will take place at the Max-Planck-Institut fuer Kernphysik in Heidelberg.


  • Felix Aharonian (DIAS / MPIK)
  • Andrei M. Beloborodov (Columbia)
  • Paolo Coppi (Yale)
  • Francis Halzen (WIPAC)
  • Jim Hinton (MPIK)
  • Werner Hofmann (MPIK)
  • Jamie Holder (Bartol)
  • Julie McEnery (NASA/GSFC)
  • Kaya Mori (Columbia)
  • Malcolm Longair (Cambridge)
  • Reshmi Mukherjee (Columbia)
  • Laura Olivera-Nieto (MPIK)
  • Quentin Remy (MPIK)
  • Brian Reville (MPIK)
  • Harm Schoorlemmer (Radboud Uni.)
  • Andrew Smith (UMD)
  • Andrew Taylor (DESY)
  • Alan Watson (Uni. of Leeds)
  • Richard White (MPIK)
  • Gabrijela Zaharijaš (Uni. of Nova Gorica)
  • Programme

    Registration opens at MPIK on Tuesday 25th of June at 12:45

    Tuesday 25th
    12:45-14:00 Registration
    Jim Hinton 14:00 - 14:30 Welcome and introduction
    Malcolm Longair 14:30 - 15:30 Historical overview of High-Energy Astrophysics
    Felix Aharonian 16:00 - 17:30 Radiation Processes
    17:30 - 19:30 Poster Session
    19:30 Bus to City
    Wednesday 26th
    Brian Reville 09:00 - 10:30 Particle Acceleration Theory
    Felix Aharonian 11:15 - 12:45 Overview of Galactic Gamma-ray sources
    Francis Halzen 14:00 - 15:30 IceCube: The First Decade of Neutrino Astronomy
    Reshmi Mukherjee 16:00 - 17:30 Extra-galactic Gamma-ray observations
    17:45 Bus to City
    Thursday 27th
    Andrew Smith 09:00 - 10:30 Fundamentals of ground based particle arrays
    Malcolm Longair 11:15 - 12:15 TeeKolloquium - The Mechanical Origins of Maxwell's Equations
    Jamie Holder 14:00 - 15:30 Fundamentals of Imaging Atmospheric Cherenkov Telescopes
    Werner Hofmann 16:00 - 17:30 Future Cherenkov Telescope facilities
    17:45 Bus to Dinner Venue
    18:30 Dinner
    20:00 After-Dinner Speech
    Friday 28th
    Jamie Holder 09:00 - 09:45 Fundamentals of Imaging Atmospheric Cherenkov Telescopes - part 2
    Andrew Smith 09:45 - 10:30 Fundamentals of ground based arrays - part 2
    Jim Hinton 11:15 - 12:45 Future of ground-particle detectors - SWGO
    Alan Watson 14:00 - 15:30 Ultra-High Energy Cosmic Rays
    Laura Olivera-Nieto 16:00 - 17:30 Data Analysis & Software tools for Gamma-ray astronomy
    17:45 Bus to City
    Saturday 29th
    Q. Remy/D. Depaoli/G. Schwefer 09:00 - 12:30 Hands on sessions
    Q. Remy/D. Depaoli/G. Schwefer 13:30 - 17:00 Hands on sessions
    17:00 Walk/Public Transport Downtown
    Sunday 30th
    Free Day
    Monday 1st
    Julie McEnery 09:00 - 10:30 Principles of space-based detection
    Andrew Taylor 11:15 - 12:45 Gamma-Ray Burst Afterglow Physics
    12:45 School Photo
    Gabrijela Zaharijas 14:00 - 15:30 Dark matter and gamma-rays
    Richard White 16:00 - 16:45 Instrumentation for VHE/UHE Gamma-ray astronomy
    16:45 -18:00 Lab Tour
    18:15 Bus to City
    Tuesday 2nd
    Paolo Coppi 09:00 - 10:30 Extragalactic Jets
    Kaya Mori 11:15 - 12:45 X-ray astrophysics and observations of Galactic TeV gamma-ray sources
    Harm Shoorlemmer 14:00 - 15:30 Principles of Radio Air-shower detections
    Andrei Beloborodov 16:00 - 17:30 Radiative mechanisms in GRBs
    17:45 Bus to City
    Wednesday 3rd
    Julie McEnery 09:00 - 10:30 Future Space-based gamma-ray missions
    Brian Reville 11:15 - 12:00 Closing Remarks
    End of School


    Registration has closed. Please contact the organisers to be added to the waiting list.
    A small registration fee of 200 Euro, will be required to cover catering and lunch expenses during the school. Attendees should arrange their own travel and accommodation.


    The meeting will take place at the
    Max-Planck-Institut für Kernphysik
    Saupfercheckweg 1, D-69117 Heidelberg, Germany

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    Travel & Accomodation

    Heidelberg is located in central Germany, approximately 80km south of Frankfurt and is easily accessible by plane, train, or car.


    We have not arranged hotel block reservations and instead recommend to use the usual hotel booking sites (e.g., HRS or Expedia) as they often have far better prices.

    Local Transport

    The conference site (MPIK) is accessible by bus lines 39 and 39A (both running via Heidelberg's main bus hub: "Heidelberg, Bismarckplatz". The buses depart from "Steig G". From "Heidelberg, Hauptbahnhof"/main station, there are only some direct connections departing on week days from Steig L, which is in parallel to the main entrance of the railway station). The bus line 39 stops directly at the MPIK stop: "Heidelberg, MPI Kernphysik". The line 39A stops approximately 50 metres away from the MPIK main entrance at the stop: "Bierhelderhof". Alternatively, the bus line 39A continues to the EMBL campus, which is connected to the MPIK site.

    Single tickets can be obtained from vending machines or the bus driver. If you intend to use local transport several times during your stay in Heidelberg, we recommend buying either day tickets ("Tages-Ticket", EUR 7,70, valid within 24 hours after validation), or a 5-day ticket ("5-Tage-ticket", EUR 30,80-). Note that 5-day tickets can only be bought at RNV servicestores, e.g. in front of Heidelberg's main station.

    Detailed information on timetables and tickets can be obtained on the regional transportation network webpages.

    Getting to Heidelberg

    Heidelberg is located in central Germany, approximately 80km south of Frankfurt and is easily accessible by plane, train, or car.

    By Plane
    Frankfurt Airport

    The closest international airport (80 km, 1 hour by car) is Frankfurt Rhein-Main Airport (Flughafen Frankfurt) with a wide selection of national and international connections. There are two terminals at the airport, with Terminal 1 occupied by Lufthansa and its partners and Terminal 2 for all other airlines.

    Transportation between the airport and Heidelberg is available by a regular train service. Frankfurt Airport is directly connected to the German long-distance rail system by its own train station (without need to use local transportation to Frankfurt Main station first), with most connections to Heidelberg's main train station (Hauptbahnhof) involving a change to a regional train (S-Bahn) in Mannheim. One way price: ICE 33.60 EUR , journey time: approx. 1 hour.
    Additional modes of transportation to Heidelberg include a dedicated Frankfurt Airport Shuttle Service (depature: Terminal 1, Exit 3; journey time approx. 75 min; return ticket for 58.- Euro; please make sure that you have a reservation) and individual (usually more expensive) shuttle services like TLS.

    Stuttgart Airport

    Stuttgart Airport is located approximately 125 km (1.5 hours by car) from Heidelberg and has regular European connections including several low-cost airlines. It does not have direct access to the long-distance rail network, but is connected by local transport to Stuttgart Main Station (Stuttgart Hauptbahnhof) with regular train service to Heidelberg.

    Other Airports

    Many low-cost flights are available to Frankfurt-Hahn Airport (which is not actually in Frankfurt). The distance to Heidelberg is approximately 150 km. The airport is serviced by a regular bus to Mainz or Frankfurt, where trains to Heidelberg can be taken.

    Several low-cost connections are as well available to the Airport Karlsruhe/Baden-Baden which is about 90 km (1 hour by car) south of Heidelberg. Travel options to Heidelberg can be found on the airport webpage.

    By Train

    Heidelberg Main Station (Heidelberg Hauptbahnhof) is linked regularly to most German and European destinations by long-distance train service. Information on schedules is available on the homepage of Deutsche Bahn.


    Please familiarise yourself with the Visa regulations of the Federal Republic of Germany. Official information is provided by the German Federal Foreign Office.

    EU nationals do not require a Visa to enter Germany.

    Generally speaking, all other foreigners require a Visa for stays in Germany. A Visa is not required for semi-annual visits of up to three months for nationals of those countries for which the European Community has abolished the Visa requirement.

    Table of countries whose citizens require/do not require visas to enter Germany.

    Code of Conduct

    The organizers are committed to making this meeting productive and enjoyable for everyone, regardless of gender, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, nationality or religion. We will not tolerate harassment of participants in any form. Please follow these guidelines:

    Participants asked to stop any inappropriate behaviour are expected to comply immediately. Attendees violating these rules may be asked to leave the event at the sole discretion of the organizers without a refund of any charge.

    Any participant who wishes to report a violation of this policy is asked to speak, in confidence, to the organisers or to email MPIK-CDY24 [at]

    This code of conduct is based on the “London Code of Conduct“, as originally designed for the conference “Accurate Astrophysics. Correct Cosmology”, held in London in July 2015. The London Code of Conduct was adapted with permission by Andrew Pontzen and Hiranya Peiris from a document by Software Carpentry (, which itself derives from original Creative Commons documents by PyCon and Geek Feminism. It is released under a CC-Zero licence for reuse. To help track people’s improvements and best practice, please retain this acknowledgement, and log your re-use or modification of this policy at

    Organisation & Contact

    • MPIK-CDY Summer School 2024
      c/o Ruth Crespo
      MPI für Kernphysik
      P.O. Box 103980
      69117 Heidelberg

      Phone: +49 (0)6221 516 201
      Fax: +49 (0)6221 516 603
      E-Mail: MPIK-CDY24 [at]