Research – Niels Bohr Institute - University of Copenhagen

Research at the Astrophysics & Planetary Science Group

"The research of the Astrophysics and Planetary Science Group addresses some central questions in the evolution of matter in the Universe; How do stars form? How do planets form and evolve? Under which conditions might life emerge and evolve?

Our own solar system may be the rule or an exception among planetary systems in the Universe. We ourselves may be a cosmic exception or just a random example among a wide variety of advanced life forms populating the 10 billion habitable planets we know exist in our galaxy, the Milky Way. We aim at understanding how other stars and planets compare with our own solar system, through observation, exploration, and modelling. How do they form and how do they develop?

Computational Astrophysics

We use various supercomputers around the world to model a selection of different astronomical phenomena, ranging from generic small scale energy release process in magnetized plasmas to the formation of stars and planets. Read more >>


How do we identify the most common planets in the Galaxy and how do we understand what they are made of? Is the Earth unique or just one of many habitable worlds? Are planets with liquid water and life common in the Galaxy? Read more >> 

Instrument Development
New and better instruments are essential for future research in astronomy, and the Niels Bohr Institute has a long legacy of developing and building telescopes, instrumentation and detector systems for research. Read more >>
Mars and exploration of the Solar System
The Mars-group has a long tradition of practical exploration of Mars by participation in NASA’s missions to the Martian surface, and are generally interested in the evolution of planets, moons and minor bodies in the Solar System. Read more >>
Star & Planet Formation Star & Planet Formation
The detection of the first exoplanet in the mid-1990'ies opened a whole new chapter in modern astrophysics - and today more than a thousand exoplanets are known. These many exoplanets raise a number of questions about their formation. Read more >>