Lunch Session LS2  29 June 2021

Taking infrared interferometry to the next level with GRAVITY+

Aims and scope

GRAVITY+ is the first new Very Large Telescope (VLT) instrument selected following the "ESO in the 2030s" review and undergoing Phase A in 2021. It will increase the sensitivity, sky coverage, and field of view of the VLT Interferometer (VLTI) to enable milliarcsecond imaging and microarcsecond astrometry in the infrared for a wide new range of Galactic and extragalactic science cases. GRAVITY+ constitutes a phased upgrade of the current, enormously successful GRAVITY instrument. With a final capability of fringe tracking down to K~15 mag (on-axis)/K~22 mag (off-axis) and Laser AO on all four 8m telescopes, a vast range of new targets will be accessible. By opening this new discovery space, the VLTI will become of broad interest to the European science community beyond the classical interferometry fields. In this lunch session, we want to introduce GRAVITY+ to the community and engage with potential future users. We will provide an overview of the instrument and the phased approach of implementation on Paranal that will gradually open up new capabilities. A range of primary science cases from the Galactic Centre, active galactic nuclei, supermassive black hole binaries, tidal disruption event and intermediate mass black holes to the characterisation of exoplanets, young and old stars, and microlenses will be presented. We also plan a Q&A/discussion session to help the community develop ideas how they can use GRAVITY+ for their own science.


  • Capabilities of GRAVITY+
  • Exoplanets with K-band interferometry
  • Active Galactic Nuclei at low and high redshifts
  • The Galactic Centre
  • Young Stellar Objects

Invited speakers

The consortium (MPE, INSU, MPIA, Univ. of Cologne, CENTRA, Univ. of Southampton, Univ. of Leuven) will present an overview of the instrument and the main science cases:

  • Frank Eisenhauer (MPE)
  • Laura Kreidberg (MPIA)
  • Taro Shimizu (MPE)
  • Thibaut Paumard (LESIA)
  • Karine Perraut (IPAG)

Scientific organisers

For the GRAVITY+ consortium: Sebastian Hoenig (Univ. of Southampton, Co-Chair), Laura Kreidberg (MPIA, Co-Chair), Thibaut Paumard (LESIA), Paulo Garcia (CENTRA), Dieter Lutz (MPE), Jean-Baptiste Le Bouquin (IPAG), Christian Straubmaier (Univ. of Cologne)


Sebastian Hoenig, s.hoenig @ and Laura Kreidberg, kreidberg @

Updated on Tue Dec 22 18:44:55 CET 2020