Grant for university’s astronomy team

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STARGAZERS at the University of Portsmouth are celebrating winning £2m to support their research into the mysteries of the cosmos.

Astrophysicists and cosmologists will use the Science and Technology Facilities Council grant to advance their work researching supernovae, galaxies, dark matter and dark energy, gravity and the very early universe.

Professor of astrophysics and director of the Institute of Cosmology and Gravitation (ICG) Bob Nichol said the team was over the moon at the news.

He said: ‘This is a nice Christmas present to receive and it’s terrific to receive such a ringing endorsement of our work, particularly in these difficult times.

‘This was a real team effort and took many months of preparation.

‘Our success is also due to past university investments in the ICG, including involvement in projects like Sloan Digital Sky Survey and the Dark Energy Survey.’

The grant will be used by the university over three 
years.

Prof Nichol said: ‘The Institute addresses fundamental questions in cosmology and astrophysics, from the very moment of creation – the Big Bang – to the populations of stars that makes up the billions of galaxies we see in our surveys of the sky.’