Edwin A. Valentijn's Homepage
July 2021: Powers of Two is published see Springer-Nature 2021
and as e-book
Edwin A. Valentijn
Department of Astronomy University of Groningen The Netherlands
Professor in Astronomical Information
Technology at the University of Groningen, since Dec 2005.
- Coordinating the Target/Target Fieldlab
- Leading OmegaCEN a National datacenter for wide field astronomical imaging, supported by the Netherlands Research School for Astronomy NOVA,
- National (NL) project manager for the Euclid satellite Science Ground Segment.
- Creative Director of DOTliveplanetarium Groningen
- Chair of The Information Universe Conference
Founder of OmegaCEN
(2001), Target (2008), Target Holding bv (2009), IntrInfo (2009), Infoversum Foundation
(2012), Infoversum Productions
bv (2012), "The Information Universe" (2008,
2015, 2018, 2020), Target Fieldlab (2018), DOTLiveplanetarium
OmegaCEN is building and supporting advanced Survey Information Systems. At the center, ~17 staff and PhDs are involved in research and development of data basing and processing of very large data sets. OmegaCEN develops and supports the data handling of o.a. OmegaCAM@VST, MUSE@VLT, Micado@ELT, the Euclid satellite and researches dark matter/theories of gravity and infrastructure for Open Science and data validation.
An interview on RTV Noord on the Euclid satellite - Feb 2014
Universe Conference channel 2018,2020,
The third edition was held on-line november 2020
The second edition took place 3-6 July 2018 in DOTliveplanetarium Groningen
The first Information Universe Conference was held at the Infoversum Groningen- Oct 2015
On 13 May 2008 I gave a public lecture (oratie) at
the occasion of my formal inauguration:
The Information Universe
.pdf of the lecture - booklet ISBN 978-90-367-3473-8
full video of the oratie (Dutch)
my works direct at "Information as a whole"
26 August 2011 Noorderzon festival Groningen,
QU3, presenting at the Target floor the
act: "God is an eJ"
attended by over 5600 visitors. Watch
God is an eJ.
World premiere to public MS's World Wide Telescope with
In 2015 my first full 3D dome production From
the sun to the sun made in collaboration with
Mirage3D was released (12 minutes) . It was premiered at the
opening of the Infoversum and next to the NL and Eng
version is now also translated in German and shown at the
Hafengeburtstage in Hamburg 2015.
It tells the story of energy in the universe, down to the gas fields in Groningen and contains the best 3D CG animation of a city.
Postal address:Prof. Dr Edwin A.Valentijn
Kapteyn Astronomical Institute
P.O. Box 800
NL-9700 AV Groningen
Telephone (work): +31 (0)50 3634011 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting +31 (0)50 3634011 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
secretary +31 (0)50 3634036 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting +31 (0)50 3634036 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
mobile (work) +31 (0) 6 48276416
email: Edwin A.Valentijn
I did my PhD at the Sterrewacht Leiden, on Radio Investigations of Clusters of Galaxies with Prof H. van der Laan as supervisor (1978), studying the intra cluster medium, cluster radio haloes and head-tail radio sources.
After that, I worked on X-ray
astronomy (Einstein observatory,) and optical surface
photometry, studying cooling flows, at the European Southern
Observatory in Geneva and Garching, Munich (1979-1984).
At ESO I was chairman of the working groups supervising the
development of the MIDAS image analysis system.
In 1984 I returned to the
Netherlands to help building up the new UK-NL optical
observatory at La Palma (Canarias) and studied dark matter
in dumbbell and cD galaxies. In 1989 I published
with A. Lauberts the first large digital image survey
(ESO-LV), which led to my paper on the opacities and dust
content of spiral galaxies (Nature 1990).
During the 90's I worked at
SRON-Groningen and ESA Villafranca- Madrid to build and
commission the Infrared Space Observatory (ISO) satellite's
Short Wave Spectrometer, which I used to pioneer the
detection of cool extragalactic molecular hydrogen- unseen
matter in the universe. The detection of relatively cool
molecular hydrogen in NGC 6034 and NGC 891 was the first of
its kind and is still unique.
Since 1998 I work at the
Kapteyn Institute for the OmegaCAM project which led to the
founding of the OmegaCEN data center (2002) and the
Astro-WISE information system (2001), one of the
first distributed Big Data information systems. In 2005
I was appointed as bijzonder professor Astronomical
Information technology at the Rijksuniversiteit
I am leading the Target project, which
started in 2009 with a 32M Euro programme - a
collaborative project between public institutions (RuG,
UMCG, Astron) and companies (IBM, Oracle, Target
which very large datacollections from astronomy, medical and
historical origin are handled with similar techniques.
From Target I initiated new enterprises in
Groningen, such as the Target Holding bv, the
NL- Science datacentre for the Euclid satellite and
the Infoversum which
is now operated by DOT.
am the National project manager for
the Euclid satellite and in 2016 we
got a 2M Euro grant from NWO-groot to
build the NL National datacenter in
Groningen for Euclid.
In 2017 Target is continuing its programme with the Target proeftuin "Mining Big data", and the tender valorisation programme "de intelligente zwerm", together a 8.3M Euro programme, with contribution from SNN and Provincie Groningen. OmegaCEN continues to support Astro-WISE, OmegaCAM at the VST, MUSE at the VLT and prepare for Euclid and Micado at the ELT.
current research focusses on data
modeling, extreme data-lineage and Big
Data handling with the Center for
Information Technology in Groningen: the entanglement
of information, both in our computer systems and in
- 2019 Leading a Facts and Fakes research programma
- 2018 Coordinating the Target Fieldlab
"Mining Big data", and partner in the Target Holding ( now Slimmer.ai ) led
programme "the internet of things", together a 8.3M
Euro programme, with contributions from SNN and
Provincie Groningen. Chair of the Steering
- Head of OmegaCEN a National datacenter for wide field astronomical imaging, supported by the Netherlands Research School for Astronomy NOVA.
- National project manager for the Euclid Satellite
Science Ground Segment
- PI with Prof Kuijken of The Netherlands Science ground Segment Facility for the Euclid Satellite supported by RUG, NOVA, SRON and NWO (NWO-Groot 2016-2022)
- Chair "the Information Universe Conference"
- Coordinating the DOTliveplanetarium
shows in former Infoversum
- Member of the "Scientific Technical Council" of SURF
- Coordinator of Astro-WISE an European network linking National datacenters involved in astronomical wide field imaging. Astro-WISE is on-going programme which started as an European Research and Development programme for the data reduction and dissemination of wide field image data (EU FP5 - RTD)
- Board member and Co-PI of KIDS and VIKING; a 1500 Square degree ESO Public Survey using OmegaCAM at the VLT Survey Telescope
- Co-I of various OmegaCAM programmes, like Fornax survey
- Pi of e-Visualisation of Big Data - with NL e-science center
- Member of the "National e-plan kernel group"
- NOVA programme manager for the Calibration and the Data reduction of OmegaCAM - a one square degree wide field imager for the VLT Survey Telescope (VST) at Paranal Chile
- Board member, NL representative and partner in the European Virtual Observatory, the EU-FP6 Data center Alliance Euro-VO-DCA and the EU FP7 EURO-VO of Founder-2014
- Member of RUG "ICT - strategy committee" 2010-2017
- Partner of the Lofar Radio Telescope project: designing and building the Long term Archive
- In dec 2006 -Jan 2007 I organized a Lecture series on "Virtual Observations" at the Kapteyn Institute.
- Second course - fall of 2008. Programme of course Virtual Observatories Fall 2008 Announcement Advanced course Virtual observatories fall 2008 (+ viewgraphs of last year course)
- Third course - spring 2010: Modern Data Mining in Astronomy - interacademiaal Utrecht feb-may 2010
- Fourth course: Virtual Observations and datamining in Astronomy- fall 2010 - Kapteyn Institute.
- Fifth course in the fall of 2012 : Virtual Observations and Datamining in Astronomy
- Sixth course 2016: Virtual Observations and Data mining in Astronomy
- Seventh course in semester 1b November 2018
Januari 2019: Astronomical
Data science, master (5 ects)
of Two - Data science -2021
The founding fathers of Astro-WISE
The GANG of Astro-WISE - the founding farthers of the Astro-WISE architecture in the days the system was perceived- Nice April 2001.
Picture by Emmanual Bertin, from left to right: Drs Danny Boxhoorn, Dr Kor Begeman, Dr Edwin A. Valentijn, Dr Roeland Rengelink and Dr Erik Deul.
Press releases/ in the press
Grant for Euclid Datacenter in Groningen
- see Target for many recent Target related press releases
- 7 March 2012: ESO Photorelease of our VST image of the Hercules supercluster
- 26 August 2011: "
God is an eJ " at QU3 Noorderzon performing arts
- July 2011: OmegaCAM@VST Photo release
- June 2011: VST and 268 Mpix OmegaCAM start work
- June 2011: Interview RTV Noord - video
- June 2011: Interview
TV - video
- See Target
website for recent (>2009) Target related press
- 31 January 2011: Interview in Bits&Chips
- 32 M budget of Target approved by SNN- April 2009
- Euro-VO AIDA project funded in EU FP7 programme - October 2007
- The Target project at the University of Groningen - Interview in Pictogram - August 2007
- Astro-WISE delivered and heading for the future - August 2007 - brochure published by OmegaCEN
- 30 Januari 2006: Benoeming RUG
- 13 March 2002: Wide Angle on the Universe and additional - Press info on Wide Angle on the Universe - .pdf format
- 17 August 1999: ISO-SWS results of H2 survey - ISO DETECTS SIGNAL FROM DARK MATTER --
The ESO-LV project
The first large digital imaging project with 32000 images scanned in the '80s
Up-to-date overviews are available at:
- CHEP2013, Beurs van Berlage Amsterdam, "Probing Big data for answers using Data about data", 16 Oct 2013
- SciOps at ESA Madrid, "The Astro-WISE Information system"- From AstroWise to Wise technologies- 12 Sept 2013
- ICT Open- Eindhoven, " Probing Big data for answers, using Data about Data", 28 Nov 2013
- Data Driven Visualisation Symposium Amsterdam, "Connecting Big data to the users"- 2 Juni 2014
- Target Conference Groningen, "Target Data federations North Netherlands", Nov 2014
- e-science Symposium Almere, "Target Data federations", 6-11-2014
- In the period June 2014- June 2015 I gave 40 presentations
in the Infoversum, mostly about Big Data
- Data science and Systems Complexity opening Symposium Groningen, "Data federations" June 2015
- Information Universe Conference, Groningen, "The Information Universe in vivo in vitro" - Oct 2015
- SCIops conference Munchen, "Data federations and its applications", 27 Nov 2015
- Data federations and its applications, 8 Januari 2016 Santa Cruz de La Palma
- Data federations and its applications, 20 Oktober 2016, IAU symposium Astroinformatics, Sorrento, Italy
- Data Science, Data federations, Science works Symposium, Societeit de Witte Den Haag, 24 November 2016
- Light on Dark matter, Capodimonte,
Napoli Feb 2017
- Big Data in Space, Big data in our computers at EWASS 2017, June Prague
- Entanglement in Information systems, Astroinformatics, Cape Town SA, November 2017
- Data validation beyond Big data Napoli, June 2018
- Dwarf galaxies as Dark Matter
tracers, Groningen, March 2019
- The Information Universe, Dagstuhl, Germany, June 2019
- Euclid, a space mission to map the dark
Universe, Spotlight Groningen,
- Machine learning, Causality lost in translation Picariello lecture on Data science, Unina.it feb 2021
In 2011 we delivered our wide field imaging camera
to ESO's Paranal Observatory in Chile
see VST and 268 Mpix OmegaCAM start work
Here one of our first pictures, reduced at OmegaCEN with Astro-WISE of M17- Omega Nebula
OmegaCEN staff 2017
Currently we handle the data of
our Guaranteed time observations and the KiDS1500 Square
In 2017 Target is continuing its programme with the Target proeftuin "Mining Big data", and the tender valorisation programme "the internet of things", together a 8.3M Euro programme, with contributions from SNN and Provincie Groningen.
OmegaCEN continues to support Astro-WISE, OmegaCAM at theVST, MUSE at the VLT and prepares for the Euclid satellite and Micado at the ELT.
research focusses on data modeling, extreme
data-lineage and Big Data handling with the Center
for Information Technology in Groningen: the
entanglement of information, both in our computer systems
and in physics.
DOTLiveplanetarium staff 2019
not on picture, but on staff: Adri Mathlener/CIT and Kor Begeman/Kapteyn
I build a fantastic dome theater downtown in
On 31 March 2014 the building was delivered to the Infoversum Foundation and the theater officially opened on 17 June 2014.
After a wonderful year with over 80.000 visitors the city of Groningen withdraw from the enterprise and it closed down in December 2015.
The venue is now operated by DOT and in October 2017 the RUG started a new programme
coordinated by Prof R. Peletier, Marlies van de Weijgaert and myself.
I owned, sailed and maintained an oak- wooden French sailing cutter (Dundee) for 25 years. Steven Gerritsen is now essentially re-building her see Orion. Like the fantastic "Theater te Water" on the ship the "Verwondering" the "Vrijhaven" of Groningen made me (amoungst other things) move to Groningen in the 80's.
I enjoyed very much Prof Blaauw sails back home from Vlieland on board of Rudolf Le Poole's skutsje.
In memoriam Adriaan Blaauw 1914-2010
My favourite picture of amazing Adriaan on this memorable trip.
In Auguste every year I guide on the sail charter SENTA Waddenzeilen
to view the Perseides in the dark on the Wadden