Space Talk on Cosmic Rays with Mathieu de Naurois
Mathieu de Naurois is a research director at the CNRS and professor at the Ecole Polytechnique, specializing in very high-energy gamma-ray astronomy. This very recent branch of gamma-ray astronomy uses very large, extremely fast telescopes to observe the brief, faint light trail (Cherenkov emission) left in the atmosphere by the cascades of particles generated when a very high-energy gamma-ray interacts with a nucleus in the upper atmosphere.
His activities have focused on the start-up and operation of the H.E.S.S. Atmospheric Cherenkov telescope network, located in Namibia and operated by an international collaboration of nearly 200 researchers. He has participated in the identification and interpretation of gamma-ray emission from numerous celestial objects, such as binary systems, galaxies with stellar outbursts and supernova remnants. He led the H.E.S.S. collaboration between 2016 and 2019 and is still its deputy director. He is also a member of the Cherenkov Telescope Array (CTA) collaboration that will take over from H.E.S.S., and in 2017 was awarded the CNRS silver medal for his contributions to gamma-ray astronomy.