The second part of the programme consists of a First research project [30 EC] and a Master’s research project [30 EC], resulting in the MSc thesis. The substance of the research projects will be individually decided between students and research staff involved in the training programme.
The minor project should be related to observational astronomy, and the major project to astronomical instrumentation. With regard to the latter, this can be hands-on lab work at the Observatory.
The major research project, or MSc project, could also be conducted at one of the Observatory’s research partners, such as Airbus Defence and Space Netherlands and cosine in Leiden, TNO in Delft, ESA/ESTEC in Noordwijk, ASTRON in Dwingeloo, SRON in Utrecht/Groningen. In this case, students will be participating in one of the international projects Leiden Observatory is carrying out with leading Dutch astronomical and astrophysical institutes.
During the instrumentation-related courses, students need to design an instrument or device. For their Master’s research project, however, students are also expected to develop a prototype of an instrument.