ESO Department of Communication

Contact Us

Please direct all inquiries and requests (English language is preferred) to this address:

ESO Department of Communication,
Karl-Schwarzschild-Str. 2
D-85748 Garching bei München

Tel: +49 89 3200 6291
Fax: +49 89 3200 2362

The Team

Our team consists of in-house staff, collaborators and interns. Some work full-time, some part-time. We also collaborate with volunteers.

A list of students and previous interns/visitors is available.


Head of the Department of Communication

Anna-Lynn Wegener

Head of the Department of Communication

Tel: +49 89 3200 6211


Susana Almagro Garcia

Administrative Assistant

Susana is the ESO Department of Communication Assistant at ESO's Headquarters in Garching. Her work includes providing administrative, travel, procurement and budget support for the department. Besides these duties, she also is in charge of logistics for the science communication internships, trainees, apprentices, students, visitors and volunteers. She coordinates events and projects as well as assisting with the budget and the coordination of payments.

Tel: +49 89 3200 6291

Media Relations Team

Mariya Lyubenova

Head of Media Relations Team

Mariya is the Head of the Media Relations Team, whose goal is to bring to the attention of the media, educators, decision-takers, local communities, and the public in general the most important scientific and technological achievements of the astronomical users community of ESO and its 16 member states. Mariya leads a culturally diverse team of science communicators, writers, visual artists, image processing specialists and social media experts. The MRT is responsible for the preparation of press releases, announcements, video casts, social media campaigns, exhibitions and other.

As a member of ESO’s astronomers faculty, Mariya is pursuing an active research program in the area of galaxy evolution, as well as supervises master and PhD students and mentors junior researchers. Born and completed a BSc and MSc in Bulgaria, Mariya obtained her doctorate in astronomy from the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in Munich in 2009, after pursuing 3 years of research at the ESO Headquarters in Germany. After that she worked as a researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy in Heidelberg, Germany and then at the Kapteyn Astronomical Institute of the University of Groningen, the Netherlands, before re-joining ESO in 2017. 

Tel: +49 89 3200 6188

Bárbara Trovão Ferreira

Public Information Officer

Bárbara is responsible for managing the production of the ESO news items and acts as ESO’s interface with the media. She started her science communication career as a science writing intern at ESO back in 2011. She then moved to the European Geosciences Union where she worked for 8 years as media and communications manager, before returning to ESO. Originally from Portugal, she has a degree in astronomy from the University of Porto, and a masters and PhD in mathematical astrophysics from the University of Cambridge, UK.

Tel: +49 89 3200 6670




Paola Amico

Science Liaison

Paola holds a Doctorate in Astronomy from Padova University, Italy. In 1994 she started as science fellow at ESO, in a wave of enthusiasm from her visits as a student that had her enjoying ESO's coffee since 1989; already in 1995 she moved her fellowship  to the Detector Group of the Instrumentation Division, to follow a more technology-oriented career in astronomy. She became staff member at ESO in the Data Management Division in 1998, as Data Quality Control Scientist for ISAAC and NACO. In 2001 she moved to Hawaii, to enjoy tropical beaches and to work at Keck Observatory as Instrument Scientist for LRIS and eventually OSIRIS, following her interest in Adaptive Optics assisted Astronomy.

In 2005 she became Staff Astronomer at Paranal Observatory, thus re-joining ESO in a different continent. She was instrument scientist of NACO and SINFONI and leader of the Adaptive Optics team. In the 8 years as astronomer at the observatories, she participated in more than 30 different instrument commissioning and upgrades, and passed the 1200-nights mark as observer. Returning to regular daytime-work happened in 2009, when she closed a geographical and career triangle, as System Engineer in the Instrumentation Division of ESO. She currently works on ELT-related projects, such as MAORY, MICADO and the Wavefront Sensing Cameras, and supports the Department of Communication as Science Liaison. Asteroid #454350 discovered by WISE is named after her.

Tel: +49 89 3200 6927


Martin Kornmesser

Visual Artist

Visit Martin's Flickr page

Tel: +49 89 3200 6586

Herbert Zodet

Video Coordinator

Tel: +49 89 3200 6422

Luis Calçada

Data Visualisations Artist

Luis studied Physics/Applied Math (Astronomy) but eventually gave up on the idea of becoming a real scientist. He got his first real job at a science centre in Portugal, where for 6 years he discovered, developed and matured his skills in visual science communication. At ESO he's part of the latter steps of the chain, in a group which tries to deliver to the public the extraordinary science there developed in the exciting and inspiring manner it deserves. His tools of choice are Maxon's Cinema 4D, Adobe's Photoshop and After Effects and a Wacom Intuos 3. When he has the time, he also likes to do some photography, a sample of which you can see on his Flickr page.

Tel: +49 3200 6855

Internal Communication

Douglas Pierce-Price

Head of Internal Communication

Tel: +49 89 3200 6759


Gabriela Gajardo

Internal Communication Chile

Tel: +56 2 463 3093

Communication Chile

Laura Ventura

Head of Communication Chile


Tel: +56 2 463 3265


Bárbara Nuñez

Regional Relations Officer

Bárbara is the Press Officer of ESO in Chile. After graduating from the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile University in 2011, she specialised in science communication at the University of Chile. She worked for national newspaper Las Ultimas Noticias, Chile’s most read newspaper in the country. There, she wrote about science, technology, and health. She also had the opportunity to write for international media such as The Planetary Society. She has been the finalist of several environmental and science journalism awards in Chile.

Tel: +56 2 463 3019

Francisco Rodríguez

Press Officer Chile


Sofía Otero Cavada

Outreach Officer in Chile

Sofía Otero Cavada is a journalist from Universidad de Chile, with a Master in Science Communication from the University of Otago (NZ). Before joining ESO, she worked in the field of promoting sciences for 10 years, with an emphasis in earth sciences and energy, for public universities and local public research centres in Chile. Since 2014, she has been teacher at the Diploma on Science Communication, at Universidad de Chile, and also teaches workshops in the area for professionals, researchers, undergraduate & graduate students. She has created and been in charge of a broad variety of contents and activities, in particular, books, exhibitions and online educational material for different audiences.

Tel: +56 2 463 3123


Editorial Team

Jutta Boxheimer

Print Coordinator

Tel: +49 3200 6332

Mafalda Martins

Print Assistant

Tel: +49 3200 9020



Web Team

Raquel Yumi Shida

Head of Web Team

Raquel obtained a professional degree in architecture and urban planning at the University of São Paulo in Brazil, her home country. As an undergraduate student she also attended classes in various fields of science, built her own telescope and became an avid amateur astronomer, publishing data and articles on galactic and extragalactic stars. Since then she has worked at the Astronomy Department at the University of São Paulo, at NASA/STScI and at ESA/Hubble doing astronomy-related web design/development, scientific research and astronomy outreach. Today she is responsible for the web content and management of several websites for ESO, IAU and ESA/Hubble.

A fraction of her publications in astronomy and science communication can be found on this NASA/ADS link

Tel: +49 89 3200 6177

Gurvan Bazin

Web & Advanced Projects Coordinator

Gurvan is a Full Stack Web Engineer. He got his PhD in Observational and Computational Cosmology in 2008 and worked on various international astronomical experiments, e.g. SPT, SDSS and LSST. He became an expert in data processing, data analysis and their counterparts in software engineering. In 2015, he started to work on the ESO Exposure Time Calculators, shifting focus towards Web Technologies. He is now responsible for the development and maintenance of the ESO, IAU and ESA/Hubble websites.

Tel: +49 89 3200 6872


Emma Foxell

Intern Science Communication

Emma has been fascinated by astronomy since viewing the 1999 total solar eclipse as a child. She completed a MSci in Natural Sciences at UCL, majoring in Astrophysics, before commencing a PhD at the University of Warwick. Emma’s PhD was in the field of exoplanets and transit surveys, focusing on red dwarfs. During her PhD, she started writing astronomy articles for Astrobites and Popular Astronomy magazine and presenting planetarium shows at local schools. Emma plans to continue in astronomy research, outreach and writing.


Emma Foxell

Stephanie Rowlands

Intern Science Communication

Stephanie’s passion for astronomy first took off after viewing the transit of Venus in 2012 and the total solar eclipse near Cairns, Australia. She soon joined the Young Observer’s group at Mount Burnett Observatory, a community run amateur astronomy club near Melbourne. It was here where she started volunteering in outreach programs and public viewing nights, introducing the public to the Southern Hemisphere night sky.

While on her way to completing a Bachelor of Science degree at Swinburne University, Steph also wrote astronomy related articles for COSMOS magazine. Her University projects included spectroscopy at the 3.9 metre Anglo-Australian Telescope. Steph’s career plan includes completing a PhD in astrophysics.



Justin Tabbett

Intern Science Communication

Popular science media sparked Justin’s interest in Physics and public understanding of science. During his Physics MSci with the University of Bristol, Justin completed a science communication placement, solidifying his desire to participate in communications. Following this placement, Justin wanted to explore other avenues of Physics, and so was led to ESO. During his undergraduate degree, he completed a project in Neutrino Detector Research and Development. Justin’s future plans are to undertake a PhD in detector development and to continue with science communication.


Justin Tabbett