Istituto Ricerche Solari Locarno (IRSOL) is a research institute working in solar physics, located in the southern part of Switzerland. While legally independent, IRSOL is associated since 2015 with USI. The activity of IRSOL is mainly focused on high precision solar spectropolarimetry. This was initially carried out within the framework of a collaboration with the group of Prof. Jan Olaf Stenflo at ETH Zurich, settled on the installation and use of the Zurich IMaging POLarimeter (ZIMPOL) at the IRSOL telescope. During the following years, all the technological expertise concerning ZIMPOL has been transferred to IRSOL, where this instrument is presently maintained and further developed. A collaboration with the Kiepenheuer Institute fur Sonnenphysik (KIS) in Freiburg (D) started in 2010. This collaboration includes the possibility of performing ZIMPOL observations at the GREGOR telescope in Tenerife (E). Since 2013 IRSOL is recognized by the Swiss Confederation as a research infrastructure of national importance. This allowed to get the financial means to substantially increase the IRSOL scientific staff and to reach academic independence. A series of scientific projects, which include the activity of PhD students and post-doc, are financed through competitive funds (e.g., from the Swiss National Science Foundation). IRSOL has excellent competences in high precision spectropolarimetry, including instrumental development, observations, theory, and numerical simulations.
Dr. Michele Bianda, IRSOL director
via Patocchi 57