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Doctor Kalle Torstensson

Submitter: Huib van Langevelde
Description: On December 6 Kalle Torstensson defended his thesis on methanol masers and millimetre lines. Kalle studied regions of high-mass star formation with the EVN and JCMT, demonstrating that in a fraction of sources masers appear to originate in the shock interface between infall and an accretion disk. In this region the conditions are apparently favourable for radiatively exciting the maser. The large-scale thermal methanol gas appears to originate from the same position and gets entrained in the outflow.

By completing his thesis, Kalle demonstrated once again that "a Swedish man can do anything", a statement with which he became first recognized as an EVN scientist, when he entered the field 5 years ago. He was reminded of this fact by 'hooggeschatte opponent' Mike Garrett, who challenged his proposition that VLBI makes all other observing dim.

Another proposition argued that there are few opportunities to get your PhD on the date of St Nicolas, patron of sailors and students (and a few other types). And in fact, many references to Kalle's sailing were made, starting with the 'laudatio' by co-promotor Huib van Langevelde. Later, friends argued that in fact Kalle is actually Sinterklaas in disguise, coming in a boat from Spain. But as the evening progressed, amongst the members of the large Torstensson tribe, the true nature of the young doctor came out, as he put a few horns on his head, distinguishing him in Leiden as a true radio astronomer.

Copyright: photo's by Lasse Torstensson
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