Nora Luetzgendorf

NIRSpec Instrument and Calibration Scientist


Main Research Fields

My main scientific interest is stellar kinematics around massive black holes. For this I am using observations of Integral Field Units (IFUs) but also computational techniques such as N-body Simulations. I have started out with looking at the centres of massive Galactic globular clusters in order to find kinematic signatures of intermediate-mass black holes and studied the lower end of the M-sigma relation which has been observed for Supermassive black holes and their host galaxies. My goal is to understand the origin and evolution of this relation by constraining it further on the low-mass and high-mass end. Furthermore I am interested in combining my observational skills with simulated data and the advanced use of simulation codes such as NBODY6(,7) and AMUSE.


  • stellar dynamics
  • star clusters
  • black holes
  • black-hole formation
  • N-body Simulations

Ongoing collaborations

  • Markus Kissler-Patig (Gemini)
  • Tim de Zeeuw (ESO, Leiden Observatory)
  • Karl Gebhardt (University of Texas, Austin)
  • Holger Baumgardt (University of Queensland, Australia)
  • Nadine Neumayer (ESO, Garching)
  • Diederik Kruijssen (MPA, Garching)
  • Eva Noyola (University of Texas, Austin)
  • Giacomo Beccari (ESO, Chile)
  • Anja Feldmeier (ESO, Garching)
  • Simon Portegies-Zwart (Leiden Observatory)
  • Torsten Boeker (ESA/Baltimore)
  • Guido De Marchi (ESA/ESTEC)



ESA Research supervisor

Guido De Marchi, Torsten Boeker, Pierre Ferruit

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