Dear participant,

this is the final circular for the IAU Symposium #342 “Perseus in Sicily: from black hole to cluster outskirts”.

The meeting will take place in Noto (Sicily, Italy), starting on Sunday, May 13, with a welcome reception and registration. Scientific sessions will start Monday 14 and end Friday 18.

In this announcement we provide the final science and social programmes, with detailed information on how to reach the conference venue. Please read it carefully. Please also take a minute to fill in the form that we prepared to collect some logistic information (link at the bottom).


It will be possible to register and pick up your conference package on Sunday at Hotel Sofia starting around 5pm. Registration will continue at Theatre Tina di Lorenzo on Monday morning and at hotel Sofia on Tuesday. For those who have not paid the registration fee, yet, it will be possible to pay it in cash or by credit card.

Participants who have been granted funding from the IAU will be able to receive their grant on Tuesday at hotel Sofia, upon signing of a receipt.


The final science program is available at http://www.ira.inaf.it/iaus342/?page_id=36; the list of posters can be found at http://www.ira.inaf.it/iaus342/?page_id=493

Invited talks will last 30′, including 5′ for questions. Contributed talks will last 20′, including 4′ for questions.

We will provide a PC and a Mac to upload presentations in advance of each science session. PDF, PowerPoint, OpenOffice, Keynote formats will all be supported, with PDF being the recommended option.

Poster format can be as large as A0. On Wednesday morning, there will be a plenary session dedicated to poster presenters, to highlight their work with one slide.


On Monday, May 14, the meeting will take place at the “Tina di Lorenzo” theatre downtown Noto (https://goo.gl/maps/sWscsdYtX9T2). On every other day (Tuesday till Friday), the sessions will be located at Grand Hotel Sofia, just out of the old city (https://goo.gl/maps/MYxqMzCPjDU2). It is a 20 minute walk between the Theatre and the Hotel.


There will be a number of events for the participants. These are all included in the conference fee registration. Please find below the details:

– SUNDAY, MAY 13. Welcome cocktail at Grand Hotel Sofia. It will be open to all participants and accompanying persons free of cost.

– MONDAY, MAY 14. After the science sessions at the Tina di Lorenzo theatre, the company “Il cuore di Argante” will perform a stage show based on the myth of Perseus. It will be a short emotional play suitable for an international audience. It will be open to all participants and accompanying persons.

– TUESDAY, MAY 15. A tour of the city visiting Baroque palaces in historic downtown Noto. The cost for accompanying persons will be 5€. At 9pm there will be a public lecture in Italian by Dr. Stefania Varano: you are welcome to attend it at CUMO (https://goo.gl/maps/PfuSCnSuoEE2), yet note this will be mainly an event organised for the local general public

– WEDNESDAY. MAY 16. This is the day of the social trip and dinner. We are considering two options for the trip. One tour will go to historic Syracuse, with a visit to San John’s catacombs from the fourth century AD, and to the island of Ortigia, the historical nucleus of the city, where walking through the city streets you can admire a small part of the archaeological and architectural heritage of what was the birthplace of Archimedes. The other option is to relax on San Lorenzo beach, about 20 km from Noto, also with a chance to visit the Villa Romana del Tellaro on the way. At the bottom of this circular, please find a link to the form to express your preferences; based on your choice we will decide the final program (ie we may keep both trips in parallel or only make one). After the trip, we will go directly for the social dinner at Dafne restaurant. The cost for accompanying persons will be 50€ for trip and dinner together.

– THURSDAY, MAY 17. After the science sessions, we will visit the INAF 32m radio telescope near Noto and have a dinner with regional dishes (dishes in the sense of food, not collecting area!) there. The cost for accompanying persons will be 20€.

– FRIDAY, MAY 18, AND LATER. At the end of the conference on Friday afternoon, the weekend of the Infiorata will begin in Noto: a cascade of thousands of flowers, expertly arranged on the road, making the vision of baroque city full of scents and colours. For trips on Saturday and Sunday, feel free to get in touch with Shougun agency (info@shougun.it) who can organise trips for you (at your own cost). The area is rich in history (from ancient Greek and Roman ruins and theatres, to baroque cities), nature (beautiful coast, and mount Etna, the highest active volcano in Europe topping 3000m), food-and-wine in nearby villages.


We are organising shuttles between the airport and Noto on the day before and the one after the meeting. We will do our best to pick up everyone, including those who arrive on different dates. We kindly ask you to fill in the form indicated below to inform us about your travel details. This will allow us to come up with a shuttle schedule that we will advertise on the web site, on Facebook, and on Twitter by May 10. In any case, the web site also has information about public buses between Catania airport and Noto.


This is the link to the form for you to fill in about your travel information and social activity preferences:



We look forward to meeting you all in Sicily soon!

Marcello, Christine, Elisabete, and Hiroshi