Francisco M. Montenegro Montes

Curriculum Vitae

2015 - Present Head of the APEX Science Operations group.
2008 - 2014 ESO/APEX support astronomer.
2005 - 2008 Ph.D. in Astrophysics "Radio-Loud Broad Absorption Line QSOs" at the ULL/IAC (Spain) and INAF/IRA (Italy).
2003 - 2005 DEA (Diploma de Estudios Avanzados) at ULL. Dissertation: "Estudio multifrecuencia de una muestra de cuásares emisores en radio con líneas de absorción anchas" (Multifrequency studies of a sample of Radio-Loud Broad Absorption Line Quasars).
2001 - 2003 Physics Bsc. (Astrophysics) at the ULL. Dissertation: "Bases de datos en el proyecto SWIRE" (Databases related to project SWIRE).
1996 - 2001 Physics studies at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (Spain)

Observing experience

I have experience with the usage of the following facilities:

Radio, mm, sub-mm:
  • APEX (bolometer and heterodyne). Support astronomer.
  • IRAM-30m (bolometer and heterodyne)
  • JCMT (bolometer)
  • Effelsberg 100-m (radiocontinuum in full polarisation)
  • VLA (radiocontinuum in full polarisation)
  • VLBA (radiocontinuum in full polarisation)
  • WSRT (spectroscopy)
  • William Herschel Telescope (long-slit spectroscopy)
  • TNG (JHK imaging and long-slit spectroscopy)
  • 2.2m CAHA Observatory (imaging)
  • NOT (imaging and long-slit spectroscopy)
  • INT (imaging)
  • MERCATOR (imaging)
  • IAC80, Observatorio del Teide (UBVRI imaging)


I like Python and its main scientific packages (e.g., scipy, matplotlib, pyfits).

For my thesis it was useful to create a Python-based pipeline (PyPEff) to reduce, in a semi-automated fashion, radiocontinuum data in full polarisation taken with the 100-m Effelsberg radio telescope.

Some tools from the Virtual Observatory that I find very useful are Aladin, Topcat or SPLAT-VO.

Databases are nowadays powerful tools in Science. I have experience in the creation, management and usage of relational databases with MySQL.

Outreach activities

Since 1995 I am proud member of the Agrupación Astronómica de Madrid (AAM). I will always be extremely grateful to people there because in my early years as a student I much developed my interest for astronomy. I could also learn to build a decent 20-cm dobsonian telescope.

I have some experience helping in guided tours through professional observatories and also amateur observing sessions.

It was a pleasure to chat with Manuel Seara (conductor of the weekly radio programme "A hombros de Gigantes") about life at APEX and the Atacama desert. You might want to listen the interview through the podcast of RTVE here (Spanish)

Maybe you want to have a look at the astronomy-related blog in which I am co-writer (Spanish). I also participate regularly in the blog of the magazine for Physics' students Revista |Quanto>. During my years at the UCM in Madrid I was involved in the organization of the paper version.

I participated in the 3rd Edition of the "Teresa Pinillos" scientific essays contest. My essay was selected for publication in the book "Un breve viaje por la ciencia". You can get the pdf from here. (Spanish)