Since 2014, the German Argentinean University Center (CUAA-DAHZ) has been funding the Double Doctoral degree in Astrophysics (DDAp), a double doctorate program between Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) and Universidad Nacional de San Martín (UNSAM) in Buenos Aires. This program has been built on the long-standing collaboration in astroparticle physics that has developed within the Pierre Auger Observatory in Malargüe, Argentina.
Doctoral students participating in the DDAp work on joint research projects in astroparticle physics and detector technologies and usually have two stays in the partner country from a total of about one year. The respective research project is complemented by a lecture program covering astrophysics, astroparticle and particle physics as well as German and Spanish courses. Embedded in the KIT Center Elementary Particle and Astroparticle Physics (KCETA), doctoral students of DDAp participate as fellows in workshops and lectures of the Karlsruhe School of Elementary Particle and Astroparticle Physics (KSETA). At the conclusion of a project after about three to three and a half years, KIT and UNSAM, will conduct a joint examination. Upon passing the examination, both institutions jointly award the doctoral degree.
Since 2018, the DDAp program has also been linked to the Helmholtz International Research School for Astroparticle Physics and Enabling Technologies (HIRSAP), a graduate school of KIT and UNSAM. Doctoral students of HIRSAP and KSETA can apply to participate in the DDAp, provided that their research topic is appropriate to the DDAp.
In recent years, the successful collaboration has developed into a "Strategic Partnership UNSAM-KIT" (SPUK), which is open to all joint research activities beyond the original subject areas.