Sofia Maggioni won the “Milla Baldo Ceolin” prize

My former master student Sofia Maggioni won the 2022 INFN prize “Milla Baldo Ceolin” for the best theses in the field of theoretical physics. Her master thesis was titled “Fully Relativistic Magnetohydrodynamic Simulations of Spinning Massive Black Hole Binaries” and she worked under my supervision and in collaboration with Prof. Monica Colpi and Mr. Federico Cattorini.

The news, in Italian, can be found on the Bicocca news blog.

New Paper on GRMHD Simulations of Massive Black Hole Mergers

We submitted a new paper investigating the dynamics of magnetized plasma accreting onto merging supermassive black holes including, for the first time, the effect of misaligned black hole spins.

The purpose of simulations like these is to investigate possible electromagnetic emission that could be generated by these systems. Supermassive black hole mergers are powerful sources of gravitational waves that will be detected by the future LISA mission, but, as simulations like ours show, they could also produce electromagnetic counterparts, that could be detected by future X-ray observatories, such as Athena.

Einstein Toolkit School 2021

The Einstein Toolkit school took place the last week of July online. All lectures were recorded and they can be found on the school web page.

I gave a lecture on how to use binary neutron star initial data generated with the LORENE code Bin_star. The recording can be seen below, while the material used for the lecture can be found here.

The Spritz Code

image of an Aperol Spritz cocktail

Our first paper on our new code Spritz has been published on Classical and Quantum Gravity. The code is also publicly available on Zenodo. This first paper presents tests in special and general relativistic magnetohydrodynamics. We are currently working on a second paper that will present our current tests of its equation of state driver and neutrino emission scheme.

The code will then be used for numerical relativity simulations of neutron star binary mergers.

Einstein Toolkit and TCAN Workshops at RIT

This week I participated at two very interesting workshops at the Rochester Institute of Technology: the Einstein Toolkit and the TCAN meeting. I gave a talk on wednesday presenting some applications of my WhiskyMHD code to binary neutron star mergers (below you can find the YouTube video of my talk).

Both workshops were successful and with very interesting discussions about the future of the Einstein Toolkit and our plan for the next year of our TCAN international collaboration funded by NASA. Many young researchers joined both meetings indicating a strong potential growth for the field of numerical relativity applied at astrophysical sources.

La prima immagine di un buco nero: storia della foto del secolo

Oggi, su invito degli studenti e delle studentesse di UNITiN, ho presentato i risultati della collaborazione Event Horizon Telescope. Le slides del mio seminario sono adesso disponibili in formato pdf. Il video del seminario è al momento accessibile via Facebook. Più di 300 studenti sono stati presenti all’evento che è stato anche trasmesso in diretta video via Facebook. Il lavoro svolto dall’associazione UNITiN è stato eccellente come al solito e mi ha fatto piacere partecipare.

EM Emission and Nucleosynthesis from NS-NS Mergers

Almudena Arcones, Marius Eichler, and I wrote a chapter for a book edited by the former EU COST Action “NewCompStar”. The chapter is titled “Electromagnetic Emission and Nucleosynthesis from Neutron Star Binary Mergers” and it is part of the book “The Physics and Astrophysics of Neutron Stars” published by Springer. In this chapter you can find a review of the current state of the art in the field of electromagnetic emission and nucleosynthesis from neutron star binaries (NS-NS and NS-BH systems).

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