My research focuses on constraining the formation and migration mechanisms of giant extra-solar planets and brown dwarfs in young and dusty circumstellar environments (e.g. proto-planetary disks). For that, I use high angular/contrast imaging/spectroscopy techniques.
Fields of interests:
- Planets and Star Formation (Exoplanets, Brown Dwarfs, Disks)
- High Contrast Imaging, Adaptive Optics, Coronagraphy
- Astronomical Instrumentation and Observing Techniques/Strategies
Research as a team player: I am part of a number of small to large teams and enjoy collaborative work very much. Observational astronomy is global and requires facilities which are onerous. We cannot each answer a little question independently. We have to get together as a community (or pieces of it) and work towards answering pertinent questions.
Thanks to SPHERE instrument installed on ESO's Very Large Telescope, in Chile, we published this fun paper (led by Valentina d'Orazi, INAF) in Nature Astronomy of the rotating shadows projected on the gas and dust disc that surround the binary star V4046 Sgr. The video on the right explains what we see (image on the left)
Press Release in Italian: http://www.media.inaf.it/2018/11/26/spherea-v4046-sgr/
Research Paper on arxiv.
The shadow location for the near side of the disk (indicated with a solid red arrow) has rotated (11 ± 1)°, as expected from the binary orbital phase. The corresponding location of the shadow in the 2015 dataset (left) is marked with a dashed arrow in the 2017 observations (right).