Gravitational physics and astrophysics
The first detections of gravitational waves from the LIGO/Virgo collaboration have already demonstrated the enormous discovery space that this new window onto the Universe is opening up. Research activities carried out within ARC aim to address a number of fundamental physics and astrophysics questions, among which: how does gravity behave in the strong field/high curvature regime, how does matter behave at supra-nuclear densities, how the Universe emerged from the Big Bang, what is the nature of dark matter and its role in structure formation, how gravitational wave emission from astrophysical sources is related to their electromagnetic counterparts or associated to neutrino emission, which is the nature of compact objects, what are their most common formation pathways and their most likely astrophysical environments. Research activities are led by members of the theoretical gravitation, astrophysics and cosmology groups hosted by the Department, including Valeria Ferrari, Leonardo Gualtieri, Paolo Pani, Roberto Capuzzo Dolcetta, Alessandro Melchiorri and Raffaella Schneider.
The center would also benefit from the involvement of staff researchers in the LISA science working groups and in the GWIC International 3G Science Case Team, to contribute to the development of the science case for the next generation gravitational wave detectors in space and ground-based. Finally, Ferrari, Gualtieri, Pani, Schneider are part of the INFN-funded TEONGRAV network, that also involves researchers in Florence, Naples, Milan, Padua and Trento Universities, and of the COST action on Gravitational waves, black holes and fundamental physics.