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Previous issues of the newsletter are published below.

  • juliedalgobbo



Name: Ottavio Fornieri


Current position: Postdoc


Affiliation: Gran Sasso Science Institute


Field of research: Cosmic-ray acceleration and propagation theory



 

What is your career trajectory to date?

I did my Ph.D. in Theoretical Physics within a joint project between Italy and Spain, earning my doctoral title in 2021. Before ending it, in December 2020, I moved to DESY Zeuthen as a Research Associate, until September 2021. I am currently a Postdoctoral Researcher in Gran Sasso Science Institute, in L'Aquila (Italy).


What are the most exciting open questions in your research area?

1. The propagation of cosmic rays in our Galaxy is still up to debate. The overall picture is agreed upon: diffusion is likely the result of charged particles scattering off turbulent magnetic fluctuations. However, various insights from plasma physics suggest that what were earlier thought to be the scattering centers for cosmic rays are probably not efficient enough. Therefore this made the cosmic-ray propagation process a widely open question. 2. Another exciting problem is how cosmic rays are get accelerated up to PeV energies, in light of the recent evidence coming from dense star forming regions.


What do you like and dislike about being a scientist?

I need the pleasure of the discovery, the whole investigation process that leads to all the pieces of a puzzle to match up together. I sometimes dislike the (mostly unhealthy) competition among groups that should be operating towards the same achievements.


Which of your skills are you most proud of, or find most useful?

I am good at digging very deep into a specific problem, until I can comprehend it under different perspectives that, at the beginning, seemed to be unrelated to each other.


What new skills would you like to learn in the next year?


I would like to learn how to run and analyze plasma-turbulence simulations (MHD/Hybrid).


What advances or new results are you excited about or looking forward to?

I am studying to understand the physics of propagating magnetic fluctuations in the plasma - which modes can propagate, their potential damping mechanisms, etc.


What is the biggest obstacle that is slowing down your research field right now?

Learning numerical techniques.


What role do you think a community network like EuCAPT can play in developing theoretical astroparticle physics and cosmology in Europe?

I think it is of outstanding importance to bring together people who, on the other hand, are used to compete. Science is not a competition.


What’s your favorite food?

Arrosticini!


How do you like to relax after a hard day of work?

I love listening to live music in a pub. I read a lot and go to the cinema.


Do you have any non-physics interests that you would like to share?


Cooking.


If you were not a scientist, what do you think you would be doing?

I would have liked to be a historian, probably.


What do you hope to see accomplished scientifically in the next 50 years?

The origin of UHECRs is one open question that seems to be solved in the next years.









Name: Paul Frederik Depta


Current position: Postdoc


Affiliation: Max-Planck-Institut für Kernphysik


Field of research: Dark matter, connections between particle physics and cosmology




 

What is your career trajectory to date?

I studied physics at the University of Frankfurt, Germany, where I obtained my Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in 2015 and 2017. Between 2018 and 2021 I was a PhD student in the DESY Theory Group in Hamburg, Germany. Since 2021 I am a postdoc at the Max-Planck-Institute for Nuclear Physics in Heidelberg, Germany.


What are the most exciting open questions in your research area?

What is the nature of dark matter? Where and how should we look for it? What could be new observational signatures of dark matter?


What do you like and dislike about being a scientist?

I like the opportunity to work on interesting problems and that by doing so, we are actually generating new knowledge in an effort to describe the physical world. At the same time, I dislike some of the frustrations along the way, be it in setbacks (though they are certainly part of the process) or uncertainties as a young scientist.


Which of your skills are you most proud of, or find most useful?

I am proud that I have the resilience to work on difficult problems and eventually solve them. This is also a very useful skill.


In your career so far, at what point were you the most excited, and what were you excited about?


It’s difficult to choose from a couple of moments, but putting my first paper on the arXiv was certainly a very exciting moment for me.


What new skills would you like to learn in the next year?


I would like to learn more about cosmological perturbation theory and applications for different dark matter models.


What advances or new results are you excited about or looking forward to?

I am looking forward to finding out more about/discovering the nature of dark matter. But I am also excited for other new results and believe that we will have interesting advances at the interface of particle physics and cosmology (e.g. in gravitational waves, 21cm observations, etc.).


What is the biggest obstacle that is slowing down your research field right now?

I think the combination of both, a wealth of data supporting the Standard Model of particle physics as well as the lack of data hinting at new physics beyond the Standard Model, is a difficult situation for a theoretical physicist working on dark matter to make progress right now.


What role do you think a community network like EuCAPT can play in developing theoretical astroparticle physics and cosmology in Europe?

A community network like EuCAPT helps to provide opportunities for scientific discussion and exchange, in my opinion probably the most important basis for developing theoretical astroparticle physics and cosmology in Europe even further.


What’s your favorite food?

Pasta.


How do you like to relax after a hard day of work?

I relax by playing the trumpet.


Do you have any non-physics interests that you would like to share?


I really enjoy playing the trumpet, which I do in different orchestras and ensembles. I also like cooking.


If you were not a scientist, what do you think you would be doing?

I think I would play the trumpet in a professional orchestra.


What do you hope to see accomplished scientifically in the next 50 years?

If I have to pick just one goal, I would say to unveil the nature of dark matter. But I do hope that we solve some other problems too, like the origin of the baryon asymmetry in the universe, the origin of neutrino masses, the nature of dark energy, and others.






  • juliedalgobbo




Name: Martina Cardillo


Current position: Faculty


Affiliation: INAF-IAPS


Field of research: High energy astrophysics, Gamma-ray astronomy, Cosmic Rays, Particle Acceleration





 

What is your career trajectory to date?

Master Degree in Astrophysics, summa cum laude, 2010,

Università di Roma Tor Vergata - PhD in AStronomy, 2013,

Università di Roma Tor Vergata - Postdoc at INAF-Osservatorio AStrofisico di Arcetri in Florence (2014-2017),

Postdoc at INAF-IAPS in Rome (2017-2021),

Permanent position at INAF-IAPS (2021-present).


What are the most exciting open questions in your research area?

What is the origin of Cosmic Rays? Which sources can accelerate particlese above PeV energies and through which mechanisms?


What do you like and dislike about being a scientist?

Like: learning something new every day, continuous evolution of my field, have the tools to teach the universe to other people, internationality and knowledge exchange all over the world.

Dislike: sedentary work, too much politics and burocracy affect the projects, too much arrogance due to the fact to be scientists.


Which of your skills are you most proud of, or find most useful?

Organisation and planning skills, multi-tasking, take my responsibilities, punctuality, respect, communication skill (outreach and teaching).


In your career so far, at what point were you the most excited, and what were you excited about?


After my master thesis, during my PhD because I contributed to one of the most important discovery about Cosmic Rays with the data analysis of the AGILE satellite (all Italian mission). And now because I'm strongly involved in the ASTRI Mini-Array project (again, an Italian project with leadership INAF), an array of 9 telescopes for the very high energy gamma-ray astronomy.


What new skills would you like to learn in the next year?


I'd like to learn about Machine Learning applied in my field, improve my programming skills, have the chance to direct my own project.


What advances or new results are you excited about or looking forward to?

In my field: The ASTRI Mini-Array results and its contribute about what we know about PeVatrons and particle acceleration.

In general: the ARTEMIS mission and our return to the moon, commercial space flights, the chance to go to Mars.


What is the biggest obstacle that is slowing down your research field right now?

In general, politics and burocracy are big problems in Science. Then there are problems due to poor coordination within the team and understaffing (a very big problem in Italy even because some new regulations).


What role do you think a community network like EuCAPT can play in developing theoretical astroparticle physics and cosmology in Europe?

I think that network and a constant updating between scientists is fundamental and EuCAPT can be a good tool to do this. The hope is that the great part of Scientist enjoy the community and I think that will be very important to involve young scientists (PhD, postdoc and so on).


What’s your favorite food?

Every kind of food! Sweet or salty! Especially the Italian, obviously. I like eating :D!


Have you lived in a different European country than you do now? If so, would you like to tell us something about it, e.g. a fond memory or something you found surprising?


Nope. I lived 1 month in Germany, Heidelberg but it is too short period to say something about the life there.


How do you like to relax after a hard day of work?

Reading, writing, playing the piano, doing sport (running with a podcast in my ears), listening music and, if possible, dancing!


Do you have any non-physics interests that you would like to share?


I like a lot of things: I'm an amatorial theatral actress, I wrote a book ("Col sorriso negli occhi"), I write poetry in Italian and Roman dialect, I play the piano (and a little the guitar), I read a lot and I love walking in Rome and traveling everywhere.


If you were not a scientist, what do you think you would be doing?

Probably a doctor (cardiac surgeon or neurosurgeon).


What do you hope to see accomplished scientifically in the next 50 years?

Rights equality, gender equality, renewed love and trust for culture and science, common consciousness and solution for global problems.





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