Michela Mapelli

I am a black hole enthusiast, a cat-addicted person and I am delighted to lead this wonderful research team. I obtained my PhD in Astrophysics from the International School for Advanced Studies (SISSA) in Trieste (2006). My PhD Thesis on the “Relic signatures of reionization sources” was awarded both the Gratton and the Tacchini Prizes. In 2011, after a Forschungskredit postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Zurich and a senior postdoctoral fellowship in Milano, I moved to a permanent position at INAF Padova, where I obtained a “Future in Research” Italian grant (2013) and  I started building an independent research group. In 2015, I was awarded the MERAC PRIZE for the Best Early Career Researcher in Theoretical Astrophysics by the European Astronomical Society, “for my theoretical and computational contributions to the dynamics of star clusters and galaxies, the reionization epoch, the Galactic centre, and the formation of massive stellar black holes”. In 2017, I became fixed-term professor at the University of Innsbruck and one year later I moved to the University of Padova as an associate professor. In 2017, I have been awarded an ERC consolidator grant about “The demography of black hole binaries in the era of gravitational wave astronomy”. My current work focuses on the astrophysical formation channels of compact-object binaries.