Consolidated research topics

In this context, the study of stellar evolution and nucleosynthesis is addressed through the development of theoretical models of an astrophysical nature and the experimental and theoretical study of nuclear impact sections necessary as input to the models. The hydrodynamic description underlying the developed models, with magnetohydrodynamic and/or double diffusive instability of thermohaline mixing type, also finds applications in oceanographic fields.


Observation of the most extreme environmental conditions present in the Universe and research of new physics through the study of high energy electromagnetic radiation (gamma rays) and charged particles (cosmic rays). The observation and analysis activities of the experiments already in operation like Fermi, AMS-02, DAMPE, are accompanied by technological development and design activities for the new generation of international gamma-ray observatories such as CTA and ASTRI Mini-Array, x radiation (eXTP) and cosmic rays with energies up to the PeV (HERD).

Experimental study of the elementary constituents of matter and their fundamental interactions. Research of new physics beyond the standard model both at the TeV scale, through the CMS and LHCb experiments at CERN's LHC collisionator, and through the study of rare decays of meson B and K mesons with the Belle II experiments (at the SuperKEKB accelerator in Japan), LHCb, BESIII (at the BEPC-II accelerator in China) and NA62 at the CERN SPS accelerator. The activities include both the analysis of experimental data and the development of new detectors and tools for acquisition, selection and reconstruction.

Theoretical study of the constituents and fundamental interactions of matter in the following topics:
• String theory;
• Theoretical astrophysics;
• Hadron and Nuclear Physics;
• Particle phenomenology;
• Applications of field theories and strings to emerging systems of condensed matter (high temperature superconductivity).

Research concerning Nanomagnetism, Spintronics, Nanomechanics, Surface Physics conducted in collaboration with CNR-IOM, also thanks to the presence of joint laboratories. In this field we use techniques already developed in the Department (Brillouin spectroscopy from spin waves, Magnetoptic Kerr Effect, Optical Interferometry, Atomic Force Microscopy, Micromagnetic and Micromechanical Simulations) as well as techniques in development (Surface Physics Laboratory that will employ ultra-high vacuum chambers and techniques based on electronic beams and x-rays) working in close connection with beamlines of the Elettra Synchrotron of Trieste.

This field includes research activities dedicated to the study of the processes of energy transformation to micro and nanoscales, in order to design and realize micro energy generators for the power supply of mobile ICT (Information and Communication Technology) devices.

This field of research is aimed at the study of biomolecules and advanced materials for innovative solutions with therapeutic purposes. In this highly multidisciplinary context, information from advanced spectroscopic techniques and the modeling capacity of complex systems play a leading role in addressing global health challenges. In this context, the synergy between Physics and other scientific disciplines defines a Transversal Collaborative Action. This scope of research accesses resources at large-scale facilities that define an international C-Lab. Research topics in this area are often addressed in collaboration with the CNR-IOM.

Development of advanced techniques and methods of scattering and spectroscopy with low energy neutron beams, synchrotron light and FEL in the EUV and X-rays regions for the study of materials, from crystalline solids to biomolecules. Design, development, and construction of advanced spectrometers and components (monochromators, collimators, mirrors, choppers, shielding). Design and development of prototype detectors for neutrons of low energy and visible light. The instrumentation is checked in the laboratories of the department and installed at European research infrastructures (ILL, ESRF, ISIS, FERMI, NFFA, ESS). The research field is developed in the international context, mainly European, of the Analytical Facilities of ESFRI (European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures). Currently under development: T-REX@ESS (IT-DE Collaboration; installation at ESS-SE); TR-OS/RAMAN (UNIPG, UNIMI, UNIROMA1, UNITS, ELETTRA, INFN collaboration; installation at NFFA@Elettra-FERMI). This research field is developed in strong synergy with CNR, INFN and ELETTRA.

Study of the dynamic and structural properties of complex liquids such as polymers, biopolymers, hydrogels, cells and tissues. For this research, Brillouin, dielectric, photocorrelation, EDLS (Extended Depololarized Light Scattering) spectroscopy laboratories have been developed and BRaMS (Brillouin-Raman Micro Spectroscopy) is being developed for mechanobiology studies and biomedical applications. These laboratories are available for a University C-Lab.

This field of research is focused on measuring geological time through multiple methodologies in order to determine sequences of events both regionally and planetarily. It represents a basic field for determining the recurrence times of geological processes ranging from the micro scale to the macro scale and allows to quantify events that propagate from very short time scales, of the order of tens of seconds, to geological periods billions of years long.

This area of research is focused on the development of integrated and multidisciplinary studies for the understanding of the internal structure of planet Earth and its dynamics. In particular, the internal dynamics of the planet determine the littospheric ones, strongly affecting its evolution in space and time and modulating all geological surface processes by shaping the appearance of the Earth in an incessant cycle.

This field focuses on the acquisition, processing, storage and integration into complex systems of three-dimensional and tempovariant georeferenced data, the development of conceptual models and software able to analyze this data with the aim of contributing to spatial planning, model-environmental management in earth sciences applicable to current configurations and geological past.
New or future activation research topics


New or future activation research topics

This research area is part of issues of global interest aimed at protecting and improving the quality of the environment, stopping and reversing the process of biodiversity loss, combating the degradation of ecosystems and moving to an increasingly circular and no longer linear economy, aimed at the reuse and recycling of resources, with lower carbon emissions and resilient to climate change.

This area of research is aimed at the reading of the landscape as a cultural asset as a starting point for designing new forms of intervention aimed at producing sustainable and environmentally friendly economic development. In addition, the field is focused on the study with scientific methodologies of the archaeological heritage in order to provide important tools for the enhancement and protection of the territory. The relationships between geodiversity, geological heritage (geosites), geo-preservation (geoparks), the environment and human history, are a new multidisciplinary field of research aimed at identifying, evaluating and enhancing the abiotic component of the physical and anthropic landscape. The multitemporal relationships between human actions on the natural resource constitute a cultural, scientific and application glue of increasing interest.

Scientific computing activities with reference to artificial intelligence models, from infrastructural machine learning to the integration of Deep Learning into the reference software stacks for data analysis.

The aim is to apply the skills and infrastructures already developed in other existing areas or lines of research in a broader framework, functional to space-related scientific research and technological development programmes. While space is in fact an enabling factor in the functioning of modern technological systems for earth and universe observation, on the other hand the themes of this field have a strong potential not only in basic research but also in applications for civil society.

The proposed field of research covers different topics transversal to physics (nonlinear dynamic systems, fluctuations,thermodynamics of non-equilibrium, ...) and geology (seismic, volcanic, hydrogeological and environmental risk) and is aimed at the study and quantification of geological risks in order to define a complete picture of their impact on a society made increasingly vulnerable by population growth and increasing globalization and interconnection. The field also includes the study of the propagation of geological and environmental risks from the local to the planetary scale, as well as on time scales ranging from a few hours to months or years, and the effect of the environment on man and living organisms, or the study of the onset of health problems caused by "geo-factors".
It is proposed to develop new predictive models of geological and environmental risks, also in collaboration with colleagues from other Departments (Mathematics, Chemistry and Biology, Pharmacy, Medicine, Political Science, Engineering, Agricultural, Food and Forestry Sciences, Letters) to embrace crises of different kinds (social, health, epidemiological, economic, ...) within the more general context of a transversal action of the University.

Technological developments for gravitational wave detectors (Ligo/Virgo, Kagra, ET), data analysis and correlation between astrophysical and gravitational observations aimed at the theoretical and experimental study of gravitational wave emission mechanisms and relativistic jets associated with gamma ray bursts (GRBs). Neutron star mergers and state equations of neutron stars.