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Alessandro Lanzafame obtains the summa cum laude degree in Physics at the University of Catania in 1989 with a thesis on Plasma numerical simulation and Astrophysical applications under the supervision of Prof. Marcello Rodonò and Prof. Angelo Marcello Anile.
From 1990 to 1994 is Post-graduate Research Assistant at Armagh Observatory, N. Ireland, and enrolled as PhD student at Queen’s University Belfast.
In 1994 defends his PhD thesis entitled The transition region between the chromosphere and the corona in late-type stars with Prof. Dame Carole Jordan e Prof. Francis Keenan as examiners. Supervisors of the thesis are Prof. Philip Dufton e del Dr. Patrick Brendan Byrne.
In 1994 is Post-Doctoral Research Assistant at Armagh Observatory
From 1995 to 1996 is Research Fellow at the Strathclyde University in Glasgow.
In 1997 returns to the University of Catania as Lecturer in Astronomy and Astrophysics.
In 2006 obtains the title of Adjunct Professor.
Since 2018 is Associate Professor in Astronomy and Astrophysics at the University of Catania
Prof. Alessandro Lanzafame
|Prof. Alessandro Lanzafame|
|Department of Physics and Astronomy|
|University of Catania|
|Via S. Sofia 78||Telephone:||+39 0957332239|
|95123 Catania||Fax:||+39 095330592|
Area of expertise: Galactic Astrophysics, Stellar Physics, Solar Physics, Stellar Systems, Stellar evolution, Atomic Physics.
Relevant Employment and Educational History
|1989||Degree in Physics, University of Catania|
|1984||Doctor Of Philosophy (PhD), Queens University of Belfast|
|1990 – 1993||Post-Graduate Research Assistant, Armagh Observatory, UK|
|1994||Post-Doctoral Research Assistant, Armagh Observatory, UK|
|1995 – 1996||Research Fellow, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, UK|
|1997 – 2018||Researcher, University of Catania|
|2006 – 2018||Adjunct Professor, University of Catania|
|2018 – present||Associate Professor, University of Catania|
Angular momentum evolution of low-mass stars and formation of planetary systems. Open clusters dynamics and evolution. Evolution of the Galaxy. Stellar ages. Lithium depletion. Stellar magnetic activity. Modelling of stellar chromospheres. Structure of the solar outer atmosphere. Formation of helium lines in the Sun and solar-like stars. Mass accretion in young stars. Inelastic atomic scattering in tenuous plasmas.
Publication Summary (as of 2nd of January 2020, source ADS)
162 papers published, 113 refereed, 9370 citations, h-index=34.
Full list at ADS available at this link
Selected Research-Related Public Service Positions
INAF Associated Researcher
Member of the ADAS (Atomic Data and Analysis Structure) steering committee
Member of the Data Processing and Analysis Consortium (DPAC) for the ESA Gaia space mission
Manager of the Gaia-DPAC work packages Special Variability Detection, Solar-like Variability and Extended Stellar Parametrizer – Cool Stars
Member of the steering committee for the Italian participation in the ESA Gaia space mission
Co-Investigator in the Gaia-ESO Large Spectroscopic Survey; manager of the Pre-Main Sequence Spectrum Analyses working group
Università di Catania, Dipartimento di Fisica e Astronomia, board member
Università di Catania, member of the Physics Doctoral School committee (Ph.D. in Physics)
Contact person for the Astrophysics curriculum for the Laurea Magistrale in Physics at the University of Catania
Università di Catania representative in the Italian H2020 space advisory board
Referee for the Journals: Astronomy & Astrophysics, Astrophysical Journal, Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Summary of Grant income > 10 kEuro
|2008||PRIN-INAF (Participant, 120kEuro)|
|2010||PRIN-INAF (Participant, 140kEuro)|
|2008||ASI contract The Gaia mission: the Italian participation in the DPAC Consortium (Co-I, Local coordinator, 1.6MEuro)|
|2010||Accordo attuativo ASI-INAF Missione Gaia - Partecipazione Italiana al DPAC (Co-I, Local coordinator, 3.7MEuro)|
|2013||INAF Premiale Gaia-ESO (Co-I, Local coordinator, 360 kEuro)|
|2014||PRIN-INAF The Gaia-ESO survey (Co-I, Local coordinator, 186 kEuro)|
|2015||Extension of Accordo attuativo ASI-INAF Missione Gaia - Partecipazione Italiana al DPAC (Co-I, Local coordinator, 3.4MEuro)|
|1997 – 2000||Laboratory for Astrophysics (assistant)|
|2000 – 2001||Stellar Physics (60h)|
|2001 – 2006||Astronomy (60h)|
|2003 – 2010||Cosmology (48h)|
|2006 – 2008||Stellar Physics (48h)|
|2010 – 2012||Elements of Planetology and Cosmology (48h)|
|2010 – present||Astrophysics (48h, 42h since 2018)|
|2019 – present||Elements of Astronomy and Cosmology (42h)|
|1991 – 1992||Radiative Transfer in stellar atmospheres (Master of Science, Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, Queen’s University Belfast)|
|1996 – 1997||Stellar Spectroscopy (PhD in Physics, University of Catania)|
|1999||Elemental abundances in stellar atmospheres (PhD in Physics, University of Catania)|
|2003 – 2008||The Origins of Modern Science|
|2018||Magnetic fields in Neutron Stars|
Public Outreach Activity
Talks at schools and amateur groups on Astrophysics, Cosmology, and History of Science
Talks during visits of students of secondary schools at the INAF-Catania Astrophysical Observatory on Astrophysics and Cosmology
Member of the International Astronomical Union (IAU)
Member of the Royal Astronomical Society (1992 - 1995)
Angular momentum evolution of low-mass stars.
Rotation and magnetic fields effects on low-mass stars
Stellar age from rotation (gyro-chronology)
Stellar lithium depletion and enrichment.
Stellar magnetic activity.
Open clusters cinematics, dynamics, and evolution.
Evolution of the Galaxy.
Modelling of stellar chromospheres.
Structure and heating of the solar outer atmosphere.
Formation of helium lines in the Sun and solar-like stars.
Mass accretion in young stars.
Formation of planetary systems
Inelastic atomic scattering in tenuous plasmas.
My scientific activity is currently focused on problems related to rotational evolution and magnetic fields in low-mass stars and the consequences on the internal stellar structure, on the formation of planets, on the star-planet interaction, and on the determination of stellar age. These problems have important connections with the conditions of star formation, with the dynamics of star clusters and associations and their interaction with the Galaxy system, as well as with the formation and evolution of the kinematic groups of the Galaxy. A significant objective was achieved in 2018 with the publication of the results obtained within the ESA-Gaia mission, and contained in the second date release (DR2), on the amplitude of the rotational modulation and rotation period of approximately 150,000 stars (Lanzafame + 2018, A&A, 616A, 16L). In addition to constituting the most extensive catalog on stellar rotation available today, the richness and photometric precision of the data have highlighted unexpected results on the magneto-rotational evolution of young stars that change the current paradigm. The data show, in fact, evidence of rapid transitions hitherto unknown between different magneto-rotational regimes in young stars (Lanzafame + 2019, ApJ, 877, 157L). Another notable achievement in this area is the development of a new statistical method based on the survival analysis for the statistical determination of the radii of stars in stellar systems from periods of rotation and projected rotational velocities. The application of this method to the Pleiades has allowed us to establish that only some stars in a transition phase of magneto-rotational evolution appear to be affected by radius inflation compared to standard models (Lanzafame+2017A&A, 597A, 63L).
Altre attività della mia ricerca riguardano misure spettroscopiche da terra e dallo spazio per lo studio delle condizioni fisiche delle atmosfere stellari e dell'atmosfera solare. Le tematiche di applicazione di queste misure riguardano principalmente la determinazione dei parametri stellari fondamentali, l'attività magnetica, la rotazione stellare, l'accrescimento di massa in stelle giovani, l'evoluzione dell'abbondanza del litio, i meccanismi di riscaldamento del plasma cromosferico e coronale. In questo contesto, in ambito stellare la Gaia-ESO survey, insieme ad altre survey simili, costituisce un contributo epocale.
Other activities of my research concern spectroscopic measurements from the ground and from space for the study of the physical conditions of stellar atmospheres and the solar atmosphere. The main objective is the inference of fundamental stellar parameters, magnetic activity, stellar rotation, mass growth in young stars, the evolution of lithium abundance, the heating mechanisms of the chromospheric and coronal plasma. In the stellar case, the Gaia-ESO survey represents, in this respect, an epochal contribution.
I risultati da me ottenuti in ambito solare sono ottenuti principalmente nel contesto dell'analisi di spettri EUV acquisiti da SoHo CDS e SUMER. Un mio contributo particolarmente rilevante per la comprensione dei meccanismi di riscaldamento della corona solare è stata la scoperta della relazione tra signatures nella distribuzione del plasma in temperatura (differential emissione measure - DEM) e il regime di riscaldamento impulsivo (Susinno+ 2010ApJ, 709, 499S).
The results I obtained in the solar field are mainly in the context of the analysis of EUV spectra acquired by SoHo CDS and SUMER. One of my particularly relevant contributions to the understanding of the solar corona heating mechanisms was the discovery of the relationship between signatures in the plasma distribution in temperature (differential emission measure - DEM) and the impulsive heating regime (Susinno+ 2010ApJ, 709, 499S).
My other contributions of particular importance concern the measurement of helium stratification in chemically peculiar B stars, the determination of the DEM in structures of the solar corona, the measurement of the physical parameters of active regions in close binary stars (of the RS CVn type), the measurement of plasma velocity in magnetic flux tubes in solar active regions (first experimental evidence of siphon flows), the indirect measurement of the mean free path of photons and protons in the external atmosphere of low-mass magnetically active stars, the radiometric calibration of Coronal Diagnostic Spectrometer (CDS) on board SoHO.