Astronomical Optics and Data Analysis/Statistics
Since starting my PhD in Experimental Physics in Ireland in 2004, I have been mainly involved in the pre-launch characterization (optics, coupling with detectors) of the HFI instrument on board the ESA Planck satellite. This work has been followed, while working France and the UK, by a data analysis + astronomical optics phase. In addition to these technical aspects, I have also taken an active part in management (such as Planck-HFI optics working group coordinator). I have also worked on other issues, such as the ASI LSPE experiment and ESA ITT contracts.
RELEVANT WORK HISTORY
Research Associate: April 2012 – Present (ending September 2014)
The University of Manchester, Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics
Main functions and responsibilities:
Optical and horn antenna simulations for the European Space Agency (ESA) Planck satellite High-Frequency Instrument (HFI).
Data analysis for Planck - HFI. Main tools: custom-made Fortran and IDL codes used within the mission mainframe (computer clusters, mission specific programming environment).. Elementary knowledge of Python.
Evaluation of systematic effects deriving from optical components and other mission parameters on polarised Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) observations. This ongoing work is focused on a possible next-generation ESA CMB polarisation satellite (akin to COrE) and the Italian Space Agency (ASI) Large-Scale Polarization Explorer (LSPE).
Member of Planck non-Gaussianity working groups (isotropy and statistics of the CMB and cosmic strings).. Usage of R statistical environments.
Research Engineer: June 2008 – December 2011
French National Research Council (CNRS), posted at the Institut d’Astrophysique Spatiale (IAS), Orsay, France.
Main functions and responsibilities:
Optical and horn antenna simulations for Planck-HFI.
Coordinator of the Planck-HFI optics and beams working group.
Liaison person between Planck-HFI, ESA and industrial contractors for beam/telescope modelling and alignment recovery.
Member of the HFI Data Processing Centre Pipeline Running and Checking team.
Member of the Planck Non-Gaussianity working group.
PhD in Experimental Physics, October 2004 – April 2008
National University of Ireland, Maynooth, Ireland
Thesis title: Optical Performance of the ESA Planck Surveyor and Techniques for the Study of the Cosmic Microwave Background.
RELEVANT TECHNICAL SKILLS
Optical simulation software: GRASP (advanced), FEKO (basic).
Limited laboratory measurement experience (including VNA) acquired during Planck-HFI multimoded horn and ESA-HWP ITT measurement campaigns. Also experience as laboratory demonstrator (optical benches).
Programming languages: IDL, Fortran, Python (basic).
Cosmology/statistics software: HEALPIX, ISAP, R (basic)..
August 2013: Planck stand demonstrator at Jodrell Bank Live event.
· April 2013: Organiser of Planck “Saturday Science” event at the Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI), Manchester.
· February 2013: ALMA stand demonstrator, MOSI, Manchester.
· January 2011: member of the "Planck 2011" conference local organising committee Paris, France.
· January 2009: demonstrator at the CNRS/ESA Planck stand for the inauguration of the International Year of Astronomy at UNESCO headquarters, Paris, France.
MEMBERSHIP OF PROFESSIONAL SOCIETIES
International Astrostatistics Association (since 2012).
SPIE (since 2010).
Institute of Physics (since 2009).
Royal Astronomical Society (since 2005).
· Italian (native).
· English (fluent).
· Finnish (intermediate).
· French (intermediate).
OTHER WORK EXPERIENCE
· 1989-2004: Italian-English translator (written).
· 1988-1989: Army legal services, during military service in Italy.
· 1988: Express courier, Rome, Italy.
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