The Italian role in the “invisible” astronomy

Pubblicato su Science on the Net

The Institute of Radio Astronomy (IRA), whose role is recognized at the international level, is the academic institution where radio astronomy research is traditionally carried out in Italy. We had the pleasure to speak with its director, Luigina Feretti.

What are the main projects currently active at IRA?

Our scientific research regards all the fundamental questions of modern astrophysics: for example, the dark matter, the galactic nuclei hosting supermassive black holes and the formation of all the cosmic structures. Our astronomy is “invisible”, but it is complementary to the optic one. There are several natural phenomena of non-thermal origin, generally due to relativistic particles that move in a magnetic field, which are detectable only through radio waves. We also carry out important studies of geodesy, for example by measuring the movement of the Earth’s crust.

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