Research is what I'm doing when I don't know what I'm doing
Wernher von Braun
My research focuses on space astronomy, i.e. astronomical observations carried out from outside the Earth's atmosphere. Roughly speaking, this is achieved by mounting telescopes on such vehicles as rockets, airplanes, baloons, satellites and probes. Below you can find a short description of some research projects I've been particularly involved in, listed more or less in reverse chronoogical order. For a closer look at my research interests and experiences, you may want to take a look at my CV.
While working on HerMES, SWIRE and SERVS, I've assembled a multi-wavelength database of Spitzer-selected sources covering the most important extragalactic survey fields. This has led to the gradual creation of the Spitzer 'Data Fusion', which is (mostly) being used for HerMES and SERVS science.
The VST Optical Imaging Survey of the CDFS and ES1 (VOICE) is an INAF GT project exploiting ESO's VST telescope to obtain deep multi-band optical imaging of a 4 square degree area within each of the CDFS and ES1 fields also probed by VISTA-VIDEO and Spitzer-SERVS. More information is available here.
The Spitzer Extragalactic Representative Volume Survey (SERVS)
The Herschel Multi-tiered Extragalactic Survey (HerMES)
The Herschel Multi-tiered Extragalactic Survey (H-ATLAS)
SPIRE is a sub-millimeter camera and spectrometer on-board ESA's Herschel satellite. My Herschel/SPIRE activities include participation to the following:
SPIRE Instrument Control Center (ICC) : Instrument Testing, Observation Planning and Data Processing Software Development
SPIRE Guaranteed Time Key Programs on High-Z (HerMES) and Low-Z (DGS, HRS, NGS) Galaxies
H-ATLAS Herschel Open Time Key Program
An Herschel Survey of Surveys (SOS) : Herschel Extragalactic Blank-Field Surveys
SHADES was the ultimate SCUBA extragalactic survey, undertaken by a UK-led international team using SCUBA at JCMT. I've been working on Optical+Spitzer observations and SED modelling of SHADES sources.
SWIRE is the largest project within the Spitzer Legacy Science Program. It consists of a large-area survey aimed at studying infrared extragalactic populations and the history of AGN and Star Formation activity up to high redshifts.
I became a member of the SWIRE Science Team in 2003 when I joined Imperial College London, and I've since working on catalogue validation, characterization of the survey selection function, LSS studies via angular colleration functions and SWIRE observations of ISO & SCUBA sources.
My main PhD Research Project, which I've been working on from November 2001 to October 2003 at the Department of Astronomy of the University of Padova under the supervision of Alberto Franceschini, focused on the development of an innovative data reduction and analysis method devised for application to data obtained with ISOCAM and ISOPHOT, the two imaging instruments on-board ISO, the astronomical satellite jointly developed by ESA, NASA and ISAS which has operated from 1995 and 1998. This powerful technique, now known as LARI Method after its main developer, Carlo Lari, working at the Institute of Radio-Astronomy of the Italian National Research Council, in Bologna. First applied to a large-scale shallow survey like ELAIS, such method has proved very useful in the reduction of deeper fields such as the ISO 15 $\mu$m observations of the two Hubble Deep Fields and of the Lockman Hole as well.
|LARI Method||ELAIS 15 Micron Final Analysis|
The research project my Master's Thesis was concerned with was a study on the feasibility of galaxy observations with GAIA, a scientific satellite mission approved by the European Space Agency as Cornerstone 6 of its Horizons 2000 scientific programme, with launch expected around 2015. In this framework, in collaboration with the GAIA group at Copenhagen University Observatory, and particularly with Erik Høg, I presented a few technical to the science advisory groups established by ESA for the GAIA mission:
: Statistical Model of Galaxies (Vaccari & Høg, 15 Mar 1999)
SAG_CUO_69 : Simulated Observations of Galaxies with GAIA (Vaccari & Høg, 27 Aug 1999)
GAIA-CUO-104 : A Statistical Model of Galaxies (Vaccari & Høg, 30 Jan 2002)
GAIA-CUO-105 : GAIA Galaxy Survey: a multi-colour galaxy survey with GAIA (Vaccari, 1 Feb 2002)