Dr Giovanni Rosotti

Ernest Rutherford Fellow

School/Department: Physics & Astronomy, School of



Originally from northern Italy I've moved a few times around Europe crossing several times the Alps and the Channel before finally arriving in Leicester in 2021. I studied at the University of Milan for my degree in Physics but in 2011 I moved to the other side of the Alps for my PhD in Astronomy from the LMU in Munich enjoying the local lifestyle of biergartens while studying with my supervisor prof. Barbara Ercolano. By this time I realised I wanted to explore further up north and so in 2014 I ended up in Cambridge where I spent 4 years as a post-doc at the Institute of Astronomy working with prof. Cathie Clarke. Following the award of a Veni Fellowship from NWO (the Dutch Research Council) I continued exploring northern Europe and moved in 2019 to Leiden in the Netherlands where I collaborated in particular with the group of prof. Ewine van Dishoeck. I owe my passion for cycling to the years I spent in Cambridge and Leiden! Finally after being awarded an Ernest Rutherford Fellowship from the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) I moved back to England at the beginning of 2021.


I am an astrophysicist studying proto-planetary discs the birth-sites of planets. While mostly a theorist I am best described as a phenomenologist working at the interface between theory and observations. I am often involved in observational collaborations and from time to time I also conduct observations myself on telescopes such as ALMA in Chile. My two main lines of research are: 1) Disc evolution. Discs provide the building blocks to form planets and we can therefore understand planet formation only if we understand the discs. We now have large surveys of the disc demographics and I use these to constrain which theories are compatible with the observations. A long-standing question I address in particular is explaining why discs accrete - is this best explained by the fact that discs are turbulent or by MHD winds? 2) Disc-planet interaction. Once planets are formed they perturb the disc with their gravity creating spirals gaps and other structures we can observe and the disc perturbs them in return making them migrate. This is best studied through numerical simulations which can then be compared to observations.



The minimum mass of detectable planets in protoplanetary discs and the derivation of planetary masses from high-resolution observations, MNRAS, 2016, 459, 2790 -Evidence for a correlation between mass accretion rates onto young stars and the mass of thei



I am part of the exoALMA project - we were recently awarded 150hr on the ALMA telescope to study in great detail 15 proto-planetary discs and try to spot the signatures of young forming planets lurking in them. We will use a new technique to do this which uses a very careful analysis of the velocity of the gas in the disc. There will be a lot of work to do and this would be perfect for a PhD student - there are many opportunities ranging from data analysis to numerical simulations of planet-disc interactions depending on what the student prefers. I am advertising a PhD project so if you're interested please get in touch with me!


I currently offer PA4900 Y4 research projects and PA4440 Literature Review Projects
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