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Mario Spera

I studied Physics and Astrophysics from 2005 to 2008 (Italian ‘’laurea triennale’’) and Astronomy and Astrophysics from 2008 to 2010 (italian ‘’laurea specialistica’’) at the University of Roma – Sapienza. I took my Master degree in September 2010 (cum laude) with a Thesis entitled ‘’High Precision, High Performance Simulations of Astrophysical Stellar Systems’’. I received my PhD in January 2014 at the University of Roma – Sapienza, with a Thesis on the use of ‘’Hybrid Computational Architectures to Study Self-Gravitating N-body Systems’’, where I applied the latest computing technologies to the study of the dynamics of stellar systems. In March 2014, I moved to the Astronomical Observatory of Padova, where I studied the formation of compact objects in different stellar systems. In March 2017, I was awarded an independent postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Milano- Bicocca for my own research project on ‘‘The Formation of Merging Compact- Object Binaries (ForCOB)’’. In October 2017, I moved to the University of Innsbruck as postdoc working on the same topics of my ‘’ForCOB’’ project. 
I am currently a Marie Curie Global Fellow at University of Padova, presently seconded to CIERA - Northwestern University, where I work as a theoretical and computational astrophysicist. The main aim of my research project, called HOMERICS, is to study the formation and evolution of compact-object binaries to interpret present and forthcoming gravitational-wave detections. To achieve this goal, I developed new numerical techniques to study the interplay between stellar evolution and stellar dynamics, in different stellar environments. I am the main developer of the HiGPUs-RX N-body code and of the SEVN population synthesis code. 
The new constraints on the stellar black-hole mass spectrum I obtained with the SEVN code were recently used to provide an astrophysical interpretation for the progenitors of the gravitational-wave detections (see Fig. 1 of Abbott et al. 2016, ApJL, 818, 2 and Fig.4 of Abbott et al. 2019, https://arxiv.org/pdf/1811.12940.pdf). 
Since 2018, I am an active member of the LIGO-Virgo collaboration. 
Recently, I was invited to join the Editorial Team (Paper Writing Team) of one of the LIGO-Virgo papers, on one special event, to contribute to the astrophysical interpretation of the event (which will be publicly announced in the next days). 

Ha vinto il Premio giovani ricercatori edizione 2020 categoria Astrofisica e Spazio .