Our pioneering simulations of supermassive black hole binaries have linked the theory of galaxy formation with the emerging field of gravitational waves. By probing the physics at scales less than a light year inside colliding galaxies, we have shown that black holes can merge much faster than previously thought, we uncovered the importance of collisions with interstellar clouds, and we discovered the an unexpected role of dark matter in driving black hole mergers.

Tags: Space & the Universe, High Performance Supercomputing, Computational Science

Lucio Mayer

Center for Theoretical Astrophysics and Cosmology, University of Zurich

Lucio Mayer was born and raised in Milan, with an education grounded in classical studies. He studied Physics at the Universita’ Milano-Bicocca, then obtained a PhD in Astronomy working at Milan, Durham, and the Max-Planck Institute for Astrophysics. In 2001, Lucio became a postdoc at the University of Washington, home of the N-Body shop. He was Zwicky Fellow at ETH Zurich in 2005 and became SNF professor at the University of Zurich in 2006, and stayed on as a professor at the Institute of Computational Science, which he helped founding. With his wife and two daughters, Lucio travels around the world and enjoys life.

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