The last two decades of cosmological observations and discoveries have led to the establishment of a concordance cosmological model. We have found that the Universe expansion is accelerating, which points to the presence of a positive value of the cosmological constant in Einstein’s equations. We also discovered that most of the matter in the Universe is not made of the particles we know on Earth, but of some sort of ‘dark matter’, yet to be identified. Finally, the galaxies and clusters of galaxies we see today are thought to be the end result of the gravitational instability of some initial perturbations of quantum mechanical origin.
Our group @ La Statale is focused on understanding the origin and evolution of the Universe by bringing together the observations, simulations and the theoretical tools needed to answer fundamental questions such as:
> What is the origin of the accelerated expansion of the Universe? Is it a simple cosmological constant or a more complicated form of Dark Energy?
> What is the particle nature of dark matter? How strong can it interact with the visible sector?
> How can we test the nature of the initial condition of our Universe? Was there an inflationary phase which seeded the structure we see today?
> Can we use the observation of the largest scales in nature to measure the mass of fundamental particles such as neutrinos?
Nowadays our attention is mostly devoted to the study of the Large Scale Structure of the Universe, the three-dimensional distribution of galaxies, and how we can use it to answer questions like the ones presented above. We are for instance deeply involved in the Euclid survey, of which we lead various working groups and work packages.
Members of the group are: Maria Archidiacono, Davide Bianchi, Marina Cagliari, Elisabetta Carella, Emanuele Castorina, Luigi Guzzo and Federico Tosone. We also have strong connections with the local INFN and INAF groups working on related topics.