Dear colleagues and students,

we kindly invite you to the Tor Vergata Astrophysics Seminar on Wednesday the 14th of April at 16:30.

Join the online seminar from browser or MS Teams App at

TITLE: Gravity, Gold and Light: What Happens When Neutron Stars Collide

SPEAKER: Dr. Eleonora Troja (University of Maryland; NASA Goddard Space Flight Center)


ABSTRACT: Neutron stars (NSs) are the densest objects in the universe. When found in pairs, their fate is to spiral into each other and eventually collide (or merge) due to angular momentum and energy losses to gravitational radiation. By combining extreme gravity, copious emission of gravitational waves, and luminous electromagnetic radiation, these mergers of neutron stars serve as excellent astrophysical laboratories to explore a wide range of fundamental problems: from the formation of ultrafast outflows to the cosmic production of heavy metals, from the equation of state of cold ultra-dense matter to the expansion rate of the universe. Our understanding of NS mergers, traditionally driven by observations of short duration gamma-ray bursts, was revolutionized in 2017 by the discovery of GW170817, the first NS merger studied through gravitational waves and light. Thanks to its proximity and an unprecedented observing campaign, this one event revealed the rich complexity of the merger phenomenon and opened up new horizons for the study of these systems. In this talk, I will present recent results from our long-term monitoring campaign of GW170817 and discuss complementary constraints from observations of short duration gamma-ray bursts in distant galaxies. Finally, I will outline future goals and perspectives of the new era of multi-messenger astrophysics.


Poster of the event is available at


Kind Regards

Tor Vergata Astrophysics Group