supernova remnant Cassiopeia A
portrait Vanessa Graber

Dr Vanessa Graber

Welcome to my website. I am a theoretical astrophysicist and machine-learning practitioner, who studies neutron stars, some of the most exciting objects in our Universe.

night sky showing the milky way and a shooting star


Neutron stars are stellar remnants that form in the supernova explosions of massive stars. Each of these objects contains a mass comparable to that of our Sun within a radius of about ten kilometres and exhibits extreme gravity, high densities, fast rotation and large magnetic fields. Such conditions cannot be recreated on Earth, making neutron stars amazing cosmic laboratories to study matter under extreme conditions.

The extreme nature of neutron stars requires us to combine knowledge from many scientific areas to understand their fascinating properties. As a result, my work crosses traditional discipline boundaries. In particular, I focus on the interface of condensed-matter physics and astrophysics as well as the connections between astronomy and artificial intelligence. More details can be found here:

night sky showing the milky way and a shooting star

Condensed-matter physics & astrophysics

One of the most exciting aspects of neutron stars is that quantum mechanics strongly influences their interiors. To better understand this behaviour, I study macroscopic quantum condensates in neutron-star interiors.

Like the Earth, neutron stars are composed of distinct layers. They have a solid crust and a fluid interior that contain neutrons, protons, electrons and possibly exotic particles. In terms of their high densities, neutron stars are very cold, giving the protons and neutrons the special ability to flow without friction: The charged protons form a so-called superconductor, whereas the neutrons are referred to as a superfluid.

These two are exotic versions of quantum states observed in condensed-matter experiments on Earth. From their laboratory counterparts, we know that superconductors and superfluids create vortices that can be envisaged as tiny, rapidly rotating tornadoes. These small structures interact with their surroundings, affecting the large-scale dynamics of the star.

waterspout off the coast of Florida, 1969
Vortices can be envisaged as tiny, rapidly rotating tornadoes. Image credit: NOAA Photo Library

I research different approaches to include these small-scale effects into theoretical models of neutron stars.

Using techniques that are well-known from standard magnetohydrodynamics, I have for example studied the evolution of the magnetic field in the interior of superconducting neutron stars. I have also presented novel ways that low-temperature laboratory experiments could be used to make progress in understanding neutron star astrophysics. I am currently working with condensed-matter experts to explore these analogies further.

Furthermore, I have been analysing how coupling processes in the interior affect the star's response after a so-called glitch. These sudden spin-ups interrupt the regular spin-down of pulsars and are thought to be a macroscopic manifestation of superfluidity. By connecting the physics on different length scales, I developed predictive models of the glitch rise, showing that assumptions about the microphysics of vortices crucially affect the star's rotational behaviour. Comparing my predictions to the first pulse-to-pulse glitch observations, reported by Palfreyman et al. (2018), I derived constraints on the strength of the frictional mechanisms in the star's interior. An improved analysis of the data, revealing novel details about the internal components of the star, was published in Nature Astronomy.

Using techniques well-known from the study of laboratory superconductors, so-called Ginzburg-Landau models, I have also been exploring the microscale characteristics of the superconducting protons in the neutron star core. Their properties are poorly understood but could significantly impact the stellar magnetism and are thus crucial to understanding the macroscopic magnetic field properties of compact objects. By adapting the Ginzburg-Landau description to the neutron-star interior and connecting it with realistic superfluid parameters and equations of state, my collaborators and I have constructed superconducting phase diagrams and found that the outer core of neutron stars exhibits so-called type-1.5 superconductivity, rather than type-II superconductivity as generally assumed. We are currently exploring the impact this new state has on astrophysical observables.

More information can be found on my publication page.

night sky showing the milky way and a shooting star

Astronomy & artificial intelligence

Astronomy has seen extensive investments in the past decade that have led to the development of new telescope facilities that take data across the entire electromagnetic spectrum, detect gravitational waves as well as neutrinos. Neutron stars are the primary targets for such multi-messenger observations. However, the large data volumes make it increasingly difficult to analyse these data by hand. For several upcoming observatories, this will become impossible all together. The astronomy community is, therefore, exploring new scientific approaches.

This is where artificial intelligence (AI) techniques such as machine learning come in. Machine learning is an AI implementation that allows systems to automatically improve and learn from previous experiences without being explicitly told how to do so. They are, thus, ideal to analyse large and complex astronomical datasets.

In particular, I have been using machine learning in the field of neutron-star population synthesis.

Although about a billion neutron stars are expected to exist in our own galaxy, observational constraints limit us to only detecting a small fraction of them; we only know around 3,500 of these compact objects to date. To overcome this gap, we use population synthesis to model the full population theoretically. Based on our current knowledge of input physics, these approaches focus on simulating synthetic neutron-star populations. Once the simulated samples are created, I compare these to real observations using machine-learning techniques to identify discrepancies and subsequently adjust our theoretical models. This global approach allows us to constrain the input physics and learn more about neutron-star properties.

artist impression of a neutron star
Artist impression of a neutron star and its magnetic field. Image credit: ESO/L.Calçada

In a proof of concept study, the MAGNESIA population synthesis team explored the possibility of inferring the properties of the Galactic neutron-star population through deep learning. In particular, we focused on their dynamical characteristics and showed that convolutional neural networks are able to accurately estimate the parameters, which control the positions of synthetic pulsars. Our analysis also highlighted the need for increasing the sample of known neutron stars and accurately classifying them, which is one of the main science drivers for the upcoming Square Kilometer Array.

Recently, I led a study that applied so-called simulation-based inference (SBI) in the context of neutron stars for the first time. We used this new machine-learning technique to infer the parameters that control the magnetic and rotational properties of radio-emitting neutron stars. SBI is crucial for population synthesis as our simulation framework is too complex to use standard Bayesian inference tools, such as Markov chain Monte Carlo. We specifically used a method called neural posterior estimation and successfully trained deep neural networks to infer posterior distributions. This work will form the basis for future multi-wavelength analyses of Galactic neutron-stars that are currently ongoing.

More information can be found on my publication page.

library shelves filled with old books


A full list of papers can be found on the online databases ADSbeta logoADS, arXiv logoarXiv or ORCID iD iconORCID. A list of selected publications is given below.

  • V. Graber, M. Ronchi, C. Pardo-Araujo, and N. Rea, Isolated pulsar population synthesis with simulation-based inference, accepted for publication in Astrophys. J. (2024)
  • S. Ascenzi, V. Graber, and N. Rea, Neutron-star Measurements in the Multi-messenger Era, Astroparticle Phys., 158, 102935 (2024)
  • N. Rea, N. Hurley-Walker, C. Pardo-Araujo, M. Ronchi, V. Graber, et al., A long-period radio transient active for three decades: population study in the neutron star and white dwarf rotating dipole scenarios, Astrophys. J., 961, 214 (2024)
  • M. Ronchi, N. Rea, V. Graber, and N. Hurley-Walker, Long-period pulsars as evidence of supernova fallback accretion, Astrophys. J., 934, 184 (2022)
  • T. S. Wood and V. Graber, Superconducting phases in neutron star cores, Univ. 8, 228 (2022)
  • D. Viganò, A. Garcia-Garcia, J. A. Pons, C. Dehman, and V. Graber, Magneto-thermal evolution of neutron stars with coupled Ohmic, Hall and ambipolar effects via accurate finite-volume simulations, Comp. Phys. Comm., 265, 108001 (2021)
  • M. Ronchi, V. Graber, A. Garcia-Garcia, J. A. Pons, and N. Rea, Analyzing the Galactic pulsar population with machine learning, Astrophys. J., 916, 100 (2021)
  • G. Ashton, P. D. Lasky, V. Graber, and J. Palfreyman, Rotational evolution of the Vela pulsar during the 2016 glitch, Nature Astron., 3, 1143 (2019)
  • V. Graber, A. Cumming, and N. Andersson, Glitch rises as a test for rapid superfluid coupling in neutron stars, Astrophys. J., 865, 23 (2018)
  • V. Graber, Fluxtube dynamics in neutron star cores, Astron. Nachr., 338, 1090 (2017)
  • V. Graber, N. Andersson, and M. Hogg, Neutron stars in the laboratory, Intern. J. Mod. Phys. D, 26, 1730015 (2017)
  • V. Graber, N. Andersson, K. Glampedakis, and S. K. Lander, Magnetic field evolution in superconducting neutron stars, Mon. Not. Roy. Astron. Soc., 453, 671 (2015)
  • A. Markowsky, A. Zare, V. Graber, and T. Dahm, Optimal thickness of rectangular superconducting microtraps for cold atomic gases, Phys. Rev. A, 86, 023412 (2012)
wooden chairs in a lecture hall


I have presented my research at a large number of international conferences and given many invited colloquia and seminars over the years. Details are shown below.

wooden chairs in a lecture hall

Talks 2023 - 2024

Click on the folder icons to download the respective slides.

  • Autumn 2024, Physics Colloquium, West Virginia University, US (online)
  • September 2024, Keynote Talk, GEMMA2 Workshop, Rome, Italy
  • July 2024, Plenary Talk, General Meeting, Spanish Astronomical Society, Granada, Spain
  • June 2024, Invited Talk, XMM-Newton 2024 Science Workshop, Madrid, Spain
  • November 2023, Simulation-based inference for pulsar population synthesis, SPINS-UK Meeting, Oxford, UK folder icon
  • November 2023, Simulation-based inference for pulsar population synthesis, Astrophysics Seminar, Centre for Astrophysics Research, University of Hertfordshire, Hatfield, UK folder icon
  • November 2023, Simulation-based inference for pulsar population synthesis, Astrophysics Seminar, Eberhard Karls University, Tübingen, Germany
  • October 2023, Neutron Stars: Astrophysical Superfluids, Geo/Astrophysical Fluid Dynamics Seminar University of Colorado Boulder, US (online) folder icon
  • June 2023, Seminar, Royal Holloway, University of London, Egham, UK (online)
  • May 2023, Simulation-based inference for pulsar population synthesis, Astrophysics Seminar, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK folder icon
  • Jan 2023, Populations of Neutron Stars, Institute of Space Sciences Strategy Retreat, Montserrat, Spain
wooden chairs in a lecture hall

Talks 2020 - 2022

Click on the folder icons to download the respective slides.

  • July 2022, Seminar, Newcastle University, Newcastle, UK (online)
  • June 2022, Pulsar population synthesis with multi-modal machine learning, EAS Annual Meeting, Valencia, Spain folder icon
  • June 2021, Magnetic field distributions in superconducting neutron stars, EAS Annual Meeting, Leiden, Netherlands (online) folder icon
  • May 2021, Analyzing the Galactic pulsar distribution with machine learning, Journal Club, CAMK, Warsaw, Poland (online) folder icon
  • March 2021, Superconducting phases in neutron star interiors, Hadronic, Nuclear and Atomic Physics Group Seminar, University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain (online) folder icon
  • November 2020, Superconducting phases in neutron star cores, Neutron Star Group Meeting, University of Southampton, Southampton, UK (online) folder icon
  • November 2020, The superfluid neutron star interior, Webinar, Fluids ECR Forum, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK (online) folder icon
  • November 2020, Neutron stars: Cosmic superfluids and superconductors, Pizza Seminar, Institute of Space Sciences (ICE-CSIC, IEEC), Barcelona, Spain (online)
  • November 2020, Neutron stars: Cosmic superfluids and superconductors, Seminar, Stony Brook University, New York, US (online)
  • July 2020, Neutron stars: Cosmic superfluids, Colloquium, Research Training Group "Models of Gravity", Oldenburg, Germany (online) folder icon
  • June 2020, Neutron stars: Cosmic superfluids, Seminar, IRAP, Toulouse, France (online)
  • March 2020, Superconducting phases in a two-component microscale model of neutron star cores, Annual PHAROS Conference, Patras, Greece (cancelled due to Covid-19)
  • February 2020, Neutron stars as cosmic laboratories, Physics Colloquium, Texas A&M Commerce, Texas, US
wooden chairs in a lecture hall

Talks 2018 - 2019

Click on the folder icons to download the respective slides.

  • November 2019, Neutron stars: Macroscopic quantum systems, MAGNESIA Kick-Off Meeting, Institute of Space Sciences (ICE-CSIC, IEEC), Barcelona, Spain
  • November 2019, Neutron stars: Macroscopic quantum systems, MAGNESIA Kick-Off Meeting, Institute of Space Sciences (ICE-CSIC, IEEC), Barcelona, Spain
  • April 2019, Crust superfluidity - Implications for macroscopic hydrodynamics, ICONS - Investigating crusts of neutron stars, JINA - CEE Workshop, University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, Netherlands folder icon
  • April 2019, Probing neutron star physics in the laboratory, Quantum turbulence: cold atoms, heavy ions, and neutron stars, INT Workshop, University of Washington, Seattle, US
  • January 2019, Neutron stars as cosmic laboratories, Mini-Symposium, Goethe University, Frankfurt, Germany
  • November 2018, Neutron stars - Astrophysical superfluids, Astrophysics Colloquium, Swinburne University, Melbourne, Australia
  • November 2018, Neutron stars as cosmic laboratories, Astrophysics Colloquium, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia folder icon
  • November 2018, Using neutron stars as cosmic laboratories, GW Group Meeting, Monash University, Melbourne, Australia
  • July 2018, Glitch rises as a test for rapid superfluid coupling, COSPAR 42nd Assembly, Pasadena, California folder icon
  • April 2018, Probing neutron star physics in the laboratory, Superfluid Seminar, Newcastle University, Newcastle, UK
  • April 2018, The superconducting state in neutron star interiors, MHD Seminar, Durham University, Durham, UK
  • April 2018, Rapid crust coupling and glitch rises in superfluid neutron stars, PHAROS WG2 Meeting, CAMK, Warsaw, Poland
  • March 2018, Modelling superfluid neutron stars, Astrophysics Seminar, McGill University, Montreal, Canada
  • January 2018, Mutual friction in superfluid neutron star crusts, Astrophysics Seminar, Newcastle University, Newcastle, UK
  • January 2018, Understanding the dynamics of superfluid and superconducting neutron stars, Gravity Seminar, University of Southampton, Southampton, UK
wooden chairs in a lecture hall

Talks pre 2018

Click on the folder icons to download the respective slides.

  • November 2017, Mutual friction in neutron star crusts, JINA - INT Workshop, University of Washington, Washington, US folder icon
  • November 2017, Neutron stars in the laboratory, Condensed Matter & Astrophysics Seminar, Northwestern University, Illinois, US folder icon
  • November 2017, Neutron stars in the laboratory, Physics Colloquium, Kent State University, Ohio, US
  • October 2017, Physics of superfluid neutron stars - Growth of the superconducting phase, New Perspectives on Neutron Star Interiors, ECT* Workshop, Trento, Italy folder icon
  • May 2017, Fluxtube dynamics in neutron star cores - Implications for magnetic field evolution, SMFNS2017 - 5th International Symposium on Strong Electromagnetic Fields and Neutron Stars, Havana, Cuba folder icon
  • June 2015, Magnetic field evolution in superconducting neutron stars, Annual NewCompStar Conference, Budapest, Hungary folder icon
  • April 2015, Magnetic field evolution in superconducting neutron stars, BritGrav 15, Birmingham, UK
  • January 2015, Magnetic field evolution in superconducting neutron stars, Observations & Theory in the Dynamics of Neutron Stars, ECT* Workshop, Trento, Italy
  • March 2014, Theoretical neutron star modelling - A closer look at vortex dynamics, BritGrav 14, Cambridge, UK
  • April 2012, Dynamics of superfluid neutron stars, GR & Relativistic Astrophysics Seminar, Eberhard Karls Universität, Tübingen, Germany
stack of folded old black and white newspapers


Sometimes, scientists are lucky for their research to make it into the news. Find below links to a selection of articles covering research I was involved with.

stack of folded old black and white newspapers

Vela glitch analysis

A selection of news articles, blog posts and videos about our Nature Astronomy article Rotational evolution of the Vela pulsar during the 2016 glitch:

stack of folded old black and white newspapers
stack of folded old black and white newspapers

Long-period Pulsars

A selection of news articles and blog posts about our research on a new class of radio emitters, so-called long-period pulsars:

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'It is the supreme art of the teacher to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge.' Albert Einstein

Lecture Notes

Summer Schools

art installation with black background, a few bright round spotlights and elongated lights

Data Science Master's

Since February 2024, I have been teaching for a range of modules as part of the MSc in Data Science programme at the University of Hertfordshire. The course covers a wide range of data-science and machine-learning topics and offers the opportunity for work placements or research projects. More information on the programme is available here.

More details coming soon.

three black camera lenses on gray surface


I taught the undergraduate module PHYS 434 Optics during the 2019 Winter term at McGill University. Below you can find general information on the course as well as the lecture notes, I created.

Classes started on Monday, January 7 and took place every Monday and Wednesday from 2:35 pm to 3:55 pm in the Rutherford Physics Building Room RPHYS 114. General information about the course, teaching assistants and an overview of the course content, prerequisites, evaluation and reading materials can be found in the syllabus folder icon. Individual lecture topics, assigned reading materials and important dates are given in the course calendar folder icon. Note that both were subject to change throughout the term.


PART I – Electromagnetism and Light Propagation folder icon folder icon
PART II – Geometric Optics folder icon folder icon
PART III – Superposition, Polarisation and Interference folder icon folder icon
PART IV – Diffraction, Fourier Optics and Modern Optics folder icon folder icon

dark night sky with only a few stars visible

Cosmos Master's

From 2021 to 2023, I taught part of the course Neutron Stars, Black Holes and Gravitational Waves, one of the modules of the Postgraduate Program in High Energy Physics, Astrophysics & Cosmology at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. Some general information on the degree is available here. Below you can find a few more details on the course as well as the lecture notes, I created.

The NSs, BHs and GWs course was coordinated by Dr Daniele Viganò and taught by several researchers from the Institute of Space Sciences. The module introduces a range of topics related to compact objects, and I covered the subjects of black hole theory and gravitational wave theory over the course of a week in the February of each year.


PART I – Towards General Relativity folder icon
PART II – Einstein's Theory of Gravity folder icon
PART III – Black Holes folder icon
PART IV – Gravitational Waves folder icon
Exercise folder icon

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Guest Lectures

Below you can download the slides, I created for a range of guest lectures.

  • July 2020, Neutron stars - Extraordinary cosmic laboratories, SEDS Celestia (Astronomy & Astrophysics Club, BITS Pilani - K. K. Birla Goa Campus), Goa, India (online) folder icon
  • October 2018, Supermassive black holes, compact binaries and accretion, PHYS 521 Astrophysics, McGill University, Montreal, Canada folder icon
  • March 2017, Superfluids and neutron stars, PHYS 432 Physics of Fluids, McGill University, Montreal, Canada folder icon
Quebec flag in front of cloudy sky

CRAQ 2019 Summer School

The Centre for Research in Astrophysics of Quebec (CRAQ) hosted its annual summer school in June 2019 in Montreal. The topic was Stellar Astrophysics, and I covered Neutron Stars during the Stellar Death section.

General information about the summer school can be found here. My presentation slides and a Jupyter notebook to calculate mass-radius relations for two simple neutron-star model equations of state can be downloaded below.

Slides folder icon
Jupyter notebook folder icon

vertical rods illuminated rods in front of black background

ICE Summer School 2021

In July 2021, the Institute of Space Sciences hosted its 4th annual summer school. The school was dedicated to Artificial Intelligence for Astronomy, and I joined as one of the host lecturers and co-organisers.

General information about the summer school, which took place remotely from July 12 to July 16, can be found here. Together with my fellow host lecturers Helena Domínguez-Sánchez and Alessandro Patruno, as well as several external lecturers, we covered a wide range of topics related to Machine Learning in general as well as Deep Learning and its numerous applications.

In particular, I gave an introductory theory lecture on the topic of Deep Learning and Neural Networks and ran a hands-on session, where I introduced the scikit-learn Python library for machine learning and looked at a few examples of clustering algorithms (specifically k-means and Gaussian Mixture Models). Lecture slides and a notebook for the coding session can be accessed below.

Slides folder icon
Jupyter notebook folder icon

smoke being trapped in a bottle that is held upside down


Communicating science and engaging the general public is one of our important responsibilities as scientists. Showing that science can be fun and relatable is a part of my work that I greatly enjoy.

black over-ear headphones on yellow background


I love talking about science and sharing what I know about astronomy and astrophysics with an interested audience. In April 2022, I was interviewed for the German language Astronomy and Space Science podcast raumzeit. Our conversation about the fascinating topic of neutron stars, which was published in October 2022, can be found here. Almost two hours long, but there is still a lot more to learn.

standing microphone in front of orange background

Public talks

While working as a postdoctoral fellow at the McGill Space Institute in Montreal, I was part of the AstroMcGill outreach team. We regularly hosted Astronomy on Tap, a worldwide initiative combining your two favourite things: astronomy and beer. In September 2017, I had fun talking about 'Neutron stars - a space oddity' folder icon.

In December 2018, I gave the monthly public lecture jointly organised by AstroMcGill and PhysicsMatters, the McGill Physics Outreach group. My Public AstroPhysicsNight talk was titled 'Neutron Stars: Extraordinary Cosmic Laboratories for Physicists' folder icon and provided a non-specialist introduction to my research (no equations, I promise). You can watch a recording of the lecture here.

In July 2020, I contributed to the Faszination Astronomie Online initiative organised by the Haus der Astronomie. The Haus der Astronomie, which translates to 'House of Astronomy', is a Centre for Astronomy Education and Outreach in Heidelberg, Germany, that runs events for the general public, as well as workshops for students, teachers, and science communicators. In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, the centre moved its German public talk series online and has been regularly streaming about fascinating astronomy topics on its own YouTube-channel. My thirty minute-long talk on pulsar glitches, titled 'Wenn Neutronensterne Schluckauf haben' folder icon, can be viewed here.

For NASA's Universe of Learning, I presented a general overview of magnetic fields in neutron stars, the strongest fields we know of, in October 2020. These science briefings are professional learning telecons for the informal science education community, run in partnership with NASA’s Museum & Informal Education Alliance. The monthly events highlight current NASA astrophysics explorations and discoveries from across NASA's astrophysics missions. More information about the event can be found here.

In addition to making scientific content more accessible to the general public, I have also participated at events that aim to make scientists themselves more relatable. One great way of achieving this is via storytelling, and in November 2018, I performed in front of an amazing audience at a Science Story Slam hosted by Broad Science and Confabulation.

close-up of a clean dark green blackboard

School visits

In October 2018, I visited a secondary school in Tuttlingen, Germany, to tell the students about the wonders of the solar system and answer all their questions about what it means to be a scientist. We also played a game called 'Moon or Frying Pan' (an idea first spotted here). Try it out! It's actually a lot harder than it seems, but the kids loved it.

two spherical pictures (one a frying pan the other one a moon) side by side on black background
Two examples from the game 'Moon or Frying Pan'. Image credit: Christopher Jonassen/NASA.

While working in Montreal, I volunteered for the Inquiry Institute. The project aims to connect physicists with Montreal school teachers to introduce educators to simple experiments that can be repeated in the classroom and specifically highlight the importance of critical and structural thinking. We, for example, worked on a demonstration that combines a hula-hoop with painted table tennis balls to illustrate the concepts of moon phases and solar eclipses; a set-up that has proven useful in explaining how to encourage pupils to ask critical questions.

In general, demonstrations are an excellent way to get people of all ages interested in science. I have been involved in constructing simple hands-on experiments for open days and public events that help to illustrate complex physical concepts. A few examples that have proven particularly successful over the years:

striped lycra sheet deformed by a heavy mass and marbles rolling around
Visualising gravity using a lycra sheet and round objects of different masses.
  • Combining an old trampoline, striped lycra fabric and marbles of different masses provides a fantastic set-up to visualise the concepts of gravity and space-time.
  • Wave propagation, reflection and interference can be playfully illustrated using a `jelly baby wave machine'. To build your own, you need jelly babies, duct tape and kebab sticks. Idea first spotted here.
  • Following the first direct detection of gravitational waves, I constructed a table-top Michelson interferometer (my all-time favourite physics experiment) to visualise the concepts employed by interferometric gravitational wave detectors. I followed instructions provided by the LIGO outreach team.
person standing in front of an experiment explaining it to the audience
Explaining the concept of waves with a `jelly baby wave machine'.

In February 2021, I joined the 100tífiques initiative, organised by the Fundació Catalana per a la Recerca i la Innovació (FCRI) and the Barcelona Institute for Science and Technology (BIST), in collaboration with the Department of Education of the Generalitat de Catalunya. The event connects female researchers from different disciplines with high schools in Catalonia to promote positive female role models and scientific career paths. For the event, held online in 2021, I spoke to 200 students at Col·legi Reial Monestir de Santa Isabel about how I became a scientist and what I work on. The slides for my talk are available here folder icon.

light bulbs illuminating a large hashtag sign

Other activities

In August 2017, the AstroMcGill outreach team organised a public event for several thousand people at the McGill University campus to view a partial solar eclipse. Seeing so many people excited about astronomy was an amazing experience.

picture of a partial eclipse on a Sunspotter telescope
Projection of the Sun during a partial solar eclipse using a Sunspotter telescope.

Besides participating in outreach events in person, I occasionally write for blogs that focus on different topics related to science and academia. You can, for example, read an interview with me about the importance of women in research here. If you are interested in learning more about my experience at the 69th Nobel Laureate Meeting dedicated to Physics, which I participated at in the summer of 2019, you can read a post I wrote here.

One aspect of the Lindau Meeting is a poster exhibition, where a pre-selected group of thirty young scientists has the chance to present their research to a general audience. I was one of the lucky participants and my poster folder icon won the shared first prize by public vote of all the meeting attendees.

12 young scientists standing on stairs smiling into the camera. Canadian Nobel Laureates Arthur McDonald and Donna Strickland are standing behind them.
The Canadian delegation of young scientists at #LINO19 with the Canadian Nobel Laureates Arthur McDonald and Donna Strickland. Photo credit: Patrick Kunkel/Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings.

From March to August 2021, I worked as a scientific advisor for the short film Pulsars: A tale of cosmic clocks, which highlights the work of Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell, her discovery of pulsars and the importance of female role models. The movie won the first prize for short films at the Science in Action 2022 competition.

sailing boat on Lake Constance in the sunset


Or how to become a theoretical astrophysicist?

In early 2024, I joined the Department of Physics, Astronomy and Mathematics at the University of Hertfordshire, UK, as a Senior Lecturer in Data Science. I am also a member of the Einstein Telescope Collaboration and the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) Pulsar Working Group, and part of the NSF Physics Frontiers Center JINA-CEE and the ​International Research Network for Nuclear Astrophysics (IReNA).

Previously, I was a Juan de la Cierva Incorporación Postdoctoral Fellow at the Institute of Space Sciences (ICE-CSIC) in Barcelona, Spain, working on magnetic fields in superconducting neutron stars. From 2020 to 2024, I also worked as a senior postdoctoral researcher with Nanda Rea and others at the ICE on the ERC project MAGNESIA, leading the pulsar population-synthesis working group.

Before my time in Spain, I was a research fellow at the McGill Space Institute (now the Trottier Space Institute) at McGill University in Montreal, Canada, where I worked with Andrew Cumming and Vicky Kaspi on a range of neutron-star problems. Before moving to Canada, I completed my PhD in the Gravity Group within Applied Mathematics at the University of Southampton, United Kingdom, under the supervision of Nils Andersson. Moreover, I have received a physics Diplom (MPhys) from the Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, Germany, where I was part of the Theoretical Astrophysics Group headed by Kostas Kokkotas.

The first 18 years of my life, I was lucky enough to be living by Lake Constance in the South of Germany. Having seen many beautiful places over the years, I can say that the Swabian Sea (as the lake is often nicknamed) is one of the most magnificent spots I have been to, and I try to go back as often as possible.

My full CV can be downloaded here folder icon.

old type writer in front of a white background


You can reach me in the following ways:

Mailing address:
Centre for Astrophysics Research
Department of Physics, Astronomy and Mathematics
University of Hertfordshire
Hatfield, Hertfordshire, AL10 9AB
United Kingdom