Foto del docente

Franco Vazza

Associate Professor

Department of Physics and Astronomy "Augusto Righi"

Academic discipline: FIS/05 Astronomy and Astrophysics


Dissertation topics suggested by the teacher.

A list possible Master Thesis includes: 

1. The non-thermal emission from the cosmic web

  • Case: the formation of cosmic structure proceeds via the dissipation of gas and dark matter infall kinetic energy, through shock dissipation or other dissipative processes. The non-thermal emission (mostly in the radio band) can use at most a fraction of this kinetic energy: what is this maximum, as a function of spatial scale, cosmic environment and epoch?
  • Aim: derive the physical link between free kinetic energy as a function of environment and radio emission at different frequencies, with a careful evaluation of symplifying physical assumptions.
  • Methods:numerical analysis of cosmological ENZO simulations and analytical calculations. 
  • Thesis done in collaboration with G. Brunetti (IRA)

2. Study of the network statistics of the simulated cosmic web 

  • Casecomplex network analysis is a powerful new emerging trend in astrophysics, which allows to describe the degree of self-organisation of the cosmic web with quantitative methods, describe it and even compare it with the organisation of other complex networks developed in Nature. Network parameters can also be computed for existing and incoming galaxy catalogs from large telescope surveys (e.g. from EUCLID, SKA..) and preliminary works shows that they can be used to constrain the cosmological parameters with methods which are complementary to more standard ones, involving mass functions. 
  • Aim: compute the most important network parameters from a new suite of cosmological simulations, in which several variations of the cosmological parameters are investigated.
  • Methods:numerical analysis of cosmological ENZO simulations and new code production using Python and/or Julia 
  • Thesis done in collaboration with M. Tsizh (DIFA).


However, it is always possible to propose a different thesis, if the student has a clear idea and the supervisor is competent on the topic. 

All theses are mostly focused on the usage of numerical simulations (with different level of complexity, depending on the students'skills) as a tool to improve our understanding on the physics of gas and magnetic fields in cosmic large-scale structures. It is necessary just to have a bare minimum knowledge (and interest) for numerical methods, but not in a specific language in particular. The supervisor would typically advise to use / develop algorithms in Julia  ( , arguably the most versatile and performing programming language for the development of new scientific codes. 

All thesis projects are designed to produce, within the duration of the project or shortly afterwards, at least one scientific publication - this is what happened to all projects I have offered so far, either at the University of Bologna or before this at the University of Hamburg.  

Manuel O. Stubbe (2015) ->

Stephan Hackstein (2016) -> e

Paul M. Hinz (2017) -> e

Matteo Angelinelli (2018)-> 

Marco Simonte (2020) ->

Laura di Federico (2022)


Luca Beduzzi (2023)