Rochester Institute of Technology scientist Manuela Campanelli was recently made a fellow of the American Physical Society. Campanelli is the director of the Center for Computational Relativity and Gravitation and an associate professor of the RIT’s School of Mathematical Sciences.
Election to fellowship in the 50,000-member society is limited to 250 fellows per year (or one half of one percent of the membership) and recognizes outstanding contributions to physics.
Campanelli was chosen to receive this distinct honorific title for her groundbreaking work on numerical simulations of binary black hole space times and for explorations of physical effects such as “super kicks” and spin-driven orbital dynamics.
Campanelli’s research is helping to make the field of gravitational wave astronomy a reality. In 2005, Campanelli and colleagues Carlos Lousto and Yosef Zlochower were one of two independent teams of scientists to simulate the merger of two black holes on a supercomputer according to Albert Einstein’s theory of general relativity for strong field gravity.
The Center for Computational Relativity and Gravitation at Rochester Institute of Technology is an interdisciplinary research center dedicated to the study of extreme gravitational astrophysics systems through the use of computer simulation and visualization. Research focuses on some of nature’s most spectacular phenomena, such as black-hole and neutron-star collisions that produce intense bursts of gravitational and electromagnetic radiation, collisions between entire galaxies, and the central black-hole engine that powers active galactic nuclei.