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Faces of HPC: Maneula Campanelli

Manuela Campanelli is the Director of the Center for Computational Relativity and Gravitation at the Rochester Institute of Technology and is known for her ground-breaking work on numerical simulation of the merging characteristics of binary black holes with supercomputers.


Manuela Campanelli is a professor at the Rochester Institute for Technology and Director of the Center for Computational Relativity and Gravitation. Her work on simulating merging black holes provides groundbreaking numerical methods to help understand the formation of accretion disks in binary black holes. As part of the  the LIGO collaboration she also works on understanding and detecting gravitational waves.


Manuela was born in Switzerland, but moved with her parents in Italy when she was fourteen. Fascinated by astronomy from a young age Maneula was just one of the two girls attending the science courses at her school in Italy. At the University of Perugia, Maneula studied Mathematics as there was no astrophysics department but was encouraged to maintain her interest in astrophysics.

Following her graduation Campanelli moved to the University of Bern, Germany to study astrophysics for her PhD. Her interest in black holes and what happens when they collide took her to the University of Texas at Brownsville and is now the Director for the Center for Computational Relativity and Gravitation at the Rochester Institute of Technology. 

Maneula’s current research focuses on groundbreaking numerical simulations of binary black holes and using supercomputers to simulate the merging of supermassive blackholes, the accretion disks and jet dynamics, leading to the discovery that supermassive black holes can be ejected from most galaxies at speeds of up to 4000km/s. Manuela is also part of the LIGO collaboration, the collaboration that first detected gravitational waves and confirmed Einstein's theory of gravity, general relativity. 

Manuela has received numerous awards during her career including a Marie-Curie scholarship, American Physical Society (APS) Fellowship (2009), and the RIT Trustee Scholarship Award (2014). She was also the Chair of the Topical Group in Gravitation of the APS in 2013.


Last updated: 07 Oct 2016 at 14:13