Gravitational wave astronomy

My focus

The most important focus of my research
Go to Stellar Dynamics

Stellar Dynamics

How stars move in dense stellar systems is a much more complex problem that seems, and it is deeply intertwined to a number of complex astrophysical and relativistic phenomena

Go to Gravitational Waves sources for ground-based detectors

Gravitational Waves sources for ground-based detectors

Ripples in space and time from stellar-mass compact objects and black holes.

Gravitational wave sources for space-borne observatories

Observing gravitational waves from supermassive black holes will allow to test General Relativity in the strong regime

Go to Supermassive Black Holes and Tidal Disruptions of Stars

Supermassive Black Holes and Tidal Disruptions of Stars

A star venturing too close to a supermassive black hole may end up being torn apart.

Go to Dark Matter

Dark Matter

The unknown nature of the dark matter of the Universe and the understanding of gravity are among the more tantalizing problems in modern physics.

Go to Multimessenger Astrophysics

Multimessenger Astrophysics

With photons we can see, with gravitational waves, we can hear.

Go to Planets


The formation and evolution of protoplanetary systems, the breeding grounds of planet formation, is a fascinating complex dynamical problem that involves many orders of magnitudes.

Go to High Performance Computing

High Performance Computing

The evolution of N-body systems, like galactic nuclei or globular clusters, is a source of different astrophysical phenomena which can be simulated using computational algorithms.

Codes and documentation that I have used and/or developed

my topics of research

Theoretical astrophysics and General Relativity
A description about my work and me

My background is in theoretical physics. I did my PhD research on stellar and gas dynamics. For about 12 years I worked at the Albert Einstein Institute in Golm, Potsdam, close to Berlin, where I was the group leader of Astrophysics. At the AEI I worked on gravitational waves physics. I broadened my experience, working on planetary formation theory with numerical simulations. I have recently expanded my interests to sources of X-ray emission, such as the tidal disruption of a star, accretion power mechanisms and the electromagnetic emission associated to these phenomena. I am interested in GPU computing, in particular in developing new algorithms in stellar dynamics written in CUDA. Find more about me here.

  • This is the strongest point of my expertise.

  • My background, and one of my favourite topics

  • astrophysics is becoming one of my main interests

  • astrophysics - I have developed from scratch a novel hybrid algorithm to study their formation, and a new GPU Nbody code


Members of my team

Past and present: Postdocs and PhD students that (have) work(ed) with me

Xian Chen

Assistant Professor at the Peking University (PKU)
Xian was my postdoc from 2011-2014 at the Albert Einstein Institute (my subproject of the SFB Transregio “Gravitational Waves Astronomy”). He is now one of my closest collaborators and one of my best friends.

Cristián Maureira Fredes

PhD student at the Max-Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Eistein Institute)
Cristián joined my group in 2013 as an undergrad, and did a six-months research project for his Chilean magister. Thanks to an approved DFG project of mine, he joined as a PhD student in 2015.

Alejandro Torres Orjuela

PhD student at Peking University (PKU)
Alejandro joined our team in 2017 to do a PhD in theoretical astrophysics, with focus on general relativity and, in particular, gravitational waves of extreme-mass ratio inspirals.

Verónica Vázquez Aceves

PhD applicant, currently visiting my group at CAS/PKU
Verónica joined us in 2017 with a short-term fellowship and will apply next year for a PhD position to work with us.

Emily Davidson

Undergrad student at the University of Cambridge UK, Murray Edwards College.
Emily came to me for a research project in 2014 that ended in a published paper on MNRAS

Patrick Brem

Quantitative Risk Analyst at the Deutsche Bank in Berlin.
Patrick joined me in 2012 as a PhD student at the Max-Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute) in Potsdam thanks to my B10 subproject of the SFB Transregio “Gravitational Waves Astronomy”

Jordi Casanellas

Senior Data Scientist Consultant at Deloitte
Jordi joined me as a postdoc in 2013 thanks to a successful application that we put forward together at the Alexander von Humboldt foundation.

Daniela Alic

Senior Analyst at the Deutsche Bank.
Dana joined me as a postdoc in multimessenger astrophysics of supermassive black holes thanks to my B10 subproject of the SFB Transregio “Gravitational Waves Astronomy”

Symeon Konstantinidis

Test Engineer at Qualcomm CDMA Technologies.
Simos joined me first as an undergrad working towards his PhD under the supervision of Kostas Kokkotas. He then spent one year with me as a postdoc at the Albert Eistein Institute thanks to a DAAD Fellow application that we put together forward successfully in 2011.

Miguel Preto

Molecular Dynamics Researcher
Miguel joined me as a postdoc at the AEI in 2011 with an internal fellowship. During his stay we published a number of papers on mass segregation around a supermassive black hole.

"Modeling and Observing DEnse STellar systems", Working Group 4