Paolo Padoan

Universitat de Barcelona (UB)

Experimental Sciences & Mathematics

Academic Degrees:
- PhD in Astrophysics, Niels Bohr Institute, Copenhagen, 1997
- Degree in Astronomy, University of Padova, 1992

Academic Positions:
- ICREA Research Professor, University of Barcelona, March 2010 - present
- Associate Professor, UC San Diego, June 2007 - February 2010
- Assistant Professor, UC San Diego, June 2003 - June 2007
- Postdoctoral Fellow, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Caltech, 2001 - 2003
- Postdoctoral Fellow, Harvard University, 1999 - 2001
- Postdoctoral Fellow, INAOE, Puebla, 1998 - 1999

Research interests

A major goal of my research is to understand the origin of stars. Star formation is a central problem in the study of galaxy evolution and cosmology. Stars are a dominant energy source to the interstellar medium of galaxies and control their chemical enrichment; the first massive stars in the universe contributed to its re-ionization. Because star-forming gas in galaxies is highly turbulent, the study of star formation involves the investigation of turbulence as well. A general theory of turbulence does not exist, but computer simulations provide valuable information on universal properties of turbulent flows. I conduct numerical experiments of super-sonic, self-gravitating magneto-hydrodynamic turbulence with physical parameters appropriate for describing star-forming gas in galaxies. Using adaptive mesh refinement methods, numerical simulations may span a huge range of scales, from the size of a galactic disk to that of an individual circumstellar disk.

Selected publications

Padoan P, Juvela M, Pan L, Haugbolle T & Nordlund A 2016, ‘SUPERNOVA DRIVING. III. SYNTHETIC MOLECULAR CLOUD OBSERVATIONS’, Astrophysical Journal, 826, 2, 140.

Padoan P, Pan L, Haugbolle T & Nordlund A 2016, ‘SUPERNOVA DRIVING. I. THE ORIGIN OF MOLECULAR CLOUD TURBULENCE’, Astrophysical Journal, 822, 1, 11.

– Pan L, Padoan P, Haugbolle T & Nordlund A 2016, ‘SUPERNOVA DRIVING. II. COMPRESSIVE RATIO IN MOLECULAR-CLOUD TURBULENCE’, Astrophysical Journal, 825, 1, 30.

– Frimann S, Jørgensen JK, Padoan P & Haugbølle T 2016, ‘Protostellar accretion traced with chemistry: Comparing synthetic C18O maps of embedded protostars to real observations’, Astronomy & Astrophysics, (587) A60.