IPS wins the Leonardo Innovation Award in the Radical Innovation category

Telespazio and Telespazio VEGA Deutschland team won the Leonardo 2018 Innovation Award in the Radical Innovation category. The proposal “Ionosphere Prediction Service for GNSS Users” was presented by Filippo Rodriguez (team leader), Roberto Ronchini, Stefano Di Rollo, Gian Paolo Plaia, Luca Preziosi, Vanessa Sicurello, Osman Kalden and Douwe Lambers. UTOV Solar Physics Team contribution to the IPS project is represented by: observations and algorithms for flare forecasting, algorithms for the detection of CME onset and time of arrival at 1AU, and measurements of SEPs.

The innovation is a platform which can predict when solar explosions interacting with the ionosphere will interfere with terrestrial systems. The activity of the sun produces significant effects on the ionosphere, which is the highest ionized layer of the Earth’s atmosphere. This can influence the behavior of satellite navigation systems, drastically reducing their accuracy or interrupting their proper functioning. Today, predicting weather conditions in space is of special interest: systems are therefore needed to help anticipate and measure the effect of solar activity on applications and services that use satellite navigation systems. The beneficiaries of these forecasts would include the operators of vehicles, aircraft and vessels which use receivers based on GPS, Galileo and other systems to navigate. The service is based on advanced proprietary algorithms that draw on data provided by various open source sensors and historical data. The output is forecasts which are useful in mitigating the effects of magnetic interference.
The Leonardo Innovation Award Ceremony was held at the Città della Scienza (Science City) Museum in Naples. The event was attended by Italy’s Minister of Education, University and Research, Marco Bussetti, as well as senior representatives from industry, Italian institutions and the world of science.


ESCAPE Project Press Release

The first quarter of 2019 sees the exciting launch of one out of the five successfully retained INFRA-EOSC-04-2018 Cluster projects, which the European Commission supports with €16 million to boost the implementation of the European Open Science Cloud (EOSC).

ESCAPE (European Science Cluster of Astronomy & Particle physics ESFRI research infrastructures) aims to address the Open Science challenges shared by ESFRI facilities (CTA, ELT, EST, FAIR, HL-LHC, KM3NeT, SKA) as well as other pan-European research infrastructures (CERN, ESO, JIV-ERIC, EGO-Virgo) in astronomy and particle physics research domains.

UNITOV contribution to the ESCAPE project is using deep learning for Space Weather forecast, in collaboration with Dr. Enrico Camporeale from CWI.


Here you can find more information about ESCAPE

G. Viavattene wins the “E. Landi” prize

G. Viavattene presenting his thesis as the winner of the 2018 E. Landi prize

To commemorate the scientific career of Prof. Egidio Landi Degl’Innocenti, the INAF – Astrophysical Observatory of Turin established and financed a prize named after him, to reward the best Master Thesis in the research field of Solar Physics published in the last three years.

The 2018 edition of this prize was won by G. Viavattene, PhD student at “Tor Vergata” Rome University for his thesis: “Spectro-polarimetric analysis of a short lived solar active region”.

As the winner, G. Viavattene has been invited to give an oral presentation about his work at the SoHe3 meeting and to publish an article on the proceedings of the congress.

UTOV contributions at the SoHe3 Meeting

Who is who in the Heliosphere
A Slide presented by P.Romano, showing the participants to the meeting and their ‘position’ in the Heliosphere.

The purpose of the Italian Solar and Heliospheric Community (SoHe) conferences is to provide a forum at the national level for the discussion of the main topics of solar and heliospheric physics, and space weather. The conference will strengthen existing collaborations and establish new ones, both in the context of projects in which part of the community is involved in. This edition has been held in Turin, on October 28-31, 2018.

Our team presented many contributions to the meeting!


The Italian ARIEL meeting

Dr. Daniele Galuzzo presented yesterday at the Italian ARIEL meeting our new model for exoplanet atmospheres. Based on a 3D General Circulation Model, it is able to derive the dynamical properties of the atmosphere. Furthermore we combined the GCM with a radiative transfer code so that our model give as as output high resolution spectrum of the planet, both reflected and thermal spectrum. We applied our model to the interesting case of the nearest exoplanet to Earth: Proxima Centauri b. We also proposed a photometric method for direct detection in the IR of the atmospheric features using JWST or ELT class groundbased telescopes.

A Turbulent talk for the 9th YRM

During the 9th Young Researcher Meeting in Salerno, the PhD student Giorgio Viavattene presented recent and interesting results on the Fluctuation Theorem of Gallavotti and Cohen (1995) [GCFT], which describes some symmetry features of the entropy production rate and deviations in the non-Linear and far from equilibrium regime.
The turbulent solar convection, observed in the photosphere and viewed as a dissipative non-equilibrium system near a steady state, provides an incomparable laboratory to test the validity of the GCFT.
To perform this analysis, we made use of a high-resolution spectro-polarimetric dataset acquired with the IBIS instrument installed at the Dunn Solar Telescope. The entropy production rate has been evaluated using the vertical heat flux as a proxy, which has been computed using line-of-sight and temperature maps.


An unique night

Last Friday we observed together with about 70 students the longest total lunar eclipse of the century.

The event started in the late afternoon and we could use the telescopes of the Solar Physics UTOV group to observe all the seven major “stars” known to the ancients in a single night: the Sun, Mercury, Venus, Mars (just during the days of its great opposition), Saturn, Jupiter, and the Moon in eclipse. With this total lunar eclipse event we have concluded the three happenings of this year Eureka program, organized for the students by the Physics Department with the collaboration of AISF – Local Committee Roma Tor Vergata.



UTOV contributions at the EST Science Meeting

The EST Science Meeting aims at gathering scientists who wish to present their most recent theoretical and observational research in the field of Solar Physics. The meeting highlighted the key science cases that will be addressed by the 4-metre class solar telescopes, and the synergies with both current and future ground-based and space-borne facilities. The main characteristics and science goals of the EST project have been presented to the scientific community to maximize the sharing of knowledge about the project and provide awareness of the potential telescope capabilities. It was also an opportunity to contribute to the definition of the telescope Science Requirements Document, describing how and why the unique capabilities of EST will provide answers to several key science questions, will be presented at the meeting. EST will be the heritage of the entire solar physics community, and for this reason it is expected that the scientific community and in particular the EST Science Meeting participants, will contribute with science cases that will then be reflected in the Science Requirement Document. (more…)

Pint of Science Talk in Rome, 2018 edition

Pint of Science is a worldwide scientific festival, that is held once per year. Scientists present their research in the pubs, to communicate contemporary scientific developments to the public in informal talks.

This year, Dario Del Moro will give a talk on technology and space weather, introducing EST, the upcoming European Solar Telescope.

Tales from the Third Planet: A.C. Clarke, technology and the impact of solar activity.

A.C. Clarke had predicted it: we would have smart-phones and uninterrupted internet connection, geo-localization, cars and airplanes with AI pilots.
Our life is increasingly dependent on telecommunications and GPS and in some respects more fragile than it was before these technologies solved our everyday small problems.
To “defend” our lifestyle, we must understand the Space that surrounds us, by using new tools, such as the European Solar Telescope, for example.
Tomorrow, before leaving home, I will check Rome and Frascati weather forecast on my smartphone, but I must remember to check also the Space Weather forecast: I do not like bad surprises!


A couple of papers from the Solar and Space Physics UTOV group

Two open access papers by Solar and Space Physics UTOV group have just been published:


A probabilistic approach to the drag-based model

J. Space Weather Space Clim. 2018, 8, A11

Remote sensing of the solar photosphere: a tale of two methods

Journal of Physics: Conference Series, Volume 956, conference 1


You can find and download them at the relative links!