Full professor
Academic disciplines: 
U02, Piano: P02, Stanza: 2014
Piazza della Scienza 3 - 20126 MILANO


Monica Colpi is Full Professor at the Department of Physics G. Occhialini of the University of Milano Bicocca.nShe received her Master and Ph.D. Degree in Physics from the University of Milano in 1982 and 1987, respectively. She entered the academic career after being visiting scientist at Cornell University and postdoctoral fellow at the International School for Advanced Studies (Sissa, Trieste). Monica Colpi  has broad research interests in the areas of high energy astrophysics, theoretical astrophysics, and general relativity theory.  She has worked on black holes as accreting sources and on neutron stars, in particular on soft X-ray transients, millisecond pulsars and isolated neutron stars in the Milky Way.   Monica Colpi pioneered the field of massive black hole binary formation in gas-rich galaxy mergers, by combining her experience in high energy astrophysics with experience in galactic dynamics, after her studies on dynamical friction and tidal stirring. Binary black holes in interacting galaxies anticipate  the phase of their coalescence driven by the emission of gravitational waves. Colpi has been exploring their formation pathways with use of large-scale N-Body SpH simulations to follow their dynamics.  Coalescing binary black holes, among the loudest sources of gravitational waves in the universe, pinpoint places where galaxies assemble. Detectable out to very high redshifts, these sources are exquisite probes of the process of clustering of galactic structures, and testbed of gravity theories in the strong field regime. Monica Colpi is now actively working in the development of key aspects of the core science of the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA) and of the multi-messenger astronomy with LISA,  the LIGO-Virgo Detectors and third  generation interferometers as the Einstein Telescope.



  • Valiante, R., Colpi, M., Schneider, R., Mangiagli, A., Bonetti, M., Cerini, G., et al. (2021). Unveiling early black hole growth with multifrequency gravitational wave observations. MONTHLY NOTICES OF THE ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY, 500(3), 4095-4109.
  • Abbott, R., Abbott, T., Abraham, S., Acernese, F., Ackley, K., Adams, C., et al. (2021). Open data from the first and second observing runs of Advanced LIGO and Advanced Virgo. SOFTWAREX, 13(January 2021).
  • Acernese, F., Agathos, M., Aiello, L., Allocca, A., Aloy, M., Amato, A., et al. (2020). The advanced Virgo longitudinal control system for the O2 observing run. ASTROPARTICLE PHYSICS, 116.
  • Abbott, R., Abbott, T., Abraham, S., Acernese, F., Ackley, K., Adams, C., et al. (2020). GW190521: A Binary Black Hole Merger with a Total Mass of 150  M_{⊙}. PHYSICAL REVIEW LETTERS, 125(10), 101102.
  • Abbott, B., Abbott, R., Abbott, T., Abraham, S., Acernese, F., Ackley, K., et al. (2020). Properties and Astrophysical Implications of the 150 M Binary Black Hole Merger GW190521. THE ASTROPHYSICAL JOURNAL LETTERS, 900(1), L13.