Spring 2011 Faculty News

Ilaria Pascucci, new PTYS/LPL faculty member

Dr. Ilaria Pascucci recently joined PTYS/LPL as an astrophysicist and Assistant Professor. Before joining LPL in March of this year, she was working at the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore as instrument scientist for the STIS spectrograph on board the Hubble Space Telescope. Ilaria completed her undergraduate studies at the University of Bologna in Italy and obtained her Ph.D. in astrophysics in 2004 at the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy in Heidelberg, Germany.

Professor Pascucci's research focuses on observations and modeling of the formation and evolution of planetary systems. She is particularly interested in merging the cosmochemical constraints on the solar nebula evolution with the astronomical perspective of protoplanetary disk evolution and planet formation.

Her research activities include studies of the mineralogy of protoplanetary disks, the evolution and dispersal of the pre-planetary material around young stars, and the evolution of volatiles in protoplanetary disks in relation to their delivery to terrestrial planets. For her research, Dr. Pascucci is using state-of-the-art ground- and space-based facilities including the Hubble and Spitzer Space Telescopes, the Herschel Space Observatory, and 8m-class ground-based telescopes such as Keck and the VLT.

Welcome, Ilaria!