I received my 4-year degree in Physics in 1991 at the University of Pisa, as a student of the Scuola Normale Superiore, with a grade of 110/110 cum laude. I earned a PhD in Energetics at the University of Padova in 1995.
From 1995 to 2001 I was hired as researcher with a temporary contract by the Istituto Gas Ionizzati of the National Research Council (CNR) in Padova. Since 2001 I am researcher on a permanent basis at the same institution, and carry out his research activity at Consorzio RFX in Padova, Italy, a research institution managing the RFX-mod toroidal experiment for the magnetic confinement of fusion-relevant plasmas and the test facility for the neutral beam injectors of the ITER project. Since 2007 I am the head of one of the five physics groups operating within Consorzio RFX.
During my scientific career I have been spending research periods at the Max Planck Institut für Plasmaphysik in Garching (Germany), at CEA in Cadarache (France), at the University of Wisconsin at Madison (USA) and at the Czech Academy of Science in Prague (Czech Republic).
I have been teaching since academic year 2005-2006 the course of Physics of Nuclear Fusion and Plasma Applications within the master’s degree in Physics at the University of Padova. I have set-up the VESPA plasma physics experiment, routinely used in laboratory courses within the master’s degree in Physics. I am member of the Academic Council of the Joint Research Doctorate and European Interuniversity Doctoral Network on Fusion Science and Engineering. I have been tutor of 4 PhD students, supervisor of 7 theses for the master’s degree in Physics and of 12 theses for the bachelor’s degree in Physics.
Since 2002 I am member of the International Advisory Board of the Workshop on Electric Fields, Structures and Relaxation in Edge Plasmas, renamed EFTSOMP starting from 2008. Since 2007 I am member of the International Scientific Committee of the International Workshop on Electrical Probes in Magnetized Plasmas (IWEP). I have also been one of the two Italian representatives in the Management Committee of the MP0804 COST Action “Highly Ionised Pulsed Plasma Processes”
I have been the Principal Investigator of the European project CfP-WP14-ER-01/ENEA_RFX-02, financed within the Horizon 2020 Euratom Work Programme, titled “Magnetic reconnection in fusion plasmas”. I have participated in several research projects, among which are the FP7 European project “HiPER – High Power Electric Propulsion: a Roadmap for the future”.
I am co-author of 145 papers published in refereed international journals (including one in Nature Physics) and of 102 papers published in proceedings of international conferences. I am co-author of two international patents and one European patent, in the fields of space propulsion and plasma medicine.
The H-index of my scientific production is 28 (source: ISI Web of Knowledge, February 2016).