VESF - The Virgo-EGO Scientific Forum


Astro-GR@Rome workshop (14-18 July 2014)

will be run jointly with the Virgo EGO Science Forum (VESF) in order to provide also young scientists and student from the VESF community with an opportunity to listen to the presentation and participate in the discussion.

The proposed workshop will bring together experts in stellar dynamics, astrometry, radio, optical and X-ray observations, numerical modeling of dense stellar systems and gravitational wave science in order to promote collaborations between these groups. We believe that by fostering the communication between these relatively different communities, we will be prepared to optimize and take maximum advantage of the coming observations in the next years.

The meeting is co-sponsored by the Virgo EGO Science Forum (VESF), the Italian National Institute of Astrophysics (INAF) and the Albert Einstein Institute (AEI).


This workshop will bring together experts from the astrophysical community (in particular scientists working in the field of multiwavelength observations, evolution and dynamics of stellar systems and astrometry) and experts in gravitational wave (GW) research (both from the experiments and theory).

The goal is to stimulate the interest and foster the collaboration across the GW and astrophysical communities in one of the most challenging and exciting scientific enterprises of the 2010's. Outstanding scientific issues will be be outlighted which can only be addressed through the collaboration of these communities. The program that we are presently finalizing comprises reviews by a number of leading experts.


Monday: Introduction and Stellar-mass binaries and Advanced LIGO/VIRGO

09:00 Registration (payment of fee, badges etc)
09:30 Introduction: "How does this work?" Amaro-Seoane, Schneider, Stella
10:00 Andrea Vicere "Towards the era of advanced GW detectors"
10:45 Coffee break
11:15 Adamantios Stavridis "General introduction to GWs"
Questions to the talks

13:00 Lunch

14:00 Andrea Possenti "Relativistic binary pulsars and coalescing binaries"
14:45 Bruno Giacomazzo "General Relativistic Simulations of Neutron Star Binaries"
15:30 Coffee break
16:00 Blackboard discussion, including a short (20') presentation - Luigi Stella (BB) and Cristiano Palomba (short) "Continuous gravitational waves: sources and detection challenges"

People split in four groups, A, B, C and D, randomly.

Each group picks up a person who will be in charge of preparing a talk on the fly for Friday, summarising the most important conclusions from the talks and the blackboard presentations.

You belong to group A if your name is between numbers 1 and 12; to B if you are betewen 13 and 25; to C if between 26 and 38 and to D if between 39 and the last one.

Tuesday: Dynamics of supermassive black holes, EMRIs and eLISA

10:00 Bernard Schutz: "An introduction to the eLISA mission"
10:45 Coffee break
11:15 Andres Escala "Gas-induced MBH mergers"
Questions to the talks

13:00 Lunch

14:00 Tal Alexander: "What is the Schwarzschild Barrier?"
14:45 Pau Amaro Seoane: "Stellar dynamics and EMRIs: What matters?"
15:30 Coffee break
16:00 Blackboard discussion - Adamantios Stavridis

Wednesday: GWs in the advanced detector era - GAIA and Multi-messenger astronomy

10:00 Matthias Steinmetz "Dissecting the Milky Way with RAVE and Gaia"
10:45 Coffee break
11:15 Simone Dall'Osso "Magnetars: probes of neutrons star physics with electromagnetic and gravitational wave signals"
Questions to the talks

13:00 Lunch

14:00 Marica Branchesi "Multi-messenger gravitational wave and electromagnetic astronomy: prospects and challenges"
14:45 Günter Sigl "Possible Multi-messenger Sources of gravitational waves and particle radiation"
15:30 Coffee break
16:00 Blackboard discussion, including a short presentation (20') - Brocato and Branchesi (BB), Silvia Piranomonte (short), Andrea Passamonti (short) "Instabilities in neutron stars and gravitational waves"

Evening: social dinner

Thursday: Nuclear gas dynamics and tidal disruptions

10:00 Massimo Dotti "Massive black hole spins: a link between galactic dynamics and accretion physics"
10:45 Coffee break
11:15 Michela Mapelli "The dynamics of neutron star and black hole binaries in young star clusters"
Questions to the talks

13:00 Lunch

14:00 Giuseppe Lodato "Disc precession during tidal disruption events"
14:45 Elena Rossi "Tidal disruption of stars by supermassive black holes"
15:30 Coffee break
16:00 Blackboard discussion - TBA

Friday: Pulsar Timing Arrays, Stochastic Background and final presentations

10:00 Marassi "Stochastic backgrounds of gravitational waves from extra galactic sources"
10:45 Coffee break
11:15 Sesana "Observing gravitational waves with a galactic scale detector"
Questions to the talks

13:00 Lunch

Afternoon - Final presentations by chosen moderators from Group A and B, each 30 min

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List of participants



The school will be held on April 15-18, 2013 at the Astronomical Observatory of Rome in Monteporzio Catone (Rome, Italy).

This year the focus of the school will be on multi-messenger astronomy. The goal is to bridge the GW and the astrophysical communities, by offering for the most important gravitational wave sources, complementary lectures given by leading experts in the field.

Astrophysical observations of interest for Virgo, source modeling, and data analysis will be presented.

The school is also aimed at stimulating the interest and fostering the collaboration of students and young researchers from both the GW and astrophysical communities in the one of the most challenging and exciting scientific enterprises of the 2010's.

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Marie Anne Bizouard Coalescing Binaries: Data Analysis 1
Luc Blanchet Coalescing Binaries: PN Signal Modeling slides
Coalescing Binaries: PN Signal Modeling notes
Marika Branchesi E.m. follow-up of GW transient candidates
Eric Chassande-Mottin Searches for gravitational-wave transients
Stefano Covino Future searches for GW counterparts with new astrono mical facilities
Toni Font Coalescing binaries in Numerical Relativity: NS-NS
Leonardo Gualtieri NS expected signals (rotation, oscillations)
Dafne Guetta Gamma Ray Bursts Theory and observations
High energy neutrinos and gravitational waves from Gamma-Ray Bursts
Gravitational Waves from Short Gamma-Ray Bursts
Ian Jones Neutron stars structure
Neutron stars observations
Cristiano Palomba NS Data analysis 1 (connection with em observations)
Holger Pletsch Search ol pulsars in Fermi data using GW search methods
Andrea Possenti Compact binaries - Astrophysics
Thierry Pradler Neutrino-GW Joint search
Luciano Rezzolla Coalescing binaries in Numerical Relativity: BH-BH
Nick Stergioulas Neutron star oscillations: numerical simulations
Andrea Vicerè Advanced Virgo: Sensitivity and perspectives
Michal Was GRB: observations in connection with GW


The first VESF School on Advanced Gravitational Wave Detectors will be held in Cascina (Pisa) at the EGO site June 18 to 22, 2012

The Virgo Collaboration and the CNRS/INFN EGO Consortium have set-up a Forum where participating astrophysicists and theorists would contribute to the further development of scientific knowledge around Virgo.

It is the purpose of the Virgo–EGO Scientific Forum (VESF) to enlarge the research community around the present Virgo collaboration by providing individual participants and institutions interested with scientific opportunities of stimulating research, publications, and all other scientific activities.

The VESF includes the members of the Virgo Collaboration and all the scientists interested in gravitational wave research from other laboratories and institutions. Click here to see the groups that so far are VESF Council members.

The VESF scope, functions and organization are detailed in its Charter. As foreseen in the Charter, the VESF governing body is its Council. The Council nominates the VESF Coordinator and the members of the Executive Board.

The Executive Board (EB) is currently formed by:

  • Federico Ferrini, EGO director and Member
  • Jean-Ives Vinet, Member and Virgo spokesperson
  • Massimo Bassan, Member
  • Toni Font, Member
  • Luigi Stella, Member
  • Nikolaos Stergioulas, Member

VESF core activities are the funding of fellowships and the organization of schools.




The Second VESF School on Gravitational Wave Data Analysis
will be held from May 2nd to May 6th 2011
at the site of EGO in Cascina!

Scientific Committee:
M. Bassan, F. Ferrini (EGO Director),V. Ferrari (VESF Coordinator), F. Fidecaro (Virgo Spokesperson), A. Giazotto, K. Kokkotas, S. Perus (EGO Secretariat), L. Rezzolla, L. Stella, A. Viceré (School Director)

The purpose of this VESF school is to complement the traditional VESF School on Gravitational Waves, providing a practical, hands-on introduction to the methodologies and techniques for data analysis. The school is hosted at the European Gravitational Observatory, site of the Virgo detector, and is addressed to graduate students, young post-doctoral fellows and to anyone interested in getting started with Interferometer Data Analysis!

The program of the 2011 School will cover the following selected topics:
Noise analysis
Lecturer: Elena Cuoco (EGO, Italy)
Fundamentals of noise characterization Spectral and time frequency analysis Noise estimation and modeling
Data quality
Lecturer: Didier Verkindt (LAPP, France)
Data selection Identification of artifacts Rejection of events correlated with noise and environmental monitors
Search for unmodeled bursts
Lecturer: Nicolas Leroy (LAL, France)
Generalities on short-duration GW signals Searching for candidate events in data Network analysis strategies Upper limits, detection confidence and all that.
Optical follow-ups
Èric Chassande-Mottin (APC, France)
Marica Branchesi (UNIURB, Italy)
Generalities on optical transients Looking for optical events coincident with candidate GW events Techniques of image analysis
Stochastic background
Lecturer: Giancarlo Cella (INFN, Italy)
Sources of gravitational stochastic background. Analysis techniques for noise sources. Case studies.

The format of the School foresees introductory lectures to the topics selected, followed by extended practice sessions, in the form of case studies on real data from an interferometric detector, carried out using the software tools of the LSC and Virgo Collaboration. The use of software tools will be introduced to the students, who will be provided with test code and examples.

The software and the computing resources to carry out analysis work will be made available on EGO computing clusters by the School organization. Students are kindly asked to bring their own laptop, which they will use for accessing the remote computing resources on the EGO cluster, and for


will be held from July 26th to 30th, 2010
in Sesto (Val Pusteria, Bolzano) Italy

VESF, a Forum of the European Gravitational Wave scientific community, offers a yearly school on Gravitational Waves.

This summer, the school will be hosted at the Sexten Center for Astrophysics (SCfA) in the wonderful setting of the Dolomites (Sento Pusteria - Bolzano, Italy).

The School will introduce Physics and Engineering students and postdocs to Gravitational Waves, their astrophysical sources and the technologies developed for their detection. The 2010 program wil include topics such as:
Introduction to GR and Gravitational Waves Data analysis
Sources of Gravitational Waves Space Detectors: LISA and beyond
Theory of Interferometers (Michelson, Fabry-Perot, Recycling...) Technique for future interferometers: squeezing, cryogenics and all that
Instrumental noises and control 3rd generation detectors: ET
Past and present detectors: the state of the art Radiotelescopes, pulsar timing, binary pulsars
2nd generation detectors: Advanced Virgo and Ligo, Geo-HF Gamma ray, X-ray, neutrinos and Multimessenger astronomy