Hey folks, nice to meet you!
My name is Andrea and I am from Cremona, a small historic and rural town in northern Italy. After a good time at the local high school, I graduated in Physics from Pavia University (Italy) in 2012. While working on my Master project I spent two intensive months as a Summer Student at DESY, in Hamburg (Germany). Now I am working as a PhD student in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam and at Nikhef, the National Institute for Subatomic Physics in Amsterdam (the Netherlands).
My work concerns the structure of hadrons, particles (like the proton) bound together by the action of the strong force. So, I am definitely a particle physicist, but I deal mostly with Quantum Chromo Dynamics (QCD), the theory underlying the strong interaction. I focus on the flavor structure of the proton and on correlations between the spin and the momentum of its elementary constituents. In particular, I am investigating transverse-momentum-dependent distribution and fragmentation functions (TMD PDFs and TMD FFs, or TMDs for friends), mathematical tools representing the probability density profile for quarks and gluons in momentum space.
Am I a pure theoretician? Mmm. Am I a lab-nerd? Definitely not. I would define myself as a phenomenologist, because I have a theoretical background but my research is not only theory-oriented: despite dreaming about gauge connections and Wilson lines, I also like doing data analysis and simulations. This is cool, because I end up sharing efforts and expertise with people working in theoretical and experimental collaborations over the world.
I am really happy to be part of Quantum Diaries crew because I believe that scientific progress is not only a matter of computers, touch-screens and smartphones: it is, first of all, a matter of culture and its diffusion. Sharing scientific knowledge and discoveries with society is a fundamental educational task.
I also started a blog as an undergraduate student: http://puntozeroblog.com/. Here you can find my early production, but it is mainly in Italian.
Apart from physics and its divulgation, I am passionate about a lot of things, at least theoretically. But time is limited and tends to run out immediately, especially if you are a physicist. In practice, what I can really manage in my spare time is relaxing, reading, caring about my family scattered across Europe, love and some good friends. Last but not least, I love my bike, which is a fundamental item in Dutch society.
I hope I will satisfy my educational spirit by posting on Quantum Diaries, and I would love to hear from you: please don’t hesitate to share comments, feedback and thoughts.