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Kavli Institute for Cosmology, Cambridge



Roberto Maiolino is professor of Experimental Astrophysics at the Cavendish Laboratory (Department of Physics) and at the Kavli Institute for Cosmology of the University of Cambridge; he is also Honorary Professor at University College London and Royal Society Research Professor.
He received his MS in Physics at the University of Florence in 1992 and the PhD in Astronomy at the University of Florence in 1996, with secondment at the Steward Observatory at the University of Arizona. From 1995 to 1997 he was postdoctoral fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrische Physik, in Garching (Munich). From 1997 to 2006 he was astronomer at the Arcetri Astrophysical Observatory (Florence) and then, from 2006 to 2012, he was senior astronomer at the Astronomical Observatory of Rome, prior to the appointment at the University of Cambridge. In 2018 he was knighted by the Italian President in the Order of the Star of Italy. In 2022 he was elected Fellow of the Royal Society.

Full Curriculum Vitae:


Roberto Maiolino is active in various areas of extragalactic astronomy, and in particular in the observational investigation of the formation, evolution and transformation of galaxies and black holes. In the recent years he has focused on the search and characterisation of the first generation of stars and black holes in the early Universe, the chemical evolution of galaxies and of the intergalactic medium, the evolution of the gas and dust content in galaxies, and the mechanisms responsible for quenching star formation in galaxies.
He exploits multi-wavelength observations obtained at some of the major telescopes, both ground-based and in space.

He is member of the Instrument Science Team of NIRSpec, the near infrared multi-object spectrograph for the James Webb Space Telescope. He is the Project Scientist and Co-PI of MOONS, the Multi-Object near-IR spectrograph for the Very Large Telescope, and Project Scientist of ANDES, the high resolution spectrograph for the Extremely Large Telescope.


Key publications: 

ADS (astrophysics data system)

AMAZE. I. The evolution of the mass-metallicity relation at z > 3. Maiolino, R. et al. 2008, Astronomy & Astrophysics, 488, 463

Evidence of strong quasar feedback in the early Universe. Maiolino et al. 2012, Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 425, L66

A supernova origin for dust in a high-redshift quasar. Maiolino et al. 2004, Nature, 431, 533

First detection of [CII]158 μm at high redshift: vigorous star formation in the early universe. Maiolino et al. 2005, Astronomy & Astrophysics, 440, L51

"Comets" orbiting a black hole. Maiolino et al. 2012, Astronomy & Astrophysics, 417, A47

The assembly of `normal' galaxies at z ˜ 7 probed by ALMA. Maiolino et al. 2015, Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 452, 54

Star formation inside a galactic outflow. Maiolino et al. 2017, Nature, 544, 202

De re metallica: the cosmic chemical evolution of galaxies. Maiolino & Mannucci 2019, The Astronomy and Astrophysics Review, Volume 27, Issue 1, article id. 3, 187 pp.

Massive molecular outflows and evidence for AGN feedback from CO observations. Cicone, Maiolino et al. 2014, Astronomy & Astrophysics, Volume 562, id.A21, 25 pp

Quasar feedback revealed by giant molecular outflows. Feruglio, Maiolino et al. 2010, Astronomy and Astrophysics, Volume 518, id.L155

Low-Luminosity and Obscured Seyfert Nuclei in Nearby Galaxies. Maiolino & Rieke 1995, Astrophysical Journal v.454, p.95

Dust in active nuclei. I. Evidence for "anomalous" properties. Maiolino et al. 2001, Astronomy and Astrophysics, v.365, p.28

Heavy obscuration in X-ray weak AGNs. Maiolino et al. 1998, Astronomy and Astrophysics, v.338, p.781

Strangulation as the primary mechanism for shutting down star formation in galaxies. Peng, Maiolino & Cochrane 2015, Nature, Volume 521, Issue 7551, pp. 192

Cool outflows in galaxies ad their implications. Veilleux, Maiolino, Bolatto & Aalto, The Astronomy and Astrophysics Review, Volume 28, Issue 1, article id. 2

Professor of Experimental Astrophysics

Contact Details

Room K30
Kavli Institute for Cosmology
c/o Institute of Astronomy
Madingley Road
(01223) 761661


Person keywords: 
Galaxy formation and evolution