Computational Plasma Astrophysics
Plasma astrophysics is a new, emerging research field aiming to understand the dynamics of astrophysical plasmas - hot ionized gases - from first principles. The Computational Plasma Astrophysics research group at the University of Helsinki uses theoretical and computational methods to study the most extreme plasma environments around neutron stars and black holes. We focus on understanding the radiative plasma physics of magnetar flares, neutron-star mergers, accretion flows around black holes, and enigmatic fast radio bursts.
The research is funded by the European Research Council (ERC) Starting Grant project ILLUMINATOR. The project aims to unravel how neutron stars generate their observed electromagnetic radiation.
High-Performance Computing Lab
High-performance computing solutions and open-source simulation tools are essential to our research. To perform our numerical studies, we maintain our own computational laboratory with a dedicated in-house, >1000-core supercomputer. We use the cluster to develop the open-source plasma simulation framework Runko.
We study plasma physics of various high-energy astrophysical systems, including:
In addition, we focus on fundamental plasma instabilities and processes, including: