Research in Physics

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I am interested in general relativistic astrophysics with a focus on gravitational waves. Most of my work is concerned with the dynamics of compact binaries (composed of black holes/neutron stars) and the gravitational waves they emit. During my PhD, I studied spin effects in such binaries. Later I investigated dynamical tides, which become important when the orbital motion is in resonance with an oscillation mode of the compact star. This is of particular interest for neutron stars and I was granted a DFG research fellowship for this project.

Currently, I am working at the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute) in the group for Astrophysical and Cosmological Relativity, in particular on the effective-one-body model for gravitational waveforms from compact binaries. In this effective-one-body model, the results of analytic approximations are incorporated synergetically, together with information from full-fledged numerical simulations. This makes it one of the most powerful tools to predict gravitational waveforms for gravitational wave astronomy. Recently, I also got interested in methods for calculating scattering amplitudes and connections to gravitational waves.


List of publications from Summary: 3 Phys. Rev. Letters (one being a Research Highlight in Nature), an Editor’s Suggestion in PRD, and a CQG Highlight


PhD thesis: Canonical Formulation of Spin in General Relativity, published in Ann. Phys. (Berlin) 523 (2011) 919-924
Diploma thesis (in German): Supersymmetric Lattice Field Theories


List of talks

Summary: 27 invited talks, including the international MG14, MG15, GR20, and GR21 conferences, the 524. WE-Heraeus-Seminar, a main talk on the 2010 German Physical Society (DPG) meeting, and one as a candidate for the Thesis Price 2012 of the DPG.

"James B. Hartle Award" for a talk on the GR19 conference

Outreach contributions

Journalists Day at the Albert Einstein Institute (ca. 20 international journalists)
demonstrator at the Potsdam Science Day 2018
participated in a TV clip for ``Tomorrow Today'' on Deutsche Welle
Talk on neutron stars and black holes in computers, Potsdam Science Day 2017
Interview for Development Company for Television Program (dctp) on the work of PRL 116 (2016) 181101
Interviews on the first gravitational wave detection by LIGO for: Antenne Brandenburg, Babelsberg Hitradio, Radio Frei, Reuters (TV)
Welt der Physik: Die Suche nach Gravitationswellen
Deutschlandfunk: Delle auf Reisen - Die Fahndung nach den Gravitationswellen
Deutschlandfunk: Neutronensterne - Mehr als ausgebrannte Sternleichen




Korteweg–de Vries Equation and Supersymmetric Quantum Mechanics (in German), source code: soli.tar.bz2
Experimental physics (in German): Protokolle zum F-Praktikum