Luisa Bonolis

Visiting Scholar
Visiting Scholars are established scholars, as evidenced by significant publications and broad academic experience, spending a fixed term as guests at the MPIWG for research purposes. They may be externally funded or receive a Research Fellowship from the MPIWG.
Department I
PhD, Istituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare
June 1, 2016 to May 31, 2018

Luisa Bonolis joined the Research Program on the History of the Max Planck Society (GMPG) in 2016. She has a PhD in History of Science from Bari University, Italy (2009). Luisa’s research interests include high-energy astrophysics, evolution of cosmic-ray research, early developments of colliders in Europe, history of research on thermonuclear fusion, and oral history​. Her current projects focus on the emergence of relativistic astrophysics; astrophysics, astronomy and space sciences in the History of the Max Planck Society—her current project is entitled “Branching as a Strategy for Scientific Research and Innovation: the Transformation and Evolution from 1947 to 2002 of the Max Planck Institute for Physics into the Present Cluster of Institutes for Physics, Astrophysics, Extraterrestrial Physics, and Gravitational Physics.”

Selected publications

Bonolis, L. (2017). Stellar structure and compact objects before 1940: towards relativistic astrophysics. The European Physical Journal H, 42(2), 311-393. doi:10.1140/epjh/e2017-80014-4. View

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Lebowitz, J. L., & Bonolis, L. (2017). A life in statistical mechanics. Part 1: From Chedar in Taceva to Yeshiva University in New York. The European Physical Journal H, 42(1), 1-21. View

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Blum, A. S., Bonolis, L., Lalli, R., & Renn, J. (2015). La relatività dopo la guerra. Le Scienze: edizione italiana di Scientific American, 567, 48-53.

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Bonolis, L. (2014). International scientific cooperation during the 1930s: Bruno Rossi and the development of the status of cosmic rays into a branch of physics. Annals of Science, 71(3), 355-409.

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Bonolis, L. (2014). From cosmic ray physics to cosmic ray astronomy: Bruno Rossi and the opening of new windows on the universe. Astroparticle Physics, 53, 67-85. doi:10.1016/j.astropartphys.2013.05.008.

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Bonolis, L., Dionisi, C., & Robotti, N. (Eds.). (2014). The legacy of Bruno Pontecorvo: the man and the scientist. Bologna: Società italiana di Fisica.

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Di Castro, C., & Bonolis, L. (2014). The beginnings of theoretical condensed matter physics in Rome: a personal remembrance. The European Physical Journal H, 39(1), 3-36. View

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October 22, 2016
Prague. Symposium "Enduring Ideas, New Alliances: Social and Epistemic Factors in the Renaissance of General Relativity", 7th European Society for the History of Science Conference
The Emergence of Relativistic Astrophysics in the early 1960s (invited talk)
March 2, 2016
Sapienza University, Rome. Thermonuclear fusion, Space exploration and frontier research in astrophysics: History and Obstacles. Department of Astronautical, Electrical and Energy Engineering.
The birth of research on nuclear fusion in Italy (invited talk)
December 8, 2015
International Solvay Institutes, Bruxelles
From white dwarfs to Gravitational Collapse within Einstein’s Theory: The emergence of Relativistic Astrophysics (invited talk)
December 1, 2015
Harnack House, Berlin. A Century of General Relativity, November 30 - December 2, 2015
From ‘Dark Stars’ to Gravitational Collapse within Einstein’s Theory: The Emergence of Relativistic Astrophysics (invited talk)
July 2015
Sapienza University, Rome
The Renaissance of General Relativity in Rome: Main actors, research programs and institutional structures. XIV Marcel Grossmann Meeting (invited talk)
January 2014
DESY, Hamburg
Bruno Maksimovich Pontecorvo. From slow neutrons with Enrico Fermi in Rome to neutrino oscillations in Dubna (invited talk)
September 2013
International School for Advanced Studies, Trieste
Bruno Pontecorvo. Universality of Weak Interactions and Muon Decay. National Conference of the Italian Physical Society (invited talk)
August 2012
Bad Saarow/Pieskow
Conference 100 Years Cosmic Rays. From Cosmic Ray Physics to Cosmic Ray Astronomy. Bruno Rossi and the Opening of New Windows on the Universe (invited talk)
Teaching activities
Courses at the annual Winter School on History of Physics organized by the Italian Association for Physics Teaching (A.I.F.) The coming of abstract mathematics in the physics of 20th century (2003); Pauli and the mysteries of beta-decay, Fermi's theory of beta-decay (2004); Enrico Fermi and the Roman Physics School, Bruno Rossi and the electromagnetic cascade (2005); Einstein, Jordan, Dirac and the origins of QED (2006); Neutrinos. A history of puzzles and paradoxes (2007); From Mendel's laws to the discovery of the structure of DNA double helix (2008); The motion of Planets, order or chaos? The three-body problem, a challenge for celestial mechanics (2009); Physicists and Mathematicians in Goettingen. Amalie Emmy Noether and the birth of super-laws (2009); Lords of the cosmic rays: from earth laboratories to physics in space. A century of cosmic ray researches (2010); Physics and Group Theory. From Evariste Galois to Emmy Noether. From Noether's Theorems to the "Gruppenpest" in the new Quantum Mehanics (2013)
University of Basilicata, Potenza, ItalyCourses on History of Physics, Didactics of Physics and Laboratory


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Curriculum Vitae