Michele Trenti's Home Page

Kavli Institute Fellow
Institute of Astronomy and Kavli Institute for Cosmology
University of Cambridge
Madingley Road
Cambridge, CB3 0HA
United Kingdom

  • E-mail:
  • Phone: +44 (0)1223 337526
  • Michele on top of Cotopaxi (5897m)


  • June 24, 2014: My largest Hubble Space Telescope allocation ever: 480 orbits in a single cycle to extend bright galaxy detection to Hubble's frontier at 500 Myr after the Big Bang: Bright Galaxies at Hubble's Detection Frontier: The redshift z~9-10 BoRG pure-parallel survey. I am looking forward to this amazing dataset! Update of June 25: with the adrenaline levels going down and the brain functioning again, I just realized that, pending a successful phaseII, Hubble will be busy taking the data for 32 full days!! For the full story see this KICC release.

  • June 5, 2014: My latest work on GRB host galaxies is available on arXiv.
  • March 2013 (with November update): I accepted a faculty position at the School of Physics of the University of Melbourne, and (November 2013) the Australian Research Council awarded me a Future Fellowship (17 in Physical Sciences offered in 2013). Unfortunately, unforeseen complications have arisen during the application for the Australian work visa, because my wife is a cancer survivor, which is considered grounds against immigration by Australian law. At the current stage, it is unclear if and under what conditions it will be possible to obtain a visa for myself and my family.
  • Try my Cosmic Variance Calculator for high-redshift galaxy surveys.
  • August 11, 2013: My paper on lack of energy equipartition in globular clusters has been accepted.
  • June 27, 2013: My paper on the connection between GRBs and star formation is in press on ApJL.
  • December 11, 2012: My Marie Curie Career Integration Grant "The first protocluster of galaxies: probes of star formation in the infancy of the Universe" has been approved for funding (April 2013-March 2017).
  • October 4, 2012: Live web-interview on the most distant galaxies in the Universe and the Hubble Extreme Deep Field, hosted by the Kavli Foundation.
  • June 6, 2012: Sixth cycle in a row with an HST proposal approved as PI: Unveiling the structure of the farthest galaxy protocluster: WFC3 imaging of a z~8 galaxy overdensity.
  • March 14, 2012: My investigation on the connection between Gamma Ray Bursts and high redshift galaxies has been accepted by ApJ.
  • January 3, 2012: My 5yr Kavli Fellowship at KICC in Cambridge, UK has started.
  • October 5, 2011: A detection of a z~8 protocluster in the BoRG survey: Accepted to ApJ [on November 20, 2011]. This is the most distant protocluster identified to date (NASA/ESA press release).
  • June 6 2011: My BoRG survey has been approved for continuation by the HST TAC: A second large HST program as PI!
  • From January 2012: I will join the Kavli Institute for Cosmology in Cambridge, UK as a Kavli Fellow.
  • January 10 2011: My BoRG paper is published in ApJL. More exciting results will come soon.
  • October 21 2010: Here is my Nature News & Views contribution on the spectroscopic observations of one of the z>8 galaxies in the Hubble Ultradeep Field.
  • June 2010: For the fourth consecutive year I have secured HST funding as a PI: N-body modeling of globular clusters: detecting intermediate-mass black holes by non-equipartition in HST proper motions.

    Selected Old News

  • November 6 2008: Nature featured one of my paper on Population III stars in its research highlights section.
  • May 29 2008: My HST-GO/PAR large program (142 orbits) to search for bright z>7.5 galaxies has been approved! I am also a Co-I of a program to search for faint galaxies at those redshifts.

    About me

    From January 2012 I am a Kavli Institute Fellow at the Institute of Astronomy in Cambridge, UK. Currently, I am working primarily on:
    * Galaxy formation and evolution at high redshift and Population III stars
    I am also interested in the local Universe:
    * Dynamical evolution of globular clusters, mainly searching for intermediate mass black holes at their center

    I completed my undergraduate (2001) and graduate (2005) education in Physics in Italy at Scuola Normale Superiore of Pisa, an extremely selective institution which admits less than 30 science majors each year (27 in 1997 when I took the entrance examination) and provides a full scholarship to its students. If you are curious to learn more about Scuola Normale Superiore as seen from a U.S. perspective, there is a recent coverage on the school by The Chronicle of Higher Education . Before joining the Institute of Astronomy, I was a post-doc at CASA, University of Colorado, and at the Space Telescope Science Institute.

    When I am not sitting in front of the computer to work on astrophysics I like to play strategy board games (and Dungeons&Dragons as well...) with my friends and to hike/climb outside. Lately I have taken an interest in trail running, including the Pikes Peak Ascent, and recently my first ultra-marathon.

    Since 2005 I am married to Daiana. We studied together in Pisa and she currently works for the Cassini Imaging Team.

    A more formal CV is available upon request.