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Dr M. Gilfanov (1962) has been appointed professor by special appointment of High-Energy Emission from Galaxies at the University of Amsterdam's (UvA) Faculty of Science. The chair was established on behalf of the Amsterdam University Fund Foundation.

Gilfanov, Marat - Jeroen Oerlemans
Photographer: Jeroen Oerlemans

Marat Gilfanov conducts research in the field of high-energy astrophysics and X-ray astronomy. His interests include the physics of accretion (when matter from a companion star in a binary stellar system is attracted by the gravity of a neutron star or a black hole), the interaction between matter and radiation under extreme astrophysical conditions of high temperature and pressure, strong gravitational force and high magnetic fields and the spectral formation in the vicinity of black holes and neutron stars. 

Gilfanov studies X-ray binary stars, populations of accreting neutron stars and black holes in the Milky Way and external galaxies. He is also exploring the nature of systems that produce type Ia supernovae (supernovae that are believed to be a result of explosions of white dwarf stars ), based on the various electromagnetic features of their early (pre-supernova) evolution and their impact on their surroundings. His interests also include the epoch of reionisation and diagnostics of the large-scale structure of the universe using methods of X-ray astronomy.

Gilfanov has been working at the Max-Planck-Institut für Astrophysik in Garching (Germany) since 1996, where he is currently a research group leader. He is also a leading scientist at the Space Research Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences, and has several times been appointed visiting researcher at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (USA). Gilfanov has published more than 300 articles in scientific journals including Nature, Astronomy & Astrophysics, The Astrophysical Journal and Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.