Why I am in Atacama


The passion for astronomy was born when I was 10 years old and has not gone away, conditioning all my future choices.

The Atacama desert  is a mystical place, among astronomy enthusiasts, a kind of paradise sometimes described by stories that seem to flow into mythology. For many years I dreamed of being able to move to Atacama, to observe the stars and live the desert.

 

In the second half of 2017, the opportunity that I was expecting so much has come. In 2007, under the coordination of an Italian researcher, I participated to the discovery of the transit of an extrasolar planet: HD1756b. For few years we lost contact, but that researcher from Padua, Mauro Barbieri, in 2014 received the opportunity he had been waiting for a lifetime, of course not from Italy but from an anonymous city in the middle of the Atacama desert: Copiapó. In just three years he became the director of the Institute of Astronomy and Planetary Sciences at the University of Atacama and created a PhD program. 

 

In my search for a way to move to the Atacama desert, I saw the PhD announcement at the University of Atacama, under the guidance of my mentor.: it was just perfect. Without thinking twice, I left, I visited the place, I apply for the position and I won. I will therefore become a researcher and I will do it in the best place in the world for astronomy: my dream has come true!