Matteo Cantiello | Stellar Physics

"The Stars are beautiful because of a flower that cannot be seen."

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

At Caltech, in Kip Thorne’s office

At Caltech, in Kip Thorne’s office


My name is Matteo Cantiello and I am an Astrophysicist. I am a theorist who investigates the life and death of stars. I am currently working as an associate research scientist at the Center for Computational Astrophysics (Flatiron Institute, in New York City) and as a visiting associate researcher at Princeton University. I published more than 50 astrophysics articles in top scientific journals (including Nature and Science), and have obtained more than 4000 citations. 

I like to to talk about my research, and science in general, to as wide as an audience as possible. I currently live in Brooklyn, but I was born and raised among gentle Tuscan hills.

Here you will find more about my research. For questions, advising and speaking engagements, send a query using my contact info.


Featured on the cover of Nature

Our recent theoretical work on the stability and mass loss of luminous blue variables has been published in Nature, and we made the cover! Our radiation three-dimensional simulations of massive, radiation-dominated stars, show that helium opacity has an important role in triggering outbursts and setting the observed effective temperature of luminous blue variables during outbursts.  This finding represents an important step forward in understanding the life and death of the biggest stars in the universe. These massive stars, despite their small number, largely determine the evolution of galaxies through their stellar winds and supernova explosions. And when they die, they leave behind black holes. Here you can find a movie of the simulations.

“Outbursts of luminous blue variable stars from variations in the helium opacity” Nature 561, 498–501 (2018)

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