Fabiola Gianotti (Italian pronunciation: [faˈbiola dʒaˈnɔtti]; born October 29, 1962) is an Italian particle physicist, a former spokesperson of the ATLAS experiment at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN in Switzerland, considered one of the world's biggest scientific experiments.
Gianotti holds a PhD in experimental sub-nuclear physics from the University of Milan, Italy. She joined CERN in 1987, working on various experiments including the UA2 experiment and ALEPH on the Large Electron Positron collider, the precursor to the LHC at CERN. Her thesis was on data analysis for the UA2 experiment.
Gianotti began working on liquid-argon calorimetry at the LHC in 1990 and continued that work for ATLAS when the collaboration began in 1992. Gianotti also worked on LEP2's supersymmetry search between 1996 and 2000.
Gianotti is also a member of the Physics Advisory Committee at Fermilab, the particle physics laboratory at Batavia, Illinois. A trained pianist, she has a professional music diploma from the Milan Conservatory.
Gianotti is member of the Accademia dei Lincei for the category of physics.
The ATLAS collaboration consists of almost 3,000 physicists from 169 institutions, 37 countries and five continents, and is the biggest detector ever built at a particle collider. Gianotti served as ATLAS physics coordinator from 1999 to 2003 and has worked with the collaboration since its inception. After 18 years of working with CERN, Gianotti became the ATLAS experiment's spokesperson and coordinator, leading the lab's strategic planning and presenting findings to the international media. On July 4, 2012, at the International Conference on High Energy Physics, Gianotti announced that a team at CERN had discovered a particle consistent with the Higgs Boson predicted by the Standard Model of physics. She also was a finalist for the Time's Person of the Year for 2012.
Honours and awards
- On 13 November 2012, Milan Municipality assigned Gianotti the Gold Medal (known as "Ambrogino d'oro", named after the patron saint of Milan, Saint Ambrose) that would be given to her by the Mayor Giuliano Pisapia on December 7, 2012.
- On 11 December 2012, she was awarded the 2012 Special Fundamental Physics Prize.
- In 2013, she received a doctorate honoris causa from the École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL).
- On 1 November 2013, she received The Niels Bohr Institute Medal of Honour, for her contribution at the Atlas experiment at CERN, and for her promotion of science as a spokesperson at CERN.
- The woman in charge of the world's biggest experiment, New Scientist, March 4, 2009
- The Large Hadron Collider runs on woman power, CERN Courier, April 16, 2008
- "Fundamental Physics Prize - News". Fundamental Physics Prize. Retrieved 11 December 2012.
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