Fulvio Melia

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Fulvio Melia
Fulvio Melia.jpg
Born (1956-08-02) 2 August 1956 (age 59)
Gorizia, Italy
Residence United States


Fields Astrophysics
Institutions University of Arizona
Alma mater Melbourne University
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Doctoral advisor Paul Joss and Saul Rappaport
Doctoral students Marco Fatuzzo
Ranjeev Misra
Peter Tamblyn
Marcus Boyd
Jack Hall
Sergei Nayakshin
Robert Coker
Sera Markoff
Michael Fromerth
Siming Liu
Gabriel Rockefeller
Brandon Wolfe
Jun-Jie Wei
Thomas McClintock
Known for High Energy Astronomy, supermassive black holes, cosmology
Notable awards Presidential Young Investigator Award (from President Ronald Reagan), Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Research Fellow, Sir Thomas Lyle Fellow, Miegunyah Fellow, Erskine Fellow, John Woodruff Simpson Chair

Fulvio Melia (born 2 August 1956) is an Italian-American astrophysicist and author. He is Professor of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Arizona and was a Scientific Editor of The Astrophysical Journal and an Associate Editor of the The Astrophysical Journal Letters. A former Presidential Young Investigator and Sloan Research Fellow, he is the author of six books and 200 refereed articles on theoretical astrophysics and cosmology.


Melia was born in Gorizia, Italy. He was educated at Melbourne University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and held a post-doctoral research position at the University of Chicago, before taking an assistant professorship at Northwestern University in 1987. Moving to the University of Arizona as an associate professor in 1991, he became a full professor in 1993. From 1988 to 1995, he was a Presidential Young Investigator (under President Ronald Reagan), and then an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow from 1989 to 1992. He became a Fellow of the American Physical Society in 2002. He is also a Professorial Fellow in the School of Physics, Melbourne University.

From 1996 to 2002, he was a Scientific Editor with the Astrophysical Journal, and has later been an Associate Editor with The Astrophysical Journal Letters. He is also the Chief Editor of the Theoretical Astrophysics series of books at the University of Chicago Press.

In a career that has seen him publish 200 refereed research papers and several books, Melia has made important contributions in High Energy Astronomy and the physics of supermassive black holes. He is especially known for his work on the galactic center, particularly developing a theoretical understanding of the central supermassive black hole, known as Sagittarius A*. With his students and collaborators, he was the first to propose that imaging this object with millimeter-interferometry, which should be feasible within a few years, should prove beyond doubt that it possesses the event horizon predicted by Einstein's theory of general relativity.

In recent years, he has plied his knowledge of general relativity and event horizons to cosmology, developing a foundation for the symmetries in the Friedmann-Robertson-Walker metric. In so doing, he and his students have developed the so-called R_h=ct Universe, a cosmological theory that has accounted for the observational data better than all other models proposed thus far[according to whom?]. In this cosmology, the Universe has no horizon problem, and therefore evolved without inflation.

He is also a well-respected and popular publicist of astronomy and science in general, delivering many lectures at public venues, including museums and planetariums. His books have won several awards of distinction, including the designation of Outstanding Academic Books by the American Library Association, and selection as worldwide astronomy books of the year by Astronomy magazine.



  • Fulvio Melia, (2001). Electrodynamics (Chicago Lectures in Physics), University Of Chicago Press. ISBN 0-226-51958-9

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