Contact details


Telephone number: 01865 274267

Role: Fellow and Tutor; Professor of Physics; University Lecturer


Prof Gianluca Gregori


I have received an M.S. (Laurea) in Nuclear Engineering in 1997 from the University of Bologna, Italy, and in 2001 I have obtained a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, with a thesis on Thomson scattering diagnostics in thermal plasma jets. In 2002 I have also received an M.S. in Astrophysics from the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis on a thesis related to magneto-hydrodynamics simulations of cloud-wind interactions in the interstellar medium.

From 2001-2005 I was first a postdoctoral associate and then a staff scientist at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, in the National Ignition Facility directorate where I developed theoretical and experimental techniques for the characterization of dense plasmas using inelastic X-ray scattering. From 2005-2007 I was a senior scientist at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, in the Central Laser Facility, where I continued to work on X-ray characterization of strongly coupled plasmas. In 2007 I moved to the Department of Physics at the University of Oxford, and the college of Lady Margaret Hall. In 2012 I became Lecturer in Physics and Fellow of Lady Margaret Hall and in 2013 I was promoted to Professor in Physics. In Oxford, I run a research group focussing on both the microscopic measurement of highly compressed matter and the generation and amplification of magnetic fields by plasma turbulent processes.

More recently I have also expanded my interests in laboratory astroparticle physics. I am a visiting professor in the Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics at the University of Chicago. From 2018–2019 I have been Gaspard Monge visiting professor at Ecole Polytechnique, Paris. In 2014 I have won the Edouard Fabre International Scientific prize for contribution to the physics of inertial fusion and laser-produced plasmas. I was awarded the John Dawson Award for Excellence in Plasma Physics in 2019 and 2020 for my work on turbulent dynamo and collisionless shocks. I was elected Fellow of the American Physical Society in 2016, and Fellow of the Institute of Physics in 2017. In 2019 I have co-founded Machine Discovery Ltd, a University of Oxford spin-off company focused on the commercialization of optimization software and fast-emulator algorithms.

Research interests

My main research interest consists in using large laser facilities to reproduce in the laboratory conditions found in astrophysical environments. This field of research is usually referred to as Laboratory Astrophysics.

Examples of my recent work include: 

  • Laboratory simulation of cosmological shock waves, turbulence and primordial magnetic fields. This work tries to address one of the greatest puzzles of modern astrophysics: the generation and amplification of magnetic fields ubiquitously found in the Universe.
  • Exotic properties of matter found in the core of planets and white dwarfs. Inside compact astrophysical objects, matter is in a very unusual state: it exhibits properties that are common to both liquids and solids. The quantum nature of the system must be accounted for. The properties of this matter are investigated in laboratory experiments using high power lasers and with large-scale quantum simulations. Matter conditions found in our experiments have also relevance with inertial confinement fusion research - and thus help in addressing an important technological challenge: the realization of a fusion power reactor on Earth. 
  • Gravity analogue experiments. In the focus of a high-power laser, electrons feel extreme accelerations. These are comparable to the acceleration believed to occur near the event horizon of the back hole. Because of the equivalence principle, we can thus use laboratory experiments in order to investigate complex phenomena, involving the connection between gravity and quantum mechanics, that are not yet fully understood. 


I tutor a number of courses in the Physics curriculum, including electromagnetism, atomic physics, and condensed matter.



Physics and Philosophy

Selected publications

  • G Gregori, A Ravasio, CD Murphy, K Schaar, A Baird, AR Bell, A Benuzzi-Mounaix, R Bingham, C Constantin, RP Drake, M Edwards, ET Everson, CD Gregory, Y Kuramitsu, W Lau, J Mithen, C Niemann, H-S Park, BA Remington, B Reville, APL Robinson, DD Ryutov, Y Sakawa, S Yang, NC Woolsey, M Koenig, and F Miniati, “Generation of scaled protogalactic seed magnetic fields in laser- produced shock waves.” Nature 481, 480 (2012).
  • B Reville, AR Bell, and G Gregori, “Diffusive shock acceleration at laser-driven shocks: studying cosmic-ray accelerators in the laboratory.” New Journal of Physics 15, 015015 (2013).
  • J Meinecke, HW Doyle, F Miniati, AR Bell, R Bingham, R Crowston, RP Drake, M Fatenejad, M Koenig, Y Kuramitsu, CC Kuranz, DQ Lamb, D Lee, MJ MacDonald, CD Murphy, H-S Park, A Pelka, A Ravasio, Y Sakawa, AA Schekochihin, A Scopatz, P Tzeferacos, WC Wan, NC Woolsey, R Yurchak, B Reville, and G Gregori, “Turbulent amplification of magnetic fields in laboratory laser- produced shock waves.” Nature Physics 10, 520 (2014).
  • G Gregori, B Reville, and F Miniati, “The generation and amplification of intergalactic magnetic fields in analogue laboratory experiments with high power lasers.” Physics Reports 601, 1 (2015).
  • J Meinecke, P Tzeferacos, A Bell, R Bingham, R Clarke, E Churazov, R Crowston, H Doyle, RP Drake, R Heathcote, M Koenig, Y Kuramitsu, C Kuranz, D Lee, M MacDonald, C Murphy, M Notley, H-S Park, A Pelka, A Ravasio, B Reville, Y Sakawa, W Wan, N Woolsey, R Yurchak, F Miniati, A Schekochihin, D Lamb, and G Gregori, “Developed turbulence and nonlinear amplification of magnetic fields in laboratory and astrophysical plasmas.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 112, 8211 (2015).
  • P Tzeferacos, A Rigby, A Bott, A Bell, R Bingham, A Casner, F Cattaneo, E Churazov, J Emig, F Fiuza, C Forest, J Foster, C Graziani, J Katz, M Koenig, C-K Li, J Meinecke, R Petrasso, H-S Park, B Remington, J Ross, D Ryu, D Ryutov, T White, B Reville, F Miniati, A Schekochihin, D Lamb, D Froula, and G Gregori, “Laboratory evidence of dynamo amplification of magnetic fields in a turbulent plasma.” Nature Communications 9, 591 (2018).
  • A Rigby, F Cruz, B Albertazzi, R Bamford, AR Bell, JE Cross, F Fraschetti, P Graham, Y Hara, PM Kozlowski, Y Kuramitsu, DQ Lamb, S Lebedev, J Marques, F Miniati, T Morita, M Oliver, B Reville, Y Sakawa, S Sarkar, C Spindloe, R Trines, P Tzeferacos, LO Silva, R Bingham, M Koenig, and G Gregori, “Electron acceleration by wave turbulence in a magnetized plasma.” Nature Physics 14, 475 (2018).
  • KA Beyer, B Reville, AFA Bott, H-S Park, S Sarkar, and G Gregori, “Analytical estimates of proton acceleration in laser-produced turbulent plasmas.” Journal of Plasma Physics 84, 905840608 (2018).
  • TG White, MT Oliver, P Mabey, M Kühn-Kauffeldt, AFA Bott, LNK Döhl, AR Bell, R Bingham, R Clarke, J Foster, G Giacinti, P Graham, R Heathcote, M Koenig, Y Kuramitsu, DQ Lamb, J Meinecke, T Michel, F Miniati, M Notley, B Reville, D Ryu, S Sarkar, Y Sakawa, MP Selwood, J Squire, RHH Scott, P Tzeferacos, N Woolsey, AA Schekochihin, and G Gregori, “Supersonic plasma turbulence in the laboratory.” Nature Communications 10, 1758 (2019).
  • L Chen, A Bott, P Tzeferacos, A Rigby, A Bell, R Bingham, C Graziani, J Katz, M.Koenig, C-K Li, R Petrasso, H-S Park, J Ross, D Ryu, T White, B Reville, J Matthews, J Meinecke, F Miniati, E Zweibel, S Sarkar, A Schekochihin, D Lamb, D Froula, and G Gregori, “Transport of High-energy Charged Particles through Spatially Intermittent Turbulent Magnetic Fields.” Astrophysical Journal 892, 114 (2020).