Nicholas Corso

Astronomy & Space Sciences


I'm a second year graduate student who joined the Cornell Astronomy Department in Fall 2022. Broadly speaking, I am interested in extreme gravity environments, be they neutron stars or black holes, and what they tell us about the nature of spacetime and matter when pushed to their limits.

I have recently graduated from the University of Chicago with a B.S. in Astronomy and Astrophysics. During my time there, I contributed to the DAMIC-M collaboration under the guidance of Professor Paolo Privitera by running Monte Carlo particle simulations of sources of background radiation to model their behavior in low energy limits. Additionally, under the guidance of Professor Damiano Caprioli, I modeled the behavior of supernova remnant shock fronts in different environments to study the latter's effects on the resulting gamma emission and the conclusions that we can draw about cosmic ray acceleration.

Nowadays I work under the mentorships of Professors Dong Lai and Saul Teukolsky to study stellar explosions of different varieties. More specifically, I am exploring the reactions of stars to injections of energy into thin interior shells. This may shed new light on processes that may occur in stellar interiors such as tidal heating. I'm also using numerical relativity to study stellar collapse due to a hadron-quark phase transition to try to probe for observational signatures that may shed light on the neutron star equation of state in its core.

Although some may justifiably claim that I live under a rock, outside of academic life I enjoy a variety of computer games, hiking, running, and playing cello (recently as part of a Middle Eastern music ensemble!), and I practice the martial art of kendo