Francesca Ferlaino
Research Director @ Quantum Optics and Quantum Information Institute of Innsbruck
Born on 23th December 1977 in Napoli, Italy. She studied physics at the University of Federico II in Naples, where she received her diploma in 2000 for a theoretical work on Bose-Einstein condensates, jointly conducted in Naples and at the International School for Advanced Studies (SISSA) in Trieste.

She then directed her research interest towards experimental physics.
After few months of wandering around the world, she has started her PhD at the European Laboratory for Non-linear Spectroscopy (LENS) in Florence, receiving her PhD degree in 2004 under the supervision of Prof. M. Inguscio. At LENS, Francesca was involved in the first realization of quantum gases mixture of different atomic species.

In 2007, Ferlaino moved to Austria first as a visiting scientist, then as postdoctoral researcher, and Lise-Meitner fellow. She conducted study on ultracold few-body physics in the group of Prof. R. Grimm. At the beginning her stay in Innsbruck was just planned for 3 months. The 3 months became 6. The 6 months 1 year. 1 year easily doubled to 2 years, and the 2 years doubled again, and again :).

In 2009, thanks to external grants, she established her research group and started the ERBIUM experiment, realizing the first Bose-Einstein condensate of Er in 2012. Since 2014, Francesca has been professor for atom physics at the University of Innsbruck and Scientific Director at the Institute for Quantum Optics and Quantum Information (IQOQI).

During the last years, she was awardee of numerous prestigious prizes and distinctions, including the Alexander-von-Humboldt Professorship, the Science Prize of the City of Innsbruck, the Ignaz L. Lieben Prize, and the Fritz-Kohlrausch Prize for experimental physics. In addition, she received the START Prize, one ERC-Starting and one ERC-Consolidator grant.

Aside from physics, Francesca spend a lot of time traveling around, behind the objective of her photo camera, and with her family.