Massimo Villata, Theoretical Physicist and Astrophysicist

Massimo Villata is born in Turin in 1954.

In the years 1968-1973 he attends the Technical Institute for Surveyors (including a student revolt and the other) and graduates with honors.

Due to the difficulty of finding a good job, and even a little out of passion, after a year of apprenticeship at a bookstall, starts his own and does the bookseller for a dozen years, outdoor as he likes. Meanwhile cultivates other interests, like photography and writing stories.

On the day of his 30th birthday gives entry to university (mostly to get access to the university canteen). Making the rounds with his brother in the stand, he attends some courses and tries to take some examination, with success.

He then decides to do the physicist: graduates with honors and honorable mention, sells the business and wins a doctoral scholarship, after which he wins a contest for a researcher at an observatory of the Italian National Institute for Astrophysics, where he still works.

He specializes in the study of blazars (active galactic nuclei highly energetic and variable) and in a few years he becomes President of the international consortium of radio and optical telescopes (WEBT) dedicated to this study, and, thanks to its innovative theories, an astrophysicist internationally renowned.

In the course of his career has signed nearly 300 publications, of which about half as first or second author.

He recently returned to his old passion for fiction, merging it with his scientific culture, in what he calls “scientific novel”. He published his first novel (under the pseudonym Max Wells) and is currently writing his second novel.

Since 2000 Massimo Villata has been the president of the WEBT consortium (see e.g. Wikipedia and OATO.inaf.it).

Some of his most recent and important scientific results are reported on popular science-news websites.


  1. Rob Cook
    May 09, 2013 @ 00:35:04

    I was wondering if dark energy could be gravitational pull from a source external from the known universe it would explain the red shift and mean all kinds of things for the universe at large


    • F. W.
      Sep 25, 2013 @ 00:05:47

      Wouldn’t that imply, that our universe is surrounded by a “sphere” of matter that is more than 15 billion ly away? Seems really unlikely.


      • From
        Oct 03, 2014 @ 11:54:15

        Imagine a singularity surrounded by anything “trapped” in the event horizon. Sounds like a sphere of matter surrounding the singularity. Imagine further this is higher-dimensional.

        Inside the singularity, three spatial dimensions “tear free” of the initial singularity, perhaps due to some fundamental limit to energy density even within singularities. This causes the, now three-dimensional, singularity to, oxymoronically, expand somewhat, an expansion which then starts to accelerate thanks to the pull of the surrounding event horizon.

        Voilá? I posited an explanation for the unlikely sphere and why the “other” eight dimensions are so compressed, all in one fell swoop.


  2. Bill Baker
    Nov 13, 2015 @ 05:30:20

    Massimo has advanced an idea a lot of us have had about the existence of an anti-gravitational force. It’s almost a physical neccesity, yet resistance to the idea was palpable.


  3. Zisa
    Nov 05, 2016 @ 06:33:05

    sono un italiano che vive da 43 anni negli stati uniti. Ho letto con interesse un articolo sul tuo lavoro, poi ho dato un’occhiata al tuo sito. Nella sezione intitolata “ABOUT”, non ho potuto che notare come la tua breve biografia in inglese sia una cattiva traduzione di una versione in italiano (sicuramente piu’ elegante).
    Mi sono permesso di fare delle piccole modifiche linguistiche e, se vuoi, te le mando se mi fai sapere il tuo indirizzo e-mail (ma solo se la cosa non ti offende).
    Perche’, ti chiederai, mi sto prendendo il disturbo? Le coincidenze! Vedi, io e te siamo ambedue del 1954 ed anch’io ho studiato in un istituto tecnico. Anch’io ho studiato fisica (Ph.D nel 1985–Washington State University) e anch’io coltivo un hobby artistico.
    Ripeto: se vuoi puoi scrivermi a:
    In ogni caso, buona fortuna con le tue teorie (che continuero’ a leggere)
    Grazie e Ciao


  4. Massimo Villata
    Nov 08, 2016 @ 09:56:54

    Grazie, nessuna offesa, ci mancherebbe.
    Ti scriverò via e-mail.
    Ciao, massimo


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