European Space Agency (ESA)
Antonella Nota, the Deputy Head of the Science
Division, was born and raised in Venice, Italy.
Her love of astronomy started very early. As a teenager,
she was one of the first women to join the AAVSO
in Europe, and monitored variable stars for years
from the Lido in Venice. She completed her university
studies at the Institute of Astronomy of the University
of Padua, home of Galileo. She worked at the Italian
LABEN where she participated in the initial design
of the Beppo Sax mission, and then she moved to
Darmstadt, Germany, where she spent almost two years
providing scientific support for the Exosat X-ray
She joined STScI in 1986, as a FOC/IDT member and
eventually became a member of the ESA staff in 1990.
She spent ten years supporting HST instrument science
operations taking on increasingly challenging management
positions starting as Lead of the Faint Object Camera
Group, then Lead of the Observatory Support Group
and finally the Lead of the NICMOS Group. She is
now the Deputy Division Head of the Science Division.
Her scientific interests are mainly in the field
of post main sequence evolution of very massive
stars, especially Luminous Blue Variables and Ofpe/WN9
stars. She has studied the nebulae ejected by these
stars and used the nebular properties to constrain
the ejection mechanism and refine the understanding
of the last evolutionary phases of these very luminous
and massive objects. More recently, she has developed
an interest in the stallar function of young star
clusters, especially at very low masses.
Outside astronomy, Antonella has many interests,
including modern art and classical music. She loves
extreme sports, and still spends her vacations scubadiving
in remote areas of the world, or skiing. She is
married to Mark Clampin, an astronomer colleague
whom she met at STScI, and has a little daughter,
three years old, Simona.