Show/hide main menu

Academic Staff A-Z

Professor Dario Martelli


Title: Professor in Theoretical Physics

Telephone: +44 020 7848 2153


Office: S4.06, Strand Building, Strand Campus

Office Hours (current students)



Dario Martelli studied Physics at the University of Pisa and the Scuola Normale Superiore of Pisa, and obtained his PhD from the International School of Advanced Studies in Trieste. He held research positions at CERN in Geneva, and the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton among others.

In 2010 he joined the Department of Mathematics of King's College as a Lecturer in Theoretical Physics. He was appointed Reader in 2012 and became a Professor in 2013. He held an EPSRC Advanced Fellowship and subsequently has been awarded a prestigious ERC Starting Grant to lead a research team working on a research project at the interface of string theory, gauge theory, and geometry.

In 2010 Professor Martelli won the SIGRAV Prize from the Italian Society of General Relativity and Gravitational Physics for his work in string theory. In his career he wrote a number of publications in collaboration with Prof S.-T. Yau, concerning Sasaki-Einstein geometry and its relationship to string theory, and worked with Prof J. Maldacena on aspects of the string theory/gauge theory correspondence.

Research Interests

The research interests of Professor Martelli are centred around the gauge/gravity correspondence in string theory and geometric structures arising in this context. In particular, a line of investigations is that of supersymmetric solutions of supergravity. He obtained important results in Sasakian geometry, including the discovery of novel classes of Sasaki-Einstein manifolds.

He has also obtained original results in the context of supersymmetric gauge theories. In particular, he has been exploring localization techniques that allow one to obtain analytic control in strongly coupled quantum field theories, and the embedding of these in string theory via the gauge/gravity duality.

In recent years, Professor Martelli has initiated a number of novel research directions. He has defined the “supersymmetric Casimir energy”, and studied aspects of this new observable in a series of papers. In particular, this has been instrumental to explain the microscopic entropy of certain black holes that arise in string theory, thus solving a long-standing puzzle in the literature. 

In another set of publications, he opened the way for the marriage of holography and F-theory, that are two traditionally distinct areas of string theory. His work explained how these two viewpoints can be combined to obtain insights into gravitational theories as well as yielding novel field-theoretic constructions.


Further Information

Research profile and publications

Sitemap Site help Terms and conditions  Privacy policy  Accessibility  Modern slavery statement  Contact us

© 2019 King's College London | Strand | London WC2R 2LS | England | United Kingdom | Tel +44 (0)20 7836 5454