Daniel Siegel

University of Guelph - Department of Physics

team website
A unifying theme of my research is the pursuit to connect fundamental physics with the cosmos. I am excited about multimessenger and gravitational-wave astronomy with Advanced LIGO and Virgo and its partner facilities in the electromagnetic band and the neutrino/high-energy particle sector. My research interests cover a broad range of topics including gravitational physics, nuclear astrophysics, high-energy astrophysics, and transient astronomy. Much of my research centers around unraveling the fundamental physics and astrophysics of compact binary mergers involving neutron stars, it elucidates how such mergers and other astrophysical phenomena synthesize heavy elements in the Universe via the rapid neutron capture process, and it reflects on the broader impacts for nuclear physics and astrophysics, and the consequences for cosmology. In order to study these prime targets of multi-messenger astronomy, I perform fully general-relativistic magnetohydrodynamic simulations of astrophysical systems on supercomputers, including microphysical equations of state, weak interactions, neutrino radiation transport, and nuclear reaction networks, in combination with analytical and semi-analytical modeling.
  • 2019 - present Department of Physics, University of Guelph, Assistant Professor
  • 2019 - present Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics, Associate Faculty
  • 2015 - 2019 Columbia University, New York, Postdoctoral Researcher and NASA Einstein Fellow
  • De S. & Siegel D. M., 2021, Igniting weak interactions in neutron-­star post-­merger accretion disks, Astrophys. J., in press, arXiv: 2011.07176
  • Li X. & Siegel D. M., 2021, Neutrino Fast Flavor Conversions in Neutron­-star Post­-Merger Accretion Disks, Phys. Rev. Lett. 126, 251101, arXiv: 2103.02616
  • Zenati Y., Siegel D. M., Metzger B. D., Perets H. B., 2020, Nuclear Burning in Collapsar Accretion Disks, Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc., 499, 4097, arXiv: 2008.04309
  • Siegel D. M., 2019, GW170817-the first observed neutron star merger and its kilonova: implications for the astrophysical site of the r-process, invited contribution to the EPJA Topical Issue "First joint gravitational wave and electromagnetic observations: Implications for nuclear and particle physics", Eur. Phys. J. A 55, 203, arXiv: 1901.09044
  • Zevin M., Kremer K., Siegel D. M., Coughlin S., Tsang B. T.-H., Berry C. P. L., Kalogera V., 2019, Can Neutron-Star Mergers Explain the r-process Enrichment in Globular Clusters?, Astrophys. J. 886, 4, arXiv: 1906.11299
  • Horowitz C. J. et al. 2019, r-Process Nucleosynthesis: Connecting Rare-Isotope Beam Facilities with the Cosmos, topical review, J. Phys. G: Nucl. Part. Phys. 46, 083001 (103pp), arXiv: 1805.04637
  • Siegel D. M., Barnes J. & Metzger B., 2019, Collapsars as a major source of r-process elements, Nature 569, 241, arXiv: 1810.00098
  • Siegel D. M., Mösta P., Desai D. & Wu S., 2018, Recovery schemes for primitive variables in general-relativistic magnetohydrodynamics, Astrophys. J. 859, 71, arXiv: 1712.07538
  • Siegel D. M. & Metzger B., 2018, Three-dimensional GRMHD simulations of neutrino-cooled accretion disks from neutron star mergers, Astrophys. J. 858, 52, arXiv: 1711.00868
  • Siegel D. M. & Metzger B., 2017, Three-dimensional general-relativistic magnetohydrodynamic simulations of remnant accretion disks from neutron star mergers: outflows and r-process nucleosynthesis, Phys. Rev. Lett. 119, 231102, arXiv: 1705.05473 (selected PRL Editors' Suggestion, selected for a Viewpoint in Physics)
  • Siegel D. M. & Ciolfi R., 2016, Electromagnetic emission from long-lived binary neutron star merger remnants II: lightcurves and spectra, Astrophys. J. 819, 15, arXiv: 1508.07939
  • Siegel D. M. & Ciolfi R., 2016, Electromagnetic emission from long-lived binary neutron star merger remnants I: formulation of the problem, Astrophys. J. 819, 14, arXiv: 1508.07911
  • Ciolfi R. & Siegel D. M., 2015, Short gamma-ray bursts in the 'time-reversal' scenario, Astrophys. J. Lett. 798, L36, arXiv: 1411.2015
  • Siegel D. M., Ciolfi R. & Rezzolla L., 2014, Magnetically driven winds from differentially rotating neutron stars and X-ray afterglows of short gamma-ray bursts, Astrophys. J. Lett. 785, L6, arXiv: 1401.4544
  • Siegel D. M. & Roth M., 2014, An upper bound from helioseismology on the stochastic background of gravitational waves, Astrophys. J. 784, 88, arXiv: 1401.6888
  • Siegel D. M., Ciolfi R., Harte A. I. & Rezzolla L., 2013, Magnetorotational instability in relativistic hypermassive neutron stars, Phys. Rev. D Rap. Comm. 87, 121302(R), arXiv: 1302.4368
  • Siegel D. M. & Roth M., 2012, On the feasibility of employing solar-like oscillators as detectors for the stochastic background of gravitational waves, Astron. Not. 333, 978, arXiv: 1401.6883
  • Siegel D. M. & Roth M., 2011, Excitation of stellar oscillations by gravitational waves: hydrodynamic model and numerical results for the sun, Astrophys. J. 729, 137, arXiv: 1103.0373
  • Siegel D. M. & Roth M., 2010, Excitation of non-radial stellar oscillations by gravitational waves: a first model, Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc. 408, 1742, arXiv: 1006.4803
  • Fernández R., Herwig F., Babul A., East W., Groth C., Ivanova N., Kushner P., Lehner L., Matzner C., Myers P., Navarro J., Navrátil P., Peltier D., Rein H., Siegel D. M., Thacker R., Wadsley J., Large­ Parallel Supercomputer Simulations - Frontiers in Canadian Research, NDRIO 2020 white paper
  • Fernández R., Bovy J., Haggard D., Heinke C., Herwig F., Lehner L., Rosolowsky E., Ruan J., Safi-Harb S., Siegel D. M., Venn K., Woods T. 2019, The cosmic origin and evolution of the elements, Canadian Astronomical Society (CASCA) Long Range Plans for astronomy and astrophysics (LRP2020) white paper, arXiv: 1910.09712
  • Chornock, R. et al. 2019, Multi-Messenger Astronomy with Extremely Large Telescopes, Astro2020: Decadal Survey on Astronomy and Astrophysics, science white papers, no. 237; Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, Vol. 51, Issue 3, id. 237 (2019), arXiv: 1903.04629
  • Foley, R. et al. 2019, Gravity and Light: Combining Gravitational Wave and Electromagnetic Observations in the 2020s, Astro2020: Decadal Survey on Astronomy and Astrophysics, science white papers, no. 295; Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, Vol. 51, Issue 3, id. 295 (2019), arXiv: 1903.04553
  • Siegel D. M., 2020, Heavy elements form short and long gamma-ray bursts, Invited contribution, Proceedings of the Yamada Conference LXXI: Gamma-ray Bursts in the Gravitational Wave Era 2019, Yokohama, Japan, Eds. T. Sakamoto, M. Serino, S. Sugita, arXiv: 2008.06078
  • Aprahamian, A., et al., 2018, FRIB and the GW170817 Kilonova, FRIB Theory Alliance workshop, arXiv: 1809.00703
  • Siegel D. M. & Ciolfi R., 2015, Magnetic field amplification in hypermassive neutron stars via the magnetorotational instability, in Proc. of the 1st Karl Schwarzschild Meeting on Gravitational Physics, Frankfurt, 2013, ed. P. Nicolini et al., Springer Proc. Phys. 170 (2015), arXiv: 1401.5275 (awarded Karl Schwarzschild Prize)
  • Ciolfi R. & Siegel D. M., 2015, Short gamma-ray bursts from binary neutron star mergers: the time-reversal scenario, Swift: 10 Years of Discovery, Rome, 2014, Proc. Sci. (SWIFT 10)108 (2015), arXiv: 1505.01420
  • Siegel D. M. & Ciolfi R., 2015, Magnetically-induced outflows from binary neutron star merger remnants, Swift: 10 Years of Discovery, Rome, 2014, Proc. Sci. (SWIFT 10)169 (2015), arXiv: 1505.01423
  • Siegel D. M., 2018, Lecture Notes "Theoretical Concepts for Multimessenger Astrophysics", invited lecture series at the ICTP school "The Sound of Space-time: The Dawn of Gravitational Wave Science"
  • Siegel D. M. & Mösta P., 2018, GRMHD_con2prim: a framework for the recovery of primitive variables in general-relativistic magnetohydrodynamics, code publication, Zenodo, doi:10.5281/zenodo.1213306
  • Post-merger evolution and nucleosynthesis in neutron star mergers, invited talk, NASA Theory and Computational Astrophysics Network on Binary Neutron Star Mergers Workshop 2021, Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT), virtual event, July 2021
  • Multimessenger astrophysics and the cosmic origin of heavy elements, invited Theoretical Astroparticle Physics (THAT) seminar, DESY Zeuthen, Germany, June 2021
  • How to synthesize heavy elements: neutron­-star mergers and beyond, invited seminar, University of Victoria Astronomy Research Centre Star Talks seminar series, Victoria, British Columbia, May 2021
  • How strongly gravitating systems create heavy elements, invited presenta­tion, April Meeting of the American Physical Society, April 2021
  • Multi­messenger astrophysics and how the Universe makes heavy elements, invited colloquium, CP3­Origins Seminar, Danish National Research Foun­dation, Nov. 2020
  • Understanding how violent cosmic events create heavy elements, invited contribution to the NASA 2020 Supercomputing Conference, Nov. 2020
  • Igniting weak interactions in neutron-star post-merger accretion disks, invited talk, Theory and Computational Astrophysics Network on Binary Neutron Star Mergers Workshop 2020, Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT), July 2020
  • Multi-messenger astrophysics, invited keynote talk, Winter Nuclear & Particle Physics Conference (WNPPC 2020), Banff, Alberta, February 2020
  • Modeling multi-messenger sources: nucleosynthesis & thermal neutrinos, invited overview talk, Canadian Multi-Messenger Astrophysics Workshop, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, January 2020
  • Heavy elements from short and long gamma-ray bursts, invited keynote talk, Gamma-ray Bursts in the Gravitational Wave Era conference (GRB-GW 2019), Yokohama, Japan, Oct./Nov. 2019
  • Neutron-star merger and collapsar theory, invited talk, R-Process Alliance workshop, MIT, Cambridge, MA, Nov. 2019
  • GW170817: astrophysical results and implications for cosmic nucleosynthesis, invited overview talk at GR22-Amaldi13, Valencia, Spain, July 2019
  • The New Era of Gravitational-Wave Physics and Astrophysics, Invited Program participant, Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics, Santa Barbara, CA, June 2019
  • R-process in merging neutron stars & beyond, invited talk at the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics Conference: "Merging Visions: Exploring Compact-Object Binaries with Gravity and Light", Santa Barbara, CA, June 2019
  • Forging the Universe's gold, invited talk at Theory Canada 14, UBC & TRIUMF, Vancouver, Canada, June 2019
  • Multimessenger astronomy & cosmic nucleosynthesis, invited talk, FOF meeting 2019, Cordoba, Argentina, April 2019
  • Multimessenger astrophysics & cosmic nucleosynthesis, invited talk at GRAV- 19, FAMAF, National University of Cordoba, Argentina, April 2019
  • Cosmic nucleosynthesis: r-process from NS mergers and collapsars, invited talk, Astrophysics with Gravitational-Wave Populations, Aspen Center for Physics, Aspen, CO, Feb. 2019
  • R-process nucleosynthesis in neutron star mergers and collapsars, invited Joint Institute for Nuclear Astrophysics - Center for the Evolution of the Elements (JINA-CEE) Online Seminar, United States, Feb. 2019
  • Multimessenger astrophysics and the cosmic origin of the heavy elements, invited Astrophysics Lunch Seminar, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, Feb. 2019
  • Multimessenger astrophysics and the cosmic origin of the heavy elements, invited colloquium, International Center for Theoretical Physics, Sao Paulo, Brazil, Dec. 2018
  • The cosmic origin of the heavy elements, Einstein Fellows Symposium, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge, MA, Oct. 2018
  • Emergent Trends in Simulating Multimessenger Astrophysics Sources, invited talk at Deep Learning for Multimessenger Astrophysics: Real-time Discovery at Scale, National Center for Supercomputing Applications, Urbana-Champaign, IL, Oct. 2018
  • Neutron star mergers, kilonovae, and the origin of the heavy elements, 14th Rencontres du Vietnam (VHEPU 2018), International Center of Interdisciplinary Science Education (ICISE), Quy Nhon, Vietmam, Aug. 2018
  • GW170817: Implications for the astrophysical site of the r-process, FRIB and the GW170817 kilonova, Facility for Rare Isotope Beams, Michigan State University, East Lansing, United States, July 2018
  • Neutron star mergers, kilonovae, and the cosmic origin of the heavy elements, invited talk, Committee on Space Research of the International Council for Science 42nd Assembly (COSPAR 2018), Pasadena, CA, July 2018
  • The Cosmic Origin of the Heavy Elements: Implications from the Neutron Star Merger GW170817, invited talk, Thirteenth Conference on the Intersections of Particle and Nuclear Physics (CIPANP 2018), Palm Springs, CA, June 2018
  • Modeling neutrino-cooled accretion disks in GRMHD with GRHydro, invited talk, North American Einstein Toolkit Workshop, Georgia Tech, Atlanta, June 2018
  • Neutron star mergers and the cosmic origin of the heavy elements, invited colloquium, Department of Physics, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands, March 2018
  • Invited panelist on kilonovae and neutron star mergers, Physics and Astrophysics at the eXtrme (PAX) workshop, The Pennsylvania State University, College Park, Feb. 2018
  • Neutron star mergers and the cosmic origin of the heavy elements, invited colloquium, Department of Physics, Syracuse University, Syracuse, New York, Feb. 2018
  • The firework of electromagnetic counterparts from GW170817, invited review talk, High Energy Astrophysics Division (HEAD) special session "Multi-messenger Astrophysics from a Neutron Star Merger", 231st Meeting of the American Astronomical Society, Washington D.C., Jan. 2018
  • Neutron star mergers and the cosmic origin of the heavy elements, invited colloquium, Institute for Gravitation and the Cosmos, The Pennsylvania State University, College Park, Jan. 2018
  • Neutron star post-merger simulations: disk winds and the red kilonova from GW170817, invited talk, KITP conference "GW170817: The First Double Neutron Star Merger", Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics, Santa Barbara, California, Dec. 2017
  • Neutron star post-merger simulations and the red kilonova from GW170817, invited talk, The Astrophysics of Neutron Star Mergers meeting, Center for Computational Astrophysics, Flatiron Institute, New York, Nov. 2017
  • Neutrino-cooled accretion disks, GW170817 and its red kilonova, invited TAC seminar, UC Berkeley, Nov. 2017
  • Neutron star post-merger simulations: the origin of kilonovae and the heavy elements, Einstein Fellows Symposium, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge, MA, Oct. 2017
  • GRMHD simulations of remnant accretion disks from neutron star mergers, invited talk, Electromagnetic Signatures of r-process Nucleosynthesis in Neutron Star Binary Mergers conference, Institute for Nuclear Theory program, INT Seattle, Aug. 2017
  • Neutron star mergers and multi-messenger astronomy, invited review talk, Tera Electron Volt Particle Astrophysics 2017 conference (TeVPA 2017), Columbus, Ohio, Aug. 2017
  • Neutron star post-merger simulations, r-process nucleosynthesis and electromagnetic counterparts, invited review talk and invited discussion lead on NS-NS and NS-BH post-merger simulations, eXtreme Matter meets eXtreme Gravity workshop, eXtreme Gravity Institute (XGI), Bozeman, MT, Aug. 2017
  • Remnant accretion disks from neutron star mergers, contributed talk, Microphysics in Computational Relativistic Astrophysics conference 2017 (MICRA 2017), Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan, July 2017
  • Remnant accretion disks from neutron star mergers, invited talk, The Accreting Universe, TDLI workshop, Tsung-Dao Li Institute, Shanghai, China, July 2017
  • R-process nucleosynthesis and electromagnetic emission from NS merger remnants, invited talk, Nuclear Astrophysics in the Gravitational-Wave Astronomy Era conference, European Centre for Theoretical Studies in Nuclear Physics and Related Areas (ECT*), Trento, Italy, June 2017
  • Joint optical and gravitational-wave science, invited discussion panelist, GW-LSST workshop, Columbia University, May 2017
  • Compact binary mergers: electromagnetic counterparts and heavy-element nucleosynthesis, invited colloquium, Physics Department, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, Virginia, April 2017
  • Electromagnetic signatures of compact binary coalescence (CBC) systems, invited talk, The Dawning Era of Gravitational-Wave Astrophysics, Aspen Center for Physics Winter Conference, Feb. 2017
  • Electromagnetic transients from long-lived BNS merger remnants, contributed talk, Astrophysics in the Era of Gravitational Wave and Multimessenger Observations, JSI workshop, Annapolis, Maryland, Nov. 2016
  • Electromagnetic counterparts from long-lived binary neutron star merger remnants, Einstein Fellows Symposium, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge, MA, United States, Oct. 2016
  • Electromagnetic counterparts from long-lived binary neutron star merger remnants, invited talk, Short gamma-ray bursts: from observation to numerical simulations conference (SGRB 2015), University of Trento, Italy, Sep. 2016
  • KITP program Astrophysics from LIGO"s First Black Holes, invited program participant, Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics, Santa Barbara, Aug. 2016
  • Electromagnetic counterparts from long-lived binary neutron star merger remnants, contributed talk, 21st International Conference on General Relativity and Gravitation (GR 21), Columbia University, July 2016
  • "Low"-temperature and "low"-density physics: implementation of the Helmholtz EOS in GRMHD, invited talk, Einstein Toolkit Meeting 2016, University of Trento, Italy, June 2016
  • Electromagnetic counterparts to the gravitational wave signal of compact binary mergers, invited Institute Seminar talk, Physics Department, University of Trento, Italy, June 2016
  • Late-time outflows from binary neutron star mergers: strong X-rays vs r-process kilonovae, invited talk, The r-process nucleosynthesis: connecting FRIB with the cosmos, ICNT workshop, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan, May 2016
  • Electromagnetic counterparts to the gravitational wave signal of compact bi- nary mergers, invited talk, Rapid Response Workshop on Compact Binary Mergers, Center for Theoretical Physics, Columbia University, Feb. 2016
  • PIRSA:18020093, Neutron star mergers and the cosmic origin of the heavy elements, 2018-02-15, Colloquium
  • A `hard' look at models of high energy emission on the face of GW170817, invited talk, Lights, Sounds, Action in Strong Field Gravity workshop, Perimeter Institute For Theoretical Physics, Waterloo, Canada, Nov. 2017