GEOMED is a project of MSCA fellow Dr Matthew Agius supervised by Prof. Claudio Faccenna, Prof. Francesca Funiciello and Prof. Fabio Cammarano, hosted at the Università Degli Studi Roma Tre in Italy.

Scientific team | Università Degli Studi Roma Tre | Laboratory of Experimental Tectonics | Geophysical Laboratory

The scientific team

Matthew Agius
Research Fellow
Agius is a seismologist interested in the structure and evolution of the Earth’s crust, upper mantle and mantle transition zone across different tectonic settings. His research interest includes seismic networks, seismicity and seismic imaging.

Claudio Faccenna
Full Professor
Faccenna is an expert on the tectonics of the Mediterranean, subduction, and mountain building. He is interested in structural geology, laboratory and numerical modelling, seismic data interpretation and paleomagnetism.

Francesca Funiciello
Associate Professor
Funiciello is a solid Earth scientist expert in experimental modelling of geodynamic processes. She is responsible for the LET facility working on experimental tectonics, focusing on dynamics and kinematics of subduction zones, convection of the mantle and material rheology.

Fabio Cammarano
Associate Professor
Cammarano is an expert in interdisciplinary studies based on mineral physics and seismic data. Main interests include continental and oceanic lithosphere, physical properties of the Earth’s mantle, reversal of seismic and gravity data by temperature and composition, and thermodynamic modelling, He is responsible for the Geophysical Laboratory at URT.


Fabrizio Magrini
Ph.D. student
Magrini is a computational seismologist, working on seismic ambient noise cross-correlation and surface-wave attenuation

Giovanni Diaferia
Post doctorate
Diaferia combines seismic data with thermodynamics in order to determine the solid and thermal structure of the lithosphere.


Università Degli Studi Roma Tre

University Roma TRE hosts more than 40,000 students, 12 Departments and 8 Schools. 80-degree courses, 75 Master, 16 doctoral schools and five PhD programs. It is the second-largest university of Rome by enrolment and one of the largest research-based institutions in Italy. The new Department of Science established in 2013 integrates the expertise of a wide range of scientific disciplines – Geology, Biological Sciences, Chemistry, Physics – providing the basis for innovative and interdisciplinary education and research activities. The quality of the available educational package contributes to offering high level undergraduate, postgraduate and master programmes mirroring both scientific and professional needs. The Geology section consists of 21 faculty members, 3 technicians, and 40 post-docs and PhDs. It manages many public (national and international) and private projects and collaborates with more than 100 institutions worldwide.

For more information visit

Laboratory of Experimental Tectonics

The laboratory of Experimental Tectonics (LET), which is hosted within the Department of Sciences, is the first analogical modelling laboratory created in Italy. The basic principle of analogical modelling involves the selection, calibration and use of materials that allow to respect the criteria of geometric-kinematic-dynamic-rheological similarity and reproducing them in laboratory processes having geological dimensions and time scales (see animation on the right).

The laboratory is equipped with state-of-the-art experimental equipment, tools for the characterisation of the physical parameters of the models and tools for registering the models. These include analogue modelling apparatus such as stepping motors, deformation boxes, sand-boxes, and thermo-mechanical apparatus; physical measuring instruments such as rheometer, viscosimeter. densimeter, temperature controllers; and, CCD cameras and 3D laser scanners for accurate deformation measurement.

Over the years, LET has distinguished itself in 4 original research lines aimed at the simulation of:
– crustal-scale deformation
– lithospheric-scale deformation
    (subduction, delamination, post-glacial rebound)
– vulcano tectonics
– modelling of fault cracking and propagation processes.

LET is part of the EPOS network of strategic European infrastructures for Earth Sciences.

For more information visit

Laboratory of Experimental Tectonics

Lateral view of a subduction
analogue model.


Numerical model showing synthetic seismic waves propagating inside a thermal plume.

LiSard: A seismic array of 10+ broadband stations across Sardinia.

Geophysical Laboratory

This laboratory is dedicated to geophysical research at multiple scales and with an interdisciplinary approach. The research involves all steps: acquisition, processing and interpretation of several different geophysical methods. The laboratory is also equipped for the geotechnical characterisation of soils and rocks.

The latest large scale experiment undertaken by the laboratory is LiSard: LIthosphere of SARDinia, a seismological array consisting of 10 broadband seismic stations 10 posthole broadband (120s) sensors have been installed across Sardinia to study the lithosphere beneath. This will improve our knowledge of understanding the Mediterranean geodynamic processes.

In addition to University courses, members of the lab are engaged in promoting science and seismic risk awareness in society.

For more information visit the laboratory page here.

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