Dr. Dmitry Semenov  
Max Planck Institute for Astronomy
Koenigstuhl 17
D-69117 Heidelberg, Germany
Staff member since 2012
Office: 218
Phone: +49 (0) 6221 528 354
Fax: +49 (0) 6221 528 246
E-Mail: semenov AT mpia.de
Datenschutzerklaerung / Data protection declaration
About me:
I'm an astrophysicist and astrochemist, and currently a staff member at the Max Planck Institute of Astronomy in Heidelberg, Germany. I'm also a Guest Researcher at the Organic Chemistry Department of the Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich. Day by day I sit a front of my laptop and peer into the display, trying to unravel mysteries of formation of our solar system and other extrasolar systems, as well as origin of prebiotic molecules in space and life on Earth. Major questions that I thrive to answer, using both theoretical predictions and observations at IR/radio frequencies, are 1) how and which simple and complex organic molecules can be synthesized in space, particularly, at the verge of planet formation process, 2) analysis and interpretation of molecular emission lines from various cosmic objects, 3) predictions of what we may learn about planet-forming disks with new generation telescopes, such as Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), NOEMA Interferometer, and the newest James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), and 4) the dawn of complex organic chemistry leading to the synthesis of crucial prebiotic compounds in cosmic bodies and in the early Earth's atmosphere and on it's surface.

For that, I've developed a range of advanced numerical models and tools, including a widely-used gas-grain astrochemistry code "ALCHEMIC" and a number of chemistry analysis and visualization tools written in IDL and Python. In addition to numerical codes, I've developed a number of chemical networks suitable for simulations of chemical evolution, including deuterium isotopic fractionation, in various astrophysical environments. Naturally, I couldn't have accomplish all of this without enormous help from our PhD students, which I supervise on a regular basis. Since 2012, I've begin giving lectures at the Heidelberg University, mainly on astrochemistry and molecular astrophysics (together with PD Dr. Holger Kreckel (MPIK) and, since 2023, with Giulia Perotti (MPIA). Below on my page you can find all the relevant information about my scientific life, publication record, PDFs of the lectures, codes, etc.

- Chemical Evolution of the Solar Nebula, Protoplanetary Disks, and Star-formation Regions
- Isotopic Fractionation and Grain Surface Processes
- Interferometric and Single-dish Observations at (Sub-)millimeter Wavelengths
- Organic Synthesis, Origin of Life, Molecular Evolution
Large collaborations and programmes:
- Key Co-I in the large program "From Protostars to Planet-Forming Disks" (PRODIGE), one of the four MPG-IRAM Observatory Programs. The aim of PRODIGE is to study evolution of properties of physics and chemistry in low-mass protostars and T Tauri protoplanetary disks
- Co-PI in the "Chemistry in Disks" (CID) international consortium to study physics and chemistry of protoplanetary disks
- Co-PI in the PdBI large programme "Fragmentation and disk formation during high-mass star formation"
Cirriculum Vitae (1 page)
List of publications on NASA ADS (as of Jan 2024)
PhD thesis: "Dust and gas in protoplanetary discs"
Lectures (online materials)
ALCHEMIC chemical code
Benchmark of detailed gas-grain chemical models for protoplanetary disks
Opacities for protoplanetary disks
Heidelberg-Jena-Saint-Petersburg Database of Optical Constants
Fractional ionization in protoplanetary disks
Laboratory Astrochemical Surface Science in Europe
Useful links

Responsible: Dmitry Semenov
Last updated: January 2024