“I believe in extraterrestrials. Numbers and the Eternal Father? I am loyal to both of them »- Corriere.it

From Elvira is the best

The scientist, the “comet lady”, said: “I was hungry when I was little, I don’t forget. Am I in politics? It’s better for everyone to do their job.” The Secret to Success: “Believe and Be Good”


Does the comet bring bad luck?

“No. A comet is a gift that the universe gives us: every moment it sends something to illuminate our sky. If anything, they bring luck, a big deal for me.”

Which star name did you first learn?

“Aldebaran, the constellation of Taurus. The name surprised me as a child. On the other hand, the brightest star I never get tired of looking at is Sirius. It’s easy to spot: if you follow the Orion Belt, go further to the left, you The first great star to find is Sirius 7.

Amalia Ercoli Finji glows like a celestial object in her own light that she has loved to see since childhood, when she looked out of the porch of the house, she shared with her beloved sister Elvina a room smaller than her brother’s in the gallery. Angelo is privileged because he is male, but big enough to develop the curiosity, determination and talent that has made him the “Lady of the Comet”. On April 20, he is 85 years old (good luck!).

A reminder of “his” war.

“Bombings. They were horrible. When a bomber was seen, a siren sounded, but you have to wait for the next one to make sure an attack is going on. In that short space of time we were all silent with our hearts around our necks.

In those years he learned to admire Strega Liqueur.

“It was very valuable! It was used to confuse the border guards when a small door was opened for them to flee to Switzerland. When we were displaced in Cantello, my father helped many to escape. They had a very difficult year.”

Then the war ended.

“I was in second grade on April 25, 1945. At 10 o’clock the bell rang and the teachers sent us home unconscious which still shakes me today. I went home holding hands with my brother, at which point the tanks entered the gallery. Yes: One day a truck with two murdered fascists went under my window ….

What does liberation mean to you?

“To start life again, to eat. When I see someone who is either dieting or moving food on a plate, I don’t understand: I have to clean the plate, because hunger, especially for children, is really something against nature.”

What was your favorite fairy tale?

Cinderella I didn’t like it at all, I didn’t believe in fairy tales. Rather I liked him very much Cats with boots. Shoes were a very valuable commodity in those days.

The shoe remains his weakness.

“Yeah, first of all, because my legs are so short, 34 are missing. I can jokingly say that I used to use high heels because I get up a little bit and then I have beautiful ankles:” Like a gazelle, “said one fan. With a heel of one foot 34 and 12, I walked to the point.

She was the first woman to graduate in aeronautical engineering in Italy. How did he manage to overcome family resistance?

“For two reasons. One, the character: I believed it. The other, because I was good: In 1956 I was the most beautiful high school diploma in Italy, complete with a letter from the Minister of Education Paolo Rossi. When I was admitted to the Polytechnic, my father made a mistake in choosing me. I was studying for emotion. And I read a lot.

Favorite book?

Brave captain
, I know in my heart! There are adventures, seas, many human aspects. This is a great book: it has taught me friendship, solidarity, justice, honesty, loyalty.

How did your passion for mathematics come about?

“It simply came to our notice then. Mathematics is nice because it is a universal language: 2 plus 2 equals 4 for us and 4 for Japanese. There is a moment when you get results in mathematics which is like an illusion: you have reached the truth.

And why aeronautical engineering?

“When I finished my two-year training period, I had to choose what to do next and I realized what my path was: something ahead. The Air Force was the best then. The hardest moment, with all the fuel, I keep quiet and count, one thousand one, one thousand two, one thousand and three, until it goes up. “

But alas, why is it a thousand times?

“Every word is equal to one second. And since I know how long the runway is, I know how long it takes for the plane to reach and pull.”

He has built a brilliant career with five children. How did he do it when they were little?

“I held them in my arms and luckily they slept through the night. They are about the same age. Sometimes I would hang my legs on the table and feed them with one spoon after another. I ate thousands of apples and ate so many peels that he had no idea. ‘

Where was October 4, 1957?

“In the university, in the second year, in the class. Someone is saying that the Russians have launched a satellite into space. I heard the by-beep very well on the radio. The Russians, along with Sputnik, defeated the Americans before the end of the International Geophysical Year.

What about 12 November 2014?

At the European Center for Space Operations, ESOC, in Darmstadt, Germany. The Philae Lander finally landed on comet Churiyumov-Gerasimenko. We toasted. But after half an hour, the idea spread that something was wrong. Instead, another hour and a half later, the speaker informed us that the lander had come down a second time after jumping.

He was in charge of ESA’s Rosetta Mission. And he designed the drill that dug the comet 510 million kilometers from Earth.

“Before leaving Phil, I sat in a corner and began to pray: Lord, we have done everything we can, now it’s your turn.”

How do you reconcile faith with science?

“Very well! Because they are two different worlds: science is the world of reason and experiment, faith is the world of the supernatural. In my case, faith is a form of humility: do not think that we know everything, but say that a good God protects us. What if I die? I don’t know, there’s no telescope to look out of. But when I go there, and considering my age, I have a lot of questions.

Do you believe in outsiders?

“Of course! I’m not saying UFOs with antennas, but statistically there are other forms of life. Consider the billions of galaxies, billions of stars, billions upon billions of planets in the universe … Do you want there to be no other life? The problem is another: to our knowledge. Also, especially in physics, which limits our speed of light, we will never be able to communicate with one of these intelligent civilizations, because they are so far away. “

He was the director of the aerospace engineering department at the Polytechnico de Milano.

“It’s a very difficult time. The department council is made up of men only and I put them all against them for my” famous innovative idea “that” only one woman can come close “.

An example?

“I bought a small two-seater, however, with the rest of the research funds and discounts. I remember the laughter when I first proposed: “Such an idea can only come to Amalia!”. But for space I asked the students to build a satellite on which many degree theses were built. We had nothing in the air force, when I wanted the boys to understand why you pull the yoke and the plane comes up.

How did it turn out?

“I asked a friend of mine to bring it back after some departmental advice. And, coincidentally, they said to him: “What a wonderful idea!” .

You have won many national and international awards, which one do you like the most?

“Probably Milano Dona, because I feel like a citizen of the world, but Lombard and Milanese. A woman who works on thought.

Have they ever told you to go into politics?

“Once upon a time, at Trezzano sul Naviglio. And Dandini put me on the list of women for Quirinal. I thank you, but I was denied. Politics requires preparation and qualification: it is better for everyone to do their job.”

Glad to hear that Prime Minister Draghi is encouraging women in science?

“People who respect their wives or partners say it,” said Draghi.

She has a “golden” husband.

“The qualities that fascinated me in Finji were intelligence, kindness, loyalty, and he was a handsome young man. August 6 marks the 70th anniversary of our marriage. And do you know the litmus test to see if the person is right? ‘

Tell me now!

“It must be like the wind, you don’t even notice its existence when it’s there, but you die when it’s not there. And then you realize it’s right if you want your children to have faults.”

He has four sons and one daughter, Elvina. We just want to spend some words for the woman, her undisputed knock?

“Ah, I got him whenever I wanted. So much so that starting from the second I always prepared a pink layout. I remember the absolute happiness when the midwife grabbed her by the legs and said she was a woman. Elvina has a bad character, as bad as I am, but there’s that red thread that we women, mothers and not, have to do with care, generosity ….

Do you consider yourself a happy woman?

“Yeah Al that sounds pretty crap to me, Looks like Al that sounds crap to me, Looks like Al that sounds crap to me, Looks like Al that sounds crap to me, Looks like Al that sounds crap to me, Looks like Al that sounds crap to me, Looks like Al that sounds crap to me, Looks like Al that sounds crap to me, Looks like Al that sounds crap to me We don’t always stay together, but in the end he decides.

April 24, 2022 (change April 24, 2022 | 07:15)

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