My main research areas are astrochemistry, star formation and protoplanetary discs. It is worth highlighting my contribution to the knowledge of the gas chemistry in photodissociation regions with very cited works in the prototypical regions Horsehead, NGC 7023, the Orion Bar and Mon R2. I would like to stand out the detection of S2H in the Horsehead nebula with the IRAM 30m telescope, the first one in the interstellar medium. More recently, I have participated in the first detection of CH3+ in space using the James Webb Space Telecope (JWST). The comprehension of the chemistry of protostars and planet-forming disks is fundamental to disentangle how planets are formed and the origin of life in our planet. I have greatly contributed to the understanding of the sulfur chemistry in molecular clouds, protostars and proto-planetary disks. Indeed, my work have allowed to determine,sulfur depletion in different environments with an uncertainty of less than factor of ~10. My project “The trail of sulfur: from molecular clouds to life” (SUL4LIFE) has been granted by the European Research Council with an Advanced Grant 2022.
I have a large expertise using state-of-the-art ground-based and space facilities (IRAM, ALMA, Herschel, Spitzer, JWST, SKA) working at (sub-)millimeter and infrared wavelengths. In particular, I was heavily involved in the scientific program of the Herschel Space Observatory, being collaborator of three Large Key Programs. I have also participated in several IRAM Large programs, leading the Large Program “Molecular abundances in molecular clouds (GEMS)”. I am member of the Core Team of the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) ERS project, “Radiative feedback from massive stars, as traced by multiband imaging and spectroscopic mosaics” (PDRs4All) and member of the science group “Cradle of Life” of the Square Kilometer Array (SKA).
Several students and post-docs have worked under my supervision. Although all of them have developed individual research lines, we have mantained our collaboration, thus increasing the multi-disciplinary nature of my team. Education and outreach have also been a priority during my career. I has been lecture in the UCM doctoral courses and in several international astrophysical annd astrochemistry schools, organizing myself some of them. I have written two chapters in outreach books for general public, and six outreach books for kids.
I am member of the International Astronomical Union (IAU), European Astronomical Society (EAS), Sociedad Española de Astronomía, and Asociación de Mujeres Investigadoras and Tecnólogas (AMIT).