The RELAB group is composed of an international and multidisciplinary team of professors, researchers, technicians, PhD students and research fellows. More than 30 graduate specialists from various thematic areas work in the following fields: energy, environment, building construction and applied sciences

The group is made up of:

Mario Motta –

Mario Motta, is Associate Professor at the Energy Department of the Politecnico di Milano; he is (has been) a teacher of HVAC systems for low energy buildings and engineering of solar thermal processes.

He graduated in mechanical engineering from the Politecnico di Milano, he holds a master’s degree (MSc) in “Energy Systems and the Environment” from the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow (United Kingdom) in 1996; a doctorate in Technical Physics from the University of Genoa in 2002; a post-doc position, through a “Marie Curie individual fellowshiop” at the Fraunhofer “Institute for Solar Energy systems” in Freiburg (Germany) between 2002 and 2004. His main research interests are: building physics, HVAC systems for low energy buildings, air-assisted air conditioning and refrigeration systems, solar thermal technologies, thermally activated refrigeration technologies, evaluation of the performance of air conditioning systems in real operating conditions , tele-heating and -cooling. Mario Motta was coordinator of the “solar refrigeration” working group of the European solar thermal technology platform (ESTTP); 2001-2004 he was involved in the activities of Task 25 and 38 on “solar air-conditioning and refrigeration” part of the “Solar Heating and Cooling Program” of the international energy agency (IEA-SHC). Mario Motta was a member of the CNES (National Commission for Solar Energy) created in August 2006 by the Italian Ministry of the Environment and Protection of the Territory and Sea, as a consultancy body for regulatory activities. He has been a member of the board and council of the Italian Association for Urban Heating (AIRU). He shared the coordination of the working table on the Decarbonisation of the Italian economy at the Prime Minister’s Office from October 2015 to December 2016, he was part of the working group that oversaw the drafting of the national energy and climate plan (PNIEC) and long term strategy (LTS). He is a member of scientific or steering committees of research institutes or consortia: Poliedra Consortium since 2015, i-STUTE Advisory Board: interdisciplinary center for Storage, Transformation and Upgrading of Thermal Energy (from July 2013 to today). He was a member of the Italian Thermotechnical Committee (CTI) for the 2016-2018 three-year period, as a representative of the Ministry of the Environment for the protection of the territory and the sea. At the Polytechnic of Milan he coordinates the activities of the Energy Commission, an advisory body of the Directorate-General for Energy, which he has been part of since its establishment in 2012. He has been and is a member of the Department of Energy Committee. Mario coordinates a research group of around 30 people, with a stable funding rate of around € 1 million in the last five years. He is partner and coordinator of several national/international projects concluded and underway since 2004. He is co-author of over 60 articles and book chapters.


Marcello Aprile –

Researcher and Adjunct Professor at the Politecnico di Milano Department of Energy, he holds a Master degree in Mechanical Engineering, a Master of Science degree in Solar Engineering and PhD on Energy Engineering achieved at Politecnico di Milano in 2010. His main research interests are: building physics, HVAC systems for low energy houses, solar assisted air-conditioning and refrigeration, solar thermal technologies, thermally driven heat pumps, performance assessment of heating and cooling systems, district heating and cooling. Co-author of about 50 scientific papers. Since 2006, he has been involved in several EU funded and national projects focusing on the integration of energy efficient heating and cooling systems combined by renewable energy sources (PV, solar thermal) in buildings and district heating and cooling networks.


Alberto Mauro –

Graduated in Environmental Engineering at the Politecnico di Milano, he currently works at the Politecnico, Department of Energy where he is responsible of the Relab laboratory for certification, development and testing of heat pumps, chillers and air conditioners.  At the Politecnico he was involved in applied research in the field of solar thermal technology for heating, cooling and refrigeration, hub generation and energy efficiency projects in particular, following the purchase of materials, the management of the works and the start-up of the plants. Previously he worked for 7 years at an engineering company in the field of oil and gas responsible for the environment division.


Alice Denarie –

Alice Dénarié is a building engineer with a PhD in energy. Her research activity is mainly focused on the analysis of district heating and cooling networks (DH&C) and their integration with renewables, with a particular attention to solar thermal systems. During her PhD she has gained expertise in the dynamic simulation of these systems. She has worked on several national and international projects (UNEP, EU, national institutions and DH companies). She is also involved in dissemination and training activities at AIRU, the Italian District Heating Association.


Jacopo Famiglietti –

Civil Engineer from the University of Pisa. He works from almost 10 years in LCA and sustainability field applied to buildings and industrial sectors. He is an expert of LCA modeling and in the development of tools/software and datasets for calculating the environmental impact of products. He is the scientific coordinator of the LIFE TTGG project and project leader of international and national research projects. Author of scientific publications published in international journals and conferences proceedings.


Lorenzo Pistocchini –

Research fellow at the Department of Energy of Politecnico di Milano since 2008, after some years’ experience in the metalworking industry and international cooperation. He holds a Master degree in Mechanical Engineering (Polimi, 1999), a Master of Science degree in Renewable Energy Systems Technology (Loughborough University, 2007) and a PhD on Energy Engineering (Polimi, 2015). His research has been on thermally driven air conditioning and concentrated solar power, and is presently focused on the development of Gas Absorption Heat Pumps for domestic heating.

Rossano Scoccia

Building engineer and PhD in energy and nuclear science from Politecnico di Milano. He works from more than 10 years in the HVAC and RES sectors. He is an expert of dynamic energy simulations. He is work package leader of the Heat4Cool H2020 project and project leader of international and national research and innovation project. He was teaching assistant of many university courses dealing with building services and he is adjunct professor of Building Services Energy modelling course at Politecnico di Milano.



Tommaso Toppi –

Researcher and Adjunct Professor of Thermodynamics and Heat Transfer at the Department of Energy of Politecnico di Milano, he holds a Master degree in Energy Engineering, a Master of Science degree in Energy Efficiency, Decentralized and Renewable Energy Generation and a PhD in Energy Engineering achieved at Politecnico di Milano in 2011. His main research interest is renewable heating and cooling in buildings, with a focus on sorption technologies. He coordinates the research at the ReLAB laboratory and, since 2011, he has been involved in national and international projects focusing on the development and performances assessment of efficient and renewable heating and cooling systems.


Patrizia Melograno –

Management engineer with energy specialization and PhD in “Environmental and Energy Technology” at University of Studies of Bergamo. Presently she is the responsible for the accredited tests and for the quality management at RELAB, the accredited laboratory of Politecnico di Milano operating in HVAC sector. Thanks to the experience acquired through the years, she is an expert in the performance assessment of electrically and thermally driven heat pumps and HVAC systems according to the current reference standards, for which she is in the technical committees for their reviewing, and according to the main certification programs.  She is currently involved in international projects focusing on seasonal performances of the new generation heating and cooling systems, trough stationary and dynamic test procedures, and on the interaction between their performances in terms of internal comfort and produced noise.



Roberto Fumagalli –

Graduated in building engineering, he carried out his first job in the acoustics laboratory in 2006-2007 for a psychoacoustics project for household appliances. In 2008-2009 he works outside Politecnico for a service study, dealing with environmental acoustics, building acoustics, noise and vibration risk assessments, becoming a “technician competent in environmental acoustics”. From 2010 he takes care of the measurement activities at the acoustics laboratory of the Energy Department. From the end of 2017 he joined the ReLAB staff, taking care of the test activities as a test technician and responsible for the acoustic tests.



Giorgio Villa –

Energy engineer and PhD student in Energy and Nuclear Science and Technology at Politecnico di Milano.

His collaboration with RELAB research group started with the Master of Science thesis about energy and economic evaluation of absorption heat pumps for residential applications. The topic of the PhD is the developing of a fuel driven heat pump for residential applications. He is teaching assistant of Thermodynamic and Heat transfer course.


Ettore Zanetti –

Energy engineer and PhD student in energy and nuclear sciences at Politecnico di Milano. He is working on several projects involving HVAC systems modelling and control optimization. The topic of the PhD is Model Predictive Control for building management systems. He is teaching assistant of the master in Energy engineering class “Solar Thermal Processes”.



Fabrizio Fattori –

Graduated in Environmental Engineering, he holds a Ph.D. in Energy System Modeling achieved at the University of Pavia. As Post Doc in the same institute, the main focus of his research was on including short-term dynamics into long-term models in order to study scenarios with high penetrations of electric vehicles and photovoltaic. He is the main author of MELiSsa, NEMeSI and Hot_Spot models, built for energy system planning at national and subnational scale. Since 2023 he is researcher at Università dell’Insubria, where he mainly works on modelling the Italian energy system in future scenarios. He has a collaboration with the RELAB Group since 2018.



Giulia Spirito –

Energy engineer, Giulia started collaborating with the RELab group in 2020 thanks to her MSc thesis about the assessment of district heating potential in Milan, with a focus on renewable energy integration and excess heat recovery.
As a research fellow she was involved in several projects on the evaluation of technical and economic potential of low-temperature district heating, through the analysis and the geolocation of renewable and excess heat sources to be matched with heat demands and through the modeling of distribution networks. To this end she manages geo-referenced data through GIS software and Python, from the local level to the national scale.
She is now a PhD student in Energy and Nuclear Science and Technology at Politecnico di Milano.



Rossella Alesci –

Research fellow at the Department of Energy of Politecnico di Milano, she has graduated in Building Engineering in 2020. She started to collaborate with the RELAB group thanks to her master thesis, related to the definition and validation of a thermal zone model in Modelica language. At the moment she works on the development and validation of building and plant systems models able to perform dynamic simulations, in Modelica language.



 Francesco Mezzera –

Francesco graduated in Energy Engineering in 2020 at Politecnico di Milano. He started his collaboration with the RELAB Group with his master’s thesis work on the development of a model of the Italian energy system with a high detail level on the hydrogen supply chain, in order to evaluate its role in decarbonisation scenarios. Currently his research interests concern the study of new technologies for the production, storage, transportation and use of hydrogen and their application in the context of the simulation of future Italian energy system. In September 2021 he obtained the qualification to the engineering profession.



Marianna Pozzi –

Marianna Pozzi graduated in 2020 in Energy Engineering at Politecnico di Milano. Her collaboration with RELAB group started with the master’s thesis work on the georeferenced estimation of heating demand and on the simulation of retrofit scenarios for the city of Milan starting from open data. In September 2021 she obtained the qualification to the engineering profession. From November 2021 she is a PhD candidate in Energy and Nuclear Science and Technology. Her research project focuses on the spatio-temporal detailed modelling of heat demand in civil sector buildings, from the local level to the national scale, in order to evaluate synergic investments in power and heat sector in decarbonisation scenarios.



Lorenzo Cassetti –

Lorenzo Cassetti obtained his master’s degree in Energy Engineering at Politecnico di Milano in 2020. He began his collaboration with the RELAB group in November 2021, as part of the national PhD project in Sustainable Development and Climate Change. His research is focused on the role of spatial resolution in modeling energy systems, with particular attention to decarbonization scenarios.



Giuseppe Muliere –

Graduated in Physics at the University of Pavia, he holds a PhD in energy planning at a local scale. From 2010 to 2013 he collaborated with the Department of Electrical Engineering of the University of Pavia focusing his research work on energy planning. Since 2005 he has worked as an environmental specialist at the Province of Pavia public administration, where, from 2014 to 2021, he held the position of head of the IPPC office. He joined the RELAB group in 2021 as a research fellow in the field of model development for the simulation of the energy system with investment optimization.



Nicola Cesare Di Nunzio –

Graduated in Energy Engineering in May 2021 at Politecnico di Milano. He started his collaboration with the ReLab Group with his master’s thesis work on the use of simplified models for the simulation of the building-heating system refurbsihment process . His current research interest concerns the simplified modeling of complex building and heating systems integrated within district heating networks in decarbonisation scenarios.



Hashem Amini Toosi –

A Ph.D. candidate at the ABC Department and a research fellow at the Energy Department of Politecnico di Milano. His main research focus is to develop integrated optimization models to implement life cycle sustainability assessment in building and energy retrofit design. Within his Ph.D. research, he worked on parametric building energy and life cycle modeling, multi-objective optimization, machine learning methods, and decision-making models in energy-efficient and zero-emission building design. He collaborates with RELAB within the research projects in LCA and data science to evaluate the environmental footprint of energy systems, buildings, and cities.



Kevin Autelitano –

Graduated in Building and Architectural Engineering at Politecnico di Milano in April 2021, with a thesis about the application of drone-mounted video and thermal cameras for monitoring and diagnostics of buildings. He is currently Research Fellow in ReLab, focusing his activity on data collection and process for tools development, LCA indicators and environmental footprint analysis in energy systems and construction technologies.



Alejandro Josè Di Cicco –

Alejandro Josè Di Cicco obtained his Master’s Degree in Energy Engineering from the Politecnico di Milano on December 2021. His collaboration with the RELAB group began thanks to his thesis on the modelling and characterization of a falling-film evaporator for adsorption refrigeration cycles. Currently, he continues with the RELAB group as research fellow, and his work is focused on the study and modelling of adsorption cycles.



Esraa Elmaddah

Esraa Elmaddah obtained her master degree in renewable energy in 2019 upon receiving the scholarship award of New Zealand Development Scholarships at Auckland University of Technology. After her masters’, she has been working in the consultancy field for many projects in Egypt and the African region including energy efficiency and management and renewable energy projects. She was part of “Climate and Energy Policies Advocacy of Youth in the Arab World program” by Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung Jordan for two years. In December 2022, she started the national doctorate program in Sustainable Development and Climate Change on a collaboration project between CARISMA Research Group at IUSS Pavia and RELAB. The project’s goal is to assess the impact of climate change on the Italian energy system.



Matteo Catania –

Graduated with a degree in Energy Engineering from the Polytechnic University of Milan in December 2021 with a thesis focused on the techno-economic analysis of hydrogen and biofuel production plants. He started collaborating with the RELAB group in June 2022, focusing on the development and expansion of models for integrated energy system analysis, with a focus on the role of hydrogen as an intermediate vector of integration, evaluating possible alternatives for improving the Italian national energy system in the horizon of total decarbonization by 2050.



Giulia Novati –

Giulia Novati graduated in Energy Engineering in 2020. Her collaboration with the RELBA group began with her master thesis, aimed at identifying possible decarbonization paths for the main Italian industrial sectors, with the development of long-term scenarios. She then deepened the theme of industrial decarbonization working as a researcher within the ECCO think tank. Since December 2022, she has started the national doctorate in Sustainable Development and Climate Change of the IUSS-Pavia, with the aim of improving the knowledge about the possible path for the decarbonization of industry and understanding the implications on the national energy system.



Gianluca Abrami –

Graduated in Energy Engineering from Politecnico di Milano in April 2022, he began working with the RELAB group in March 2021 as part of the master’s thesis project developed in cooperation with Chalmers University in Gothenburg (Sweden). The subject of the thesis was the integration of a hybrid absorption-compression heat pump into the district heating network in Goteborg in order to recover the waste heat produced by a CO2 capture plant. To date, he is a research fellow in the RELAB group. He works mainly as support for the European project PUSH2HEAT, concerning the development and application of high-temperature heat pumps for waste heat recovery from industrial plants.



Pier Paolo Figiaconi –

Energy engineer and PhD student in Energy and Nuclear Sciences and Technologies at Politecnico di Milano. His collaboration with the RELAB research group started with his master’s thesis concerning the modelling of a phase change thermal storage coupled with a heat pump and photovoltaic system to assess the increase in self-consumption. His research is now focused on the development of small-scale heat pumps coupled with PCM storage for residential applications.