Neutron stars and black holes in the Galaxy often present themselves in binary systems with low mass or high mass companion stars. Dr. Rea’s studies are centered on the X-ray emission of such objects, which is believed to be due to accretion of matter from the normal star to the compact object. These systems are perfect places where to test out theory of matter under extreme gravitational conditions. In addition, her research is also aimed at unveiling the emission properties of matter embedded in magnetic field close or stronger than the electron critical magnetic field of about 4x1013 Gauss, at which the cyclotron energy of an electron reaches the electron rest mass energy.
She is also an active member of the LOFT collaboration and the Fermi-LAT collaboration.