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NASA Announces Astronomy and Astrophysics Fellows for 2016

For Release: March 25, 2016

NASA


NASA has selected 36 fellows for its prestigious Einstein, Hubble, and Sagan Fellowships. Each post-doctoral fellowship provides three years of support to awardees to pursue independent research in astronomy and astrophysics. The new fellows will begin their programs in the fall of 2016 at a host university or research center of their choosing in the United States.

"The selected fellows are some of the brightest, rising stars in the field of astronomy and astrophysics," said Paul Hertz, director of Astrophysics at NASA Headquarters, Washington. "We look forward to the exciting discoveries they make that further our understanding of the universe."

Participants in the Einstein Fellows program conduct research broadly related to the mission of NASA's Physics of the Cosmos (PCOS) Program, which aims to expand our knowledge of the origin, evolution, and fate of the universe. The PCOS Program consists of a suite of operating science missions and possible future missions that focus on specific aspects of these questions.

"We are very pleased to welcome this talented group of young scientists as the incoming Einstein Fellows," said Belinda Wilkes, Director of the Chandra X-ray Center at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory that manages the Einstein Fellows program for NASA. "Their research will advance the quest to better understand the physics of the cosmos in a variety of directions."

The 13 new Einstein Fellows in alphabetical order and their host institutions are:

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  • Iair Arcavi, University of California, Santa Barbara
  • Lia Corrales, University of Wisconsin, Madison
  • Eric Coughlin, University of California, Berkeley
  • Daniel D'Orazio, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts
  • Davide Gerosa, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena
  • Michael Johnson, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge, Massachusetts
  • Boris Leistedt, New York University, New York
  • Morgan MacLeod, Princeton University, New Jersey
  • Dheeraj Pasham, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge
  • Anna Patej, University of Arizona, Tucson
  • Blake Sherwin, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, California
  • Daniel Siegel, Columbia University, New York
  • Daniel Wilkins, Stanford University, Palo Alto, California

Participants in the Hubble Fellowship program conduct research broadly related to the mission of NASA's Cosmic Origins (COR) Program, which aims to examine the origins of galaxies, stars, and planetary systems, and the evolution of these structures with cosmic time. The COR Program consists of a suite of operating science missions and possible future missions that focus on specific aspects of these questions.

"Hubble Fellows are the future leaders of our field, and these prestigious fellowships give them a wonderful opportunity to grow professionally and establish their credentials. This impressive class of Fellows will surely make major contributions to astronomical research for years to come. Congratulations to all of them," said Ken Sembach, STScI director.

The 17 new Hubble Fellows are listed below in alphabetical order with their host institutions:

  • Brendan Bowler, University of Texas at Austin
  • Zheng Cai, UCO/Lick Observatory, University of California
  • Emmanouil Chatzopoulos, University of Arizona, Tucson
  • Diana Dragomir, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge
  • Maria Drout, Carnegie Observatories
  • Jean-Baptiste Fouvry, Institute of Advanced Study, Princeton
  • Sean Johnson, Princeton University, New Jersey
  • Michael McCourt, University of California, Santa Barbara
  • Anne Medling, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena
  • Maxwell Millar-Blanchaer, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California
  • Marcel Sven Pawlowski, University of California, Irvine
  • Paola Pinilla, University of Arizona, Tucson
  • Sarah Sadavoy, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge, Massachusetts
  • Josiah Schwab, University of California, Santa Cruz
  • Daniel Scolnic, University of Chicago, Illinois
  • Paul Torrey, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge
  • Jennifer Yee, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts

The Sagan Fellowship, created in September 2008, supports 6 scientists whose research is aligned with NASA's Exoplanet Exploration Program. The primary goal of this program is to discover and characterize planetary systems and Earth-like planets around other stars.

“The 2016 Class of Sagan Fellows covers almost all aspects of exoplanet research: from the theory and observation of forming planets and the study of exoplanet atmospheres, to the architecture of planetary systems and the search for habitable exo-Earths. With their innovative ideas, technical skills and leadership abilities, these young scientists will expand the frontiers of the exciting field of astrophysics,” said Charles Beichman, executive director of the NASA Exoplanet Science Institute at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.

The six 2016 Sagan Fellows are listed below with their host institutions:

  • Katherine Follette, Stanford University, Palo Alto, California
  • Jeffrey Fung, University of California, Berkeley
  • Samuel Halvorsen, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia
  • Kento Masuda, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge
  • Benjamin Montet, University of Chicago, Illinois
  • Caroline Morley, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts

The Chandra X-ray Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts, administers the Einstein Fellowships for NASA. NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, manages the Chandra program for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington, D.C. The Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory in Cambridge, Massachusetts, controls Chandra's science and flight operations. The Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) in Baltimore, Maryland, administers the Hubble Fellowships for NASA. STScI is the science operations center for the Hubble Space Telescope and the science and mission operations center for the James Webb Space Telescope, scheduled for launch in 2018. STScI is operated for NASA by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, in Washington, D.C. The NASA Exoplanet Science Institute, which is operated at the California Institute of Technology in coordination with NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, administers the Sagan Fellowship Program.

A full list of the 2016 fellows and other information about these programs is available at:

http://cxc.harvard.edu/fellows/fellowslist.html
http://www.stsci.edu/institute/smo/fellowships/hubble/fellows-list/
http://nexsci.caltech.edu/sagan/2016postdocRecipients.shtml

For more information about NASA's Astrophysics Division, visit: http://nasascience.nasa.gov/astrophysics

Media contacts:
Felicia Chou
NASA Headquarters, Washington
202-358-0257
felicia.chou@nasa.gov

Megan Watzke
Chandra X-ray Center, Cambridge, Mass.
617-496-7998
mwatzke@cfa.harvard.edu

Cheryl Gundye
Space Telescope Science Institute, Baltimore, Maryland
410-338-4707
gundy@stsci.edu

Elena Mejia
Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California
818-393-5467
elena.mejia@jpl.nasa.gov