Experimental and Observational Astrophysics and Cosmology

Particle physics

Viewing the formation and evolution of stars, galaxies, and the cosmos. Galaxy clusters, cosmic microwave background radiation, ultra high-energy sources, large scale structure in the universe and cosmic evolution.

Current research in observational astrophysics and cosmology at Stanford covers a wide range of approaches to tackling the most important frontiers. Major topics include direct detection of dark matter, probes of dark energy (via gravitational lensing, surveys of galaxy clusters and supernovae), sources of gamma rays (pulsars, blazars, supernova remnants, dark matter annihilation or decay), the structure of clusters of galaxies and their use as probes of cosmology, the development of next generation detectors of photons (radio through gamma-ray), the origins of solar variability on a wide range of time scales, and experiments in gravitation (detection of gravitational waves, probes of gravity at short distance scales).

Major experiments and  facilities include the LUX-ZEPLIN experiment (direct detection of dark matter), the Cryogenic Dark Matter Detector (direct detection of dark matter), the Fermi Large Area Telescope (gamma-rays), NuSTAR (x-rays), the Dark Energy Survey DES (probes of dark energy), the Solar Dynamics Observatory SDO and the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory SOHO (solar space missions), and the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory LIGO. Future facilities include the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST, observing half the sky deeply every three days).

The Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology, housed in the the Fred Kavli Building at SLAC and the Physics & Astrophysics Building and the Varian Physics Laboratories on campus, hosts much of the research in astrophysics and cosmology at Stanford and SLAC. Scientists meet through twice-weekly Tea Talks, a weekly Cosmology Seminar and a weekly Astrophysics Colloquium. Seminars are also hosted by the Stanford Solar Observatories Group and the Hansen Experimental Physics Laboratory.

Related Faculty

Professor of Physics and of Particle Physics and Astrophysics
Stanley G. Wojcicki Professor
Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education, Freeman-Thornton Chair for the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education and Professor of Physics
Provost, Emerita, James and Anna Marie Spilker Professor, Professor of Materials Science and Engineering and of Physics
Director, Hansen Experimental Physics Laboratory (HEPL), Professor of Physics, of Particle Physics and Astrophysics and of Photon Science
Cassius Lamb Kirk Professor of Natural Sciences and Professor of Particle Physics and Astrophysics, Emeritus
Professor of Physics and of Particle Physics and Astrophysics
Professor Macintosh has taken the position of Director of University of California Observatories at UC Santa Cruz and is currently on a 0% appointment at Stanford.
Luke Blossom Professor in the School of Humanities and Sciences
Professor of Particle Physics and Astrophysics and of Physics
Professor (Research) of Physics, Emeritus

Related News

Roger Romani

Source: Washington Post

“The IXPE data gives us the first map of the magnetic field in the…

Nicholas  Rapidis

Since the 1960s there has been plenty of evidence to support the existence of dark matter…

The Stanford researchers involved in the SALSA study are thrilled with their fascinating findings and the cake awaiting them after the photo shoot. Top (l to r)...

Magnetic fields are common throughout the universe but incredibly challenging to study. They don…

Illustration by Sandbox Studio, Chicago with Olena Shmahalo

While the cosmic-backlight approach should work well for mapping matter at the edges of galaxies…

This is a long-exposure image from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope of massive galaxy cluster Abell 2744. It shows some of the faintest and youngest galaxies...

Stanford physics graduate student Elise Darragh-Ford and her colleagues examined computer-…

Attendees at the KIPAC 20th Anniversary Community Day festival will observe the sun through telescopes and sun-spotters. (Image credit: Jacqueline Ramseyer...

This year, the Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology (KIPAC) is celebrating…

Related Events

Stanford Student Observatory

Linda Cicero

Astronomy Lecture - Supermassive Black Holes

Date: -

Did you know there's a…