David Spergel




I am a theoretical astrophysicist. My interests range from the search for planets around nearby stars to the shape of the universe.

Over the last decade, the WMAP Satellite has been the main focus of my research. WMAP was successfully launched on June 30, 2001. The results from WMAP are described in a series of papers. The WMAP 2003 and 2006 parameters papers are currently the 4th and 10th most cited paper in the entire SPIRES catalog and the two most cited papers in physics published this millenium. Our seven year results paper is the most cited paper published in 2011 in physics and strophysics.

See this interview for a brief description of the WMAP results and see Mike Lemonick's book for the story of the WMAP satellite. My next major CMB project is the Atacama Cosmology Telescope (ACT) and supporting observations through the Southern Cosmology Surveys, an international collaboration.

I am involved in several large space and ground-based collaborations that are developing new technologies for cosmology and exoplanet science:

Princeton University TPF group new technologies that should hopefully enable the direct imaging of earth-like planets.

Cochair, Science Definition Team or the WFIRST mission, a mission that aims to understand dark energy, explore the growth of structures and galaxies, and search for extrasolar planets.

I am also part of the Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe (IPMU).

More info: http://www.astro.princeton.edu/~dns/

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Oct 31st 2016

Are we alone? This course introduces core concepts in astronomy, biology, and planetary science that enable the student to speculate scientifically about this profound question and invent their own solar systems.

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