Astrophysics Experimentalist

Steven Kahn

Dean of Mathematical & Physical Sciences, Professor of Physics, Professor of Astronomy
Steven M. Kahn is a Professor of Physics and Astronomy. He previously served on the faculty in these departments from 1984-98, but returned to Berkeley in 2022 to take up the position of Dean of Mathematical and Physical Sciences. Kahn received his A.B. (summa cum laude) from Columbia in 1975 and his Ph.D. in physics at Berkeley in 1980. In addition to Berkeley, he has served on the faculties of Columbia, where he was the I.I. Rabi Professor of Physics, and at Stanford, where he was the Cassius Lamb Kirk Professor in the Natural Sciences. Kahn is an experimental astrophysicist and cosmologist...

Stuart Bale Awarded AGU Fellowship

September 26, 2022

Stuart Bale in the lab

Berkeley Physics is delighted to announce that Professor Stuart Bale is among the 2022 Class of AGU Fellows.

The American Geophysical Union (AGU) recognizes each awardee for their remarkable innovation and/or sustained scientific impact, as well as their efforts in fostering...

Herbert Steiner

Professor Emeritus

Herbert Steiner received his B.S. in Engineering Physics in 1951 and his Ph.D. in Physics in January 1956, both from the University of California, Berkeley. From 1956 to 1960 he was a research physicist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and a lecturer in the Berkeley Department of Physics. After a year as a Guggenheim and Ford Foundation Fellow at CERN in Geneva, Switzerland he joined the Berkeley Physics faculty in 1961. He served as chairman of the Physics Department from 1992 to 1995. He is a fellow of the American Physical Society and the recipient of an Alexander von...

Adrian Lee


Adrian Lee joined the faculty in July 2000. He received his B.A. in physics from Columbia University in 1986 and his Ph.D. from Stanford University in 1993. At Stanford, he worked with Blas Cabrera on the early development of an experiment to detect non-baryonic dark matter. Following graduate school, Lee became a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford Medical School, where he worked on mapping functions in the human brain using magnetic resonance imaging. Subsequently, from 1994 to 2000, he did postdoctoral work at U.C. Berkeley with Paul Richards measuring spatial anisotropy in the 2.7 K cosmic...

William Holzapfel


I was born March 15, 1965 in Pittsburgh PA. After surviving an early program of experimentation with motorcycles and explosives, I went on to receive a B.A. in physics from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1987. My graduate studies were completed in 1996 with a Ph.D. in physics from Berkeley. I was then a Fermi-McCormick fellow at the University of Chicago until I joined the faculty in 1998.

Research Interests

My primary research interests are in the measurement and interpretation of anisotropies of the cosmic microwave background (CMB). Primary anisotropies of the CMB provide a...

Raffaella Margutti

Associate Professor, Marc and Cristina Bensadoun Professor of Physics

Raffaella Margutti received her undergraduate degree in Astrophysics in 2006 (magna cum laude), and her PhD in Physics and Astronomy from the University of Milano Bicocca in 2010. Margutti is a Sloan Fellow in Physics (2019), a CIFAR global scholar in Gravity and the Extreme Universe (2019), and received the 2022 New Horizons in Physics Prize for leadership in laying foundations for electromagnetic observations of sources of gravitational waves, and leadership in extracting rich information from the first observed collision of two neutron stars.

Research Interests


Mark Strovink

Professor Emeritus

Mark Strovink, Ph.D. 1970 (Princeton). Joined UC Berkeley faculty in 1973 (Professor since 1980). Elected Fellow of the American Physical Society; served as program advisor for Fermilab (chair), SLAC (chair), Brookhaven, and the U.S. Department of Energy; served as D0 Physics Coordinator (1997 and 1998).

Research Interests

After 40 years in elementary particle physics, in late 2004 I turned my attention to the unexplained force that accelerates the universe's expansion. As an experimentalist, I am interested in understanding how best to standardize Type Ia supernovae (SNe) as...

George Smoot III

Professor Emeritus

George Smoot received his Ph.D. in Physics from M.I.T. in 1970 and was a postdoctoral researcher at M.I.T. before moving to UC Berkeley in 1971. Honors include: NASA Medal for Exceptional Science Achievement, Kilby Award, Lawrence Award, Nobel Prize in Physics 2006.

Research Interests

2006 Nobel Prize winner-Experimental Astrophysicist George Smoot is an active researcher in observational astrophysics and cosmology. Smoot’s group at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the University of California at Berkeley is observing our galaxy and the cosmic background radiation that is a...

Paul Richards

Professor Emeritus of the Graduate School

Paul Richards received his B.A. in 1956 from Harvard and his Ph.D. in 1960 from Berkeley. After a postdoctoral fellowship at Cambridge University he did physics research at the Bell Telephone Laboratories. He joined the Physics faculty at Berkeley in 1966. Richards has been a visiting scientist at Cambridge University, the Max Planck Institutes for Solid State Physics at Stuttgart and Radio Astronomy at Bonn, the Ecole Normale Superieure in Paris, the University of Paris, the Paris Observatory, and the University of Rome. With students and collaborators, Richards has published more than...

Matt C. Pyle

Assistant Professor, Michael M. Garland Chair

Matt Pyle received B.S. in Physics (2001) and B.E. in Aerospace Engineering (2002) from the University of Notre Dame, and a Ph.D. in Physics from Stanford University (2012). Subsequently, he crossed the bay and was a postdoctoral researcher at Berkeley. He joined the Berkeley Physics faculty as the Garland Assistant Professor in 2015.

Research Interests

Many of the questions that we would like to ask about the nature of the universe today, for example "could dark matter be composed of particles with mass less than that of a proton?", are simply impossible to answer with present...