NASA has selected 36 fellows for its prestigious Einstein, Hubble and Sagan fellowships, including one Indian called Dheeraj Pasham from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, who will conduct research on “Quest for the Elusive Intermediate-mass Black Holes”.
Dheeraj Pasham (“DJ”) received his Bachelor’s degree in Aerospace Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay in 2004. He obtained his Ph.D. from the University of Maryland in College Park (2014) where he focused on X-ray timing studies to understand the nature of ultraluminous X-ray sources in order to answer the question of whether they host stellar-mass or intermediate-mass black holes.
As an Einstein fellow at MIT, he plans to apply and extend his expertise in time series analysis to (1) identify and weigh intermediate-mass black holes, and (2) address the many open questions concerning the tidal disruption of stars by supermassive and intermediate-mass black holes.
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.”