Professor Alicia Soderberg Awarded a 2011 Packard Fellowship in Science and Engineering
Tuesday, October 18, 2011
News Feature

The David and Lucile Packard Foundation has awarded one of 16 Fellowships in Science and Engineering to Professor Alicia Soderberg at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. She is the only astrophysicist among this year’s awardees.

The Packard Foundation’s Fellowship program was established in 1988 “to allow the nation’s most promising professors to pursue science and engineering research early in their careers with few funding restrictions and limited reporting requirements." Each Fellow receives an unrestricted research grant of $875,000 over five years.

Professor Soderberg will use her Packard Fellowship to “close the gap in our understanding of stellar death” by investigating dying stars and supernova explosions using radio and millimeter telescopes to complement the optical data more traditionally used for such studies.

Alicia Soderberg joined the Harvard faculty in 2010, following a three-year NASA Hubble Fellowship. She holds an undergraduate degree from Bates College in Physics and Mathematics, a M.Sc. in Applied Mathematics from the University of Cambridge and a Ph.D. in Astrophysics from California Institute of Technology.

Her research interests encompass studies of supernovae in multiple wavelengths, and the evolution of massive stars and the history of mass loss in those stars. She also works on advances in the automation of small telescopes.

Professor Soderberg was the recipient of a National Science Foundation/University of Arizona ADVANCE Award to increase the participation and Advancement of Women in Academic Science and Engineering Careers in 2010. In 2009, she was awarded the American Astronomical Society’s Annie Jump Cannon prize for outstanding research and promise for future research. She recently concluded three-years as a Kavli Fellow of the National Academy of Sciences.

More information on the Packard Fellowships may be found at: