The Bruce Medalists


  Photo 2007, courtesy Prof. Ostriker
Jeremiah Paul Ostriker
13 April 1937 2011 Bruce Medalist  

“Jerry” Ostriker, a native of New York City, earned his bachelor’s degree in physics and chemistry at Harvard University and his Ph.D. in astrophysics at the University of Chicago, where he was a student of S. Chandrasekhar. After a post-doctoral year at the University of Cambridge he joined the faculty at Princeton University in 1965. There he served as chairman of the deparment of astrophysical sciences (1979-1995) and later as provost (1995-2001). For the next three years he was Plumian Professor of Astronomy and Experimental Philosophy at Cambridge, after which he returned to Princeton as Director of the Princeton Institute for Computational Science and Engineering. In 2012 he moved to Columbia University. Working with many different colleagues over the years, he has made significant contributions to a number of areas of theoretical astrophysics and cosmology. He has contributed to our knowledge of pulsars and black holes, the interstellar medium, cosmic rays, and the formation and evolution of galaxies and quasars. He was one of the first to suggest that galaxies are immersed in large halos of dark matter, and he has investigated many cosmological topics, including the distribution of galaxies, baryonic matter, dark matter, and dark energy, and the values of cosmological parameters as determined using data from WMAP and SDSS. He and his colleagues proposed that about one-third of the baryonic matter in the universe is in a Warm-Hot Intergalactic Medium (WHIM).

Personal Web Page
At Columbia University
At Princeton University

Other awards
American Astronomical Society, Helen B. Warner Prize, 1972; Henry Norris Russell Lectureship, 1980.
Astronomische Gesellschaft, Karl Schwarzschild Medal, 1999. (citation)
Peter Gruber Foundation, Cosmology Prize, 2015.
National Academy of Sciences, James Craig Watson Medal, 2012.
National Science Foundation, National Medal of Science, 2000.
Royal Astronomical Society, Gold Medal, 2004.

Biographical materials
Kiel, Lauren D., Harvard Crimson, “Jeremiah P. Ostriker: Astrophysicist, Princeton professor remembers adventurous college years,” 1 June 2009.
National Academy of Sciences Interview
Ostriker, Jeremiah P., “A Fortunate Half-Century,” Ann. Revs. Astron. Astrophys. 54, 1-17 (2016).

AIP Center for History of Physics (several)
Institute for Advanced Study (with John Bahcall and Lyman Spitzer, Jr., ca. 1979)

Named after him
Minor Planet #12146 Ostriker

More references

The Bruce Medalists

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