Kaushik Basu

Prof. Shrinivas Kulkarni

George Ellery Hale Professor of Astronomy and Planetary Sciences at Caltech, Former Director of the Caltech Optical Observatories

Prof. Shrinivas Kulkarni’s primary interests are the study of cosmic explosions, neutron stars and developing new methodologies for astronomical research. He is known for the discovery of the first millisecond pulsar, the first brown dwarf and showing that gamma-ray bursts are of extra-galactic origin. He is known for his innovation in the emerging field of Time Domain Astronomy through the highly successful Palomar Transient Factory and the Zwicky Transient Facility. Over the period 2006-2018, Prof. Shrinivas Kulkarni served as the Director of the Caltech Optical Observatories (which include the Palomar Observatory and the W. M. Keck Observatory).

His notable awards include the Alan T. Waterman Prize of the US National Science Foundation, the Helen B. Warner award of the American Astronomical Society and the Jansky Prize of Associated Universities, Inc. Prof. Kulkarni is a fellow of several learned societies: the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (1994), Fellow of the Royal Society of London (2001), Fellow of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (2003), Honorary Fellow, Indian Academy of Sciences (2011), and Foreign member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (2016). In 2017, he won the Dan David Prize for his contribution to the emerging field of Time Domain Astronomy.