The field of Kolb’s research is the application of elementary-particle physics to the very early Universe, including cosmic inflation models, gravitational production of particles, particle dark matter, ultra-high energy cosmic rays, and high-energy neutrino astronomy. In addition to over 200 scientific papers, he is a co-author of The Early Universe, the standard textbook on particle physics and cosmology, and his book for the general public, Blind Watchers of the Sky, received the 1996 Emme Award of the American Aeronautical Society.
Kolb is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a Fellow of the American Physical Society. He was the recipient of the 2003 Oersted Medal of the American Association of Physics Teachers for notable contributions to the teaching of physics, the 1993 Quantrell Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching at the University of Chicago, and the 2009 Excellence in Teaching Award from the University’s Graham School of Continuing Liberal and Professional Studies.
Kolb is a member of the Enrico Fermi Institute and the Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics. He currently serves on the boards of the Giant Magellan Telescope and the Adler Planetarium.