John Carlstrom

Astrophysicist John Carlstrom leads the South Pole Telescope in Antarctica, a 10-meter telescope looking for the first light in the universe, left over from the Big Bang. The search will help us discover new galaxy clusters, understand inflation and the mass of the neutrino, and provide clues about the mysterious phenomenon called dark energy, which makes the expansion of the universe accelerate.

Carlstrom is also working on the Dark Energy Survey and the Cosmic Microwave Background Stage 4; he previously led the Sunyaev-Zeldovich Array at the Owens Valley Radio Observatory in California. His honors include a MacArthur Fellowship in 1998 and election to the National Academy of Sciences in 2002.

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