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Alex Filippenko

Professor, UC Berkeley Department of Astronomy

headshot of Alex Filippenko

Alex Filippenko is a Professor of Astronomy at the University of California, Berkeley, where he is also a Richard and Rhoda Goldman Distinguished Professor in the Physical Sciences and a Miller Senior Fellow in the Miller Institute for Basic Research in Science. An elected member of both the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, he is one of the world's most highly cited astronomers and the recipient of numerous prizes for his scientific research. He was the only person to have been a member of both teams that revealed the accelerating expansion of the Universe, an amazing discovery that was honored with the 2007 Gruber Cosmology Prize and the 2015 Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental Physics to all team members, and the 2011 Nobel Prize in Physics to the teams’ leaders. Winner of the most prestigious teaching awards at UC Berkeley and voted the “Best Professor” on campus a record 9 times, in 2006 he was named the Carnegie/CASE National Professor of the Year among doctoral institutions.  He has produced 5 astronomy video courses with The Great Courses, coauthored an award-winning astronomy textbook (5 editions), and appears in more than 120 television documentaries.  He was awarded the 2004 Carl Sagan Prize for Science Popularization, and he was selected as one of only two recipients of the 2017 Caltech Distinguished Alumni Award (PhD 1984). An avid tennis player, hiker, skier, whitewater rafter, snorkeler, and scuba diver, he enjoys world travel and spending time with his family. One of his passions is observing total solar eclipses, having experienced 17 of them so far.

Papers, Articles and Publications

Academic Background
  • PhD, Astronomy, California Institute of Technology
  • BA, Physics, University of California, Santa Barbara