Perimeter Institute Associate Faculty member Niayesh Afshordi has won an Early Researcher Award from the Ministry of Research and Innovation (MRI) of Ontario.
PI Director Neil Turok commented, "This is a wonderful endorsement of Dr. Afshordi's exceptional potential. He is a highly creative and talented young scientist whose research may well shed new light on the mysteries of dark matter and dark energy in the universe."
The Early Researcher Awards program (ERA) helps promising, recently-appointed Ontario researchers build their research teams of graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, research assistants and associates. The goal of the program is to improve Ontario's ability to attract and retain the best and brightest research talent from around the world. Each researcher receives $140,000 funding through the program. Dr. Afshordi won this ERA for his proposal, "Astrophysical Windows into Fundamental Physics."
Almost three-quarters of the cosmic energy budget appears to be comprised of a mysterious dark energy accelerating the universe's expansion that is some sixty orders of magnitude lighter than theoretical expectations. Likewise, gravity on galactic scales is dominated by dark matter, which has evaded detection for more than half a century.
With an overall goal of identifying the unknown components of our universe, Dr. Afshordi's research program will look at data from current and upcoming space probes to develop a better understanding of the nature and dynamics of dark matter and dark energy. It aims to develop new computational methods to test theories, combining leading-edge theory with scientific computing, and numerical and data analysis, and will interface with major international experiments.
- Phenomenology of Gravitational Aether as a solution to the Old Cosmological Constant Problem, Siavesh Aslanbeigi, Georg Robbers, Brendan Z. Foster, Kazunori Kohri, Niayesh Afshordi, arXiv:1106.3955
- Neutron Stars and the Cosmological Constant Problem, Farbod Kamiab, Niayesh Afshordi, arXiv:1104.5704
- Prospects for Detecting Dark Matter Halo Substructure with Pulsar Timing, Shant Baghram, Niayesh Afshordi, Kathryn M. Zurek, arXiv:1101.5487
- Stellar Black Holes and the Origin of Cosmic Acceleration, Chanda Prescod-Weinstein, Niayesh Afshordi, Michael L. Balogh, arXiv:0905.3551