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Ira Wasserman


Space Sciences Building - Crsr, Room 626
109 Clark Hall

Educational Background

B.S., 1974, Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Ph.D., 1978, Harvard University. Postdoctoral Research Associate, Cornell University, 1978-79; Chaim Weizmann Postdoctoral Fellow, Center for Radiophysics and Space Research, Cornell University, 1979-81. Assistant Professor, Astronomy, Cornell University, 1981-87; Associate Professor, Astronomy, Cornell University, 1987-93; Professor, Astronomy, Cornell University, 1993-present. Professor, Physics, Cornell University, 1997-present. NSF Postdoctoral Fellow, 1981-82; Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Fellow, 1984-88; Bok Prize Lecturer, Harvard University, 1989. Member, American Astronomical Society.



i) Long term variation in the rotation of neutron stars, specifically neutron star precession and implications
for the physics of superfluids in their interiors.

ii) Nonlinear mode coupling in rotating neutron stars, and the saturation of the r-mode instability driven by gravitational radiation.

iii) Astronomical manifestations of remnants of string/brane inflation, particularly cosmic strings, and prospects of constraining models for the early Universe observationally.


  • Astronomy
  • Physics

Graduate Fields

  • Physics
  • Astronomy and Space Sciences


  • Cornell Laboratory for Accelerator-based Sciences and Education (CLASSE)
  • Laboratory for Elementary-Particle Physics (LEPP)
  • Cornell Center for Astrophysics and Planetary Science (CCAPS)


My research covers a range of topics in theoretical astrophysics, ranging from cosmology particularly the nature of dark energy and the cosmological constant, and the possibility for detecting observational signatures of superstring inflation and neutron star astrophysics particularly long term variations in pulsar rotation.