Dawn Peterson

Affiliate Research Scientist
Waltham, MA


Ph.D. Univ. of Rochester, 2005
B.A. Boston University, 1998

My research experience and interests lie in the general area of low mass star (and brown dwarf) formation, ranging from star formation in large, young stellar clusters to isolated star formation in Bok globules, primarily using infrared and visible wavelength observations. I received my PhD in Astronomy and Physics from the University of Rochester and had two postdoctoral positions: firstly at the University of Virginia where I got to use the group's spectrograph at various observatories including APO and Magellan, and secondly at Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, where I primarily worked with the Gould Belt Spitzer legacy team. Outside of work, I love to read fiction, the news, and science blogs (I'm grateful there is a virtually infinite internet to scour every evening), play volleyball, go cycling, watch movies, and occasionally do some amateur photography. I also love to travel, so astronomy has been great for that. I have spent the past few years working part-time through SSI continuing similar research, though mainly using space-based archival data instead of ground-based observations.