Research Homepage of Christian D. Ott


I am a computational/theoretical astrophysicist in TAPIR, which is part of the Walter Burke Institute for Theoretical Physics at Caltech. My work is at the interface of numerical relativity, nuclear/neutrino astrophysics, and gravitational-wave physics.

My current primary research interests are (1) explosions of massive stars in core-collapse supernovae and long gamma-ray bursts and their multi-messenger signatures in neutrinos, gravitational waves, and photons, (2) the formation of stellar mass and supermassive black holes, and (3) binary black hole and neutron star mergers. Another line of my research is concerned with the observation and interpretation of gravitational waves from astrophysical sources. I was involved in the LIGO Scientific Collaboration and contributed to the first direct detection of gravitational waves.

I work with the Caltech portion of the Simulating eXtreme Spacetimes (SXS) collaboration and am also involved in the Einstein Toolkit. I run the website that hosts resources for the stellar collapse and neutron star merger communities. I have strong collaborative ties with the Yukawa Institute for Theoretical Physics (YITP) at Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan. I presently hold a visiting professorship at YITP.

I am presently leading an NSF CAREER project in Gravitational Physics. I was a 2012-2014 Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow.

Trainees/Mentees that won national postdoctoral fellowships:
Evan O'Connor (Junior Faculty, Stockholm University 2016; Hubble Fellowship 2014; Caltech PhD 2012), Christine Corbett Moran (NSF Fellowship 2015), Philipp Mösta (Einstein Fellowship 2015), Christian Reisswig (Einstein Fellowship 2012), Luke Roberts (Einstein Fellowship 2013).

Postdocs shipped off to faculty positions:
Luke Roberts (Michigan State University, 2016), Sebastiano Bernuzzi (University of Parma, 2015), Sean Couch (Michigan State University, 2015), Ernazar Abdikamalov (Nazarbayev University, Kasachstan, 2014)

Follow me on Twitter:

Read my blog: Blowing Up Stars

Check out some of my talks on: SlideShare -- a community portal for stellar collapse, supernovae, and compact objects -- SXS Collaboration YouTube Channel -- SXS Collaboration Website

The Team: Current Students & Postdocs

Jonathan Blackman Davide Gerosa (Einstein Fellow)
Jonas LippunerHiroki Nagakura (JSPS Fellow)
Sherwood RichersAndré da Silva Schneider

Teaching Info

2014/15 Winter term:
Ph136B - Applications of Classical Physics.
Ay101 - Physics of Stars.

2013/14 Spring term: Ay102 - Interstellar Medium.

2013/14 Winter term: Ay190 - Computational Astrophysics.

2013/14 Fall term: Ay121 - Radiative Processes (with Gregg Hallinan)

2013 Spring term:
Ay102 - Interstellar Medium.
Ay190 - Computational Astro (independent study).

2012/13 Fall term. Ay121 - Radiative Processes (with Gregg Hallinan).

2012 Spring term. Ay125 -- High-Energy Astrophysics (with Alan Weinstein).

2010/2011 Winter term. Ay190 -- Computational Astrophysics

2011/2012 Fall term. FS 001 -- Freshman Seminar on Cosmic Explosions and Their Multi-Messenger Signals

2011 Spring term. Ay125 -- High-Energy Astrophysics (with Alan Weinstein).

2010/2011 Winter term. Ay190 -- Computational Astrophysics

2009/2010 Spring term: Section 6 (recitation) of Ph1c Analytic.

2009/2010 Winter term: Ay 215 -- Seminar in Theoretical Astrophysics: Interacting Binaries. Check out the course webpage!

Snapshot from a 3D GR black hole formation simulation (Ott et al. 2011, PRL)

New Stuff (in quasi-chronological order)

  Older News

Some Current Projects and Collaborations

(Complete ADS list), (ADS short-author list only [no LIGO papers]),

Recent Short Author List Work:

2017 2016 2015 2014 2013