Jay M. Pasachoff is Field Memorial Professor of Astronomy at Williams College, where he teaches the astronomy survey course and works with undergraduate students. He is also Director of the Hopkins Observatory there. Pasachoff has observed 35 solar eclipses and is Chair of the Working Group on Solar Eclipses of the International Astronomical Union. He is part of a group of scientists observing the atmosphere of Pluto through stellar occultations. He also works in radio astronomy, concentrating on cosmic deuterium and its consequences for cosmology.
Pasachoff studied at Harvard, receiving his bachelor's degree in 1963, his master's degree in 1965, and his doctorate in 1969. He worked at the Harvard College Observatory and Caltech before going to Williams College in 1972. His sabbaticals and other leaves have been at the University of Hawaiis Institute for Astronomy, the Institut d'Astrophysique de Paris, the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey, the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, and most recently at Caltech. He has taken a leading role in the science and history of transits of Mercury and Venus, as an analogue to exoplanet studies, leading up to the 2012 transit of Venus.
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