Priyamvada Natarajan is a professor in the departments of Astronomy and Physics at Yale University. She is noted for her work in mapping dark matter and dark energy, particularly with her work in gravitational lensing, and in models describing the assembly and accretion histories of supermassive black holes. She authored the book Mapping the Heavens: The Radical Scientific Ideas That Reveal the Cosmos.
Natarajan has undergraduate degrees in Physics and Mathematics from M.I.T. She was also enrolled in the M.I.T. Program in Science, Technology & Society and the M.I.T. Program in Technology and Public Policy from 1991 to 1993. She did her graduate work in theoretical astrophysics at the Institute of Astronomy, the University of Cambridge in England, where she was a member of Trinity College and was elected to a Title A Research Fellowship that she held from 1997 to 2003. Prior to coming to Yale, she was a visiting postdoctoral fellow at the Canadian Institute for Theoretical Astrophysics in Toronto, Canada.
Natarajan was awarded the Emeline Conland Bigelow Fellowship at the Radcliffe Institute of Harvard University in 2008. In 2009, she was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship. Natarajan was also the 2009 recipient of the India Abroad Foundation's "Face of the Future " Award and the recipient of the award for academic achievement from the Global Organization for the People of Indian Origin (GOPIO). Natarajan was elected a fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society in 2009, the American Physical Society in 2010, and the Explorers Club in 2010. She was awarded a JILA (Joint Institute for Laboratory Astrophysics) Fellowship in 2010. In January 2011 she was awarded an India Empire NRI award for Achievement in the Sciences in New Delhi, India. She was the Caroline Herschel Distinguished Visitor at the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore for 2011-2012. In addition to her current appointments at Yale and Harvard, she also holds the Sophie and Tycho Brahe Professorship, Dark Cosmology Center, Niels Bohr Institute at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark and was recently elected to an honorary professorship for life at the University of Delhi.
She is on the scientific advisory board of Nova ScienceNow.
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