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Tejaswi Venumadhav Nerella

Member, School of Natural Sciences
1 Einstein Drive
Institute for Advanced Study
Princeton, NJ 08540

Phone: (626) 826-3571


California Institute of technology
Ph.D. in Physics,
Advisor: Christopher Hirata


Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur
M.Sc (Integrated) in Physics, GPA: 10.0/10.0


Research Interests

My research area is astrophysics, with a primary focus on cosmology. I have research interests in a number of areas, including but not limited to the pre-atomic era of the very early universe, recombination, reionization, and binary systems.

I am interested in doing cosmology with the 21-cm signal from neutral hydrogen during the reionization epoch. My current work in this area focuses on developing new methods to study observables such as primordial magnetic fields and gravitational waves using high-resolution maps of the 21-cm line. I also enjoy thinking about radio interferometry, and have previously worked on its application to studying the global 21-cm signal. I have also worked on the thermal evolution of the intergalactic medium during the cosmic dawn era, when the global 21-cm signal is expected to be observable. In a broader sense, I also think about aspects of cosmic structure formation in the dark-ages, and its implications for observables in the later universe.

A second theme of my research is astrophysical applications of strong gravitational lensing. Along with collaborators, I worked on one of the first theoretical papers about highly magnified stars within background galaxies behind massive galaxy clusters. Our predictions for the observational appearance of the stars, including both the image distribution and the lightcurve, were borne out by the first detection in the lensing cluster MACSJ1149. I am working on several applications of such systems to detecting low-mass dark matter substructure inside lensing clusters. I have also worked on the predictions for strongly lensed and multiply imaged gravitational wave mergers that will be seen by LIGO.

My other research interests include weak interactions of neutrinos in the early universe, and the secular evolution of binary systems. Previously, I have worked on tidal deformation of neutron stars, and its consequence for their internal oscillatory modes. Apart from these topics, at various periods, I have worked on orbital resonances in eccentric binaries, optics design for CMB experiments and, very briefly dabbled in X-ray fluorescence from kilonovae.

Academic Honors

John Bahcall Fellowship
Institute for Advanced Study


Friends of the Institute Membership
Institute for Advanced Study


International Center for Theoretical Sciences, Bangalore


Schmidt Fellowship
Institute for Advanced Study


Robert A. Millikan Fellowship 2010
California Institute of Technology


International Fulbright Science and Technology Award
Bureau of Education and Cultural Affairs, U.S. Department of State


President's Gold Medal for the best academic performance in
the graduating class in all disciplines, IIT Kanpur


General Proficiency Medal for the best academic performance in
the graduating class in Physics, IIT Kanpur


Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship
California Institute of Technology

2007, 2008

Academic Excellence Award
IIT Kanpur

2007, 2008, 2009, 2010

Silver Medal, 36th International Physics Olympiad


KVPY Fellowship
Department of Science and Technology, Govt. of India


NTSE Fellowship
National Council of Educational Research and Training, Govt. of India


Work Experience

Visiting Scientist
Max-Planck-Institut für Physik komplexer Systeme, Dresden
Advisor: Roderich Moessner

May-August 2009

Summer Undergraduate Research Fellow
California Institute of Technology, Pasadena
Advisor: Re'em Sari

May-August 2008

Summer Undergraduate Research Fellow
California Institute of Technology, Pasadena
Advisor: Andrew Lange

May-August 2007

Refereed publications


n-th author papers

Professional service

Other work

Talks and poster presentations

Teaching Experience and outreach



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Tejaswi Venumadhav 2014-10-17

Christopher M. Hirata
The Ohio State University
191 West Woodruff Lane
Columbus, OH 43210, USA
Matias Zaldarriaga
Institute for Advanced Study
1 Einstein Drive
Princeton, NJ 08540, USA
Jordi Miralda-Escudé
Institut de Ciències del Cosmos
Universitat de Barcelona
08028 Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain
Olivier Doré
Jet Propulsion Laboratory
M/S 169-327
4800 Oak Grove Drive
Pasadena, CA 91109, USA