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Department of Physics

Mellon College of Science

Shirley Ho

Associate Professor

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, 510-486-6119

Astrophysics & Cosmology
Wean Hall 8301

lab website 

Prof. Shirly Ho

Education & Professional Experience

PhD: Princeton University, Astrophysics (2008)
B.A.: UC Berkeley, Computer Science and Physics (2004)

Honors and Awards:
Emmy-Noether Fellowship, 2015
Carnegie Science Award, 2015
Macronix Prize, 2014
Chamberlain Fellow, 2008
Seaborg Fellow, 2008

Curriculum ViTA

Associate Professor, Carnegie Mellon University, 2016–
Senior Scientist, Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, 2016–
Cooper-Siegel Assistant Professor, Carnegie Mellon University, 2015–16
Assistant Professor, Carnegie Mellon University, 2011–
Chamberlain and Seaborg Fellow: Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, 2008–11

Research Interests

Cosmology has entered a new era beginning in the 21st century when a combination of the measurement of cosmic microwave background and the low redshift data, such as those from supernova, has established a standard cosmological model. This is a spatially flat universe started with a possibly standard inflationary scenario, where energy density is split between two unknown dark components, dark energy and dark matter and a fraction of baryons. Understanding the dark components of the Universe and how it all began are the two most outstanding problems of contemporary cosmology. To attack these two outstanding problems, I utilize the spatial distribution of galaxies, quasars, and neutral hydrogen (probed by the Lyman alpha forest in quasar spectra or 21-cm observations) as standard rulers for the Universe.

In particular, I utilize a standard ruler in the network of galaxies/matter tracers called Baryon Acoustic Oscillations to constrain models of dark energy. I am a member of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey III, which is in the process of surveying the largest volume of galaxies, quasars and neutral hydrogen. I am also a core team member of the Planck HFI and LFI, which is making the best cosmic microwave background map at large scale. I combine the cosmic microwave background and the distribution of galaxies and quasars to investigate the varying potential of the Universe (probably due to dark energy) via Integrated Sachs Wolfe Effect, and constrain the matter content of the Universe with gravitational lensing of the CMB. I would be very happy to talk to/ work with students and postdocs about new ways to understand the dark components of the Universe and its beginning. I also make use of the McWilliams Center's high performance computing facilities, including Warp, to perform large scale clustering analysis of the Universe.

Selected Publications

Shadab Alam et al., The eleventh and twelfth data releases of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey: final data from SDSS-IIIThe Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series 219, 12 (2015) 

Yen-Chi Chen, Shirley Ho, Peter E. Freeman, Christopher R. Genovese, Larry Wasserman, Cosmic web reconstruction through density ridges: method and algorithmMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 454, 1140 (2015) 

Nishant Agarwal, Shirley Ho, Sarah Shandera, Constraining the initial conditions of the Universe using large scale structureJ. Cosmol. Astropart. Phys. 2014, 38 (2014) 

L. Anderson et al., The clustering of galaxies in the SDSS-III Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey: baryon acoustic oscillations in the Data Release 9 spectroscopic galaxy sampleMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 427, 3435 (2013)

Shirley Ho et al., Clustering of Sloan digital sky survey III photometric luminous galaxies: the measurement, systematics, and cosmological implicationsThe Astrophysical Journal 761, 14 (2012)

Hee-Jong Seo et al., Acoustic scale from the angular power spectra of SDSS-III DR8 photometric luminous galaxiesThe Astrophysical Journal 761, 13 (2012)

Roland de Putter et al., New neutrino mass bounds from SDSS-III data release 8 photometric luminous galaxiesThe Astrophysical Journal 761, 12 (2012)

Anže Slosar et al., The Lyman-α forest in three dimensions: measurements of large scale flux correlations from BOSS 1st-year dataJournal of Cosmology and Astroparticle Physics 09, 001 (2011)

Anže Slosar, Shirley Ho, Martin White, Thibaut Louis, The acoustic peak in the Lyman alpha forestJournal of Cosmology and Astroparticle Physics 10, 019 (2009)

Shirley Ho, Yen-Ting Lin, David Spergel, Christopher M. Hirata, Luminous red galaxy population in clusters at 0.2⩽ z ⩽0.6 , The Astrophysical Journal 697, 1358 (2009)

Anže Slosar, Christopher Hirata, Uroš Seljak, Shirley Ho, Nikhil Padmanabhan, Constraints on local primordial non-Gaussianity from large scale structureJournal of Cosmology and Astroparticle Physics 08, 031 (2008)

Shirley Ho, Christopher Hirata, Nikhil Padmanabhan, Uros Seljak, Neta Bahcall, Correlation of CMB with large-scale structure. I. Integrated Sachs-Wolfe tomography and cosmological implicationsPhysical Review D 78, 043519 (2008)

Christopher Hirata, Shirley Ho, Nikhil Padmanabhan, Uroš Seljak, Neta Bahcall, Correlation of CMB with large-scale structure. II. Weak lensingPhysical Review D 78, 043520 (2008)

C. Conroy, S. Ho, M. White, Constraints on the merging time-scale of luminous red galaxies, or, where do all the haloes go?Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 379, 1491 (2007)

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