Shea Brown, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Instruction

I was born in Waterville, ME, and attended the University of Maine (B.A., Physics 2003). My Ph.D. work was done at the University of Minnesota (2009) under the supervision of Lawrence Rudnick. Prior to coming to Iowa, I was a Bolton Postdoctoral Fellow at CSIRO Astronomy & Space Science, and I've been a Visiting Scientist at the Istituto di Radioastronomia in Bologna, Italy, as well as the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) in Cambridge, MA.

Research Interests

I am an observational astronomer, focusing on probes of diffuse gas and magnetic fields in the large-scale structure of the Universe, including clusters and filaments of galaxies. My primary focus is on radio, microwave, and x-ray observations of thermal and non-thermal emission in these systems, with the goal of detecting the elusive Warm-Hot Intergalactic Medium (WHIM), the nearly invisible gas believed to host half of the ordinary matter in the Universe. I specialize in complex data analysis and statistical imaging techniques for detecting faint diffuse emission, pushing the boundaries of what information can be inferred from the data.

I am also an active member of the international Square Kilometre Array (SKA) community, participating in the development of cutting edge science with several SKA “pathfinder” telescopes all around the world. I'm an active member of three Survey Science Projects for the Australian SKA Pathfinder (ASKAP), and a former member of the Muchison Widefield Array. ASKAP will be providing incredible data in the coming years, and offers many opportunities for student research here at the University of Iowa.

Selected Publications

A complete list can be found on ADS.

Costa, A.H., Spangler, S.R., Sink, J.R., Brown, S., & Mao, S.A., 2016, Denser Sampling of the Rosette Nebula with Faraday Rotation Measurements: Improved Estimates of Magnetic Fields in H II Regions, ApJ, 821, 92

Shimwell, T.W., Markevitch, M., Brown, S., et al., 2015, Another shock for the Bullet cluster, and the source of seed electrons for radio relics, MNRAS, 449, 1486

Shimwell, T.W., Brown, S., Feain, I.J., et al., 2014, Deep radio observations of the radio halo of the bullet cluster 1E 0657-55.8, MNRAS, 440, 2901

Research areas
  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
Shea Brown
Ph.D., University of Minnesota, 2009

303 Van Allen Hall (VAN)
Iowa City, IA 52242
United States