Sciences and Exploration Directorate

Brief Bio


Astrophysicist, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD (June 2013 - Present)

Adjunct Professor, Department of Astronomy, University of Maryland, College Park, MD (June 2013 - Present)

Adjunct Professor, Department of Physics, George Washington University, Washington, DC (June 2017 - Present)

Principal Investigator, Neil Gehrels Swift Observatory (February 2017 - Present)

Research Interests


Tidal Disruption Events

Astrophysics: Black Holes


Multi-Messenger Astronomy

Astrophysics: Gravitational Waves

Current Projects


Neil Gehrels Swift Observatory - Principal Investigator


Zwicky Transient Facility - Chair of Science Steering Committee


Large Synoptic Survey Telescope: Transients and Variable Stars Working Group


Gravitational-wave Ultraviolet Counterpart Imager Concept - Principal Investigator

Positions/Employment


Research Astrophysicist

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center - Greenbelt, MD

June 2013 - Present


Adjunct Assistant Professor, Department of Astronomy

University of Maryland - College Park, MD

June 2013 - Present


Adjunct Assistant Professor, Department of Physics

George Washington University - Washington, DC

June 2017 - Present


Postdoctoral Scholar

University of California, Berkeley - Berkeley, CA

August 2008 - June 2013

Education


PhD (2008), Department of Physics, California Institute of Technology

Thesis: "The Energetics and Environments of Swift Gamma-Ray Bursts"

Advisors: Profs. Fiona Harrison and Shri Kulkarni

 

BA (2002), Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics, Harvard University

Thesis: "Multi-Layer Optics for the Next Generation of X-ray Missions"

Advisor: Dr. Suzanne Romaine

Awards


Research Corporation Scialog Fellow: 2015-2016

Robert H. Goddard Award, Scientific Achievement: 2015

Junior Fellow, Joint Space-Science Institute: 2013-Present

NASA Graduate Student Research Fellowship: 2005-2008

Talks, Presentations and Posters


Invited

Recent Observational Puzzles from Tidal Disruption Flares

March 2019

University of Amsterdam Astronomy Colloquium


What multi-messenger observations of GW170817 have told us

2018

Joint Space-Science Institute - GWPAW 2018


Recent Observational Puzzles from Tidal Disruption Flares

November 2018

Caltech Astronomy Colloquium


Optical Surveys

November 2018

Eighth Fermi Symposium


Transients and MultiMessenger Astrophysics with HabEx

November 2018

HabEx 


The Neil Gehrels Swift Observatory: Status and Prospects

October 2018

Time-Domain Astrophysics with Swift III


Kilonovae: An Observer's Perspective

July 2018

Neutron Star Merger Summer School


The Zwicky Transient Facility

June 2018

Northwestern University Department of Physics and Astronomy Colloquium


The Transient Universe as Seen by Swift

March 2018

Conference on the Transient Universe


Other

UV and Optical Spectroscopy of Tidal Disruption Flares

September 2018

FlipperFest: A 60th Birthday Celebration for Alex Filippenko


Selected Publications


Refereed

Cenko, S. B., A. Cucchiara, N. Roth, et al. S. Veilleux, J. X. Prochaska, L. Yan, J. Guillochon, W. P. Maksym, I. Arcavi, N. R. Butler, A. V. Filippenko, A. S. Fruchter, S. Gezari, D. Kasen, A. J. Levan, J. M. Miller, D. R. Pasham, E. Ramirez-Ruiz, L. E. Strubbe, N. R. Tanvir, and F. Tombesi. 2016. AN ULTRAVIOLET SPECTRUM OF THE TIDAL DISRUPTION FLARE ASASSN-14li The Astrophysical Journal 818 (2): L32 [10.3847/2041-8205/818/2/l32]

Cenko, S. B., A. L. Urban, D. A. Perley, et al. A. Horesh, A. Corsi, D. B. Fox, Y. Cao, M. M. Kasliwal, A. Lien, I. Arcavi, J. S. Bloom, N. R. Butler, A. Cucchiara, J. A. Diego, A. V. Filippenko, A. Gal-Yam, N. Gehrels, L. Georgiev, J. J. González, J. F. Graham, J. Greiner, D. A. Kann, C. R. Klein, F. Knust, S. R. Kulkarni, A. Kutyrev, R. Laher, W. H. Lee, P. E. Nugent, J. Xavier Prochaska, E. Ramirez-Ruiz, M. G. Richer, A. Rubin, Y. Urata, K. Varela, A. M. Watson, and P. R. Wozniak. 2015. iPTF14yb: THE FIRST DISCOVERY OF A GAMMA-RAY BURST AFTERGLOW INDEPENDENT OF A HIGH-ENERGY TRIGGER The Astrophysical Journal 803 (2): L24 [10.1088/2041-8205/803/2/l24]

Bradley Cenko, S., H. A. Krimm, A. Horesh, et al. A. Rau, D. A. Frail, J. A. Kennea, A. J. Levan, S. T. Holland, N. R. Butler, R. M. Quimby, J. S. Bloom, A. V. Filippenko, A. Gal-Yam, J. Greiner, S. R. Kulkarni, E. O. Ofek, F. Olivares E., P. Schady, J. M. Silverman, N. R. Tanvir, and D. Xu. 2012. SWIFT J2058.4+0516: DISCOVERY OF A POSSIBLE SECOND RELATIVISTIC TIDAL DISRUPTION FLARE? The Astrophysical Journal 753 (1): 77 [10.1088/0004-637x/753/1/77]

Nugent, P. E., M. Sullivan, S. B. Cenko, et al. R. C. Thomas, D. Kasen, D. A. Howell, D. Bersier, J. S. Bloom, S. R. Kulkarni, M. T. Kandrashoff, A. V. Filippenko, J. M. Silverman, G. W. Marcy, A. W. Howard, H. T. Isaacson, K. Maguire, N. Suzuki, J. E. Tarlton, Y.-C. Pan, L. Bildsten, B. J. Fulton, J. T. Parrent, D. Sand, P. Podsiadlowski, F. B. Bianco, B. Dilday, M. L. Graham, J. Lyman, P. James, M. M. Kasliwal, N. M. Law, R. M. Quimby, I. M. Hook, E. S. Walker, P. Mazzali, E. Pian, E. O. Ofek, A. Gal-Yam, and D. Poznanski. 2011. Supernova SN 2011fe from an exploding carbon–oxygen white dwarf star Nature 480 (7377): 344-347 [10.1038/nature10644]

Bloom, J. S., D. Giannios, B. D. Metzger, et al. S. B. Cenko, D. A. Perley, N. R. Butler, N. R. Tanvir, A. J. Levan, P. T. O' Brien, L. E. Strubbe, F. De Colle, E. Ramirez-Ruiz, W. H. Lee, S. Nayakshin, E. Quataert, A. R. King, A. Cucchiara, J. Guillochon, G. C. Bower, A. S. Fruchter, A. N. Morgan, and A. J. van der Horst. 2011. A Possible Relativistic Jetted Outburst from a Massive Black Hole Fed by a Tidally Disrupted Star Science 333 (6039): 203-206 [10.1126/science.1207150]

Cenko, S. B., D. A. Frail, F. A. Harrison, et al. J. B. Haislip, D. E. Reichart, N. R. Butler, B. E. Cobb, A. Cucchiara, E. Berger, J. S. Bloom, P. Chandra, D. B. Fox, D. A. Perley, J. X. Prochaska, A. V. Filippenko, K. Glazebrook, K. M. Ivarsen, M. M. Kasliwal, S. R. Kulkarni, A. P. LaCluyze, S. Lopez, A. N. Morgan, M. Pettini, and V. R. Rana. 2011. AFTERGLOW OBSERVATIONS OFFERMILARGE AREA TELESCOPE GAMMA-RAY BURSTS AND THE EMERGING CLASS OF HYPER-ENERGETIC EVENTS The Astrophysical Journal 732 (1): 29 [10.1088/0004-637x/732/1/29]

Law, N. M., S. R. Kulkarni, R. G. Dekany, et al. E. O. Ofek, R. M. Quimby, P. E. Nugent, J. Surace, C. C. Grillmair, J. S. Bloom, M. M. Kasliwal, L. Bildsten, T. Brown, S. B. Cenko, D. Ciardi, E. Croner, S. G. Djorgovski, J. van Eyken, A. V. Filippenko, D. B. Fox, A. Gal-Yam, D. Hale, N. Hamam, G. Helou, J. Henning, D. A. Howell, J. Jacobsen, R. Laher, S. Mattingly, D. McKenna, A. Pickles, D. Poznanski, G. Rahmer, A. Rau, W. Rosing, M. Shara, R. Smith, D. Starr, M. Sullivan, V. Velur, R. Walters, and J. Zolkower. 2009. The Palomar Transient Factory: System Overview, Performance, and First Results Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific 121 (886): 1395-1408 [10.1086/648598]

Perley, D. A., S. B. Cenko, J. S. Bloom, et al. H.-W. Chen, N. R. Butler, D. Kocevski, J. X. Prochaska, M. Brodwin, K. Glazebrook, M. M. Kasliwal, S. R. Kulkarni, S. Lopez, E. O. Ofek, M. Pettini, A. M. Soderberg, and D. Starr. 2009. THE HOST GALAXIES OFSWIFTDARK GAMMA-RAY BURSTS: OBSERVATIONAL CONSTRAINTS ON HIGHLY OBSCURED AND VERY HIGH REDSHIFT GRBs The Astronomical Journal 138 (6): 1690-1708 [10.1088/0004-6256/138/6/1690]

Tanvir, N. R., D. B. Fox, A. J. Levan, et al. E. Berger, K. Wiersema, J. P. Fynbo, A. Cucchiara, T. Krühler, N. Gehrels, J. S. Bloom, J. Greiner, P. A. Evans, E. Rol, F. Olivares, J. Hjorth, P. Jakobsson, J. Farihi, R. Willingale, R. L. Starling, S. B. Cenko, D. Perley, J. R. Maund, J. Duke, R. A. Wijers, A. J. Adamson, A. Allan, M. N. Bremer, D. N. Burrows, A. J. Castro-Tirado, B. Cavanagh, A. de Ugarte Postigo, M. A. Dopita, T. A. Fatkhullin, A. S. Fruchter, R. J. Foley, J. Gorosabel, J. Kennea, T. Kerr, S. Klose, H. A. Krimm, V. N. Komarova, S. R. Kulkarni, A. S. Moskvitin, C. G. Mundell, T. Naylor, K. Page, B. E. Penprase, M. Perri, P. Podsiadlowski, K. Roth, R. E. Rutledge, T. Sakamoto, P. Schady, B. P. Schmidt, A. M. Soderberg, J. Sollerman, A. W. Stephens, G. Stratta, T. N. Ukwatta, D. Watson, E. Westra, T. Wold, and C. Wolf. 2009. A γ-ray burst at a redshift of z ≈ 8.2 Nature 461 (7268): 1254-1257 [10.1038/nature08459]

Soderberg, A. M., E. Berger, K. L. Page, et al. P. Schady, J. Parrent, D. Pooley, X. Wang, E. O. Ofek, A. Cucchiara, A. Rau, E. Waxman, J. D. Simon, D. C. Bock, P. A. Milne, M. J. Page, J. C. Barentine, S. D. Barthelmy, A. P. Beardmore, M. F. Bietenholz, P. Brown, A. Burrows, D. N. Burrows, G. Byrngelson, S. B. Cenko, P. Chandra, J. R. Cummings, D. B. Fox, A. Gal-Yam, N. Gehrels, S. Immler, M. Kasliwal, A. K. Kong, H. A. Krimm, S. R. Kulkarni, T. J. Maccarone, P. Mészáros, E. Nakar, P. T. O'Brien, R. A. Overzier, M. de Pasquale, J. Racusin, N. Rea, and D. G. York. 2008. An extremely luminous X-ray outburst at the birth of a supernova Nature 453 469 [10.1038/nature06997]

Cenko, S., D. Fox, D. Moon, et al. F. Harrison, S. Kulkarni, J. Henning, C. Guzman, M. Bonati, R. Smith, R. Thicksten, M. Doyle, H. Petrie, A. Gal‐Yam, A. Soderberg, N. Anagnostou, and A. Laity. 2006. The Automated Palomar 60 Inch Telescope Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific 118 (848): 1396-1406 [10.1086/508366]

Fox, D. B., D. A. Frail, P. A. Price, et al. S. R. Kulkarni, E. Berger, T. Piran, A. M. Soderberg, S. B. Cenko, P. B. Cameron, A. Gal-Yam, M. M. Kasliwal, D.-S. Moon, F. A. Harrison, E. Nakar, B. P. Schmidt, B. Penprase, R. A. Chevalier, P. Kumar, K. Roth, D. Watson, B. L. Lee, S. Shectman, M. M. Phillips, M. Roth, P. J. McCarthy, M. Rauch, L. Cowie, B. A. Peterson, J. Rich, N. Kawai, K. Aoki, G. Kosugi, T. Totani, H.-S. Park, A. MacFadyen, and K. C. Hurley. 2005. The afterglow of GRB 050709 and the nature of the short-hard γ-ray bursts Nature 437 (7060): 845-850 [10.1038/nature04189]