Phillip Kaaret


Ph.D., Astronomy, Princeton University 1989

Contact Information

Department of Physics and Astronomy

University of Iowa, 702 Van Allen Hall

Laboratory: 626 VAN

Phone: 319-335-1985, FAX: 319-335-1753

Email: philip-kaaret [at]

Home page:

Biographical Information

Philip Kaaret is a Professor of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Iowa. He received a B.S. in Physics in 1984 from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a Ph.D. in Physics from Princeton University in 1989. Kaaret was on the faculty of the Physics Department at Columbia University in New York City from 1990 to 1998. He was an Astrophysicist at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory and a member of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics from 1998 to 2004. He was an Associate Professor of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Iowa from 2004 to 2008.

Research Interests

Kaaret's main interests are understanding accreting black holes and searching for missing baryons. He is currently building a CubeSat to measure soft X-ray oxygen line emission from the halo of our galaxy to determine whether or not a significant fraction of the missing baryons reside in galactic halos. He conducts observations at X-ray, optical, and radio wavelengths of ultraluminous X-ray sources in nearby galaxies, some of which have been interpreted as being intermediate-mass or "medium-sized" black holes. He studies the properties of X-ray binaries similar to those found in the early universe.

Papers written by Professor Kaaret and students in his group during 2014-2016

Enhanced X-ray emission from Lyman break analogues and a possible LX-SFR-metallicity plane

Searching for X-ray sources in nearby late-type galaxies with low-star formation rates

Transition of an X-ray binary to the hard ultraluminous state in the blue compact dwarf galaxy VII Zw 403

Spectral state transitions of the Ultraluminous X-ray Source IC 342 X-1

X-ray binary formation in low-metallicity blue compact dwarf galaxies

X-ray luminous binaries, metallicity, and the early Universe

Copyright University of Iowa 2016