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 interest is understanding the intense gravitational fields surrounding black holes and neutron stars and the dynamics of the accretion of matter onto these objects. He conducts observations at X-ray, optical, and radio wavelengths of objects in our Milky Way galaxy and in external galaxies. His current work concerns the highly luminous X-ray sources in nearby galaxies which have been interpreted as being intermediate-mass or "medium-sized" black holes, jet ejection from black holes, and the properties of X-ray binaries in the early universe. He also builds instrumentation for space-based X-ray astronomy and ground-based gamma-ray astronomy.

Selected Recent Publications

Allured, Ryan; Tomsick, John A.; Kaaret, Philip; Yamaoka, Kazutaka 2013, Swift and RXTE Observations of the Black Hole Transient GX 339-4 in the Hard State between Outbursts, Ap. J., Vol. 774, Issue 2, article id. 135

Allured, Ryan; Fernández-Perea, Mónica; Soufli, Regina; Alameda, Jennifer B.; Pivovaroff, Michael J.; Gullikson, Eric M.; Kaaret, Philip 2013, A soft X-ray beam-splitting multilayer optic for the NASA GEMS Bragg Reflection Polarimeter, Experimental Astronomy, Vol. 36, Issue 1-2,371.

Kaaret, Philip; Feng, Hua 2013, A State Transition of the Luminous X-Ray Binary in the Low-metallicity Blue Compact Dwarf Galaxy I Zw 18, Ap. J. vol 770, Issue 1, art. ID 20,5.

Prieskorn, Z. and Kaaret, P. 2012, Burst Fluence Distributions of Soft Gamma Repeaters 1806-20 and 1900+14 in the Rossi X-Ray Timing Explorer PCA Era, ApJ, 755, 1 

Kaaret, P., Schmitt, J., and Gorski, M. 2011, X-Rays from Blue Compact Dwarf Galaxies, ApJ, 741

VERITAS Collaboration; Aliu, E. et al. 2011, Detection of Pulsed Gamma Rays Above 100 GeV from the Crab Pulsar, Science, 334, 69

Tao, Lian, Feng, Hua, Grisé, Fabien, and Kaaret, Philip 2011, Compact Optical Counterparts of Ultraluminous X-Ray Sources, ApJ, 737, 81.

Acciari, V. A. et al. 2011, Discovery of TeV Gamma-ray Emission from Tycho's Supernova Remnant, ApJ, 730, L20.

Feng, H. and Kaaret, P. 2010, Identification of the X-ray Thermal Dominant State in an Ultraluminous X-ray Source in M82, ApJL, 712,L169.

Kaaret, P., Feng, H., and Wong, D., Tao, L. 2010, Direct Detection of an Ultraluminous Ultraviolet Source, ApJL, 714, L167.

Kaaret, P., Corbel, S. 2009,  Photoionized Nebula Surrounding and Variable Optical Continuum Emission from the Ultraluminous X-Ray Source in NGC 5408, ApJ, 697, 950

Kaaret, P., Feng, H., and Gorski, M. 2009, A Major X-Ray Outburst From an Ultraluminous X-Ray Source in M82, ApJ, 692,653.

Kaaret, P., Alonso-Herrero, A.2008, X-Ray Sources in the Star-Forming Galaxies NGC 4194 and NGC 7541, ApJ 682, 1020

Feng, H. and Kaaret, P. 2008, Optical Counterpart of the Ultraluminous X-Ray Source IC 342 X-1, ApJ, 675,1067

Kaaret, P. and Feng, H. 2007, Confirmation of the 62 Day Periodicity from M82, ApJ, 669, 106

Copyright University of Iowa 2013