Michael Lam Headshot

Michael Lam

Assistant Professor
School of Physics and Astronomy
College of Science

585-475-7545
Office Location

Michael Lam

Assistant Professor
School of Physics and Astronomy
College of Science

Education

BA, Colgate University; MS, Ph.D., Cornell University

Bio

Dr. Lam is an astrophysicist in the School of Physics and Astronomy. He is a member of the North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves, whose goal is to detect and characterize low-frequency gravitational waves coming from a variety of sources such as supermassive black hole binaries at the centers of merging galaxies. He is co-chair of the Noise Budget Working Group, whose task is to characterize noise sources in the pulsar timing array detector, optimize the sensitivity of that detector, and correct/mitigate the various sources of noise. One large component of this work is the study of the ionized interstellar medium and as such he also uses the pulsars as tools to study a wide range of small- and large-scale phenomena in the Galactic electron content. He has recently extended this work on the interstellar medium to using Fast Radio Bursts as probes of the intergalactic medium. He also works on pulsar timing observations, gravitational wave detection methods, and cyber-infrastructure development for the collaboration. In addition, he is a heavy contributor to education and public outreach efforts and is a member of NANOGrav's Equity and Climate Committee.

585-475-7545

Personal Links
Areas of Expertise

Currently Teaching

ASTP-790
1 - 3 Credits
Masters-level research by the candidate on an appropriate topic as arranged between the candidate and the research advisor.
PHYS-220
3 Credits
This course is an introduction to the basic concepts of astronomy and astrophysics for scientists and engineers. Topics include the celestial sphere, celestial mechanics, methods of data acquisition, planetary systems, stars and stellar systems, cosmology, and life in the universe.
ASTP-720
3 Credits
This course surveys the different ways that scientists use computers to address problems in astrophysics. The course will choose several common problems in astrophysics; for each one, it will provide an introduction to the problem, review the literature for recent examples, and illustrate the basic mathematical technique. In each of these segments, students will write their own code in an appropriate language.
ASTP-890
1 - 6 Credits
Dissertation research by the candidate for an appropriate topic as arranged between the candidate and the research advisor.

Latest News

  • October 18, 2019

    figure demonstrating pulse arrival times

    Detection of the most massive neutron star known

    Assistant Professor Michael Lam from RIT and the North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves (NANOGrav) detected the most massive neutron star known after 5-years of observations.