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Joel R. Primack


About the Author

Joel R. Primack, emeritus professor of physics at the University of California, received his AB from Princeton in 1966 and his PhD from Stanford in 1970. He was then a junior fellow of the Society of Fellows at Harvard University. He is one of the principal originators and developers of the theory of Cold Dark Matter, which has become the basis for the standard modern picture of structure formation in the universe. Primack was made a fellow of the American Physical Society (APS) in 1988 “for pioneering contributions to gauge theory and cosmology.” He served on the executive committee of the APS Division of Astrophysics from 2001 to 2002. He has won awards for his research from the A. P. Sloan Foundation and the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. In addition to more than 200 technical articles in professional journals, Dr. Primack has written a number of articles aimed at a more popular audience. These include articles on “gravitation,” “matter,” “dark matter,” “dark energy,” and other physics and astronomy topics in the World Book Encyclopedia, and articles in publications such as Astronomy, Beam Line, California Wild, and Sky and Telescope, and in the McGraw-Hill Encyclopedia of Science and the Encyclopedia of Astronomy and Astrophysics. Dr. Primack shared the APS Forum on Physics and Society Award in 1977 with Frank von Hippel of Princeton for their book Advice and Dissent: Scientists in the Political Arena (Basic Books, 1974; New American Library, 1976). In 1995 Dr. Primack was made a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) “for pioneering efforts in the establishment of the AAAS Congressional Science Fellows Program and for dedication to expanding the use of science in policymaking throughout government.”

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