If you made any changes in Pure, your changes will be visible here soon.

Personal profile

Research Interests

Wen-fai Fong utilizes observations across the electromagnetic spectrum to study explosive transients and their host galaxy environments. These transients include gamma-ray bursts, electromagnetic counterparts to gravitational wave sources, compact object binaries, supernovae, and anything that collides or explodes.

The main questions she seeks to answer in her research are: What are the energy sources powering these transients? What is the nature and composition of material ejected from these sources? What types of environments do they explode into? What do their host galaxies look like, and what can they tell us about their progenitors?

To aid these efforts, Wen-fai uses a large variety of telescopes spanning radio, optical, near-infrared, and X-ray wavelengths on the ground and in space. On the ground, these facilities include the Very Large Array, Magellan, Gemini, MMT and Keck located in New Mexico, Chile, Hawaii and Arizona. In space, she uses NASA's Swift satellite, the Hubble Space Telescope, and eventually the James Webb Space Telescope when it launches in late 2018. She also uses information from the Advanced Laser Interferometry Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO) to rapidly follow gravitational wave sources and their host galaxies with many of these facilities.

Over the past several years, she has led multi-wavelength observational campaigns, garnering national recognition for her studies of short gamma-ray bursts.

Education/Academic qualification

Astronomy and Astrophysics, PhD, Harvard University

… → 2014

Astronomy and Astrophysics, AM, Harvard University

… → 2010

Biology, Physics, SB, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

… → 2008

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Wen-fai Fong is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • 11 Similar Profiles
gamma ray bursts Physics & Astronomy
merger Earth & Environmental Sciences
LIGO (observatory) Physics & Astronomy
binary stars Physics & Astronomy
supernovae Physics & Astronomy
radio Earth & Environmental Sciences
neutron stars Physics & Astronomy
galaxies Physics & Astronomy

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Grants 2015 2022

gravitational waves
observatories
astrophysics
universe
telescopes
electromagnetic spectra
nonthermal radiation
binary stars
ejecta
neutron stars
nonthermal radiation
electromagnetic spectra
binary stars
ejecta
neutron stars
electromagnetic spectra
nonthermal radiation
binary stars
ejecta
neutron stars

Research Output 2006 2019

  • 3371 Citations
  • 54 Article
  • 1 Letter
1 Citation (Scopus)

ALMA Detection of a Linearly Polarized Reverse Shock in GRB 190114C

Laskar, T., Alexander, K. D., Gill, R., Granot, J., Berger, E., Mundell, C. G., Duran, R. B., Bolmer, J., Duffell, P., Eerten, H. V., Fong, W. F., Kobayashi, S., Margutti, R. & Schady, P., Jun 10 2019, In : Astrophysical Journal Letters. 878, 1, L26.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

polarization
shock
linear polarization
ejecta
bursts
12 Citations (Scopus)

An Embedded X-Ray Source Shines through the Aspherical at 2018cow: Revealing the Inner Workings of the Most Luminous Fast-evolving Optical Transients

Margutti, R., Metzger, B. D., Chornock, R., Vurm, I., Roth, N., Grefenstette, B. W., Savchenko, V., Cartier, R., Steiner, J. F., Terreran, G., Margalit, B., Migliori, G., Milisavljevic, D., Alexander, K. D., Bietenholz, M., Blanchard, P. K., Bozzo, E., Brethauer, D., Chilingarian, I. V., Coppejans, D. L. & 25 others, Ducci, L., Ferrigno, C., Fong, W., Götz, D., Guidorzi, C., Hajela, A., Hurley, K., Kuulkers, E., Laurent, P., Mereghetti, S., Nicholl, M., Patnaude, D., Ubertini, P., Banovetz, J., Bartel, N., Berger, E., Coughlin, E. R., Eftekhari, T., Frederiks, D. D., Kozlova, A. V., Laskar, T., Svinkin, D. S., Drout, M. R., MacFadyen, A. & Paterson, K., Feb 10 2019, In : Astrophysical Journal. 872, 1, A18.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

supernovae
radio
erg
engines
engine
1 Citation (Scopus)

An Unexpectedly Small Emission Region Size Inferred from Strong High-frequency Diffractive Scintillation in GRB 161219B

Alexander, K. D., Laskar, T., Berger, E., Johnson, M. D., Williams, P. K. G., Dichiara, S., Fong, W., Gomboc, A., Kobayashi, S., Margutti, R. & Mundell, C. G., Jan 10 2019, In : Astrophysical Journal. 870, 2, 67.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

scintillation
radio observation
afterglows
scattering
radio
4 Citations (Scopus)

A Search for Optical Emission from Binary Black Hole Merger GW170814 with the Dark Energy Camera

Doctor, Z., Kessler, R., Herner, K., Palmese, A., Soares-Santos, M., Annis, J., Brout, D., Holz, D. E., Sako, M., Rest, A., Cowperthwaite, P., Berger, E., Foley, R. J., Conselice, C. J., Gill, M. S. S., Allam, S., Balbinot, E., Butler, R. E., Chen, H. Y., Chornock, R. & 79 others, Cook, E., Diehl, H. T., Farr, B., Fong, W., Frieman, J., Fryer, C., García-Bellido, J., Margutti, R., Marshall, J. L., Matheson, T., Metzger, B. D., Nicholl, M., Paz-Chinchón, F., Salim, S., Sauseda, M., Secco, L. F., Smith, R. C., Smith, N., Vivas, A. K., Tucker, D. L., Abbott, T. M. C., Avila, S., Bechtol, K., Bertin, E., Brooks, D., Buckley-Geer, E., Burke, D. L., Rosell, A. C., Carrasco Kind, M., Carretero, J., Castander, F. J., D'Andrea, C. B., Da Costa, L. N., De Vicente, J., Desai, S., Doel, P., Flaugher, B., Fosalba, P., Gaztanaga, E., Gerdes, D. W., Goldstein, D. A., Gruen, D., Gruendl, R. A., Gutierrez, G., Hartley, W. G., Hollowood, D. L., Honscheid, K., Hoyle, B., James, D. J., Jeltema, T., Kent, S., Kuehn, K., Kuropatkin, N., Lahav, O., Lima, M., Maia, M. A. G., March, M., Menanteau, F., Miller, C. J., Miquel, R., Neilsen, E., Nord, B., Ogando, R. L. C., Plazas, A. A., Roodman, A., Sanchez, E., Scarpine, V., Schindler, R., Schubnell, M., Serrano, S., Sevilla-Noarbe, I., Smith, M., Sobreira, F., Suchyta, E., Swanson, M. E. C., Tarle, G., Thomas, D., Walker, A. R. & Wester, W., Jan 1 2019, In : Astrophysical Journal Letters. 873, 2, L24.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

dark energy
merger
light emission
cameras
energy
2 Citations (Scopus)

Follow-up of the Neutron Star Bearing Gravitational-wave Candidate Events S190425z and S190426c with MMT and SOAR

Hosseinzadeh, G., Cowperthwaite, P. S., Gomez, S., Villar, V. A., Nicholl, M., Margutti, R., Berger, E., Chornock, R., Paterson, K., Fong, W., Savchenko, V., Short, P., Alexander, K. D., Blanchard, P. K., Braga, J., Calkins, M. L., Cartier, R., Coppejans, D. L., Eftekhari, T., Laskar, T. & 6 others, Ly, C., Patton, L., Pelisoli, I., Reichart, D. E., Terreran, G. & Williams, P. K. G., Jul 20 2019, In : Astrophysical Journal Letters. 880, 1, L4.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

gravitational waves
merger
neutron stars
binary stars
afterglows