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Masha Baryakhtar

Portrait de Masha Baryakhtar

Research Interests

I am primarily interested in understanding what lies beyond the Standard Model of particle physics, and trying to gain these insights in new ways. In the past I have worked on theories of new physics that can be tested at colliders, including supersymmetric and extra-dimensional theories -- that were thought to address the hierarchy problem -- and their signatures at the LHC. I am currently interested in pursuing novel, low-energy searches for weakly-coupled particles and forces (e.g. dark photons) that may make use of small-scale experimental techniques. Over the last several years have been studying what LIGO can teach us in the new era of gravitational-wave astronomy, and how we could potentially use it to search for new, ultralight particles around astrophysical black holes.

Positions Held

  • 2010-2015, Stanford Institute for Theoretical Physics, Stanford University, Ph.D.


  • Rising Stars in Physics, Selected Workshop Participant at MIT

Recent Publications

  • Black hole superradiance signatures of ultralight vectors, Masha Baryakhtar, Robert Lasenby, Mae Teo, Phys. Rev. D 96, 035019, arXiv: 1704.05081
  • Dark Kinetic Heating of Neutron Stars and An Infrared Window On WIMPs, SIMPs, and Pure Higgsinos, Masha Baryakhtar, Joseph Bramante, Shirley Weishi Li, Tim Linden, Nirmal Raj, arXiv: 1704.01577, accepted to Phys. Rev. Lett.
  • Black Hole Mergers and the QCD Axion at Advanced LIGO, Asimina Arvanitaki, Masha Baryakhtar, Savas Dimopoulos, Sergei Dubovsky, Robert Lasenby, Phys. Rev. D 95, 043001, arXiv: 1604.03958


  • Searching for Ultralight Particles with Black Hole Superradiance, Probing the dark sector and general relativity at all scales, Key Participant, CERN TH Institute, Geneva, Switzerland
  • Strong Gravity Universe Workshop, Sao Miguel, Portugal
  • Peyresq 22 Workshop, Peyresq, France
  • New Lampposts for Dark Matter Workshop, Eugene, OR
  • Cornell University University High Energy Physics Seminar, Ithaca, NY
  • University of Carleton Theoretical Physics Seminar, Ottawa, ON
  • University of Michigan High Energy Physics Seminar, Ann Arbor, MI
  • University of Minnesota High Energy Physics Seminar, Minneapolis, MN
  • Testing Gravity 2017 Conference, Vancouver, BC
  • TRIUMF Seminar, Vancouver, BC
  • University of Victoria Seminar, Victoria, BC
  • Particle-Astro-Nuclear Physics Seminar at Wayne State University, Detroit, MI
  • McGill High Energy Seminar, Montreal, QC
  • Experimental-Theory Remote Seminar at University of Washington
  • Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory Particle Theory Seminar, Berkeley, CA
  • Santa Cruz Institute for Particle Physics Seminar, UCSC, Santa Cruz, CA
  • Princeton Pheno Group Seminar, Princeton, NJ
  • Rising Stars in Physics Workshop, Selected Participant, MIT, Cambridge, MA
  • Invisibles 16 Workshop, Padova, Italy
  • TRIUMF Precision for New Discoveries Workshop, Vancouver, BC
  • Fermilab Theoretical Physics Seminar, Fermilab, IL
  • Argonne National Laboratory HEP Theory Seminar, Argonne, IL
  • University of Chicago HEP Lunch Seminar, Chicago, IL
  • Boston University Particle Physics Seminar, Boston, MA
  • Harvard Particle Physics Seminar, Cambridge, MA
  • MIT Nuclear and Particle Theory Seminar, Cambridge, MA
  • PIRSA:17020092, Observing Superradiance of Light Vector Particles, 2017-02-09, Strong Gravity
  • PIRSA:14100049, Discovering the QCD Axion with Black Holes and Gravitational Waves, 2014-10-28, Particle Physics