Niayesh Afshordi

I am an Astronomer, and a Physicist; in short I am an astrophysicist. I am an Assistant Professor in the Astrophysics and Gravitation group at the Department of Physics and Astronomy University of Waterloo . I am also an Associate Faculty in the Cosmology group at the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physic (PI) . I dabble in Astrophysics, Cosmology, and Physics of gravity. I am obsessed with observational hints that could help address problems in fundamental physics. In particular, I have found anomalous signatures of dark energy and dark baryons in the cosmic microwave background radiation. With other collaborators, I have also developed a curious theory for an incompressible dark energy, named cuscuton (after the Latin name for the parasitic plant of dodder ). I am currently trying my hand in solving the cosmological constant problem through a new theory of gravity that can surprisingly relate the formation of astrophysical black holes to today's acceleration of cosmic expansion . In a related inquiry, I am also exploring the relation of cuscuton and quantum gravity .
If you are interested in pursuing a MSc degree, please apply to the Perimeter Scholars International (PSI) masters program. If you are interested in working with me as a PhD student, please submit an application directly to my department at the University of Waterloo and indicate that you would like to be supervised by me. Perimeter Institute is committed to diversity within its community and I welcome applications from underrepresented groups.
Astrophysics, Cosmology, Physics of Gravity, Dark Energy, Dark Matter, Clusters of Galaxies, Structure Formation, Accretion Disks, Cosmic Microwave Background, Missing Baryons, Quantum Field Theory, Quantum Gravity, Lorentz Violation, Black Holes, Neutron Stars, Early Universe, Primordial Magnetic Field, Foundations of Quantum Mechanics, Gravitational Wave Astronomy, Pulsar Timing, COVID-19 Epidemiology, Medical Physics and Radiotherapy
  • Professor of Physics and Astronomy, Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Waterloo, 2022-present
  • Associate Professor of Physics and Astronomy, Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Waterloo, 2015-2022
  • Assistant Professor of Physics and Astronomy, Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Waterloo, 2009-2015
  • Postdoctoral Researcher, Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics, 2007-2009
  • ITC Postdoctoral Fellow, Institute for Theory and Computation (ITC), Harvard College Observatory, Harvard University, 2004-2007
  • Graduate Student, Department of Astrophysical Sciences, Princeton University, 2000-2004
  • Interdisciplinary Trailblazer Fund "Quantum Spacetime in the Cosmos: From Conception to Reality", University of Waterloo, 2022-2024
  • HQP Pooled Resources Competition, Arthur B. McDonald Institute, 2021-2022
  • Discovery Grant "Novel Astrophysical Windows into Fundamental Physics: From Big Bang to Black Holes, and the Dark Universe", Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), 2020-2025
  • Buchalter Cosmology Prize, 1st Place, Dr. Ari Buchalter, 2019
  • Buchalter Cosmology Prize, 3rd Place, Dr. Ari Buchalter, 2015
  • Early Researcher Award, Ministry of Research and Innovation, Province of Ontario, Canada, 2011
  • Professor M. K. Vainu Bappu Gold Medal 2008, Astronomical Society of India, 2008
  • Wen, R. Y., Hergt, L. T., Afshordi, N., & Scott, D. (2023). A cosmic glitch in gravity. arxiv:2311.03028v1
  • Group, L. I. S. A. C. W. W., Afshordi, N., Akçay, S., Seoane, P. A., Antonelli, A., Aurrekoetxea, J. C., . . . Zilhão, M. (2023). Waveform Modelling for the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna. arxiv:2311.01300v1
  • Dailey, C., Afshordi, N., & Schnetter, E. (2023). Reflecting boundary conditions in numerical relativity as a model for black hole echoes. Classical and Quantum Gravity, 40(19), 195007. doi:10.1088/1361-6382/acde2f
  • Abedi, J., Longo Micchi, L. F., & Afshordi, N. (n.d.). GW190521: Search for echoes due to stimulated Hawking radiation from black holes. Physical Review D, 108(4). doi:10.1103/physrevd.108.044047
  • Wu, D., Gao, P., Ren, J., & Afshordi, N. (2023). Model-agnostic search for the quasinormal modes of gravitational wave echoes. arxiv:2308.01017v1
  • Oshita, N., & Afshordi, N. (2023). From entropy to echoes: Counting the quasi-normal modes and the quantum limit of silence. Physics Letters B, 841, 137901. doi:10.1016/j.physletb.2023.137901
  • Chen, A. Y., & Afshordi, N. (n.d.). Outskirts of dark matter haloes. Physical Review D, 107(10). doi:10.1103/physrevd.107.103526
  • Dey, R., Micchi, L. F. L., Mukherjee, S., & Afshordi, N. (2023). Spectrogram correlated stacking: A novel time-frequency domain analysis of the Stochastic Gravitational Wave Background. arxiv:2305.03090v1
  • Borissova, J. N., Held, A., & Afshordi, N. (2023). Scale-invariance at the core of quantum black holes. Classical and Quantum Gravity, 40(7), 075011. doi:10.1088/1361-6382/acbc60
  • Afshordi, N., & Magueijo, J. (n.d.). Lower bound on the cosmological constant from the classicality of the early Universe. Physical Review D, 106(12). doi:10.1103/physrevd.106.123518
  • Arun, K. G., Belgacem, E., Benkel, R., Bernard, L., Berti, E., Bertone, G., . . . Zumalacárregui, M. (2022). New horizons for fundamental physics with LISA. Living Reviews in Relativity, 25(1). doi:10.1007/s41114-022-00036-9
  • Yang, T., Hudson, M. J., & Afshordi, N. (2022). A universal profile for stacked filaments from cold dark matter simulations. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 516(4), 6041-6054. doi:10.1093/mnras/stac2564
  • Robbins, M. P. G., Afshordi, N., Jamison, A. O., & Mann, R. B. (2022). Detection of gravitational waves using parametric resonance in Bose–Einstein condensates. Classical and Quantum Gravity, 39(17), 175009. doi:10.1088/1361-6382/ac7b05
  • Mylova, M., Moschou, M., Afshordi, N., & Magueijo, J. (2022). Non-Gaussian signatures of a thermal Big Bang. Journal of Cosmology and Astroparticle Physics, 2022(07), 005. doi:10.1088/1475-7516/2022/07/005
  • Abolfath, R., Baikalov, A., Bartzsch, S., Afshordi, N., & Mohan, R. (2022). The effect of non-ionizing excitations on the diffusion of ion species and inter-track correlations in FLASH ultra-high dose rate radiotherapy. Physics in Medicine & Biology, 67(10), 105005. doi:10.1088/1361-6560/ac69a6
  • Saraswat, K., & Afshordi, N. (n.d.). Spacing statistics of energy spectra: random matrices, black hole thermalization, and echoes. Journal of High Energy Physics, 2022(4). doi:10.1007/jhep04(2022)017
  • Afshordi, N., P. Holder, B., Bahrami, M., & Lichtblau, D. (2022). Diverse Local Epidemics Reveal the Distinct Effects of Population Density, Demographics, Climate, Depletion of Susceptibles, and Intervention in the First Wave of COVID-19 in the United States. In Mathematics of Public Health (pp. 1-23). Springer International Publishing. doi:10.1007/978-3-030-85053-1_1
  • Conklin, R. S., & Afshordi, N. (2021). Boltzmann Meets Lorentz: A Surrogate Model for Black Hole Echoes. arxiv:2201.00027v1
  • Chua, W. Z., & Afshordi, N. (2021). Electromagnetic albedo of Quantum Black Holes. Journal of High Energy Physics, 2021(7). doi:10.1007/jhep07(2021)006
  • Oshita, N., Afshordi, N., & Mukohyama, S. (2021). Lifshitz scaling, ringing black holes, and superradiance. Journal of Cosmology and Astroparticle Physics, 2021(05), 005. doi:10.1088/1475-7516/2021/05/005
  • Afshordi, N., Zheng, J., Olalekan Koiki, S., Holder, B., Bahrami, M., & Lichtblau, D. (2021). My Local COVID: History, Forecast and Mitigation Portal. http://mylocalcovid.uwaterloo.ca/
  • Longo Micchi, L. F., Afshordi, N., & Chirenti, C. (n.d.). How loud are echoes from exotic compact objects?. Physical Review D, 103(4). doi:10.1103/physrevd.103.044028
  • Saraswat, K., & Afshordi, N. (2021). Extracting Hawking radiation near the horizon of AdS black holes. Journal of High Energy Physics, 2021(2). doi:10.1007/jhep02(2021)077
  • Adshead, P., Afshordi, N., Dimastrogiovanni, E., Fasiello, M., Lim, E. A., & Tasinato, G. (n.d.). Multimessenger cosmology: Correlating cosmic microwave background and stochastic gravitational wave background measurements. Physical Review D, 103(2). doi:10.1103/physrevd.103.023532
  • Dey, R., & Afshordi, N. (n.d.). Echoes in the Kerr/CFT correspondence. Physical Review D, 102(12). doi:10.1103/physrevd.102.126006
  • Yang, T., Hudson, M. J., & Afshordi, N. (2020). How dark are filaments in the cosmic web?. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 498(3), 3158-3170. doi:10.1093/mnras/staa2547
  • Barausse, E., Berti, E., Hertog, T., Hughes, S. A., Jetzer, P., Pani, P., . . . Zumalacarregui, M. (2020). Prospects for fundamental physics with LISA. General Relativity and Gravitation, 52(8). doi:10.1007/s10714-020-02691-1
  • Oshita, N., Tsuna, D., & Afshordi, N. (n.d.). Quantum black hole seismology. II. Applications to astrophysical black holes. Physical Review D, 102(2). doi:10.1103/physrevd.102.024046
  • Oshita, N., Tsuna, D., & Afshordi, N. (n.d.). Quantum black hole seismology. I. Echoes, ergospheres, and spectra. Physical Review D, 102(2). doi:10.1103/physrevd.102.024045
  • Afshordi, N., Holder, B., Bahrami, M., & Lichtblau, D. (2020). Diverse local epidemics reveal the distinct effects of population density, demographics, climate, depletion of susceptibles, and intervention in the first wave of COVID-19 in the United States. doi:10.48550/arxiv.2007.00159
  • Afshordi, N., Holder, B., Bahrami, M., & Lichtblau, D. (2020). Diverse local epidemics reveal the distinct effects of population density, demographics, climate, depletion of susceptibles, and intervention in the first wave of COVID-19 in the United States. arxiv:2007.00159v1
  • Chen, A. Y., & Afshordi, N. (n.d.). Amending the halo model to satisfy cosmological conservation laws. Physical Review D, 101(10). doi:10.1103/physrevd.101.103522
  • Dey, R., Chakraborty, S., & Afshordi, N. (n.d.). Echoes from braneworld black holes. Physical Review D, 101(10). doi:10.1103/physrevd.101.104014
  • Yang, T., Boruah, S. S., & Afshordi, N. (2020). Gravitational potential from small-scale clustering in action space: application to Gaia Data Release 2. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 493(3), 3061-3080. doi:10.1093/mnras/staa441
  • Saraswat, K., & Afshordi, N. (2020). Quantum nature of black holes: fast scrambling versus echoes. Journal of High Energy Physics, 2020(4). doi:10.1007/jhep04(2020)136
  • Oshita, N., Wang, Q., & Afshordi, N. (n.d.). On reflectivity of quantum black hole horizons. Journal of Cosmology and Astroparticle Physics, 2020(04), 016. doi:10.1088/1475-7516/2020/04/016
  • Abedi, J., Afshordi, N., Oshita, N., & Wang, Q. (n.d.). Quantum Black Holes in the Sky. Universe, 6(3), 43. doi:10.3390/universe6030043
  • Abedi, J., Afshordi, N., Oshita, N., & Wang, Q. (2020). Quantum Black Holes in the Sky. arxiv:2001.09553v1
  • Wang, Q., Oshita, N., & Afshordi, N. (n.d.). Echoes from quantum black holes. Physical Review D, 101(2). doi:10.1103/physrevd.101.024031
  • Abedi, J., & Afshordi, N. (2020). Echoes from the Abyss: A Status Update. arxiv:2001.00821v1
  • Afshordi, N., Holder, B., Bahrami, M., & Lichtblau, D. (2020). Managing COVID-19 Pandemic across Geography and Demography. https://wolfr.am/COVID19Dash
  • Spectrogram correlated stacking: A novel time-frequency domain analysis of the Stochastic Gravitational Wave Background, Cosmology and Gravitation, 2023/04/24, PIRSA:23040163
  • Fundamental Physics vs. Fundamentalism, HISTORY, PHILOSOPHY & SOCIOLOGY OF COSMOLOGY and AS- TROPARTICLE PHYSICS CONFERENCE, Bonn, 2022/06/01
  • Stimulating Hawking Radiation of Gravitational Waves: From Theory to Observations, Quantum Simulations of Fundamental Physics, Virtual series, 2022/04/01
  • Stimulating Hawking Radiation of Gravitational Waves: From Theory to Observations, New horizons for (no-)horizon physics: from gauge to gravity and back, Galileo Galilei Institute, Florence, Italy, 2022/04/01
  • Einstein vs. Einstein: The Great War, Invited Cosmo Coffee Seminar, CERN, Switzerland, 2022/01/01
  • Einstein vs. Einstein: The Great War, Invited Gravity Seminar at Southampton University, Southampton University, UK, 2021/12/01
  • On Nothing, Alternative Gravities and Fundamental Cosmology - ALTECOSMO- FUN 21, Virtual Conference, 2021/09/01
  • On the origin of the LIGO "mystery" noise and the high energy particle physics desert, SUSY 2021, 2021/08/01
  • On the origin of the LIGO "mystery" noise and the high energy particle physics desert, Sixteenth Marcel Grossmann Meeting, Virtual Meeting, 2021/07/01
  • Black Holes, Unscripted, Invited talk, "Black Hole Microstructure", Virtual Conference, 2021/06/01
  • Black Holes, Unscripted, Copernicus Webinar Series, 2021/05/01
  • Into the Unknown, Invited Physics Colloquium, University of Northern Iowa, 2021/04/01
  • Cosmology of the Pandemic, Galaxies Journal Club, Institut de Astrophysique de Paris (IAP), 2021/03/01
  • Cosmology and Pandemic, National Gravity and Cosmology Symposium, Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, 2021/01/01
  • A New Way to Measure Mass in Astronomy, U-Penn Galactic Dynamics group meeting, U-Penn, 2020/12/01