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Christopher Walter

Professor of Physics
Box 90305, Durham, NC 27708-0305
271 Physics, Duke University, Durham, NC 27708


I am a professor in the physics department studying particle physics and cosmology. I try to understand both the nature of the ghostly particles called neutrinos in giant detectors deep underground, and why the expansion of the universe is accelerating using telescopes on top of mountains.   My background and training is originally in particle physics and I was part of the team that showed the sub-atomic particles called neutrinos have mass.  The leader of our team, T. Kajita was co-awarded the 2015 Nobel Prize in Physics for this discovery which cited the work of our collaboration.   I also began the effort in observational cosmology at Duke, joining the Vera C. Rubin Observatory, a giant telescope under construction in Chile designed to make a 10 year, three dimensional survey of the entire visible sky. Using the Rubin Observatory, we will focus on examining billions of galaxies, along with supernovae and other astronomical probes to try to determine the nature of the mysterious “Dark Energy” which is unaccountably causing the universe to pushed apart at a faster and faster rate.

Current Appointments & Affiliations

Professor of Physics · 2017 - Present Physics, Trinity College of Arts & Sciences

Education, Training & Certifications

California Institute of Technology · 1997 Ph.D.
California Institute of Technology · 1991 M.S.
University of California, Santa Cruz · 1989 B.A.