Tracy Slatyer joined the MIT Physics Department in July 2013 after completing a three‐year postdoctoral fellowship at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton. Slatyer completed her undergraduate work with honors in theoretical physics at the Australian National University in 2005 and her doctoral work in physics at Harvard in 2010 under the direction of Douglas Finkbeiner.
Slatyer is a theoretical physicist who works on particle physics, cosmology and astrophysics. Her research interests are motivated by key particle physics questions, such as the search for new particles and forces and a microscopic description of dark matter, but she seeks answers to these questions by analyzing astrophysical data, including gamma-rays, X-rays, radio and the CMB. Slatyer has proposed a new kind of dark matter particle that accounts for the measured excess of cosmic ray positrons that could be due to dark matter annihilation. She has demonstrated strong skills in particle physics beyond the standard model, but also done significant and highly cited work in astrophysics and cosmology. Included in this work was a major contribution to high‐energy astrophysics that showed that the gamma ray “haze” seen by the Fermi Gamma Ray Space Telescope is, in fact, emission from two hot bubbles of relativistic plasma emanating from the Galactic Center. She has done similarly creative work combining particle physics modeling with cosmological N‐body simulations and calculations of ionization during the cosmic dark ages, and its effects on the cosmic microwave background.