Hubble image of the merging galaxy cluster Abell 520


Stephen Holland's Biography

Stephen Holland got his BSc in physics and astronomy from the University of Victoria in Canada in 1989. In 1991 he received his MSc from McMaster University with a thesis entitled A Photometric Study of the "Second Parameter" Globular Cluster Palomar 14. He went on to get his PhD from the University of British Columbia in 1998 with a thesis entitled The Globular Clusters and Halo of M31. This work was largely based on data from a successful Cycle 5 HST proposal where he was the principle investigator.

Upon graduating Dr Holland took up a post-doctoral position at the Department of Physics and Astronomy (på dansk) at Aarhus University (på dansk) in Århus, Denmark. From 1997 to 2000 he ran the Danish Centre for Astrophysics with the HST and conducted research on globular clusters in M31 and NGC 4594, stellar populations in NGC 205, and gamma-ray bursts. He also made an effort to learn Danish that had mixed results.

Moving into a new millenium Dr Holland was offered a post-doctoral position at Department of Physics at the University of Notre Dame in 2000. Between 2000 and 2003 he was a member of the High-z Supernova Search Team and worked with Peter Garnavich, Bob Kirshner, Adam Riess, and Brian Schmidt on observations confirming the recent discovery of dark energy and the accelerating universe. He also published several papers on gamma-ray bursts, their local environments, and their host galaxies. In 2001 Dr Holland spent time as a visiting researcher at the European Southern Observatory headquarters in Garching, Germany.

In 2003 Dr Holland joined NASA's Swift Gamma-Ray Burst Explorer mission as a member of the Swift Science Center, and the Swift UltraViolet Optical Telescope (UVOT) and Swift science teams. For the next eight years he developed UVOT analysis software, worked on UVOT calibration, provided user support to the astrophysics community, and supported the Swift mission. This work included developing products for the Swift Data Archive. During this period he continued to publish on gamma-ray bursts and co-authored many papers on gamma-ray bursts and supernova. In 2006 Dr Holland was invited to be a visiting researcher at the DARK Cosmology Centre of the Niels Bohr Institue (på dansk) in Copenhagen.

In 2011 Dr Holland worked part-time at the Swift Science Center and split his remaining time between two other projects at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. The first was a project at the Fermi Science Support Center to develop software that automated the analysis of gamma-ray burst data from the Fermi Gamma-Ray Burst Monitor. The second was software development for the NICER/SEXTANT project.

In 2012 Dr Holland joined the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) instrument team at the Space Telescope Science Institute to work on the ongoing calibration of the COS. His current work is developing software to automate the analysis of the time-dependent sensitivity changes in the COS and STIS. In addtion to programmatic work he is continuing his research on gamma-ray bursts, supernovae, and stellar populations.


Stephen Holland,
Most recently updated: June 11, 2012

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