Erik Tollerud

Assistant Astronomer
Erik Tollerud Picture

Dr. Erik J. Tollerud is the project scientist of the STScI Data Analysis Tools Branch. In this role he serves as the primary contact and advocate for the scientific community in the development of data analysis tools produced by and for STScI's missions. This is supported by his role as one of the founding coordinators of the Astropy Project, the core library for astronomy with the Python programming language.

For his research, Dr. Tollerud focuses on Near-Field Cosmology. He is particularly interested in dwarf galaxies of the Local Group, both in their own right and as probes of the nature of dark matter. In this realm he is particularly interested in the interface between observations and theory, and how one can be used to inform or confront the other. He is also interested in applications of modern statistical and computational methods to enable new science in these (and other) areas.

Dr. Tollerud joined STScI in 2015 as a Giacconi Fellow, transitioning to permanent staff in 2017. Before that, he was a Hubble Fellow at the Yale University Astronomy Department. As a PhD student at UC Irvine, he worked with James Bullock and Elizabeth Barton. He is a member of the American Astronomical Society, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the Interational Astronomical Union.


PhD in Physics & Astronomy, University of California, Irvine
MS in Physics & Astronomy, University of California, Irvine
BS in Physics & Mathematics, University of Puget Sound


Research Topics: Local Group Galaxies; Galaxy Formation and Evolution; Resolved Stellar Populations; Cosmology


Professional Websites:

Professional Website


ORCID ID: 0000-0002-9599-310X


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