Alenush Terian

Ālenush Teriān (Armenian: Ալենուշ Տէրեան; Persian: آلنوش طریان; also: آلنوش تریان‎; November 9, 1921 – March 4, 2011), was an Iranian-Armenian astronomer and physicist and is called 'Mother of Modern Iranian Astronomy'.[1]

Alenoush Terian
Ալենուշ Տէրեան.jpg
Alenoush Terian
Born(1921-11-09)9 November 1921
Died4 March 2011(2011-03-04) (aged 89)
Tehran, Iran
Resting place Doulab Cemetery
Alma materUniversity of Tehran, Sorbonne University
Known forMother of Modern Iranian Astronomy
Scientific career
FieldsPhysics, Astronomy
Academic advisorsKamaloddin Jenab

Early lifeEdit

She was born to an Armenian family in Tehran, Iran.[2] Her father, Arto, was a stage director, poet and translator (with the pen name Arizad meaning Born to Aryan) who had translated Shahnameh, from Persian to Armenian.[3][4] Her mother, Vartu, was a stage actress and director.[5]


Teriān graduated in 1947 in the Science Department of University of Tehran. She began her career in the physics laboratory of this university and was elected the chief of laboratory operations in the same year.

She signed for scholarship to study in France but Dr. Hesabi didn't accept it. He believed it's already enough for a woman to study this much.[3] At last she left Iran for France, by her father's financial support, where in 1956 she obtained her doctorate in atmospheric physics from Sorbonne University. Upon this she returned to Iran and became assistant professor in thermodynamics at University of Tehran. Later she worked in solar physics in the then West Germany for a period of four months through a scholarship that was awarded by the German government to University of Tehran. In 1964 Teriān became the first female professor of physics in Iran.

In 1966, Teriān became a member of the Geophysics Committee of the University of Tehran. In 1969 she was elected chief of the solar physics studies at this university and began to work in the solar observatory, of which she was one of the founders. Teriān retired in 1979. At the time of her death she was living in Tehran.[6]

Teriān's 90th birthday celebration in Tehran was attended by a number of Iranian parliamentarians and over 100 Iranian Armenians.[7]

Terian died on March 4, 2011, at the age of 90.[8]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "پیکر 'مادر نجوم ایران' تشییع شد". BBC Persian. Retrieved 2013-04-09.
  2. ^ Interview with Alenoush Terian, Farsnews Wire Service.
  3. ^ a b "An interview with Alenoush Terian". (in Persian). Archived from the original on 2012-08-01.
  4. ^ Janet D. Lazarian (2003). Encyclopedia of Iranian Armenians. Tehran: Hirmand Publisher. p. 426. ISBN 964-6974-50-3.
  5. ^ Janet D. Lazarian (2003). Encyclopedia of Iranian Armenians. Tehran: Hirmand Publisher. p. 427. ISBN 964-6974-50-3.
  6. ^ Alenoush Terian's Page in the Persian Wikipedia.
  7. ^ The Mother of the Iranian Astronomy honoured Archived 2010-11-13 at the Wayback Machine.
  8. ^ Iran’s First Female Astronomer Alenoush Terian Passes Away Archived 2011-03-11 at the Wayback Machine, The Armenian Weekly (March 5, 2011)

External linksEdit

  Media related to Alenush Terian (astronomer) at Wikimedia Commons