Bruce Gordon Elmegreen (born 24 February 1950) is an American astronomer.[1]

Bruce Gordon Elmegreen
Born (1950-02-24) February 24, 1950 (age 69)
NationalityUnited States
CitizenshipUnited States
EducationUniversity of Wisconsin–Madison (1971, BS)
Princeton University (1975, PhD)
Spouse(s)Debra Elmegreen
AwardsDannie Heineman Prize for Astrophysics (2001)
Scientific career
InstitutionsHarvard University (1975-1978)
Columbia University (1978-1984)
IBM (1984-present)
Academic advisorsLyman Spitzer


Elmegreen was born in Milwaukee, and received his bachelor's degree in 1971 from the University of Wisconsin–Madison and his PhD in 1975 from Princeton University in astrophysics under Lyman Spitzer. From 1975 to 1978 he was a Junior Fellow at Harvard University. From 1978 to 1984 he was an assistant professor at Columbia University. Beginning in 1984 he has been employed at IBM doing research at the Thomas J. Watson Research Center.[2]

His research deals with interstellar gas with a focus on star formation in gaseous nebulae and large-scale structure of spiral galaxies. Using computer model simulations, he proved the existence of standing waves in spiral galaxies.

In 2001 Elmegreen received the Dannie Heineman Prize for Astrophysics.

Since 1976 he has been married to the astronomer Debra Meloy Elmegreen (born 1952), who is a professor at Vassar College. In 2013, they authored a paper together, "The Onset of Spiral Structure in the Universe", published in the Astrophysical Journal.[3]


  1. ^ biographical information from American Men and Women of Science, Thomson Gale 2004
  2. ^ Elmegreen CV, Instituto de Astrofisica de Canarias - IAC - General Information
  3. ^ Elmegreen, Debra Meloy; Elmegreen, Bruce G. (January 20, 2014). "The Onset of Spiral Structure in the Universe". The Astrophysical Journal. 781 (11): 11. arXiv:1312.2215. Bibcode:2014ApJ...781...11E. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/781/1/11.

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