Julie Dahlstrom

  • Chair, Physics and Astronomy Department; Associate Professor of Physics and Astronomy
    Email Address:
    Office location:
    Straz Center 94

    Julie Dahlstrom came to Carthage in 2009 from the University of Chicago, Yerkes Observatory, where she was a postdoctoral researcher in observational astrophysics, specializing in high-resolution spectroscopy of stars and interstellar clouds as well as the abundances of elements produced in the Big Bang. During her years as a researcher, she authored or co-authored more than 50 articles appearing in refereed scientific journals and conference proceedings. Professor Dahlstrom was awarded the 1995 Robert J. Trumpler award of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific for her dissertation research and a 1994 Hubble Postdoctoral Fellowship of the Space Telescope Science Institute.

    Professor Dahlstrom is engaged with Carthage students in collaborative research to identify the chemical constituents of the interstellar gases from which stars and planets form. Her primary research focus is on high-resolution spectroscopy of the “diffuse interstellar bands,” a series of signatures of as-yet-unidentified molecules. The diffuse interstellar bands problem is a classic and long-standing problem of observational astrophysics, known since the 1920s. Partners in this research include astrophysicists and chemists at the University of Chicago, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the University of Colorado at Boulder, the Johns Hopkins University, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, and the Space Telescope Science Institute.

    In addition to teaching at Carthage, Professor Dahlstrom is a data specialist and instrument scientist for the Astrophysical Research Consortium’s echelle spectrograph on the 3.5m telescope at Apache Point Observatory in New Mexico. She retains close ties to Yerkes Observatory in Williams Bay, Wis., and has access to observational facilities there.

    • Ph.D. — Astronomy and Astrophysics, University of Chicago
    • M.S. — Astronomy and Astrophysics, University of Chicago
    • B.S. — Physics and Astronomy (dbl), Haverford College
    • PHY 1030 Astronomy
    • PHY 2200 General Physics I
    • PHY 2210 General Physics II
    • PHY 4100 Astrophysics
    • “Searching for Naphthalene Cation Absorption in the Interstellar Medium”, 
Searles, Justin; Destree, Joshua D.; Snow, Theodore P.; Salama, Farid; York, Donald G.; Dahlstrom, Julie, 2011, Astrophysical Journal, 732, 50
    • Studies of Diffuse Interstellar Bands V. Pairwise Correlations of Eight Strong DIBs and Neutral Hydrogen, Molecular Hydrogen, and Color Excess”,
Friedman, Scott D.; York, Donald G.; McCall, Benjamin J.; Dahlstrom, Julie; Sonnentrucker, Paule; Welty, Daniel E.; Drosback, Meredith M.; Hobbs, L. M.; Rachford, Brian L.; Snow, Theodore P., 2011, Astrophysical Journal, 727, 33