Institute of Astronomy

Dr Jay Farihi


The bulk of my research can be described as digging in the stellar graveyard, because I use stellar remnants as a tool to understand the formation and evolution of planetary systems and binaries, especially low mass objects such as brown dwarfs, planets, and asteroids.  From time to time I focus on the stellar remnants themselves, as laboratories of extreme physics and probes of Galactic history.  My research follows these themes:

  • Disks, planets, and asteroids in evolved stellar systems
  • Formation and evolution of low-mass stellar / substellar companions
  • Ultracool white dwarf atmospheres and Galactic age constraints

Selected papers

Possible Signs of Water and Differentiation in a Rocky Exoplanetary Body, J. Farihi, C. S. Brinkworth, B. T. Gänsicke, J. Girven, T. R. Marsh, D. W. Hoard, B. Klein, D. Koester 2011, ApJL, 728, L8

White Dwarf - Red Dwarf Systems Resolved with the Hubble Space Telescope. II. Full Snapshot Survey Results, J. Farihi, D. W. Hoard, S. Wachter 2010, ApJS, 190, 275

Rocky Planetesimals as the Origin of Metals in DZ Stars, J. Farihi, M. A. Barstow, S. Redfield, P. Dufour, N. C. Hambly 2010, MNRAS, 404, 2123

Infrared Signatures of Disrupted Minor Planets at White Dwarfs, J. Farihi, M. Jura, B. Zuckerman 2009, ApJ, 694, 805

Low Luminosity Companions to White Dwarfs (thesis work), J. Farihi, E. E. Becklin, B. Zuckerman 2005, ApJS, 161, 394

A Possible Brown Dwarf Companion to the White Dwarf GD1400, J. Farihi, M. Christopher 2004, AJ, 128, 1868


  • Ernest Rutherford Fellow, IoA Cambridge
  • Research Associate, University of Leicester
  • Postdoctoral Researcher, Gemini Observatory


  • Ph.D. in Physics, University of California, Los Angeles
  • M.S. in Physics, University of California, Los Angeles
  • B.S. in Mathematics, California Polytechnic University, Pomona
  • B.S. in Physics, California Polytechnic University, Pomona
Page last updated: 30 May 2013 at 11:11