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Dr. Lawlor at campus lion statue
Contact Information
Title: Associate Professor of Physics & Astrophysics
Office: 312 J Main Building
Phone: 610-892-1342
E-mail: tml10@psu.edu
Web site: http://www.personal.psu.edu/~tml10

Timothy Lawlor received a B.S. in Mathematics from Pennsylvania State University, a B.S. in Physics from East Stroudsburg University, an M.S. in Physics from Wichita State University and a Ph.D. in Physics and Astronomy from The University of Delaware.

Dr. Lawlor’s research in computational stellar astrophysics has been published in the Astrophysical Journal and Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. These papers included work on outbursting stars and so called Population III stars, believed to be the first stars to form during the early universe.  Also he has published a paper describing the mysterious star, V838 Monocerotis, which increased in brightness many fold over the course of just weeks.

Dr. Lawlor has been involved in astronomy education and public outreach, including serving as the director of the Friedman Observatory and webcasting astronomical phenomena such as the rare transit of Venus, broadcast from New Delhi, India. The images taken during this trip were used in undergraduate research projects.  Dr. Lawlor was named “Penn Stater of the Quarter” for his efforts involving outreach. He has also supervised a number of undergraduate research projects in both Astronomy and Physics. Aside from the transit of Venus (which is due to happen again in 2012 and then not again for over 120 years) undergraduate students have worked with Dr. Lawlor on projects involving observational astronomy, the physics of gravity, and the physics of friction.  Students are invited to contact Dr. Lawlor and explore their interests in physics and astronomy.

Media inquires about stellar astrophysics and general astronomical events are welcome.  Such events may include eclipses, comets, transits, etc. 

Recent Publications

J. MacDonald, T.M. Lawlor, N. Anilmis, and N.F. Rufo, 2013 “The extremely low metallicity star SDSS J102915+172927: a subgiant scenario,” Monthly Notices of the Royal   Astronomical Society, (May 11, 2013) 431 (2), 1425-1431

T.M. Lawlor, 2013, “Astronomy Exercises for the Artist: Van Gogh the Observer,” Astronomy Education Review, 12, 010202 (2013)

T.M. Lawlor, 2010 “The Early Universe Stars: A Review and Modeling Results for Population III Stars,” Penn State York Smith Symposium, 7, November 2010

T.M. Lawlor, T.R. Young, T.A. Johnson & J. MacDonald, 2008, “Evolution Populations III stars and their Supernova Explosions,” Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 384, 1583 

T.M. Lawlor & J. MacDonald, 2006, “The Mass of Helium in White Dwarf Stars and the Formation and Evolution of Hydrogen Deficient Post-AGB Stars,” Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 371, pp. 263-282.

T.M. Lawlor, 2005, “A New Model for V838 Mon: A Born-again Object with an Episode of Accretion,” Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 361, pp. 695-700.

T.M. Lawlor & J. MacDonald, 2003, “Sakurai’s Object, V605 Aquilae, and FG Sagittae: An Evolutionary Sequence Revealed,” Astrophysical Journal, 583, pp. 913-922.