Michael C. McCarthy

picture McCarthy

Dr. Michael C. McCarthy was appointed in November 2021 as the Deputy Director at the Center for Astrophysics | Harvard & Smithsonian after serving in an acting capacity for the previous 18 months. He also is a Senior Physicist and serves as the Associate Director of the Atomic and Molecular Physics (AMP) Division. His research lies primarily in the area of high-resolution spectroscopy of highly reactive molecules of astronomical, chemical, and atmospheric interest. This research program has resulted in the astronomical detection of a significant number of 'non-terrestrial' molecules generally unknown or unfamiliar on Earth. McCarthy has co-authored over 250 peer-reviewed publications, given a number of invited talks, and has received external honors including an American Physical Society (APS) Fellowship (2012), the International Barbara Mez-Starck Prize (2016), and was an NSF Distinguished Lecturer in Mathematical and Physical Sciences (2018). He presently serves on the editorial boards of a number of journals, as well as various oversight or advisory committees.

Michael received a B.S. in Chemistry at the University of Alaska in 1986, and a PhD in Physical Chemistry from MIT in 1992. He then moved to the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics as a Center Fellow. In 1997, he joined the scientist staff being appointed the Yoram Avni Distinguished Research Astronomer.