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Johns Hopkins Astrophysicist Wins Sloan Fellowship

February 15, 2012

Astrophysicist Brice Ménard of The Johns Hopkins University has won a 2012 Sloan Research Fellowship to further support his research on extragalactic astrophysics and cosmology.

Administered by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, these fellowships seek to stimulate fundamental research by early-career scientists and scholars of outstanding promise by offering two-year $50,000 grants. Ménard is one of 126 young scientists and economists to receive the award this year in recognition of their potential to contribute to academic advancement. Since the Sloan Foundation began awarding fellowships in 1955, 38 have gone on to win Nobel Prizes in their careers.

“I am very honored to receive this award and appreciate the support of the Sloan Foundation for fundamental research. This grant will help expand the activities of my research group into new directions,” says Ménard, an assistant professor in the Henry A. Rowland Department of Physics and Astronomy at Johns Hopkins’ Krieger School of Arts and Sciences.

Brice Ménard

Brice Ménard

Ménard came to Johns Hopkins in 2010 from the Canadian Institute for Theoretical Astrophysics in Toronto, where he worked as a senior research associate since 2006. A researcher in the field of extragalactic astrophysics and cosmology, he aims at achieving a better understanding of how dark matter is distributed in space and how galaxies form and evolve. To garner new insights, Ménard analyses large data sets with millions of astronomical objects, and his work has led to the detection of gravitational magnification by dark matter around galaxies, the discovery of tiny grains of dust in the intergalactic space, and a better understanding on how light rays propagate throughout the universe.

Ménard is a joint-member of the Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe at Tokyo University. He earned his Ph.D. from the Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics and the Institut d’Astrophysique de Paris. He was a postdoctoral member at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, N. J.

“Dr. Ménard is pioneering the development of powerful new techniques to mine both the current and future sets of big astronomical data to reveal profound new insights into the universe,” says Daniel Reich, chair of the Department of Physics and Astronomy at The Johns Hopkins University. “We are very pleased that the Sloan Foundation has recognized his accomplishments and potential for future impact in the field of astrophysics. We look forward to great things from Dr. Ménard.”

In a news release issued today, Paul L. Joskow, President of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation said,

“These outstanding men and women are responsible for some of the most exciting science being done today. The Foundation is proud to support them during this pivotal stage of their careers.”

A digital color image of Ménard is available: contact Lisa DeNike at Lde@jhu.edu or call 443-287-9960.

For more information on The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation:


For more information on the Henry A. Rowland Department of Physics and Astronomy:



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