Understanding Our Place in the Cosmos

Photo Credit: Paula Scattolon

Photo Credit: Paula Scattolon

Ray Jayawardhana investigates the origins and diversity of planetary systems and the prospects for life in the universe, using many of the world’s largest telescopes. A prolific researcher with more than 130 scientific papers to his credit, his discoveries have garnered widespread attention. Ray is also an award-winning writer and author of popular books. He speaks regularly to a broad range of audiences, and makes frequent media appearances.

Latest Book

  • An intriguing story, deftly told… with commendable brevity and clarity… comprehensive without being overburdened with detail or weighed down with too much theory… the book’s neat pen portraits of the men and women who tracked down the poltergeist particle give it added depth. Think of this as a great ghost story and a thumping good piece of science writing rolled into one
    Robin McKie, The Observer (UK)
  • Jayawardhana tells a whopping good ghost story. In recent years, researchers have discovered that neutrino particles, the poltergeists of physics that go right through us with nary a bump, promise to reveal much about the Earth, stars, and our cosmic origins. Beautifully written, Neutrino Hunters paints a vivid portrait of this new astronomy for the twenty-first century and the fascinating scientists who put it into place.
    Marcia Bartusiak, author of The Day We Found the Universe
  • [A] spry and readable primer … Jayawardhana likes to go big, and this time he does so by going extremely small, into the weird realm of subatomic particles.
    Karen Long , Los Angeles Times
  • Jayawardhana goes a step further than just tracking the scientific progress made in the neutrino search: he tells a story … paced perfectly, with some very in-depth topics covered in a compelling and easily understandable way … This is a well-written and gripping history.
    Nicky Guttridge, Sky at Night (UK)
  • With his typical blend of scientific insight and storytelling verve, Jayawardhana vividly, colorfully, and humorously captures the often offbeat characters who, over the past century, have pursued one of the most elusive—and significant—mysteries in the history of physics.
    Richard Panek, author of The 4% Universe

Featured Items

Listen Up, It’s Neutrino Time

Believe me, no other particle comes close to matching the incredibly colorful and quirky personality of the neutrino, or promises to reveal as much about a mind-boggling array of natural phenomena, both subatomic and cosmic.
— The New York Times

Yes, But What Are Neutrinos For?

A brief guide to what neutrinos could help us do next.
– The Boston Globe

Is Life on Earth Unique?

Researchers have confirmed that the ingredients of life, as well as potential habitats, exist beyond the Earth and are ubiquitous in our cosmic neighborhood.
– Physics World

Alien Life, Coming Slowly Into View

Is our warm, wet, rocky world, teeming with life, the exception or the norm? It is an important question for every one of us, not just for scientists.
— The New York Times