Dr Henric Krawczynski

Associate Professor

Department of Physics, Washington University in St. Louis

254 Compton, Physics Department, CB 1105, Washington University, One Brookings Drive
St. Louis
United States
PH: 011 (314) 935-8553



  • 1997 Ph.D., University of Hamburg, Physics
  • 1994 M.Sc., University of Hamburg, Physics

Research Interests

Dr. Krawczynski works in the field of High Energy Astrophysics. Dr. Krawczynski's group uses X-ray and gamma-ray observations to study the astrophysics of stellar mass and supermassive black holes. X-ray and gamma-ray observations make it possible to measure black hole masses and spins, to explore the physical conditions in the surroundings of black holes, and to study highly relativistic collimated plasma outflows (jets) originating in the surrounding of mass accreting black holes. Another research focus concerns the study of high-energy particle populations (acceleration and energy losses) in cosmic plasmas. Dr. Krawczynski's research uses the data from the satellite borne X-ray and gamma-ray telescopes Chandra, RXTE, Suzaku, and Fermi, and the ground based TeV gamma-ray telescope VERITAS.

Dr. Krawczynski's group works on several future X-ray and gamma-ray experiments. The Gravity and Extreme Magnetism SMEX (GEMS) mission will be launched in 2014 and will measure the polarization of soft (2-10 keV) X-rays. Dr. Krawczynski is member of the GEMS science team and leads the GEMS blazar topical science working group. The GEMS observations will be able to measure the masses and spins of galactic black holes, to constrain the structure and composition of the relativistic outflows from supermassive black holes, and to make sensitive tests of Lorentz Invariance. Dr. Krawczynski's group participates in the development of the proposed Energetic X-ray Imaging Survey Telescope EXIST. The EXIST mission is designed to detect the explosions of high-redshifts (z=8-14) stars. Dr. Krawczynski's group is leading the development of a proposed hard X-ray polarimetric mission. Among other science objectives, the balloon-borne experiment has the capability to constrain the structure of accretion disks around galactic black holes and to study particle acceleration processes and the propagation of X-ray photons close to highly magnetized neutron stars. Dr. Krawczynski groups participates in the R&D for the next-generation ground based Cherenkov Telescope Array (CTA) experiment. One of the main objectives of CTA will be to observe the decay of dark matter particles at the center of our Milky Way Galaxy and in the centers of nearby dwarf galaxies.

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