Faculty Directory

Department Chair: Enrico Ramirez-Ruiz Department Manager: Jenna Scarpelli
Associate Chair: Ruth Murray-Clay Graduate Advisor: David Sugg
Undergraduate Program: Jonathan Fortney Graduate Program: Brant Robertson
Jonathan J Fortney
  • Title
    • Professor
  • Division Physical & Biological Sciences
  • Department
    • Astronomy & Astrophysics Department
  • Affiliations Earth & Planetary Sciences Department
  • Phone
    831-459-1312
  • Email
  • Fax
    831-426-3115
  • Website
  • Office Location Center for Adaptive Optics (CfAO) 205
  • Mail Stop UCO / Lick Observatory
  • Faculty Areas of Expertise Astrophysics, Astronomy

Summary of Expertise

Planetary Atmospheres
Planetary Interiors
Exoplanets
Brown Dwarfs

Research Interests

I try to understand different kinds of planets as classes of astrophysical objects. I am interested in characterizing planets to better understand their composition and how they evolve with time. I am mostly a modeler and theorist and I work very closely with observers. My work involves studying the atmosphere, interior, and thermal evolution of planets at ages young and old, within the solar system and around other stars, and at distances near and far from their parent stars.

I am involved in the Kepler Mission to find small transiting exoplanets close to stars and the Gemini Planet Imager (GPI) to obtain images and spectra of gas giant exoplanets farther from stars. I often collaborate with researchers in the high-pressure physics community to determine how our growing understanding of materials at high pressure affect our calculations of the structure of planets.

Biography, Education and Training

BS, Iowa State University, 1999
PhD, University of Arizona, 2004
National Research Council Fellow and Spitzer Fellow at NASA Ames Research Center, 2004-2007

Teaching Interests

Planets, Stars, and Planetary and Stellar Systems