Representative image of a physics lab showing an optics set-up

Department of

Susmita Adhikari

Assistant Professor


Cosmology & Astrophysics, Dark Matter Halos and Structure Formation


Susmita Adhikari obtained her PhD in Astronomy at the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign. After her PhD she was a Postdoctoral fellow at The Kavli Institute of Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology, Stanford University. She then spent a year as a postdoc in a joint position between the Department of Astronomy & Astrophysics at The University of Chicago & Fermilab before she moved to IISER Pune.


Cosmology & Astrophysics, Dark Matter Halos and Structure Formation

Dark Matter Halos are the endpoint of structure formation in the Universe. All the galaxies and stars that we see in the Universe are thought to evolve within the potential wells of these halos. I study the formation and structure of dark matter halos and the co-evolution of galaxies within them. I use theory and simulations to interpret the observations of gravitationally bound objects, ranging from massive galaxy clusters to faint galaxies, primarily to learn about the underlying nature of dark matter and gravity. I am also interested in pursuing the connection between cosmic structure formation and the sources of gravitational waves.

Selected Publications

Adhikari, Shin, Jain, Hilton, Baxter, Chang, Wechsler, Battaglia et al. (DES and ACT collaboration) Probing galaxy evolution in massive clusters using ACT and DES: Splashback as a cosmic clock. The Astrophysical Journal, 923:37 (21pp), 2021 December 10 2)

Adhikari, Fishbach, Holz, Wechsler, Fang The binary-host connection: astrophysics of gravitational wave binaries from their host galaxy properties , Astrophys.J. 905 (2020) 21 3)

Adhikari, Sakstein, Jain, Dalal, Li, Splashback in galaxy clusters as a probe of cosmic expansion and gravity, JCAP 1811 (2018) 033. 4)

Adhikari, Dalal and Chamberlain, Splashback in accreting dark matter halos,JCAP 11 (2014) 019A. 5)

Banerjee, Adhikari, Dalal, More, Kravtsov et al. Signatures of Self-Interacting dark matter on cluster density profile and subhalo distributions, JCAP 02 (2020) 024.