Indiana University
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Faculty | Eileen D. Friel

Eileen Friel Professor Emerita
Ph.D. Astronomy & Astrophysics,
University of California, Santa Cruz, 1986

Contact Information:

Department of Astronomy
Indiana University
Swain West 318
727 East Third Street
Bloomington, IN 47405
Email: efriel [at]

Biographical Information

Professor Friel joined the IU Astronomy faculty in 2011. She previously served as Director of Lowell Observatory, and was for many years the Executive Officer (Deputy Director) for the Division of Astronomical Sciences at the National Science Foundation. Prior to joining NSF, she was Director of the Maria Mitchell Observatory for 5 years and directed Research Experience for Undergraduate programs there and at CTIO in Chile. She was a NATO/NSF Postdoctoral fellow at the Observatoire de Paris, a Plaskett Fellow at the Herzberg Institute of Astrophysics in Canada, and the Beatrice Watson Parrent Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Hawaii.

She received her B.S. in Physics at the College of William and Mary, completed the Part III Maths Tripos at Cambridge University, and received her Ph.D. in Astronomy and Astrophysics from the University of California at Santa Cruz.

Research Interests

Professor Friel has broad research interests in stellar and galactic astronomy. Much of her recent research has involved using star clusters as chemical and dynamical probes of the Galactic disk and halo to address questions of the formation and evolution of the Milky Way galaxy and its stellar populations. She is a collaborator in the Gaia-ESO Survey, a public spectroscopic survey being carried out on the ESO VLT, and regularly uses the WIYN telescope for observational studies.

Past Teaching
  • A450:  Galactic Astrophysics
  • A530:  Galactic Astronomy
  • A540:  Stellar Atmospheres
  • A780:  Graduate Seminar on Astronomy with Archival Data Sets (Fall 2011)
  • A780:  Professional Development in Astronomy (Fall 2016)
  • A780:  Graduate Seminar on Writing in Astronomy (Fall 2017)

Selected Publications