Shara, Michael main content.

Michael Shara

Michael Shara 2016 pic

Curator, Department of Astrophysics, Division of Physical Sciences
Professor, Richard Gilder Graduate School

Curriculum Vitae (short version)


  • Tel Aviv University, Ph.D., 1977
  • University of Toronto, M.Sc., 1973
  • University of Toronto, B.Sc., 1971

Research Interests

Dr. Shara's research interests include the structure and evolution of novae and supernovae; collisions between stars and the remnant descendants of those collisions; and the populations of stars inhabiting star clusters and galaxies. He frequently observes with the Hubble Space Telescope and other large ground-based telescopes. His research team at the museum is currently surveying our Milky Way galaxy for all of its pre-supernova stars and black hole binaries. He also studies the evolution of nova binary stars over billions of years, and has recently shown that metamorphosis occurs between different types of cataclysmic binary stars.


Shara, M., Mikołajewska, J., Caldwell, N., Iłkiewicz, K., Drozd, K., Zurek, D.

The first transition Wolf-Rayet WN/C star in M31

Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 455, 3453 – 3457 (2016)


Shara, M., Hurley, J. R., Mardling, R.A.

Dynamical Interactions Make Hot Jupiters in Open Star Clusters

Astrophysical Journal 816, 59-66 (2016)


Shara, M., Zurek, D., Schaefer, B., Bond, H., Godon, P., Mac Low, M.-M., Pagnotta, A., Prialnik, D., Sion, E., Toraskar, J., Williams, R.

HST Images Flash Ionization of Old Ejecta by the 2011 Eruption of Recurrent Nova T Pyxidis

Astrophysical Journal 805, 148-155 (2015)


Mikolajewska, J., Caldwell, N. and Shara, M.

First Detection and Characterization of Symbiotic stars in M31

Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 444, 586-599 (2014)


Shara, M., Bibby, J., Zurek, D., Crowther, P., Moffat, A. and Drissen, L.

The Vast Population of Wolf-Rayet and Red Supergiant Stars in

M101: I. Motivation and First Results

Astronomical Journal 146, 162- 174 (2013)


J. R. Hurley and M.M. Shara

A Direct N-body model of core-collapse and core oscillations

Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 425, 2872- 2879 (2012)


J. Kalirai et al (including M.M. Shara)

A Deep, Wide-field, and Panchromatic View of 47 Tuc and the SMC with HST:

Observations and Data Analysis Methods

Astronomical Journal 143, 11-32 (2012)


K.A. Woodley et al (including M.M. Shara)

The Spectral Energy Distributions of White Dwarfs in 47 Tucanae:

The Distance to the Cluster

Astronomical Journal 143, 50- 61 (2012)


M.M. Shara, T. Mizusawa, P. Wehinger, D. Zurek, C.D.  Martin, J.D. Neill, K. Forster, M. Seibert

AT Cnc: A Second Dwarf Nova with a Classical Nova Shell

Astrophysical Journal 758, 121 (2012)


M.M. Shara, J.K. Faherty, D. Zurek, A.F.J. Moffat, J. Gerke, R. Doyon,  E. Artigau, and L. Drissen

A Near-Infrared Survey of the Inner Galactic Plane for Wolf-Rayet Stars II. Going Fainter: 71 More New WR Stars

The Astronomical Journal 143, 149-170 (2012)


W. Li et al (including M.M. Shara)

Exclusion of a Luminous Red Giant as a Companion Star to the Progenitor of Supernova SN 2011fe

Nature 480, 348-350 (2011)


B.E. Schaefer, A. Pagnotta, et al (including M.M. Shara)

Eclipses during the 2010 Eruption of the Recurrent Nova U Scorpii

Astrophysical Journal 742, 113- (2011)


J.E. Gizis, A.J. Burgasser, J.K. Faherty, P.J. Castro and M.M. Shara

WISEP J180026.60+013453.1: A nearby late-L Dwarf near the Galactic Plane

 Astronomical Journal 142, 171- 174 (2011)


J. Hurley, S. Aarseth and M. M. Shara

The Core Binary Fractions of Star Clusters from Realistic Simulations

Astrophysical Journal 665, 707-718 (2007)


M. M. Shara, C. Martin, M. Seibert, R. M. Rich, S. Salim, D. Reitzel, D. Schiminovich, C. Delyannis, A. Sarrazine, N. Brosch, S. Lepine, D. Zurek, O. de    Marco, G. Jacoby  

An Ancient Nova Shell Surrounds the Dwarf Nova Z Cam

Nature 446, 159-162 (2007)

Teaching Experience

Faculty Appointments

  • AMNH Masters of Arts in Teaching Program
  • Adjunct Professor, Department of Astronomy, Columbia University, 1999-present
  • Visiting Professor, Department of Astronomy, Columbia University, 1993

Courses Taught

  • Stellar Structure and Evolution, Graduate Course, Columbia University, Fall 2014

Graduate Advisees

  • Graham Kanarek, Columbia University
  • Kathryn Stanonik, Columbia University

Graduate Committees

External Links