Dr. Tomer Shenar

School of Physics and Astronomy
ביה"ס לפיזיקה ואסטרונומיה סגל אקדמי בכיר


In my research, I strive to understand how massive stars evolve, from birth to final core-collapse into neutron stars or black holes. I do this by collecting multi-wavelength spectroscopic, photometric, and interferometric data with the world's largest telescopes such as the Very Large Telescope (VLT). I develop and utilize state-of-the-art model atmospheres and spectral disentangling algorithms to derive robust constraints on the progenitors of compact objects (Wolf-Rayet stars, OB-type stars, stripped stars). My research focuses on massive binaries, which represent the most common configuration of massive stars.

I am a co-developer of the Potsdam Wolf-Rayet (PoWR) code and spectral disentangling software. ​ I am a consortium member of 4MOST and MSE.

I am a consortium member of European Extremely Large Telescope’s (E-ELT) 2nd light instrument MOSAIC, leading to the direct involvement of TAU in the development of the largest telescope currently built.

I am the PI of the Binarity at LOw Metallicity (BLOeM) ESO Large Programme.

Key research interests include:

  • Spectroscopy of massive stars and binaries
  • Advanced evolutionary stages of massive stars (e.g., Wolf-Rayet stars)
  • Search for black holes in binaries
  • Post-interaction binaries (e.g., Oe/Be stars, helium stars)
  • Development of model atmospheres for massive stars
  • Massive stars at low metallicit


  • BS.c in physics & mathematics, Technion, 2010

  • MSc in astrophysics, University of Potsdam, Germany, 2013

  • PhD in astrophysics (summa cum laude), University of Potsdam, Germany, 2017

Academic Appointments

  • Senior lecturer, Tel Aviv University, Dept. of astrophysics, 2023

Awards and Prizes

  • Dean’s list of honors, Technion, 2008 – 2009

  • Richard-Winter scholarship, U. Potsdam, Germany, 2013

  • Award for outstanding achievements of international students (DAAD), U.Potsdam, Germany, 2013

  • Physics MSc thesis award of the Berlin Physics Society (PGzB), U. Potsdam, Germany, 2014

  • Physics PhD thesis award (Carl-Ramsauer) of the Berlin Physics Society (PGzB), U. Potsdam, Germany, 2017

  • KU Leuven Research Council Award, KU Leuven, Belgium, 2021

  • Senior postdoctoral researcher fellowship of the Research Foundation Flanders (FWO), KU Leuven, Belgium, 2021

  • Marie Curie fellowship (EU), University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands, 2021

  • Atracción de Talento program of commune Madrid (group leader), El Centro de Astrobiología, Spain

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