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 Asteroids, Comets & Satellites (3224): People
Zdenek  Sekanina's Picture
Jet Propulsion Laboratory
M/S 183-501
4800 Oak Grove Drive
Pasadena, CA 91109
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Zdenek Sekanina

  • B.S. in Astronomy (with honors), Charles University, Praha, Czechoslovakia (1959)
  • RNDr. in Astronomy, Charles University, Praha, Czechoslovakia (1963)
  • Ph.D. in Astronomy, Charles University, Praha, Czechoslovakia (1963)

Research Interests
  • Physics, evolution, and dynamics of comets
  • Physics and dynamics of meteors and fireballs
  • Physics and dynamics of interplanetary matter

Professional Experience
  • Jet Propulsion Laboratory (1980-present)
    • Principal Scientist, Earth and Space Sciences Division (1999-present)
    • Senior Research Scientist, Earth and Space Sciences Division (1984-present)
    • Research Scientist, Earth and Space Sciences Division (1981-1984)
    • Member, Technical Staff, Earth and Space Sciences Division (1980-1981)
  • Visiting Scientist, European Southern Observatory, Garching bei Munchen, Germany (1997)
  • Physicist, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (1969-1980)
  • Associate Director, Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams, International Astronomical Union (1970-1980)
  • Associate, Harvard College Observatory (1970-1980)
  • Visiting Scientist, Institut d' Astrophysique, Universite de Liege, Cointe-Ougree, Belgium (1965, 1968-1969)
  • Scientific Collaborator, Center for Numerical Mathematics, Faculty of Mathematics and Physics, Charles University, Praha, Czechoslovakia (1967-1968)
  • Visiting Scientist, Hamburger Sternwarte, Hamburg-Bergedorf, Germany (1966)
  • Astronomer, Stefanik Observatory, Prague, Czechoslovakia (1959-1966)

Selected Awards
  • Frantisek Nusl Prize by the Czech Astronomical Society (2006)
  • NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal (2005)
  • NASA Group Achievement Award, Stardust Flight Team (2005)
  • NASA/JPL Certificate of Recognition (Stardust Mission) (2004)
  • NASA Group Achievement Award, Stardust Camera Anomaly Team (2002)
  • Elected honorary member of the Czech Astronomical Society (2001)
  • Elected honorary (foreign) member of the Learned Society of the Czech Republic (equivalent to U.S. National Academy) (1996)
  • NASA Exceptional Scientific Achievement Medal (1985)
  • Outstanding Scientific Performance Certificate, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (1980)
  • Minor Planet No. 1913 named Sekanina, lvIinor Planet Center, International Astronomical Union (1976)

Selected Publications
  1. Sekanina, Z., and P. W. Chodas, Origin of the Marsden and Kracht Groups of Sunskirting Comets. I. Association with Comet 96P/Machholz and Its Interplanetary Complex. Astrophys. J. Suppl. Ser. 161, 551-586, 2005.
  2. Sekanina, Z., Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann: Nucleus Fragmentation, Its Light-Curve Signature, and Close Approach to Earth in 2006. Internat. Comet Quart. 27, 225-240, 2005.
  3. Sekanina, Z., D. E. Brownlee, T. E. Economou, A. J. Tuzzolino, and S. F. Green, Modeling the Nucleus and Jets of Comet 81P/Wild 2 Based on the Stardust Encounter Data. Science 304, 1769-1774, 2004.
  4. Sekanina, Z., and P. W. Chodas, Fragmentation Hierarchy of Bright Sungrazing Comets and the Birth and Orbital Evolution of the Kreutz System. I. Two-Superfragment Model. Astrophys. J. 607, 620-639, 2004.
  5. Sekanina, Z., Erosion Model for the Sungrazing Comets Observed with the Solar and Hcliospheric Observatory. Astrophys. J. 597, 1237-1265, 2003.
  6. Sekanina, Z., A Model for Comet 81P/Wild 2. J. Geophys. Res. 108, E10, 8112, 2003.
  7. Sekanina, Z., P. W. Chodas, M. Tichy, J. Ticha, and M. Kocer, Peculiar Pair of Distant Periodic Comets C/2002 A1 and C/2002 A2 (LINEAR). Astrophys. J. 591, L67-L70, 2003.
  8. Sekanina, Z., Statistical Investigation and Modeling of Sungrazing Comets Discovered With the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory. Astrophys. J. 566, 577-598, 2002.
  9. Sekanina, Z., E. Jehin, H. Boehnhardt, X. Bonfils, O. Schuetz, and D. Thomas, Recurring Outbursts and Nuclear Fragmentation of Comet C/2001 A2 (LINEAR). Astrophys. J. 572, 679-684, 2002.
  10. Sekanina, Z., Runaway Fragmentation of Sungazing Comets Observed With the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory. Astrophys. J. 576, 1085-1089, 2002.
  11. Sekanina, Z., and P. W. Chodas, Common Origin of Two Major Sungrazing Comets. Astrophys. J. 581, 760-769, 2002.
  12. Sekanina, Z., M. S. Hanner, E. K. Jessberger, and M. N. Fomenkova, Cometary Dust. In: Interplanetary Dust, E. Grun, B. A. S. Gustafson, S. F. Dermott, and H. Fechtig, Eds., Springer, Heidelberg, Germany, pp. 95-161, 2001.
  13. Sekanina, Z., and H. Boehnhardt, Dust Morphology of Comet Hale-Bopp (C/1995 O1). II. Introduction of a Working Model. Earth Moon Plan. 78, 313-319, 1999.
  14. Sekanina, Z., Detection of a Satellite Orbiting the Nucleus of Comet Hale-Bopp (C/1995 O1). Earth Moon Plan. 77, 155-163, 1999.
  15. Sekanina, Z., Evidence for Asteroidal Origin of the Tunguska Object. Planet. Space Sci. 46, 191-204, 1998.
  16. Sekanina, Z., P. W. Chodas, and D. K. Yeomans, Secondary Fragmentation of Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 and the Ramifications for the Progenitor's Breakup in July 1992. Planet. Space Sci. 46, 21-45, 1998.
  17. Sekanina, Z., Modeling the Diurnal Evolution of a Dust Feature in Comet Hale-Bopp (1995 O1). Astrophys. J. 494, L121-L124, 1998.

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