Skip Navigation

James Wallace

Photo of James Wallace


4800 Oak Grove Drive
M/S 306-388 Pasadena, CA 91109





Curriculum Vitae:

Click here

Member of:

Exoplanet Discovery and Science


Kent designs and builds optical instrumentation for astronomy. The science goal of these instruments is the detection of exoplanets and exoplanet  life. Astronomical instrumentation work includes:  the Palomar Testbed Interfereometer, the Palomar adaptive optics system,  the Keck Interferometer, and the Gemini Planet Imager (GPI). Most recently he has collaborated with Caltech on the developement of the Keck Fiber Injection Unit. He has been developing the Zernike Wavefront Sensor for precision wavefront control for high-contrast imaging.


  • BS: Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology
  • MS: University of Rochester
  • PhD: University of Arizona (in progress)

Community Service

  • WFIRST Review Board
  • Reviewer for OSA
  • SPIE

Research Interests

Wavefront sensing, novel optical methods and instrumentation, exoplanet detection.

Selected Awards

  • NASA Honors Award: WFIRST Coronagraph TechDev Team 2018
  • NASA Honors Award: Exoplanet Laser Frequency Comb Team 2017

Selected Publications

1. Ruane, G., Wang, J., Mawet, D., Jovanovic, N., Delorme, J.-R., Mennesson, B., and Wallace, J. Kent, “Efficient spectroscopy of exoplanets at small angular separations with vortex fiber nulling”, The Astrophysics Journal, Vol. 867, Issue 2, p. 143 (2018)

2. Bottom, M., Wallace, J. Kent, Bartos, R.D., Shelton, J.C., and Serabyn, E. “Speckle suppression and companion detection using coherent differential imaging”, Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 464, Issue 3, pp. 2937-2951 (2016)

3. Serabyn, E., Wallace, J. Kent, and  Mawet, D., “Speckle-phase measurement in a tandem-vortex coronagraph”, Applied Optics, Vol. 50, Issue 28, pp. 5453-5456 (2011).