Konstantin Batygin

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Konstantin Batygin
Konstantin Batygin smiling.jpg
Konstantin Batygin in 2017
Konstantin Yuryevich Batygin

(1986-03-23) 23 March 1986 (age 35)
NationalityRussian, American
EducationUniversity of California, California Institute of Technology
Known forPlanet Nine
Spouse(s)Olga A. Batygin (née Mishina)[1][2][3][4]
ChildrenA daughter (born 2012)[5]
Scientific career
FieldsPlanetary astronomy

Konstantin Batygin (Russian: Константи́н Юрьевич Батыгин) is a Russian-American astronomer and Associate Professor of Planetary Sciences at Caltech.[6] He is on the 2015 Forbes list of 30 scientists under 30 who are changing the world,[7] and has been named one of the "brilliant 10" people of 2016 by Popular Science magazine.[8]

Early life[edit]

Konstantin Batygin was born in Moscow, Soviet Union.[5] His father, Yuri Konstantinovich Batygin, worked as an accelerator physicist in the Moscow Engineering Physics Institute until 1994, when he moved along with his wife Galina[9] and their family to Wakō, Japan, and began working at the particle accelerator facility in RIKEN.[5] There, Konstantin graduated from a public Japanese elementary school, later attending a Russian embassy-based school and studying the martial art Gōjū-ryū.[5]

In late 1999, at age 13,[7] Konstantin Batygin moved to Morgan Hill, California[10] along with his family. He chose to attend the University of California, Santa Cruz for the beach and the chance to keep playing in his rock band, The Seventh Season.[5][11] During his sophomore year as an undergraduate at the university, he met Gregory P. Laughlin at a departmental party, and afterwards they began working together on the Solar System’s long-term dynamical evolution.[5] In June 2008, he graduated from UCSC with a bachelor's degree in astrophysics,[10] and won the Loren Steck Award for his thesis, "The Dynamical Stability of the Solar System".[9] Batygin subsequently went on to pursue graduate studies at Caltech, obtaining a Ph.D. in Planetary Science in 2012.


Batygin's research is primarily aimed at understanding the formation and evolution of planetary systems. In 2010, he and David J. Stevenson published a calculation,[12] which showed that hot Jupiters can become inflated as a consequence of Ohmic dissipation of electrical currents induced through an interaction between ionized atmospheric winds and the planetary magnetic field. In 2012, Batygin demonstrated that misalignments between stellar spin-axes and planetary orbits can arise from gravitational perturbations exerted onto protoplanetary disks by primordial companions stars.[13] In 2015, Batygin and Laughlin hypothesized that the Solar System once possessed a population of short-period planets that were destroyed by Jupiter's migration through the solar nebula.[14] In January 2016, Batygin and Michael E. Brown proposed the existence of a ninth planet in the Solar System.[11] In 2018, Batygin showed that the evolution of astrophysical disks can be modeled with the Schrödinger equation, a fundamental equation in quantum mechanics.[15]


  1. ^ "Faculty Footnotes: Konstantin Batygin". Engineering & Science. California Institute of Technology. 10 June 2015. Retrieved 28 January 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ Olga Batygin. "Outreach, gender, and science: my personal thoughts". LinkedIn. Retrieved 4 February 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. ^ "Olga A. Batygin". caltech.edu. Archived from the original on 11 February 2016. Retrieved 4 February 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  4. ^ "Olga Batygin". radaris.com. Retrieved 4 February 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  5. ^ a b c d e f Batygin, Konstantin. "About Me". gps.caltech.edu. Retrieved 22 January 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  6. ^ Batygin, Konstantin. "Home". gps.caltech.edu. Retrieved 21 January 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  7. ^ a b Hedgecock, Sarah (5 January 2015). "30 Under 30: Young Scientists Who Are Changing The World". Forbes. Retrieved 21 January 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  8. ^ Greenwood, Veronique; Willyard, Cassandra (7 September 2016). "The Man Whose Models Revealed A Possible Ninth Planet In Our Solar System". Popular Science. Retrieved 2016-09-07.
  9. ^ a b "Undergraduate awards ceremony caps annual Student Achievement Week". news.ucsc.edu. University of California Santa Cruz. 9 June 2008. Retrieved 28 January 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  10. ^ a b Stephens, Tim (9 June 2008). "Study by UCSC undergrad shows a solar system gone wild". news.ucsc.edu. University of California Santa Cruz. Retrieved 28 January 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  11. ^ a b Hand, Eric (20 January 2016). "Astronomers say a Neptune-sized planet lurks beyond Pluto". Science. Retrieved 21 January 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  12. ^ Batygin, Konstantin; Stevenson, David J. (1 January 2010). "Inflating Hot Jupiters with Ohmic Dissipation". The Astrophysical Journal Letters. 714 (2): L238. arXiv:1002.3650. Bibcode:2010ApJ...714L.238B. doi:10.1088/2041-8205/714/2/L238. ISSN 2041-8205. S2CID 13242980.
  13. ^ Batygin, Konstantin (2012). "A primordial origin for misalignments between stellar spin axes and planetary orbits". Nature. 491 (7424): 418–420. arXiv:1304.5166. Bibcode:2012Natur.491..418B. doi:10.1038/nature11560. PMID 23151584. S2CID 4398702.
  14. ^ Feltman, Rachel (23 March 2015). "Jupiter might have wrecked the first version of our solar system". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2016-08-02.
  15. ^ Mandelbaum, Ryan F. (5 March 2018). "Fundamental Equation of Quantum Physics Also Describes Rings and Disks in Space". Gizmodo. Retrieved 2018-03-05.

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